to ask the Minister of State for Provincial Administration and Internal Security:- (a) What are the circumstances surrounding the fatal shooting of Messrs. Jeremiah otieno Ochol and Christopher Gathogo on 13th June, 2009? (b) Could the Minister confirm that the two were removed from a Mombasa-bound minibus and shot at close range by police officers at Konza in Machakos? (c) What action has the Government taken to apprehend the suspects? (d) When will the bodies of the victims be released to their next of kin for burial?
Is hon. Olago here? Hon. Members, we will pend this Question for a while and see whether Mr. Olago will come to the Chamber, after which we can proceed with it.
Is Mr. Ethuro also not here? We will come back to the Question. Next Question, Mr. Warugongo!
Is Mr. Warugongo also not here?
Mr. Temporary Deputy Speaker, Sir, hon. Warugongo had hinted to me that he was held up in the traffic jam. He is likely to appear here soon.
Thank you, hon. Njuguna. We will give him a few minutes to get to the Chamber.
Next Question, Mr. Kapondi!
COMPULSORY ACQUISITION OF MR. RICHARD MWOREIâS LAND
asked the Minister for Roads:- (a) whether he could confirm that the Government compulsorily acquired a one-acre piece of land in Mount Elgon District belonging to Mr. Richard Kirui Mworei and used it as a Works Camp for 15 years; and, (b) what is owed to Mr. Mworei resulting from the acquisition, and when he will be paid.
Mr. Temporary Deputy Speaker, Sir, I beg to reply.
(a) My Ministry entered into a purchase agreement with Mr. Kirui Chemait, who was the father of Richard Kirui, in 1981. Regrettably, Mr. Chemait passed on before the process was finalized. Since then, the Ministry has been in correspondence with Mr. Richard Kirui with a view to resolving the matter. In view of the above, I have instructed the legal advisor to my Ministry to get in touch with Mr. Kirui in order to finalise this long outstanding matter.
(b) I am, therefore, unable to give specific information on what is owed to Mr. Richard Kirui at this time until after the discussions between my office and Mr. Kirui are finalized.
Thank you, Mr. Temporary Deputy Speaker, Sir.
Mr. Temporary Deputy Speaker, Sir, for the first time, I would like to congratulate the Ministry for coming up with a very appropriate answer. The first time the Ministry attempted to answer this Question, the answer that was brought here was completely inadequate. Could the Assistant Minister tell me when they will be ready, so that I can bring over Mr. Kirui, so that this matter can finally be settled?
Mr. Temporary Deputy Speaker, Sir, we will be ready from Monday.
Mr. Temporary Deputy Speaker, Sir, could the Assistant Minister also assure this House that they will take into consideration the fact that this land has appreciated in value since they acquired it, and that they will consider this fact when they will be paying compensation to Mr. Kirui?
Mr. Temporary Deputy Speaker, Sir, we will do exactly that.
Mr. Temporary Deputy Speaker, Sir, could the Assistant Minister tell us their policy on compensation for such land? I also have cases of constituents whose land was acquired more than ten years ago, and who have not been compensated. What is the Ministryâs policy on compensation for acquired land, in terms of value?
Mr. Temporary Deputy Speaker, Sir, the Ministry respects the Kenyan Constitution on private ownership of land. So, we compensate at market value for land that is privately owned, if it is compulsorily acquired under the law; gazettement of such property is done before the acquisition is effected.
Last question, Mr. Kapondi!
Mr. Temporary Deputy Speaker, Sir, I am satisfied with the answer.
Thank you very much.
Next Question, Mr. Baiya!
asked the Minister for Roads:- (a) whether he could confirm that the public invitation for tender for Ndumberi-Kiawaroga Road construction included a section in Githunguri constituency from Ngâorongo Factory to Githunguri; (b) what considerations influenced the exclusion of that section of the road in Githunguri constituency in the final contract, and substitution thereof with a section from Ngâorongo to Limuru; and, (c) what action he will take to redress the situation or construct the section of the road in Githunguri constituency that was excluded, considering that over 95 per cent of vehicular traffic in Ndumberi-Kiawaroga Road goes to Githunguri Constituency.
Mr. Temporary Deputy Speaker, Sir, I beg to reply. (a) It is true that the public invitation for tender for the Ndumberi-Kiawaroga Road Project inadvertently included a section from Ngorongo to Githunguri. (b) The project design and the tender documents that were used for bidding were for Ndumberi-Kiawaroga-Limuru Road (D409). The section from Ngorongo to Limuru was erroneously omitted from the tender invitation and was advertised in the print media, while Ngorongo to Githunguri was inadvertently included. That error was corrected in subsequent communication to the bidders. (c) The Ministry, under the current budgetary provision, is unable to undertake design and construction work for that project during this financial year. However, the road will be considered for improvement alongside others under the Roads Sector Improvement Programme.
Mr. Temporary Deputy Speaker, Sir, I would like to thank the Assistant Minister for the answer that he has given. However, since he has confirmed that there was an error in the public invitation for tender in the construction of the road to include the section from Githunguri, could he tell this House whether there was a similar error when that road was initially done in 1984? Secondly---
Hon. Baiya, can you explain the error that you are talking about for the Assistant Minister to understand?
Mr. Temporary Deputy Speaker, Sir, the Assistant Minister has said in part (b) of his answer that the section from Ngorongo to Limuru was erroneously omitted from the
Mr. Temporary Deputy Speaker, Sir, I am completely unaware of the allegations made by the hon. Member. I will be happy if he sheds more light on this issue by all means of communication. However, I may not be able to say whether there was an error in the initial design of the previously constructed road because I have not looked at the documents. That was not part of my Question this morning. But I will look into it at a later time, if he so wishes.
Hon. Baiya, are you satisfied with that answer?
Mr. Temporary Deputy Speaker, Sir, no. The Assistant Minister has not really responded to one part of my Question. Is it not true that over 95 per cent of traffic from Ngorongo goes towards Githunguri Constituency and not the other road, which only serves about 10 or so big farms in that area? Why did the Ministry, notwithstanding the traffic and the users of the road, decide to construct the road towards the Limuru direction? The money that is being used to repair that road is taxpayers' money from the Fuel Levy Fund. Why should the Ministry commit funds to a road that has lesser traffic and fail to construct the section which is used by over 95 per cent of the people?
Mr. Temporary Deputy Speaker, Sir, whereas the hon. Member may be right in his statistics on the road use, I have not looked at that. So, I may not be able to comment as to whether one road has a 95 per cent road use and the other one has 5 per cent road use. That was not part of the Question and I may not be able to comment on that. I have taken note of his concerns and I will look into the issue.
On a point of order, Mr. Temporary Deputy Speaker, Sir. My question is very categorical. I have asked the Assistant Minister to confirm why that decision was taken notwithstanding the fact that over 95 per cent of the traffic goes towards the Githunguri direction? Is it in order for him to say that, that was not included in the first part of the Question?
Mr. Assistant Minister, the question is why you are avoiding to construct a road which has over 95 per cent road users according to hon. Baiya. Why have you chosen to construct a different route? Can you explain to him the rationale behind that?
Mr. Temporary Deputy Speaker, Sir, I have already talked about the percentage use of that road. However, the interest of the Ministry of Roads is to construct every useful road in this country. Just because one road has been done before the other is not a reason to think that the other road will not be done. We will do it. Just be patient, hon. Member!
Mr. Temporary Deputy Speaker, Sir, I am ready to accept the undertaking by the Assistant Minister that he will have that road done. That is the concern of all the users of that road. They are keenly following what is going on. Could he confirm when the Ministry will do that road?
Mr. Temporary Deputy Speaker, Sir, with great sympathy, I beg the users of that road to bear with the Ministry. We will do it when funds are available.
asked the Minister for Fisheries Development:- (a) what regulations the Government has put in place to guide the exploitation of fish resources in Lake Victoria to ensure a structured arrangement of securing fish growth in the lake; (b) how funds from fishing and fish farming resources are ploughed back to benefit the fishermen and local communities; and, (c) what plans the Government has to develop fish farming in Kenya and Butula Constituency, in particular.
