Raila backtracks on CDF, calls MPs to meeting
NAIROBI, Kenya, Feb 22- Opposition leader Raila Odinga now says he is set to meet with Members of Parliament to deliberate on the future of the Constituencies Development Fund (CDF), just a day after he declared that devolution had rendered CDF irrelevant.
This was after the High Court declared the Constituencies Development Fund Act 2013 as defective and therefore unconstitutional.
Odinga says similar meetings shall be held with Senators and Governors whom the court has said must be involved in the design and implementation of the new CDF system.
In a statement, Odinga said he had tasked the Committee of Experts of the Okoa Kenya Movement to draft proposals of amendments that will be part of the negotiations to secure and entrench the CDF in the Constitution.
“In the meantime, we have tasked the Committee of Experts of the Okoa Kenya Movement to draft proposals of amendment that will be part of the negotiations to secure and entrench the CDF in the Constitution,” he stated.
He also revealed that, “As part of the proposals made by Okoa Kenya, we have created a Ward Development Fund to cater for issues concerning development at the ward.”
“When these proposals were made, CDF was in existence and was in consideration as the ward proposals were crafted. We believe that a place still exists for CDF but it must be aligned to the Constitution via referendum in the same way we plan to create the Ward Development Fund.”
He further insisted that the matter can only be resolved through a referendum.
On Saturday, the former Prime Minister said that under the current Constitution, resources should be channeled towards the County Government to avoid duplication of roles. He, however, said that proper measures must be put in place to ensure accountability.
“CDF has done wonderful things when we had a centralised government but now we have a new Constitution which introduced devolution as the core principle,” he pointed out.
“There is need to revisit some of these Acts which are not consistent with the new Constitution.”
Embakasi South Member of Parliament Irshad Sumra who was attending a church service with the former Prime Minister at Imara Daima however warned that the fund will be miss-appropriated if placed under Governors.