What do Kenya’s Budget Implementation Reports Tell Us about National Government Spending in 2015/16?

April 2017 | by John Kinuthia, IBP Kenya

Every quarter, the government of Kenya must produce a budget implementation report that details actual spending against the budget approved by parliament. This responsibility is also given to the Office of the Controller of Budget (OCOB), an independent agency whose main role is to monitor budget implementation and ensure that funds are released against the budget.

Relatively little attention is paid to in-year budget implementation reports by citizens, parliament, or the media. To stimulate more debate about their contents, this paper looks at two recent implementation reports: the Budget Implementation Review Report for the full year of 2015/16 from the OCOB and the Fourth Quarterly Economic and Budget Review 2015/16 from the National Treasury.

Findings discussed in this paper include:

  • Revenue collection in 2015/16 performed well, at 99 percent of target. Though they form a smaller part of total revenue, external funds remain below target.
  • Domestic borrowing numbers (both budgeted figures and actual receipts) are unclear and inconsistent across several budget documents.
  • Absorption of development funds improved significantly in 2015/16, though it remained below the 30 percent of total expenditure threshold set by law.
  • Additional funding allocated to priority areas in the supplementary budget for 2015/16 to fight corruption was not spent.




kenya budget implementation reports and government spending ibp 2017.pdf

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John Kinuthia

Senior Program Officer, IBP Kenya, International Budget Parnership

John is a Senior Program Officer at the International Budget Partnership Kenya (IBPK). He joined IBP in October 2012 just as Kenya’s ambitious devolution program was taking off. John leads IBPK’s research and analytical work in Kenya, and he is part of the team that works to promote budget transparency and to improve public engagement on how the government raises and spends public resources.

He has done extensive research on Kenya’s public finance system for evidence generation that IBP uses to provide technical support to civil society organizations and, in some cases, government agencies. John’s research focuses on equitable revenue sharing mechanisms, equity in government expenditure, social protection, budget credibility, public participation in budgets, sub-national budget transparency, among other areas. His role also includes supporting capacity building and the publication of guides and tools that IBPK uses to improve community engagement with national and sub-national government budgets. John also plays a role in coordinating IBP’s programmatic work in Kenya, including supporting fundraising and administrative tasks.

John holds a Bachelor of Science degree in Physics from Jomo Kenyatta University of Agriculture and Technology (JKUAT), an MBA in Strategic Management from the Kenya Methodist University, and a professional award on Decentralization and Local Governance from SOAS University of London.

Before joining IBP, John worked with Twaweza East Africa as an Associate Analyst, where he helped to build the Kenya Budget Explorer, a centralized budget portal, to improve citizens’ access to budget information.  He is a big data enthusiast, a happy bee farmer, and a part-time historian.

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