Mr. Temporary Deputy Speaker, Sir, I beg to reply. (a) The Government has put in place a Fisheries Act, Cap.378 of the Laws of Kenya, 1991, and this has also been amended by various fisheries regulations and legal notices over time. They guide the exploitation and general management of all fisheries resources in Kenya and those of Lake Victoria. In addition to monitoring, control and surveillance, which is used to eradicate bad fishing methods, fishing gears and laws that are used to protect breeding grounds, the Ministry of Fisheries has also successfully launched the National Oceans and Fisheries Policy in April, 2009 and the subsequent Oceans and Fisheries Management Co-ordination Draft Bill, which is more elaborate and explicit. It is ready and will be brought to this House in due course for enactment. The new Bill will replace the current Fisheries Act and will ensure that there is a more structured arrangement of securing fish growth and exploitation in Lake Victoria and other water bodies. (b) Fishermen and fish farmers benefit directly from the sales of their fish. The Government only collects some revenue from licensing activities and the money is used for infrastructure development, training and mounting of various fisheries management programmes. My Ministry has also planned strategic interventions to revitalize aquaculture in the country, including Butula Constituency, as follows:- (i) Improve the distribution system of improved aquaculture inputs by providing quality tilapia seeds, formulated seeds, establishment of propagation and multiplication centres. (ii) Commission a comprehensive tilapia breeding programme that will also serve Butula and the larger Busia area. (iii) Adopt a cluster based aquaculture production system which is constituency based and will also help farmers access credit. We are also targeting to improve aquaculture production to almost 50 per cent. We are currently at 1 per cent. This will involve coming up with almost 200 ponds per constituency. We are targeting 140 constituencies. Mr. Temporary Deputy Speaker, Sir, this financial year, we have been financed to the tune of Kshs1.1 billion. We are also thinking of fingerling production to improve dams and all these other areas. For Butula in particular, we are currently sourcing fish fingers from Dominion Farm as a temporary measure. We will be expanding Wahungu Fish Farm to propagate more seeds that can supply Butula Constituency. At the individual farm levels in Butula, we already have four clusters. Namely; Chengo, Tingolo, Butuma and Makwera clusters.
Thank you very much, Bw. Waziri, for your elaborate answer. However, one of my fears is, in Lake Victoria some fishermen tend to fish along the shores rather than going into the deep lake to get mature fish. What measures is the Minister putting in place to ensure that they do not fish along the shore? Along the shores, they just catch juvenile fish.
Mr. Temporary Deputy Speaker, Sir, I think in my earlier answer, I had said that we are improving programmes on monitoring, control and surveillance. Indeed, in this yearâs Budget the Government has given us Kshs300 million to buy boats that will be used for monitoring, control and surveillance to ensure that breeding areas are protected.
Mr. Temporary Deputy Speaker, Sir, in line with the Governmentâs Vision 2030 programme of promoting industrialization, what plan does the Ministry have to relocate the fish processing factory from Thika to the lake region so as to promote industrialization in our area?
Mr. Temporary Deputy Speaker, Sir, as I had said earlier, fish business is basically a private enterprise. As a businessman, sometimes we cannot hold you to account on where you want to put your factory. However, we have been encouraging the fishermen to form cooperative societies so as to be able to do value addition instead of just selling raw fish. In this way, they will get better returns. I would urge Dr. Khalwale to make sure that fishermen from the regions he is talking about are able to come up with cooperative societies. They then can be able to do value addition from the source instead of selling raw products which fetch almost 10 per cent of the real value.
Mr. Temporary Deputy Speaker, Sir, I would like to join Mr. Odhiambo in thanking the Minister for a very elaborate answer he has given. This is the way Ministers earn respect in this House. Mr. Temporary Deputy Speaker, Sir, I want to get one assurance from the Minister. In this programme of establishment of propagation and multiplication centres for fish farming, he said he has been allocated some Kshs1 billion or so and he is targeting 140 constituencies. I want his assurance that Garssen Constituency is one of those that is going to be in that programme. Mr. Temporary Deputy Speaker, Sir, there is a problem in terms of catching fish which is not yet mature. In Kipini area which is part of Garsen Constituency, we have had fish trawling problem. The trawlers really deplete the fish resources in the ocean. This leaves the local fishermen who do not have the capacity or vessels to go out and catch as much fish as they should, living in absolute poverty. What plans does the Minister have to protect the local fishermen from this problem of trawling and therefore, over-exploitation which results into poverty for the people of that area in Garsen Constituency?
Mr. Temporary Deputy Speaker, Sir, I know Garsen is one of our major fishing areas. I have been to the Kipini area and I think I know some of the problems there. For the coastal areas, we have a more elaborate programme because there, you can do both mari- culture which is culturing fish that grows in salty waters. I think for this area, we have a more specific programme through some development partners. This is done through the Arab Development Partners. There is a partnership we are developing. I want to assure the Member
Mr. Temporary Deputy Speaker, I also wish to associate myself with the accolades the Minister for Fisheries Development is receiving in this House. Indeed, I can confirm that in March, he came to Turkana to try to draw up a plan for the largest inland lake in the Republic of Kenya. That is not Lake Victoria as many people might think. Mr. Temporary Deputy Speaker, Sir, when are we getting that plan ready, and has the Minister factored sufficient resources in this yearâs Budget to ensure the plan is realized? How much has he factored?
Thank you, Mr. Temporary Deputy Speaker, Sir. I think hon. Ethuro is correct. Lake Turkana is actually twice as big as our portion of Lake Victoria. In terms of the fish biomass, I think it has got more than ten times what we have there. We have plans to see how best that resource can be utilized in terms of ensuring that the infrastructure in those places is improved. This year, we had already factored in money to put in one boat there, especially to improve security and do monitoring. From the Kshs300 million that we got for control, monitoring and surveillance, one of the boats will be bought to be used in Lake Turkana as a first step. You are very much aware that our research institute, the Kenya Marine and Fisheries Research Institute (KEMFRI) has been carrying out expeditions there to see how best we can exploit that resource. I believe that from their findings and from the plans we were developing, we should be able to utilize this resource properly for the benefit of the people there and for the benefit of this country. I beg hon. Members that once we request for more funding and once the Budget comes here, we will remember that there are resources in some areas which are not utilized. So, some money has already been allocated to Lake Turkana.
Thank you, Mr. Temporary Deputy Speaker, Sir. Time is ripe for us to have a fisheries development authority which I believe will cater for the requirements and the development of the fishing communities which live along the fishing areas. This will help them to improve on their incomes and their standards of living. What plans has he put in place to establish such an authority under his Ministry?
Mr. Temporary Deputy Speaker, Sir, I want to assure Mr. Odhiambo that if he has looked at our Oceans and Fisheries Policy, he must have seen that we have already recommended the establishment of a Kenya Fisheries Development Authority. Currently, if you look at the programme that we have; the National Aquaculture Development Programme, apart from the Kshs1 billion which we got from the Government and for which we appreciate, it is not
Next Question, No.224 by Mr. Lessonet. Hon. Koech will ask the Question on behalf of Mr. Lessonet.
on behalf of
asked the Minister for Education:-
(a) whether he was aware that Githioro Primary School in Eldama Ravine has not resumed classes to date after the consequences of post-election violence; and,
(b) when the school will be reopened.
Mr. Temporary Deputy Speaker, Sir, I beg to reply.
(a) Yes, I am aware that Githioro Primary School was affected by the post-election violence in January 2008 and has since not reopened. This is due to displacement and exodus of teachers and pupils to the neighbouring schools, namely, St. Maryâs Andama, St. Josephâs Makutano, Maji Mazuri Forest and Maji Mazuri RC Primary schools. Currently, the pupils are comfortable learning in these schools. That explains the reluctance of the schoolâs management committee and the parents to revive the closed Githioro Primary School.
(b) The Ministry has held a number of meetings with the schoolâs management committee, parents and the local leaders towards reopening the school in January 2010.
Mr. Temporary Deputy Speaker, Sir, while I thank the Assistant Minister for that answer, prior to the post-election violence, this school had been in operation, running from Standard 1 to Standard 8. It had done the Kenya Certificate of Primary Education (KCPE) Examination four times. The schools mentioned by the Assistant Minister are more than four kilometers away from this particular school. The children, especially those in Standard One, Two and Three have been subjected to this kind of suffering, covering long distances for the last one and half years. The reason behind this is that the school was destroyed and thus the reluctance of the community to revive the school. Could the Assistant Minister confirm that the children, especially the young ones, have been suffering covering long distances? What is the Ministry doing to ensure that the school is opened before 2010 so that it can take care of the suffering children?
Mr. Temporary Deputy Speaker Sir, I share the sentiments of the hon. Member. That is why, indeed, the Ministry has held meetings. It has taken it upon itself to ensure that by January 2010, this school will reopen with the help of the Ministry of Education.
Mr. Temporary Deputy Speaker, Sir, the big problem with this Government is the compartmentalized way in which it operates. The Ministry of Education alone cannot sort out this problem. What efforts is the Ministry putting in place to liaise with the Provincial Administration and other important Government agencies in the larger peace efforts to make sure that we have these people back on track in terms of their education because 2010 is quite far? They have already lost one and half years. This exercise has been slow because the Ministry operates in isolation. So, what efforts are they making along with the larger Government organs to make sure that these pupils are back in school?
