Taita Taveta Governor Backs Suspension of Non-Essential Travel, Calls for Local Regulation

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Taita Taveta Governor Andrew Mwadime supports the government’s suspension of non-essential foreign travel by officials, suggesting that local travel expenses also need regulation. He proposes a decentralized approach to government meetings to reduce costs.

In the wake of Monday’s suspension of all non-essential foreign travel by government officials, Taita Taveta Governor Andrew Mwadime has joined the call for regulating local travel expenditures.

Head of Public Service Felix Koskei introduced the suspension to oversee prudent public spending. It includes halting benchmarking, study visits, training, research, academic meetings, and symposia attended by government officials.

Governor Mwadime endorsed this move and urged the Head of Public Service to extend this oversight to local travel expenses in counties as well.

He pointed out that some counties face financial strain due to organizing meetings in relatively distant cities like Nairobi, Mombasa, and Naivasha. Governor Mwadime raised the issue during an appearance on Citizen TV’s Day Break program, saying, “Some counties have some of their meetings in Nairobi, Mombasa, and Naivasha. We don’t have an airstrip, but the number of times we travel from Taita to Nairobi monthly is equivalent to a trip to Turkey, so we should also talk about local travel.”

He proposed a “decentralized” system for government meetings, suggesting that meetings should be held in various counties, including Taita, Kisii, and Kakamega. This, he argued, would help reduce expenses, especially for financially disadvantaged counties with limited allocations.

Koskei’s announcement on Monday also included restrictions on delegations accompanying high-ranking officials during foreign trips. For instance, delegations led by Cabinet Secretaries are limited to three persons, including the Cabinet Secretary. The restrictions aim to streamline government spending and enhance cost management.

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