'Choices have consequences': Kwale Governor faults Finance Bill withdrawal

Governor of Kwale County Fatuma Mohamed Achani.

Photo credit: File| Nation Media Group

Kwale Governor Fatuma Achani has raised concern about development projects in Kwale stalling after the withdrawal of the Finance Bill 2024.

Ms Achani, who defended legislators who had voted ‘yes’ to passing the Bill said their move was focused on ensuring there are proper projects implemented that will bring development to Kwale County.

This comes amidst criticism by residents who earlier held protests that were against the Bill.

Speaking in Ukunda, Ms Achani said she persuaded Kwale MPs to support the Bill due to the numerous national government projects that had stalled in the county which required money to be completed.

"I told my MPs to pass that Bill because we also need funds. Our projects, which have been delayed like the Funzi and Mwachande bridges and the Kwale- Kinango road, would have been completed if the Bill had passed. The Bill was not passed for their own personal interests as some Kwale residents claim,” Ms Achani said.

She explained that through the Bill, Kwale County was set to receive Sh 1.2 billion, which would have been a significant amount for development.

Some of this money, she said, would have gone to the county government and MPs' offices through the Constituency Development Funds (CDF).

"For now, there are projects that will have to be stopped, and it is our people who will face the repercussions. Kwale is not like other counties in the country such as Kiambu or Mombasa; our needs are crucial and different," Ms Achani stated.

She further pointed fingers at local Civil Society Organizations (CSOs) for funding and organizing the protests in the county, which led to huge losses.

On his part, Kinondo Ward MCA Juma Maone urged Kwale County residents to give their leaders time to work, explaining that their choice was for the sake of development.

"If work is being done well here, what’s the problem with them supporting the Bill?" Mr Maone asked.

However, leaders from the Azimio faction in Kwale criticized Ms Achani and the MPs who supported the finance Bill, saying they did so for personal reasons.

Led by former Msambweni MP Candidate Omar Boga, they argued that residents should ensure that every leader who supported the finance Bill is not re-elected in 2027.

"All those leaders must go home because they have not prioritized our interests. We should not be deceived while there are still many challenges and developments that have not been achieved to help our residents,” Mr Boga said.

This comes as demonstrations in the county last week were disrupted by criminal youth who harassed businesses and robbed residents.

Ms Achani urged the youth to stop the protests, saying the situation affects the tourism sector, which is a major source of employment in the county.