Mr. Temporary Deputy Speaker, Sir, you will appreciate that that Question should be directed to the Prime Minister of this country.
Order, I think that Question falls under your docket; the Ministry of Education. I think you should respond to it and give an adequate answer.
Mr. Temporary Deputy Speaker, Sir, the Member wants me to answer the issue of co-ordination of different Ministries. That is why I feel that the question should be answered by the Prime Minister.
The question is: Can you speed up the process because if we wait until 2010, there will be a lot of suffering? Could your Ministry move in additional resources so that the school can reopen and the pupils can come back and continue with their schooling?
Thank you, Mr. Temporary Deputy Speaker, Sir. We are now in the month of July, 2009. The Ministry said that it will reopen the school by January 2010, which is six months down the line. So, we will reopen the school.
By January 2010.
Mr. Temporary Deputy Speaker, Sir, you will recall that last year, as a Parliament, we sent teams to the entire Republic, including Eldama Ravine. I led that delegation. Some of the centers including schools had been displaced. It took concerted efforts in terms of convincing, in peace meetings, to get residents back to the centers and to the schools. I want to inform the Assistant Minister that it is not just due to displacement alone that the children are not back in school. It is also the fact that the school was destroyed. What is he doing in terms of reconstructing the buildings that were destroyed in order to get the children back to school? He should also tell this House how many schools are yet to reopen due to post-election violence. When will he ensure that each and every school that was affected and destroyed reopens by 2010?
Mr. Temporary Deputy Speaker, Sir, whereas I undertake the re-opening of this particular school, it is not possible for me to confirm that every school will be re-opened. The Ministry officials are on the ground to address the matter. We have been having meetings with the relevant authorities and the parents. However, I cannot guarantee the re-opening of every school.
On a point of order, Mr. Temporary Deputy Speaker, Sir. We should address the problems of Kenyans in totality. Why should a Ministry not be able to plan for a number of schools in this country to open all together? What is their business, if they want to operate one school after one year and another one in another year? Does it make sense to
Mr. Assistant Minister, could you tell us how many schools are still closed? Do you have any plans to open all the schools by 2010?
Mr. Temporary Deputy Speaker, Sir, you will appreciate that, that is different Question. I will have to find this information. If hon. Members want to know exactly how many schools are open or will be opened by January 2011, I require more time to find out.
On a point of order, Mr. Temporary Deputy Speaker, Sir. This Question revolves around a school which was closed as a result of post-election violence. We are talking of many schools that were closed as a result of post-election violence. This has seriously affected the young school-going children. Now that the Assistant Minister does not have a comprehensive answer, would I be in order to request that this Question be deferred so that he can bring to this House a full report on the situation and the status of those schools in this country?
Mr. Temporary Deputy Speaker, Sir, I undertake to bring a comprehensive answer as a Ministry.
Mr. Assistant Minister, you can appreciate the concern of Parliament.
Mr. Temporary Deputy Speaker, Sir, I appreciate those concerns. The circumstances are different in each area. There are areas where we do not get students going back to school at all. We are establishing new schools elsewhere. I will bring more information on this matter if you give us time.
On a point of order, Mr. Temporary Deputy Speaker, Sir. Is the Assistant Minister in order to mislead this House and the entire Republic that the Grand Coalition Government does not even know how many schools were affected by the post-election violence and yet they are a direct product of the violence? These Ministers sit in this Government by virtue of the post-election violence! Since they assumed positions, they have forgotten Kenyans who died and were displaced because of them. When will this Government be serious?
Mr. Temporary Deputy Speaker, Sir, I beg to protest. I do not sit here by virtue of the post-election violence. However, with due respect to Mr. Ethuro, I undertake to provide that information.
On a point of order, Mr. Temporary Deputy Speaker, Sir. Is the Assistant Minister in order to mislead the House that the school will be re-opened in six months time when he knows very well that according to the Printed Estimates which are before this House, no money has been factored in the form of allocations to these primary schools, including this one, whose infrastructure has been destroyed and would require to be refurbished before being re- opened? Is the Assistant Minister in order to mislead us when he knows very well that this money is not there?
Mr. Temporary Deputy Speaker, Sir, I am not misleading the House. I am 100 per cent sure that this school will be re-opened in January.
On a point of order, Mr. Temporary Deputy Speaker, Sir. It would be nice if the Assistant Minister was move specific. Where will these funds come from? Does he expect the parents to construct the classrooms or the money will be obtained from the Printed Estimates? We have the Printed Estimates and these schools are not covered!
Dr. Khalwale, the Assistant Minister has answered that question. He has said that come January, 2010, he will look for additional funds to construct the school. He has also promised that the school will be re-opened at that time.
Mr. Temporary Deputy Speaker, Sir, we have seen the kind of urgency that the Government is giving the issue of the Hague, thanks to the post-election violence. We would really like to see the Government take the issue of displaced people seriously. This is more so to children who are no longer going to school and women who were raped. That is why we have asked this Question. Which Ministry is responsible for re-locating children who were displaced from schools, rebuilding schools---
Order, Mrs. Shabesh! I think that is a different Question and it cannot be directed to the Assistant Minister! Mr. Koech, ask your final question!
Mr. Temporary Deputy Speaker, Sir, the concern of this House is for all of us to see to it that all the children of this country get back to school. I thank the Assistant Minister for the undertaking. However, could he confirm to this House how much the Ministry has set aside for the reconstruction of this school? Could he also undertake that all the schools that were affected by the post-election violence will be re-opened by January, 2010?
Mr. Temporary Deputy Speaker, Sir, I cannot give the specific amount for all the schools. However, I will ensure that the Ministry funds the re-opening of this school.
On a point of order, Mr. Temporary Deputy Speaker, Sir. My question is specific. How much has been set aside by the Ministry for this school?
Mr. Temporary Deputy Speaker, Sir, I do not have the figure.
Mr. Assistant Minister, undertake that you will bring the figure later on.
Mr. Temporary Deputy Speaker, Sir, the hon. Member can come to me for briefing.
On a point of order, Mr. Temporary Deputy Speaker, Sir. Is it in order for the Assistant Minister to promise the answer to the individual Member of Parliament who asked the Question when it is on the Floor of the House? Every hon. Member is entitled to that answer!
Assistant Minister, could you undertake to bring that figure later?
Yes, Mr. Temporary Deputy Speaker, Sir.
Then that should rest the case.
On a point of order, Mr. Temporary Deputy Speaker, Sir. Just for purposes of clarity, have we deferred the Question or not?
We shall defer the Question so that the Assistant Minister can bring the figure here. When can you bring that answer?
Mr. Temporary Deputy Speaker, Sir---
On a point of order, Mr. Temporary Deputy Speaker, Sir.
Order, Mr. Abdirahman! Proceed, Mr. Assistant Minister!
Mr. Temporary Deputy Speaker, Sir, could I bring the answer next week on Wednesday?
On a point of order, Mr. Temporary Deputy Speaker, Sir. I want to appreciate and duly request your indulgence that the Minister also includes the list of other schools that were affected and what the Ministry is doing for them to be reopened.
Alright, Mr. Assistant Minister, I also direct that you bring the list of all the schools that were affected. That information is useful to us.
Mr. Temporary Deputy Speaker, Sir, if that is what is required, then much more work is required. So, either the hon. Members gives us a specific substantive Question or you give me more time to give you a detailed answer.
Mr. Assistant Minister, we would like to have the list of all the schools that are closed at the moment due to the post-election violence. Are you able to bring that list to us? I am sure your officers are on the ground and can get the information.
Yes, Mr. Temporary Deputy Speaker, Sir. That is possible.
That is all. Bring information on the two items. So, we will defer the Question to Wednesday next week.
Next Question by Dr. Eseli!
asked the Minister for Agriculture:-
(a) how much of the maize imported into Kenya was Genetically Modified (GMO);
(b) what informed the procuring entity to accept a price three times the price of the known value (where GMO costs over US$400 per tonne instead of the known price of US$150 per tonne); and,
(c) whether the Ministry did notify the Kenyan people that they were to consume GMO maize and conduct an impact assessment (prior to, and after release of the same to the market) as per the regulations of the Bio-Safety Act of 2008.
Mr. Temporary Deputy Speaker, Sir, I beg to reply.
(a) No GMO maize has been imported into Kenya.
(b) Since no GMO maize has been imported, the price comparison does not arise. The imported maize was sold at a willing buyer, willing seller basis through competitive market rates. (c) In view of the above, part (c) does not arise. The importation of maize was done in two lots. The first tranche was 153 metric tonnes and the second one was 135 metric tonnes and all certificates for the importation of maize are here, certifying that no GMO maize was brought into this country. I hereby lay the documents on the Table of the House.
