Justice sector agencies face over Sh100bn funding deficit

NCAJ actors agree to support police digitise its processes
28th February 2024

Justice sector agencies face over Sh100bn funding deficit

MOMBASA, February 29, 2024 – Justice sector agencies which include the Judiciary, office of the Attorney General, Office of the Director of Public Prosecutions and the National Police Service face a funding deficit of over Sh100 billion.

Other under-funded agencies include the NCAJ itself, Ethics and Anti-Corruption Commission (EACC), Kenya Prisons Service, Probation & Aftercare Department, the Independent Police Oversight Authority,  Witness Protection Agency and the National Council for Law Reporting among others.

“We need a re-think about funding this particular sector.  Sh100 billion in our view in the larger scheme of things for an entire sector is a crucial amount of money to support the justice sector,” the acting Chief Registrar of the Judiciary Paul Ndemo told a meeting of the National Council on the Administration of Justice.

He said the justice sector plays a very critical role in ensuring the rule of law in the society is maintained giving local and external investors confident that matters are predictable and that justice is prompt.

He added that there is need for a supplementary budget to fund NCAJ and  the anti-corruption agenda in the current FY totaling to Sh83 million and NCAJ Bill at Sh18m.

Apart from the financing shortfall to the individual justice sector agencies, the NCAJ is also facing a funding gap that stands at Sh285 million.

“The funding is to support deepened reforms, strengthening justice sector monitoring and evaluation, justice sector research and innovation, statutory council annual reporting and engagements, and grassroots administration of justice through Court User Committees,” said Ndemo, who serves as the NCAJ Acting Secretary.

He added that there was need to pursue strategic partnerships and resource mobilisation apart from NCAJ agencies contributing to NCAJ programmes.

The Director General, Budget, Fiscal & Economic Affairs at the National Treasury Albert Mwenda said the government was keen to support the justice sector given its critical role in economic development and the fight against corruption.

“If you have a strong justice system, we are able to support implementation of strategic government objectives and deliver on the socio-economic needs of the country,” Mwenda said.

He said the delivery of justice is critical to unlock economic development, especially in the commercial justice sector.

Mwenda however said funding to the justice sector was dependent on the ability of the government to meet its expenditure needs based on available revenues.

He explained to the council that as the end of January, the Treasury had experienced a shortfall of Sh232 billion.

“We are working with the Kenya Revenue Authority to ensure that our revenues remain high and how we can allocate to NCAJ and other critical sectors,” he said.

He said the National Treasury has formulated a National Tax Policy and a Medium-Term Revenue Strategy to unlock additional resources.

He emphasised the need to prioritise support for anti-corruption measures especially after the grey listing of Kenya following concerns over incidents of money laundering.

“We need to give priority to anti-corruption matters and some of these institutions are critical to addressing the non-compliance issues which is important to the Treasury.”


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