CDF Allocation and White Elephants – Who's Monitoring?

Posted by on 5th January 2011

Categories:   CDF Citizen Engagement Members of Parliament Uncategorized

By Mzalendo Contributor – Moreen Majiwa

Every year 2.5% of all the government’s ordinary revenue is allocated to the Constituency Development Fund (CDF). Three quarters of the 2.5% is allocated equally between the 210 constituencies. The remaining quarter is allocated on the basis of a combination of the national and individual constituency poverty indexes. While 2.5% may not seem like a lot, in the 2009/2010 fiscal year 2.5% amounted to approximately Kshs 14.5 billion allocated to ensure that the fight against poverty is carried out at the constituency level by implementation of development projects that have wide spread benefits to residents of different constituencies.

The developmental results, howeverm do not match the figures. A social audit report done by TISA tells the story of a surprising number of stalled CDF projects and wastage millions of shillings. In Emabakasi, Westlands and Langata constituencies approximately 46 million
kshs has been injected into projects, which have now stalled. In addition, a significant amount of monies cannot be accounted for – for example, 6.8 million Kshs isunaccounted for from Kasarani’s CDF.

White elephants and missing funds are not the only issue plaguing the management of
CDF – nepotism is also a problem. Just last week Planning Minister Wycliffe Oparanya accused Western MPs of employing their wives and relatives to manage the funds. Such accusations are not confined to Western Province.

So what is the cost of the misuse and management of CDF? The Social Audit Report
finds that almost 50% of all CDF are redirected to purposes for which they were not
intended. So of Kshs 14.5 billion that’s Kshs. 7.25 billion misappropriated in 2009/2010

Who’s accountable? At the constituency level a CDF committee manages the funds. The
committee is made up of the area MP, the District Officer, 2 Councillors, 2 Religious
Leaders, an NGO rep, a youth rep, 2 men and women from the constituency and 3
committee members. The buck stops primarily with them.

Though the new constitution provides that county governments will eventually take up
the role of management of devolved funds such as CDF. In the 2010/2011 and 2011/
2012 fiscal years the constituency development fund disbursements will be made. Who’s
monitoring the management & expenditure of the funds?


  • by Kamaa on 26th May 2011

    We need to take these people to court... We have to stop complaining

  • by evansm mumo on 8th February 2012

    This is what is needed to push our Kenya ahead guys have taken advantage of our ignorance for far too long!

  • by James Otieno on 24th July 2012

    I have been against the CDF not because of the theoretical benefits but the way it was implemented. With such a large amount of money being entrusted to unqualified people and people who are simply plants by the MPs to steal and shield theft of the funds, the only thing that should be done is suspend the scheme until proper systems are put in place to manage the funds countrywide. No development will ever take place on the basis of whim. Everything must planned properly and in relation to everything else. You cannot build a road in isolation, for example, from agricultural production, you cannot keep building schools without developing industry to absorb those who will have acquired skills, etc from education. My submission is that there are a lot of projects being carried out under CDF merely because they are popular. They are not well-thought out because neither the MP nor the Committee are qualified in development and for this reason, the most of these so-called projects have stalled; the rest are just cover-ups for grand theft of public funds. CDF was always going to end up as a scheme rife with duplication and duplicity. How, for example, do we draw the line between schools which should be built by the Ministry of Education and those that can be built under CDF? The saddest thing is that, apart from articles and complaints such as this one, there has been no professional evaluation of the scheme and since the CDF was primarily started to guarantee the sitting MP's re-election, Kenyans will never see the true benefits of such a generous allocation of money.