Mr. Temporary Deputy Speaker, Sir, in view of that answer, that this maize was sourced on a willing buyer, willing seller basis, at competitive market rates, could he give us those competitive market rates that they paid for this maize?
Mr. Temporary Deputy Speaker, Sir, the maize we got from Tanzania which was 8,141 bags cost us US$270,477. The cost per metric tonne is US$369. The maize we got from South Africa cost US$420 per metric tonne and the IS was US$430 per metric tonne.
Mr. Temporary Deputy Speaker, Sir, the issues of pricing aside, there is a bigger question that would worry all Kenyans today. That is whether it is actually safe to consume GMO maize. I would like the Assistant Minister to speak from the Floor of this House whether it is the policy of the Government to allow Kenyans to consume these GMOs. They should educate us because we are worried. This is the gist of the matter. What is the policy position? Can we, or can we not?
Mr. Temporary Deputy Speaker, Sir, currently, we do not have a policy on GMO and the Government is developing one. At the moment, the maize being consumed in this country is non-GMO. As a Ministry, we can come up with a Statement regarding GMO. At the moment, there is nothing I can say. But I can assure the House that we will do so and bring it here.
Mr. Temporary Deputy Speaker, Sir, according to the file that has been tabled by the Minister, the inspection certificate which indicates that this was a non-GMO import is actually from South Africa by a South African company called Global Inspection. How was the Government of Kenya satisfied that this Southern African company was not helping a South African company to sell its maize here? Why did the Government not do its own inspection? I also realize that in this particular file, there is a company called Afgril Trading Company Limited. This is the same company that brought spoilt maize that was returned to South Africa. Why is the Government continuing to do business with a company whose product was returned back and yet in this one they have given them 25,000 metric tonnes?
Mr. Temporary Deputy Speaker, Sir, in that file, if you go deeper, you will find a certificate from KEPHIS confirming that the maize was GMO free. It is not only the South African company that did the inspection. We did our own and it is in that file. With regard to the issue of doing business with that company, it was just a one-off incident and there is nothing else that we have done with that company.
Mr. Temporary Deputy Speaker, Sir, this file is very voluminous and I would request for some time to be able to go through it. It is not possible to tell the total tonnage that proves that it is not GMO. He told us that the imported tonnage is well over 100,000 tonnes. So, I would like to get time to go through this file and be able to interrogate the Assistant Minister further.
Dr. Eseli, the Assistant Minister has answered you. Are you not satisfied with the answer?
Mr. Temporary Deputy Speaker, Sir, I need time to go through this file which is very voluminous to be able to interrogate him. I am not yet quite satisfied with the answer. So, I need to go through this file because the tonnage he has given as having been certified as non- GMO and the tonnage that is here, can be got from this file.
Mr. Assistant Minister, could you comment whether you have done what is required?
Mr. Temporary Deputy Speaker, Sir, as far as this Question is concerned, I have given him the answer. He can go through it and put another Question instead of deferring this one.
Dr. Eseli, could you ask your final question?
Mr. Temporary Deputy Speaker, Sir, in view of the fact that I have not gone through this file, it will not be possible for me to ask an intelligent question to the Assistant Minister. It would be good if I have time to go through this file. It is only good for Kenyans to know because there is indeed a Bio-safety Act in this country. Deferring it would be more useful than asking another Question.
Dr. Eseli, go ahead and go through the file and if you have another Question you can file it but I think this Question has been answered.
On a point of order, Mr. Temporary Deputy Speaker, Sir. I am still pursuing the issue of the Bio-Safety Act and the GMOs. It has just been brought to my attention that the Bio-Safety Act, section 20 says that a person shall not import into Kenya, genetically modified organisms without a written approval of the authority. It seems that there is not only a policy in place but a law. What is lacking is the Ministryâs action in setting up an authority to deal with matters to do with GMO organisms or foods into this country. So, the issue is: When will the Assistant Minister set up this authority so that we can all feel safe?
I think your concern is already taken and the Assistant Minister said that there was a certificate in the file showing that there is certification of compliance. It is already in the file. So, Dr. Eseli, you can file another Question if you are not satisfied after you go through the file. I would rest the case there.
Order! I have already moved on!
Mr. Temporary Deputy Speaker, Sir, the Assistant Minister was even going to give a statement on this issue.
Order! Order! I think we are satisfied on that. There is a certificate there and Dr. Eseli said that he would go through the file. He can file another Question, so we need to move to the next Question.
on behalf of
asked the Minister for Energy:- (a) how the long Ministry will take to connect Migori and its environs to Kericho power line as promised by the Minister in the House in 2008; and, (b) what immediate short-term measures he has put in place to cushion learning institutions and businesses from current losses incurred due to frequent non-availability of regular power in Migori.
Mr. Temporary Deputy Speaker, Sir, I beg to reply.
Mr. Temporary Deputy Speaker, Sir, I wish to thank the Assistant Minister for a well elaborate answer and hope that he will respect his word that the system will be commissioned by December, 2009.
Mr. Temporary Deputy Speaker, Sir, what I have said will be done because these are some of the reinforcement works which we are doing as a Ministry. We will stick to our time-lines. The line should have been commissioned earlier but there was a problem on the acquisition of the way-leave all the way from Chemosit to Kisii. As things are now, all that has been done and work is on-going. Even if you go to the ground, you will realize that it is on-going and the final part of the work at Kegati Sub-station, which is nearer to Kisii Town, is nearing completion.
Mr. Temporary Deputy Speaker, Sir, I am satisfied with the answer. Thank you very much!
Very well! That will rest the case there. Next Question!
We have information from Ms. Odhiambo and we will defer that Question to a later date.
Mr. Gaichuhie is not here? The Question is dropped.
Mr. Temporary Deputy Speaker, Sir, first of all, let me apologize for coming late. However. I do not have a written answer.
asked the Minister of State for Provincial Administration and Internal Security:-
(a) why he has not paid service and pension benefits to Mr. Joseph Muturi Kagwi (Personal Number 371347) who retired on 1st December, 1997; and,
(b) When he will pay him.
Is the Minister in?
Mr. Assistant Minister, are you prepared to answer that Question?
No, Mr. Temporary Deputy Speaker, Sir. I seek the indulgence of the Chair to defer Mr. Warugongoâs and Mr. Ethuroâs Questions to a later date. That is the information I have.
Mr. Assistant Minister, notice has been provided to your Office. Why do you want to defer that Question?
Mr. Temporary Deputy Speaker, Sir, it is Questions 222 and 150.
Is there reason why we need to defer them?
Mr. Temporary Deputy Speaker, Sir, we are yet to receive satisfactory answers. I have also consulted with Mr. Ethuro and he has accepted.
So you are still getting information from the ground?
Yes, Mr. Temporary Deputy Speaker, Sir.
Mr. Temporary Deputy Speaker, Sir, I have just received an answer. Could the Assistant Minister continue?
Order, Mr. Warugongo! Let us be fair to the Assistant Minister. He is still collecting information from the ground to effectively answer you. So, I think it is fair to give the Assistant Minister additional time. That also applies to Question No.150 by Mr. Ethuro. The Assistant Minister has requested for additional time.
Indeed, Mr. Temporary Deputy Speaker, Sir, I wish to confirm that my colleague had approached me yesterday and I thought they had already communicated to the Chair. That is why I was not available when you raised the matter. So, I want it to go on record that it is not because I was missing. It is because I was already aware that the Question had been deferred to tomorrow afternoon which I would like you to also confirm with the Assistant Minister present.
All right! Mr. Assistant Minister, tomorrow afternoon, do you undertake to answer Question No.150?
That is fine, Mr. Temporary Deputy Speaker, Sir.
That is fine!
On a point of order, Mr. Temporary Deputy Speaker, Sir. The hon. Member has said that he has an answer to the Question which the Assistant Minister wants to be deferred. Is it in order?
Order, hon. Member! The answer is not adequate and so he is still getting additional information to effectively be able to answer the Question. So, the answer is not adequate and the Assistant Minister has already confirmed that.
There is a Question by Private Notice!
to ask the Minister of State for Provincial Administration and Internal Security
(a) What are the circumstances surrounding the fatal shooting of Messrs. Jeremiah Otieno Ochol and Christopher Gathogo on 13th June, 2009?
(b) Could the Minister confirm that the two were removed from a Mombasa-bound minibus and shot at point blank range by police officers at Konza in Machakos?
(c) What action has the Government taken to apprehend the suspects?
Is Mr. Olago here? It is now 10.10 a.m. and so we will drop that Question.
