The best-performers in the utilisation of constituency development funds have invested in projects ranging from construction of schools from scratch to connecting police cells with DStv for suspects to watch football while in remand and building a public swimming pool.
Others have invested in 24-hour playgrounds, buses for all secondary schools in the area, motorcycles for all assistant chiefs and chiefs to enhance security and “jobless corner” sheds where the multitude of unemployed youth share experiences as they look for jobs.
The innovative approach to development by these members of Parliament is contained in performance contract evaluation reports done by the National Government Constituencies Development Fund Board (NGCDF), the body that oversees the effective and efficient management of CDF funds.
In a report launched last month, Kasipul and Kibra maintained their positions as the best-performing constituencies. They are the only constituencies that meet the “Very Good” criterion.
“The purpose of this ranking is to tease the various constituencies to compete with one another so that they can improve service delivery to taxpayers,” said the NGCDF secretariat acting CEO, Mr Yusuf Mbuno.
Also in top 20 are Embakasi West, Matungu, Mathare, Kitui West, Kitui Central, Rabai, Juja and Kimilili. Others are Matuga, Makadara, Webuye West, Githunguri, Baringo South, Mvita, Mwingi West, Kasarani, Ndaragwa and Njoro.
WORK FOR THE PEOPLE
“MPs have been referred to as pigs, hyenas and thieves,” Kasipul MP Oyugi Magwanga told the Nation. “But there are some of us who tirelessly work for the people.”
This year, the board also ranked the top performers from every region and the most improved ones nationally.
Kitui South, Soy, Ganze, Embakasi North, Mosop, Dagoretti South, Makadara, Bomachoge Borabu and West Mugirango were ranked, in that order, as the most improved constituencies.
Kibra MP Ken Okoth, the son of a single mother taught by well-wishers from Kibera slums because his parent could not afford to pay his school fees, attributed his constituency’s success to large-scale investment in education.
“We mostly fund major projects whose impact will be long-term,” said Mr Okoth. “As part of our development strategy, we shy away from funding small-scale projects like matatus and boda boda sheds.”
In Kibra, CDF cash is not released for a specific project if the entire budget has not been met.
Guided by the slogan “Elimu Kwanza”, Kibra CDF has, since 2013, funded construction of three secondary schools from scratch and refurbished five out of nine public primary schools.
The MP credits the success story to the chairperson of the Kibra CDF Board, Mrs Leah Asego, a former teacher at Olympic Primary School.