A group of nine members of parliament have tabled a proposal for the creation of nine more counties.
On Wednesday, the lawmakers presented a constitutional amendment to the National Dialogue team, advocating for an increase in the number of counties from 47 to 56. They argued that this addition is necessary as their areas are marginalized and they believe that they too deserve to enjoy the benefits of devolution.
In a joint statement addressed to the dialogue team, the MPs noted that their proposal is driven by a sincere intention to reinforce the foundations of devolution and to facilitate essential development in closer proximity to the citizens.
“We earnestly implore the National Dialogue talks to consider including this issue as a dedicated agenda item during the upcoming deliberations,” they said.
The draft bill outlines the creation of additional counties as follows:
- Kuria County (48th county), encompassing half of Migori County.
- Teso County (49th county), incorporating half of Migori County.
- Mount Elgon County (50th county), formed from half of Trans Nzoia and Bungoma counties.
- East Pokot County (51st county), comprising Tiati and Sigor constituencies.
- Mwingi County (52nd county).
- Gucha County (53rd county), emerging from the division of Kisii County.
- Suba County (54th county), encompassing Sube North and Suba South constituencies.
- Ijara County (55th county) in Garissa.
- Nakuru West County (56th county).
The proposal has however been shot down by Tana River Senator Danson Mungatana, who says the Senate will vote against it.
According to Mungatana, the proposal could potentially spur other leaders to pursue further divisions within their respective counties.
“If we go towards that direction then Tana River county will have to ask for another county and the moment I say this there will be another 47 who will be saying the same thing,” he said during a Citizen TV interview on Thursday morning.
Mungatana added: “I get the sense and I understand where they are coming from because it is the same argument we made for the 47 but it is all of us will want sub-divisions of our counties, we will want new governors and it is not going to work.
“If this proposition comes to the Senate we will oppose it. In fact, it will resurrect the idea of why can’t we have fewer counties.”