On a point of order, Mr. Temporary Deputy Speaker, Sir. I was here yesterday when this Question was deferred and Mr. Olago was present. It was deferred to today. It was never specified whether it is for the morning or the afternoon session. Just look at the HANSARD. So, I think is unfair to drop this Question when the hon. Member was present yesterday and the Minister went missing.
That is fair to the Chair! Let us then wait; maybe he does not know whether it was coming in the morning or afternoon session. So, Mr. Ethuro, we concur with you and so we will wait to see whether Mr. Olago will be here this afternoon.
On a point of order, Mr. Temporary Deputy Speaker, Sir. All hon. Members have had an opportunity this morning to peruse the Order Papers for both morning and afternoon and we have noticed that during this afternoonâs session of the Prime Ministerâs Time, the Prime Minister has no Question from this House.
Mr. Temporary Deputy Speaker, Sir, I am rising on a point of order to remind the Chair that when we created the Prime Ministerâs Time, it was because we wanted to create an opportunity, deliberately, to allow topical issues and current issues of national importance to be presented to the Prime Minister. Mr. Temporary Deputy Speaker, Sir, as I speak, you directed from the Chair yesterday that I send a Question to the Prime Ministerâs Office in respect of the issues I had raised yesterday. I did that and I passed it to the Office of the Clerk yesterday. I was expecting that, that Question would be on the Order Paper this morning in respect of the post-election violence and the deadlock in the Cabinet over the Report on the post-election violence by the Kenya National Human Rights Commission (KNHRC).
And as if it is not enough, Mr. Temporary Deputy Speaker, Sir, hon. Mungatana had also filed a Question through the Office of the Clerk to the Office of the Prime Minister which, again, we were expecting would be on the Order Paper. Could the Chair rule whether somebody is deliberately making it difficult for hon. Members to have their issues raised to the Prime Minister or whether there is a breakdown between the Office of the Clerk, the Office of the Speaker and the Office of the Prime Minister?
Thank you, Mr. Temporary Deputy Speaker, Sir.
Mr. Temporary Deputy Speaker, Sir, I want to confirm what Dr. Khalwale has raised. For example, three weeks ago, immediately after we raised some information about millions of shillings of donor funding from various Government departments that had been returned without utilization as a result of failure by various Government Ministries to utilize that money, I immediately filed a Question with the Office of the Clerk â and I can see one of them is here. I want to know what is happening. Why is it that Questions are not being filed and are not reaching the Prime Ministerâs Office? What is happening? That is critical! If the Minister for Finance, the Minister of Agriculture or any other Minister goes and gets donor funding for Kenya and then that money is not utilized, it means that someone is sleeping in his department and the Prime Minister needs to look into that! If our Questions are not listed on the Order Paper, what is happening?
All right, hon. Mungatana and Dr. Khalwale. We will be able to follow up on your Questions which are not appearing on the Order Paper. As I understand, the House Business Committee met last night and it seems that your Questions were not there for some reason. Therefore, we will be able to follow up to find out why your Questions are not appearing. So, just give us additional time and we will be able to follow up on that.
On a point of order, Mr. Temporary Deputy Speaker, Sir.
Let me allow a point of order from hon. Wamalwa---
It is on the same one, Mr. Temporary Deputy Speaker, Sir.
I will give you time.
Okay, Mr. Temporary Deputy Speaker, Sir.
Thank you, Mr. Temporary Deputy Speaker, Sir. I rise to seek a Ministerial Statement from the Ministry of Lands regarding the fate of Mt. Elgon Hospital land in Kitale. It was public land that was converted to private use irregularly by some individuals. I would like the Minister, in his Statement, to indicate under what circumstances the prime public property that was Mt. Elgon Hospital land was converted to private use and transferred to a private company. I would also like the Minister to indicate what steps the Government has taken to ensure that public interest in that prime property is protected. Finally, I would like the Minister for Lands to confirm to the House when he intends to bring the Lands Policy that was recently approved by the Cabinet to this House to ensure its implementation and expeditious dealings on matters of land grabbing in this country.
Thank you, Mr. Temporary Deputy Speaker, Sir.
All right. Is there any Minister who can take that undertaking?
Mr. Temporary Deputy Speaker, Sir, I undertake to inform the Minister concerned to be ready next week on Thursday.
All right. It is so ordered! Next week on Thursday! Thank you.
Mr. Temporary Deputy Speaker, Sir, I also rise to seek two Ministerial Statements, one from the Minister for--- I do not know which is which â is it the Ministry of Public Health and Sanitation or the Ministry of Medical Services? It is about polio. Maybe, after I read the request, you can direct me properly. The other one is to the Ministry of State for Provincial Administration and Internal Security.
The first one, Mr. Temporary Deputy Speaker, Sir, is that I would like the Minister to confirm that there is a serious polio outbreak in the larger Turkana Region. Already, about 16 cases have been reported. I would like the Minister, in his or her Statement, to confirm how many of such cases have been reported and the exact location where they were reported. The Minister should further confirm that the number of cases reported exceeds the recommended World Health Organization (WHO) standards and, hence, must declare Turkana a national disaster. What reasons can the Minister give for the recurrence of a disease that was generally expected to have been wiped out from the surface of the earth and can only be found in northern Kenya? What urgent measures is the Minister taking in order to improve polio immunization from the current low levels of about 48 per cent to 100 per cent in order to ensure that it covers the entire region?
Mr. Temporary Deputy Speaker, Sir, knowing that Turkana region borders Sudan, Uganda and Ethiopia, what measures is the Government taking to ensure that the porous borders do not become conduits for such a serious disease? It is serious and very bad. I would like the Minister to really clarify to the nation what is happening in northern Kenya.
All right. Minister, can you take that undertaking? Could you also give an undertaking about the one on health?
Yes, Mr. Temporary Deputy Speaker, Sir. On the one on our Ministry, I will be able to give a Statement on Thursday, next week. On the other one, I will be able to inform the Minister--- The Minister is here, Mr. Temporary Deputy Speaker, Sir, he can undertake to respond to that.
All right. Minister, can you take that undertaking on community health?
Thank you, Mr. Temporary Deputy Speaker, Sir. We undertake to give the Statement next Thursday.
Mr. Temporary Deputy Speaker, Sir, tomorrow is also a Thursday. That is the next Thursday. This is a very serious matter. Polio was said to have been wiped out of the whole world.
Mr. Assistant Minister, are you able to give this Statement tomorrow?
Mr. Temporary Deputy Speaker, Sir, we shall not be able to do so tomorrow as requested by the hon. Member. I would like to give it earliest on Wednesday, next week.
Could you, please, give it on Tuesday, next week because of the emergency element involved in it?
Yes, Mr. Temporary Deputy Speaker, Sir.
Mr. Ethuro, is that okay with you?
That is okay, Mr. Temporary Deputy Speaker, Sir.
Mr. Temporary Deputy Speaker, Sir, I rise to seek a Ministerial Statement from the Prime Minister on the Kazi kwa Vijana Programme. Currently, the programme is not understood in many parts of this country. There are areas where this programme is going on very well, but in other areas, people just hear of it. The youth do not understand how it operates. I am seeking a Ministerial Statement to find out how much money has been allocated to various Ministries for Kazi kwa Vijana programme; how the money is being utilized in each of the Ministries; who forms the committees to monitor the utilization of such funds and the progress of this programme, so far.
Thank you, Mr. Temporary Deputy Speaker, Sir.
Mr. Temporary Deputy Speaker, Sir, the Kazi kwa Vijana Programme is being co-ordinated under the Prime Ministerâs office. I undertake to inform them to issue the Statement sought by the hon. Member on Thursday, next week.
Mr. Temporary Deputy Speaker, Sir, sometime before we went on recess, hon. Karua, in her Question No.182, asked for the names and qualifications of the members of the National Task Force on Police Force which was formed in 2004. I wish to table the names. It is a long list. If the Chair wants me to read it, I can do so. However, we agreed that I table a list showing their names and their qualifications.
How many names are there?
Mr. Temporary Deputy Speaker, Sir, they are 16 names.
Could you, please, read them?
