The Supreme Court of Kenya on Monday, August 8, declared the Constituency Development Fund (CDF) illegal and unconstitutional.
In a judgement delivered by Chief Justice Martha Koome, the apex court ruled that the CDF Act 2013 that allowed Members of Parliament to manage funds offended the division of the revenue and public finance law.
The ruling quashed the Court of Appeal’s decision that had initially allowed the enactment of the CDF Act 2013.
“A declaration is hereby made that the Constituency Development Fund Act, 2013 is unconstitutional. Each party to bear their own costs,” the judgement read in part.
In December 2017, the Court of Appeal overturned a 2015 High Court ruling that declared CDF unconstitutional in its entirety. Alluding to this, CJ Koome ruled that the Supreme Court upheld the verdict of the High Court that annulled the CDF Act 2013.
“We have also reversed the Court of Appeal on its findings on the issue of CDF and division of revenue, and have restored the finding of the High Court, that the CDF Act 2013 violates the constitutional principle on the division of revenue,” read part of the ruling by Koome.
CDF was established in 2003 (CDF Act 2003) to enable the government to set aside at least 2.5 per cent of its ordinary revenue and channel it towards the Fund.
This was amended in 2007, to establish the National Government CDF Boards (NG-CDF)at the constituency level to replace the National Committee.