MPs to adopt report on pay rise

What you need to know:

  • Team has set aside a legal notice that cut salaries and allowances to be paid to legislators

MPs will on Tuesday begin the first phase in their battle for higher pay and unlimited allowances when they meet to debate and approve a report of a committee that seeks to quash a legal notice they claim reduced their salaries.

According the parliamentary timetable, the first business for the National Assembly on Tuesday will be the adoption of a committee report that has recommended revocation of the Legal Notice by the Salaries and Remuneration Commission.

The notice set their monthly pay at Sh532,500, with an annual increase of Sh44,375.

Speaker of the National Assembly, Mr Justin Muturi told the Nation that the lawmakers will be “correcting an illegality” done by the SRC.

The Speaker insisted that the salaries commission had violated the law because it used the Legal Notice to repeal the law, yet, as per the Constitution, legislation was the exclusive mandate of the two Houses of Parliament.

“It is the constitutional role of Parliament to make and change laws. Parliament cannot be directed by any organ other than itself and the Constitution,” Mr Muturi said on Sunday. The debate will come at a time when the Commission for the Implementation of the Constitution has warned that the MPs might find themselves in blatant violation of the Constitution if they go ahead to vote for the adoption of the report of the Committee on Delegated Legislation.

The Standing Orders (House rules) and the Constitution prohibits members from voting on a matter in which they have “pecuniary interest”.

The Parliamentary Service Commission is still in talks with the salaries commission about the remuneration of the MPs, and the push for unlimited allowances is one of the things that MPs want addressed.

Recently, SRC chairperson Sarah Serem said that the team will not be intimidated by MPs demands.

“This issue of intimidation is not something we will stop to listen to,” she told journalists.

The Leader of Majority Party in the Senate, Prof Kindiki Kithure has opposed the confrontational stance that the members of the National Assembly have adopted in the push for salaries.

“…They are wrong because we, as honourable Senators, may also have issues of salaries, but we have chosen to follow the law and use the constitutional pathway of agitating for this. That is why we have the Parliamentary Service Commission (PSC),” Prof Kithure said last week.