Mr. Temporary Deputy Speaker, Sir, we have Mr. Cyrus Gituai who was then the Permanent Secretary at the Ministry. Hon. Amos Wako, Attorney-General; Maj-Gen. Mohammed Ali, Commissioner of Police; Mr. Joseph K. Kinyua, Permanent Secretary, Ministry of Finance; Mr. David S.O. Nalo, then the Permanent Secretary, Ministry of Trade; Mr. Titus J.K. Gatere, Director, Kenya Institute of Administration; Mr. Kinuthia Mbugua, Commandant, Administration Police; Dr. Manu Chandaria, Proprietor, Mabati Rolling Mills; Mr. James J. Mageria, Rtd. Assistant Commissioner of Police; Justice Mary Owuor, Criminal Justice International Trainer in Security Business Executive; Ms. Jane Kiragu a lawyer at FIDA; Mr. Stephen Ouma, advocate of the High Court; Mr. Philip Kichana, advocate of the High Court; Mr. Maina Kiai, Kenya Human Rights Commission; Mr. Francis Thuita Kimemia, Deputy Secretary, Office of the President; Mr. Leonard Kimani, legal officer, Office of the President, and Mr. Leonard Wanyonyi, Senior Assistant Secretary.
On that particular Question, I was---
On a point of order, Mr. Temporary Deputy Speaker, Sir.
Mr. Temporary Deputy Speaker, Sir, why does the hon. Member not let me finish and then he can have all the time to raise his points of order?
On that particular occasion, I was also challenged to lay on the Table of this House some of the reports. I did say that those reports will be laid once they have been released by the appointing authority. The Waki Commission Report is the only report that has been released by the appointing authority. It is already in the public domain. The rest of the reports are yet to be officially released by the appointing authority. Therefore, I cannot table them before Parliament.
The reports on the Kiruki Commission, the Artur Brothers, the Grand Regency Commission and the Sharawe Commission on North Eastern Province are yet to be released by the appointing authority. Concerning Prof. Alstonâs Report, I wish to state that the report is a UN document. Therefore, I cannot purport to table it before Parliament knowing very well that it was not commissioned by this Government. In any case, it is also in the public domain. Mr. Temporary Deputy Speaker, Sir, Cap.108, the Commissions of Inquiry Act, provides for the appointment of Commissioners to inquire into and report on matters of a public nature referred to them by the President. Consequently, the President reserves the right on how to deal
Mr. Temporary Deputy Speaker, Sir. The point of order on which I wanted to rise on has already been overtaken. So, I will just seek a clarification. I would like the Assistant Minister to appreciate the fact that when the President orders for a task force, it is not in his interest to do so. He is doing so, as the custodian of the interest of the public. Therefore, it is important that members of the public know what the outcome of that particular task force is.
Secondly, could the Assistant Minister clarify the total cost these task forces have visited on public funds.
Mr. Temporary Deputy Speaker, Sir, I will just repeat what I said earlier because that is not a new question to me. I had said earlier that the amount spent on the 2004 task force was Kshs2.1 million The Waki Commission spent a total of Kshs25,214,456. We are still preparing the budget for the current task force which will be completed within this month. They are supposed to finalise their report by the end of the month.
Mr. Temporary Deputy Speaker, Sir, it is, indeed, true that once a Commission of Inquiry is held, we need to have the report. However, we are also guided by the statutes of this county. I would want to challenge the hon. Member to amend this Commissions of Inquiry Act to compel the appointing authority to release the report once the commissions have done their work. Otherwise, the President has powers to release what he wants.
Mr. Temporary Deputy Speaker, Sir, I want to acknowledge what the Assistant Minister has said about the powers of the President, but it is also true that there is nothing about the law that forbids the President from releasing these reports to the public. It is true that these are public funds being expended on public matters towards achieving certain objectives. It is only fair and imperative that the President makes these reports public for this House to debate.
Hon. Baiya, the Assistant Minister has already said that there is no law that can compel the President to release the reports. Currently, there is no law that can compel the President to release the reports. So, the case rests there.
On a point of order, Mr. Temporary Deputy Speaker, Sir. The issue is, really, not the legality around it. The issue is about public money being spent to produce reports that do not come to public attention. You wonder why those commissions were set up in the first place, if they were not meant for some public good. So, Mr. Assistant Minister, we are not going to amend the Act, but that is not an excuse for the appointing authority not to release such reports to the public. We are in the era of transparency and accountability. So, can you ensure that your boss releases all the reports that were undertaken at great public expense?
Mr. Temporary Deputy Speaker, Sir, it is true. Even the expenditure of those public funds is done through an Act or some statute. That is why Cap.102
On a point of order, Mr. Temporary Deputy Speaker, Sir. The Assistant Minister is not in order to mislead the House that the President can spend public funds without any regard as to whether the public is going to be interested in getting value for expendigure of their money. The reason as to why the Office of the Controller and Auditor-General is there is to make sure that the public gets value for any money that is expended. Can the Assistant Minister admit that he is just being a good advocate for the President, who deliberately refuses to make these reports public, because he wants to protect certain interests that have been exposed in certain cases, like in the case of hon. Kimunya, who was indicted by the Cocker Commission, but the President refused to make the report public so as to let him off the hook?
Order! Order, hon. Members! Let us rest that case at that. The Assistant Minister has taken time to explain that we cannot compel the President to release the reports. Next Order!
Mr. Temporary Deputy Speaker, Sir, I beg to move the following Motion:- THAT, aware that Northern Kenya and other Arid Lands face perennial drought that is cyclic in nature; mindful that this occasions severe negative economic, social and environmental effects; noting that currently, responses to drought are reactive due to lack of proactive measures; concerned that the country lacks legal framework designed to mitigate these problems, this House urges the Government to establish a Drought Management Authority responsible for drought preparedness and response. Mr. Temporary Deputy Speaker, Sir, drought is one of the most serious problems facing this nation. Drought affects about 10 million Kenyans, who are food insecure. Drought destroys the economy of a nation and sets back years of development efforts. Structural and institutional marginalization and drought related-disasters are major causes and contributors to poverty in northern Kenya â an area that is drought-prone.
Out of 14 disasters that have happened in Kenya in the last 30 years, 12 are drought- related. Major droughts occur in this country every three to five year. All of us in this House are
Mr. Temporary Deputy Speaker, Sir, I wish to second this Motion. In doing so, I want to thank my good friend who has come to join us in this House. I want to thank him
Thank you, Mr. Temporary Deputy Speaker Sir, for giving me this opportunity to support this Motion. I support it with my heart, mind and soul. I begin by thanking the hon. Member for North Horr, Mr. Chachu Ganya, for bringing this Motion before this House and for causing the Government to take action. This Motion which seeks to address the problems that nearly 80 per cent of this countryâs population faces has been brought on the Floor of this House by an hon. Member. This should have been the responsibility of the Government. The Government should have brought this Motion a long time ago. However, since the Government does not think and does not want to think, I want to thank the hon. Member for making it think. There is no way we can think about Kenya without thinking about the northern part of this country. Last year, after the crisis, once the Cabinet was formed, there were a lot of celebrations in northern Kenya because for the first time, there seemed to be a genuine attempt to solve our problems by establishing a Ministry particularly responsible for this region in terms of trying to fast- track development. However, we are increasingly becoming disappointed. We are starting to think that this was a political gimmick and that this Ministry was maybe established in order to satisfy the huge voting blocks that certain parties achieved. Part of it was a campaign platform by certain political parties. You cannot attempt to establish a Ministry like this and then you give it a paltry Kshs2 billion in two consecutive budgets, part of which is supposed to go to a project called Arid Lands Resource Management Project. We want to thank that project and its management. That money has not been coming from the Government. It has been coming from our friends; the international community. I think if there is a real definition of Government and sense of Government in northern Kenya; it is only the Arid Lands Resource Management Project that can qualify to really mean âGovernmentâ to the people because it has been useful in terms of mitigating their problems. I just happen to have come from home last evening, a constituency represented by hon. Abdirahman in Wajir South. This happens to be my home area. I have realized that in that part of the country, if there is no focus by the Government to mitigate disaster that is likely to happen, we might go to the countryside or the constituencies with the firefighting measures when we might have lost livestock which is the backbone of our economy and even lose people. This Motion seeks to establish Drought Management Authority responsible for drought preparedness. To prepare is to plan. Failure to plan is planning to fail. I, therefore, want to support this Motion and to request the Minister, even though he is consulting, to do all that is possible to justify his presence here as a Minister and second, the relevance of the Ministry to the country and fast-track the development of this Authority. Mr. Chachu has said that this Ministry will be responsible for the coordination of the very many items that lie in many Ministries that are relevant in northern Kenya. Currently, there are six other Ministries, apart from the Ministry of State for Development Northern Kenya and other Arid Lands, which have pocket budgets to support the northern Kenya programmes. Why did the Government establish the Ministry of State for Development of Northern Kenya and other Arid Lands when we have a substantial budget for it in the Ministry of Water and Irrigation, the Ministry of Regional Development Authorities, the Ministry of Lands, and the Office of the President and especially in the Ministry of State for Special Programmes? What is the essence of establishing the Ministry of State for Development of Northern Kenya and other Arid Lands
Mr. Temporary Deputy Speaker, Sir, I thank the Minister for confirming that he has staff in arid areas. I meant the arid lands project which was stopped by the World Bank.
