Supreme Court has dismissed the Parliamentary Service Commission’s (PSC) motion seeking to suspend a judgment ordering legislator to refund the house allowance allocated to them worth Sh1.2 billion, saying the allocation was illegal and the money need to be refunded for the benefit of Kenyans.
Lady Justice Njoki Ndung’u declined to suspend the High Court judgment that in 2020 ruled that the money was siphoned from taxpayers.
“I decline to certify the matter as urgent and order the case by Parliament to be placed before the Deputy Registrar, who shall give directions on compliance for determination by a five-judge Bench,” ruled Ndung’u.
Justice Ndung’u also declined to issue a temporary order staying the Court of Appeal’s ruling from December, last year, which directed Clerks of both the National Assembly and Senate to recover Sh1.2 billion in accommodation and facilitative allowances already paid to MPs pending the appeal’s hearing and decision.
MPs had filed the application under a certificate of urgency at the Supreme Court, challenging the Court of Appeal’s decision upholding the High Court ruling that quashed the Sh250,000 house allowance paid to each legislator on the grounds that it had not been approved by the Salaries and Remuneration Commission (SRC).
PSC MPs petitioned the Supreme Court to suspend the Court of Appeal’s judgment delivered by justices Wanjiru Karanja, Jamilla Mohammed, and Gatembu Kairu until their appeal is heard and determined, arguing that the two lower courts misinterpreted the Constitution on the roles of SRC versus those of PSC MPs.
“A conservatory order is issued staying ruling and order of the Court of Appeal judges Karanja, Gatembu and Mohammed delivered on December 3, 2021 directing the applicant to recover Sh1.2 billion that was already paid out to MPs as accommodation, facilitation allowance pending the hearing and determination of the application,” the MPs stated in the application.
The court has since directed the clerks to recover the millions paid to each legislator within one a period of one year.