Sakaja’s sh1.2 billion school feeding Programme stopped by court

The Nairobi County government’s plan to undertake a school feeding program dubbed Dishi Na County has been dealt a blow after the High Court suspended its implementation until a case challenging the move is heard and determined.

Lady Justice Mugure Thande on Friday issued conservatory orders in a case filed by Tunza Mtoto Coalition and Education expert Janet Ouko who argued that the program that is expected to cost Ksh.1.2 billion is a national function. 

The program that was scheduled to start on the first day of the third term in all primary schools and ECDs in Nairobi may now have to wait.

In their application, the two petitioners said Nairobi County Governor Johnson Sakaja acted against the law in launching the program that they say is the function of the national government. 

According to the petitioners, there was no deed of transfer between the national government and the county government in respect of the primary school functions.

 The petitioners also argue that the 2023/2024 Nairobi City County Budget illegally allocated Ksh.1.2 billion to the program that does not fall under the county; this they say is at the expense of other development programs in Nairobi.

In their petition, they cite Part 2 of the Fourth Schedule of the Constitution Kenya, 2010 (Articles 185(2), 186(1), and 187(2)) that distributes functions between the national government and county governments on issues pertaining to education.

The national government’s functions are; Education policy, standards, curricula, and examinations, granting university charters, universities, tertiary educational institutions and other institutions of research and higher learning, primary schools, special education, secondary schools, special education institutions, promotion of sports and sports education.

Functions of the county government on the other hand are: pre-primary education, village polytechnics, home craft centers, and childcare facilities.

The National Government has been part of those championing the program that they say will cushion parents and keep children in school. 

The court order comes even as Governor Sakaja has already commissioned the construction of central kitchens in 10 sub-counties within the city.

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