Mr. Temporary Deputy Speaker, Sir, I beg to support the Motion.
Thank you, Mr. Temporary Deputy Speaker, Sir, for giving me this opportunity to contribute to this very important Motion. I would like to take this opportunity to thank my colleague, Mr. Chachu for bringing this very important Motion.
Mr. Temporary Deputy Speaker, Sir, it is important for our country to plan to support or save our citizens. It is high time that we had an authority in this country to look into critical issues including disaster management so that we can plan and be proactive. My colleague, Mr. Chachu, has proposed the establishment of the Drought Management Authority, under the Ministry of State for Development of Northern Kenya and other Arid Lands. That Authority is very important. You will realise that for several years, beginning from the 1990s, we have had a circle of long spell of drought. If we had an authority which could study and report to the parent Ministry that drought is in the offing, then this country could not be facing the famine that it is facing now. People are suffering because of lack of planning. It is important that we begin planning seriously for calamities such as drought.
Mr. Temporary Deputy Speaker, Sir, the people of Kajiado where I come from are suffering from famine. I urge the Government to ensure that food security for those people is guaranteed because the situation is grave. The Government should also move with speed and address the famine situation not only in Kajiado but also in other parts of Kenya. The situation is grave and it requires attention by the Government. I would like the Government to set aside funds and fund critical Ministries well. The other Government money should be channeled towards saving Kenyans. We need the proposed Authority because livestock farmers have always been taken for granted by previous regimes. We do not even think that the current Government is taking the livestock farmers seriously. An example is the current drought that the country is facing. The KMC was given a loan of Kshs500 million to mitigate the problems of farmers. That amount is peanuts. It would have been fair if the KMC was given a grant of not less than Kshs2 billion in
Mr. Temporary Deputy Speaker, Sir, I stand to support this Motion to set up a Drought Management Authority in this country. There is what we call the Arids Land Resource Management Project that is basically doing what we are talking about; drought mitigation. This project is funded by the
Thank you, Mr. Temporary Deputy Speaker, Sir, for giving me the opportunity to support this very important Motion. My view is that this Motion is not only important for the northern region alone because if you look at the geography or the physical nature of this country from 1920, 1950 and now, particularly if you fly over the country, you will see what we have done as leadership in this country, to make it arid and semi arid. The forests
Thank you, Mr. Temporary Deputy Speaker, Sir, for giving me this opportunity to support this very important Motion. In my view, we are talking about setting up an authority. That is a noble and correct step because we want to focus on what really matters. So far, drought and the problem of livestock owners is taken for granted and yet, that is their livelihood.
However, Mr. Temporary Deputy Speaker, Sir, Kenya, like the rest of the world, has been suffering from the effects of climate change. In this country, I constantly get a feeling that when we talk of climate change, we are talking about it in abstract. The effects of climate change are here with us. If anyone is in any doubt, they should actually travel around the country
Mr. Temporary Deputy Speaker, Sir, I would like to support this Motion and to start by saying that it is an unfortunate situation we are finding ourselves in, when an hon. Member has to bring this kind of Motion, which is solely the work of the Government.
Mr. Temporary Deputy Speaker, Sir, the work of the Government is to ensure that the people have basic needs. That is basic! On the issue of drought, I want to agree with my colleague and Minister---
Order, hon. Shabesh! I am seeing that there is a lot of interest by hon. Members. Could you agree among yourselves to use a maximum of five minutes to allow other hon. Members to contribute?
Thank you, Mr. Temporary Deputy Speaker, Sir. I will not take more than five minutes.
I agree with Dr. Kosgey that the issue of drought is related to that of climate change. It is important that the Government steps up to the opportunities that arise around the world. This is because climate change is not an issue for Kenya; it is a global issue. Within this climate change conversation, this is an opportunity for us to, once and for all, deal with the issue of drought as a disaster.
Mr. Temporary Deputy Speaker, Sir, drought may be a way of life in Kenya, but it is being exacerbated because of climate change. Within the issue of climate change, there is Disaster Risk Reduction Fund and the Climate Adaptation Fund. I am not sure how the Government plans to come across these funds. If the Minister for Development of Northern Kenya and other Arid Lands would want to benefit from this fund, it is important that he works with the Minister for Environment and Mineral Resources and the Minister for Special Programmes who are involved in the issue of climate change.
Maybe, this is the reason why we are not doing very well on this issue because there are too many Ministries competing for the same resources and work. That is why we really do need to support the issue of reducing Ministries. We can then get a Ministry that can deal with one issue comprehensively. This is money that is being made available to countries through the World Bank and countries that are called Annex One; those that have brought about the issue of climate change. This money is being collected by other developing countries, but Kenya is not doing so. This is because there is a Ministry for Environment and Mineral Resources somewhere, another one for Special Programmes and now this one for Development of Northern Kenya and other Arid Lands. Who will collect this money on behalf of Kenya? Why do we not sit down as the Cabinet and not waste time speaking about the Hague which is really not about Kenyans? It is about five or six people. Let us speak about Kenyans. Kenyans need this money to survive. Livestock needs to be protected because this is the livelihood of the Kenyan people. Mr. Temporary Deputy Speaker, Sir, I also want to speak about this Ministry. The issue of arid lands is not only for northern Kenya. Northern Kenya was put there because it is the
Mr. Temporary Deputy Speaker, Sir, I would like to thank Mr. Chachu for having brought this Motion to the House which I can only describe as very timely, relevant and ideal for us to be able to deal with the problems of drought and under-development in northern Kenya. For a long time, we have complained in this country that policy makers and planners have not been able to address our problems as expected. That is why in less than 10 years after Independence, people in northern Kenya were put on food aid which they still receive today. About 40 years down the road, we are still asking for alternative options besides food aid and no Government, including the current one, has been able to address our problems. Mr. Temporary Deputy Speaker, Sir, when some people hear about drought, they just view it as a common occurrence. It is not a common occurrence because those who feel it, will always want it addressed and will speak about it very passionately. Drought cycles have now become shorter. We are virtually in drought every given year. In the past, it was 10 years, 15 years, but now it is virtually on annual basis for those who live in northern Kenya. We know drought affects the whole country and responses have not been forthcoming. Just to give you an example, His Excellency the President declared famine a national disaster on 16th January, 2009. Six months down the road, if you go back to the regions where we come from, you will still find that there are no responses in terms of mitigation, particularly on water and food. It is a pity! It is because of the isolated responses from line Ministries. Mr. Temporary Deputy Speaker, Sir, we have now the Ministry of Development of Northern Kenya and other Arid Lands and the Ministry of Special Programmes which are both co-ordinating drought and emergency issues. What is the output? Virtually nothing. We would want these centralized. That is why I am saying that the Drought Management Authority proposed by Mr. Chachu is very ideal. We would really want it done as quickly as possible because the Drought Management Authority will be autonomous in the sense that it will not be able to get these problems of financial deadlines. As at 30th June, we were told that all accounts had been closed. I think it will be more autonomous in terms of meeting its own targets. As other speakers before me have said, northern Kenya is not a place where you cannot grow things. In the place where I come from, the Uaso Nyiro Development Authority is not doing anything meaningful. River Uaso Nyiro goes through my constituency, although we do not see any water now.
Thank you, Mr. Temporary Deputy Speaker, Sir, for giving me this opportunity. Let me start by thanking Mr. Chachu for thinking on behalf of this Government which seems to be asleep. We have been able to see previously that this Government works only on emergencies. You know very well that our current President and the previous Presidents have been very quick in making declarations of national disasters; one of them being famine. I do not know what the significance of declaring a situation a national disaster helps. If this helps the situation, then the Government should declare arid lands and other semi-arid areas national disasters too. This will ensure that they are able to benefit from whatever this Government believes they can benefit from. I want to support the creation of the Drought Management Authority (DMA) as quickly as possible. The Motion talks about the drought being cyclic in nature. So, it is no longer an emergency. This Government is aware that during certain periods of time within our calendar years, we expect drought. Of utmost importance is this: What have they been able to do? We have agencies that have been able to help this Government to predict. It seems we are not able to make use of these agencies. Even animals have been able to indicate to us that there are certain weather patterns that will come over. We have birds that keep on flying around, and this tells us to expect this kind of a situation. The Government must be able to rise to the occasion and address this kind of situation well in advance. It is sad that every now and then, we see the Government seeking help to help its own people. A Government that always seeks help cannot help its people. Mr. Temporary Deputy Speaker, Sir, it is sad that every now and then, this Government sits down to plan how to do what I know the hon. Minister knows; what is called in the world of NGOs âsustainable hungerâ. Every year, we have to ensure that there is hunger for work to be there in the following year. This is a habit that must stop. The response, in terms of intervention, that we expect from the creation of the proposed Drought Management Authority is very important, in terms of rehabilitation of infrastructure like dams. If such infrastructure is there, then it should be rehabilitated. If it is not there, we should see the Government creating dams. In the Budget that was presented to this House a few weeks ago, the Government allocated more money for the rehabilitation of Nairobi River than the total amount that has been
Hon. Members, it is now time for the Government Responder to reply.
