It’s been a year and a half since the last elections, and a year since parties last published financial accounts of their performance. They are now doing the same for the 2013-2014 year and with numbers in from most of the ‘major parties’ – what’s changed and what trends are there to see?
1. Party in the Big Tent: Of the 349 parliamentary seats contested in 2013, the two coalition groups of Jubilee (comprising TNA [which won 89 seats] and URP [75 seats]) and CORD (comprising ODM [96 seats] , Ford K  and Wiper) bagged a majority of the seats in Kenya’s 2013 parliament – and thus keep almost all the funding from the taxpayers Political parties Fund. But since Jubilee and CORD are not coalition, the funds are directed to the member parties. TNA, which did not exist the year before, now lead the political party finance fund list; TNA got Kshs 77 million and URP got Kshs 40 million, trailing ODM that got Kshs 78 million (ODM is slightly up from Kshs 73M in 2013).
2. Un-Funded small parties: Narc-K gets nothing from the taxpayer compared to almost Kshs 10 Million last year. UDF gets none compared to Kshs 8M last year, and is now mainly dependent on its party leader for support. Ford-Kenya also gets nothing from the political parties fund, while Wiper got Kshs 670,000.
3. Being in a Coalition Pays: Wiper’s accounts note that the party received Kshs 11.8 million funding from their coalition partner (assuming ODM ). Oddly, Ford-K, another CORD coalition partner, did not get any and seems totally dependent on its elected leaders – with their Senators and MP’s contributing about Kshs 4.5 million of Ford-K’s Kshs 4.7 million income for the year.
4. Smaller Income & Costs: ODM has income of Kshs 101 million this year (with 78M from taxpayers) compared to Kshs 244 million last year, and URP has Kshs 44 million (40M from taxpayers) compared to Kshs 76 million last year. Last year ODM and TNA made 149M and 114M respectively from election fees, and this year the figures are 0.9M and 2.5M respectively. Expenses are also down this year for all parties compared to 2013 which was an election year – and this year ODM spent Kshs 4 million on campaigns compared to Kshs 132 million last year. On average, parties are spending about 20-25% of what they did last year, except ODM who’s expenses are at a rate almost twice other parties – and this could be due to their leading the push for a referendum vote on the constitution.
5. War Chests: TNA, Wiper, and URP all appear to be building war chests for future operations and elections. As at June 2014, TNA had Kshs 29 million in the bank while both URP and Wiper had about Kshs 15 million – and ODM had 1.6 million.
Note: Political Party seat totals are from Wikipedia.