MEMBERS WANT CONSTITUTIONAL PROTECTION FOR NG-CDF AND NGAAF
Members of the National Assembly have intensified their calls to have National Government Constituency Development Fund (NG-CDF) and National Government Affirmative Action Fund (NGAAF) entrenched in the Constitution.
Led by Hon. Mugambi Rindikiri (Buuri) the lawmakers said the two funds have elevated children from disadvantaged backgrounds to get education.
“Through the NG-CDF, we have created doctors, engineers, pilots, administrators, and good citizens. If the NG-CDF was not there, we would not have created these people in our midst,” said Hon. Rindikiri.
Hon. Rindikiri also argued that through the use of NG-CDF, the country has witnessed youth activities being promoted across the 290 constituencies.
“We have used the NG-CDF to create infrastructure for our security. Where we did not have police posts, we used the NG-CDF for that purpose. We have built laboratories where we did not have them,” he said.
His sentiments were shared by Hon. Janet Sitienei (Turbo) who said that the NG-CDF is the one fund that has helped many people, especially those from poor backgrounds, to go through school and college education and earn a living thereafter.
“It is one fund that needs to be enhanced to enable us to support our constituencies and families to improve their livelihoods. This Fund has equalized education in all our constituencies,’ said Hon. Sitienei.
Further, Hon. Sitienei argued that with the introduction of the Competence Based Curriculum (CBC), there are challenges in junior secondary schools including a lack of laboratories. She challenged the NG-CDF Boards to allocate funds for the construction of laboratories in schools without them.
Hon. Beatrice Kemei (Kericho) termed NG-CDF and the NGAAF as important not only to Members but also to Kenyans.
“What the two funds have done is unmatched. Lives have been changed because of the NG-CDF and the NGAAF. Students, especially those from vulnerable families, have been able to go to school, thanks to these funds,” said Hon. Kemei.
She added: “Widows, single mothers, and people who are differently enabled have taken their children to school, courtesy of the NG-CDF and the NGAAF.”
In addition, she stated that those who would have dropped out of colleges and universities have been able to continue with their studies with the help of these funds.
Hon. (Dr.) Ojiambo Oundo (Funyula) said that the delayed disbursement of NG-CDF funds from the National Treasury means the challenges witnessed in junior secondary schools will remain with us for many years to come.
“We urge the National Treasury - for the sake of the children and accelerated development in this country - to, please, do all that it can to release the funds so that the NG-CDF Committees can allocate and expend them before the end of the financial year so that Kenyans can get value for money", Hon. (Dr.). Oundo said.
Hon. Peter Lochakapong (Sigor) observed that NG-CDF and NGAAF have greatly helped the people of Kenya through the allocation of bursaries.
According to Hon. Lochakapong, though allocation is not uniform across the country, the fund has ensured that children access education and are retained in school.
“That is a good thing. We have also developed school infrastructure. We have built classrooms, and in some cases dormitories and laboratories,” said Hon. Lochakapong, adding that it has improved academic performance in learning institutions.