Mr. Temporary Deputy Speaker, Sir, before I respond, I would like to donate three minutes to hon. Kamama and two minutes to Dr. Nuh.
Very well, Mr. Kamama!
Mr. Temporary Deputy Speaker, Sir, first, I would like to thank the Government Responder for donating this time to me. I want to say that all of us are not oblivious of the fact that in the military, we have what we call âradar systemâ that detects the presence of an enemy or any foreign material that endangers lives. We should also not forget the fact that the Government of the United States of America (USA) has a system of detecting cyclones, hurricanes and all other bad weather situations in that country. Mr. Temporary Deputy Speaker, Sir, in our case, we need a Drought Management Authority that will detect similar situations in the entire country, more specifically in the ASAL areas, which constitute about 80 per cent of the entire land mass of this country. That region has been forgotten right from the colonial time. The colonialists started by introducing a pass to make sure that people who were interested in development could not access those regions. So,
Hon. Kamama, you are exceeding the generosity of the donor.
Thank you, Mr. Temporary Deputy Speaker, Sir. I will not talk about what has been presented before, but I want to just make a statement that if it is true that Kenya is 80 per cent arid and semi-arid, then that fact alone should tell us, as a Government and as a nation, what level of importance we should attach to the establishment of the Authority that, in my opinion, is long overdue. It should not be formed only as a corrective measure to correct all the consequences of drought that have been suffered by ASALs, but also as a preventive measure to ensure that our semi-arid areas do not eventually become arid. That, notwithstanding, in the establishment of the Authority, we should ensure that there is adequate allocation of resources, both financial and human, to put in place the right policies that will ensure there are mitigation measures. It is quite interesting that the same regions that suffer perennial droughts also suffer perennial floods. With the kind of expertise and human resource that we have in this country, why can we not have an Authority with the right policies and resources to engage in an extensive programme of dam construction? That way, every year, we can harvest enough water to be used in irrigation throughout ASALs. Mr. Temporary Deputy Speaker, Sir, while supporting this Motion, I would like to say that we should not limit ourselves to thinking that Arid and Semi-Arid Lands (ASAL), as being only within northern Kenya. If it is 80 per cent of Kenya, then we know we have pockets of ASAL s all the way from the coastal region where we have one of the poorest constituencies in Kaloleni and Ganze, all the way to western Kenya and Nyanza Province where we have
Mr. Temporary Deputy Speaker, Sir, first and foremost, I would like to thank Mr. Chachu for bringing this Motion before this House. I want to support the Motion and inform the House what we are doing as a Ministry. I would like to shed light on some things that have been mentioned about my Ministry. I think it is true that like all other Ministries, this Ministry has been created politically. I think people should stop saying this Ministry has been created for politics. There is no single Ministry that has not been created for political reasons. We are a democracy and democracy demands that what people think is important should be done. I think that puts the record straight. We have youth problems and the Ministry of Youth and Sports was created. Governments all over the world use different mechanisms to respond to needs of the people. We have had projects to address the issues of northern Kenya. The Government felt that, that was not enough and decided to create a Ministry. So, we need to move forward. Mr. Temporary Deputy Speaker, Sir, it is also true that the budget allocation we have received in the last two financial years is a drop in the ocean, considering the problems we want to solve. I also want people to know that the problems of northern Kenya and arid lands will not be solved by budget allocations only. I am thankful to all the Members who have highlighted the fact that we have little allocation from the Budget. We, however, have other ways we intend to work. We intend to put up the right institutions, repeal some laws and change peopleâs attitudes. The reason resources are not allocated to those areas is the mindset that has been created since the colonial time. We intend to change that. Mr. Temporary Deputy Speaker, Sir, let me come to the point we are discussing today, which is the setting up of Drought Management Authority (DMA). I am grateful to Mr. Chachu for bringing this Motion. The Ministry is already working on it. We have set up a team and we have draft legislation in place. We have a Cabinet Memo ready to be taken to the Cabinet. We will bring it before the House very soon. You can be assured that this time round, the Government will implement this Motion. I would like to inform the House that the establishment of this Authority would first and foremost, provide the legal basis for the activities of drought management. Since 1992, the Government of Kenya together with its development partners, have been setting up early warning systems and coordination structures up to the national level. Because of the lack of legal framework there are many gaps you will see today. So, this is one of the things which will help. The Fund will have a number of things that it will do. It will provide not only the rationale process of being the legal framework but also an authority like that one will provide the
It is now time for the Mover to reply!
Mr. Temporary Deputy Speaker, Sir, before I reply, I would like to donate two of my minutes to Mr. Wamalwa.
Mr. Temporary Deputy Speaker, Sir, I would like to thank Mr. Chachu for giving me two minutes to also contribute to this very important Motion. Not long ago, there was an equally very important Motion brought to this House by Mr. Affey that proposed that we should have rotational sittings of this House. In fact, had we had this Motion debated somewhere in the northern part of this country, perhaps, we would have given it more weight because it would have impacted more on us as Members, by seeing the severity of the drought out there. We would have seen Kenyans suffering and their livestock dying. We would have walked by the carcasses of their animals. It is a serious matter. It is time that we had an authority to manage drought. Drought is something that has been experienced for many years and it will come again in future. It is not just drought, but we have also had floods in Budalangâi and Nyando. These are not emergencies because every year, we have experienced floods or drought. It is time that we had an authority, particularly to focus on the drought situation, act in time and help Kenyans who are suffering from drought all over the country. We should focus on priorities which my colleagues have talked about. As a nation, we have not really prioritized certain areas such as the northern part of this country. Issues like drought have not been prioritised. As I speak here, we have a bloated Cabinet in a country faced with famine and drought. My time is up. Mr. Temporary Deputy Speaker, Sir, I beg to support the Motion and urge the Government to take it seriously.
Mr. Temporary Deputy Speaker, Sir, I want to thank all my colleagues who have contributed positively to this Motion. I also would like to thank the seconder who is now in the Chair, for providing the policy framework necessary for this Authority to be established. I want to thank the Minister, who is a proven professional in his own right for seeing the need for establishing this Authority and for being proactive in his Ministry. I am glad to hear that a lot of good work is going on. I hope that this critical Authority, which will serve very many Kenyans, will see the light of the day very soon. The assurance given by the Minister is very important because this problem of drought is affecting over 10 million Kenyans living in an area that is almost 80 per cent of Kenyaâs landmass. It is very critical to mention that we are talking of 75 per cent of Kenyaâs wealth; the livestock of this nation in arid and semi-arid areas of this nation. If we do not manage the drought, our wealth will go to waste. That is why it is so critical for this Authority to be established. I really do hope that when this Authority is established, it will be well financed and capacitated both in finances and human resource. It will be the only Authority of its kind in drought prone areas and I really do hope that the Minister will do what it takes to ensure that it is functioning.
Mr. Temporary Deputy Speaker, Sir, as I conclude, realizing the climate change phenomenon in the whole world, the Authority will go a long way in managing drought and the
Mr. Temporary Deputy Speaker, Sir, I beg to move the following Motion:-
THAT, acknowledging the fact that demand for electricity in this country far outstrips supply; further aware that small hydro-power generation plants can be used to supplement the Governmentâs effort to provide electricity to its citizens and encourage establishment of cottage industries through lower electricity costs; cognizant that the western part of Kenya is endowed with rivers such as the Nzoia, Yala, Arror, Weim Wei, Moiben, Chepkaitit, Kaptetit and others; this House urges the Government to establish small hydro-power generation plants on these rivers to supplement the supply of electricity to the national grid.
Mr. Temporary Deputy Speaker, Sir, the reason why I brought this Motion is because of the experiences we have had in this country. You remember that in the year 2000, we had problems with power. As a country, we only rely on the Seven Folks Dam which is in Mt. Kenya region. At that time, we were imagining that if we had put very many generating plants on the rivers of the other parts of the country, we would have had---
Order, Mr. Chanzu! You will have about 18 minutes next Wednesday.
Hon. Members, it is now time to interrupt the business of the House. The House, therefore, stands adjourned until this afternoon, Wednesday, July 22, 2009 at 2.30 p.m.
The House rose at 12.30 p.m.