Mr. Deputy Speaker, Sir, before I ask the Question, I would like to state that I have not received a copy of the written answer.
Do you wish to proceed with the Question?
Yes, Mr. Deputy Speaker, Sir. STALLING OF MT. KENYA ELECTRIC FENCING PROJECT
Mr. Deputy Speaker, Sir, I beg to ask the Minister for Forestry and Wildlife the following Question by Private Notice. (a) Why has the electric fencing around Mt. Kenya stalled even though construction materials are available at the site? (b) When will the construction commence? (c) What measures is the Minister taking to keep away wildlife, especially monkeys from farmlands around the Aberdares?
Mr. Deputy Speaker, Sir, I seem to have a different answer to a Question that is almost similar to this one. Probably, that is why the hon. Member does not have a copy of the written answer.
Do you want to revisit the Question later on? Are you waiting for the right answer?
Yes, Mr. Deputy Speaker, Sir. ILLEGAL ALLOCATION OF ASK WATER SPRING LAND TO CHURCH
to ask the Minister for Water and Irrigation:-
Is Mr. Shakeel not here? We will come back to that Question later on! Let us move on to Mr. Kiuna’s Question! SALE OF ADC MOLO FARM
Mr. Deputy Speaker, Sir, I beg to ask the Minister for Agriculture the following Question by Private Notice. (a) Could the Minister state the original acreage of the ADC Molo Farm, the acreage of the farm sold so far and money made out of the sale? (b) Could the Minister table the list of beneficiaries of the sale and explain how the sale has contributed positively towards agricultural development? (c) How much did the Government spend in the purchase of 700 acres of Asante Farm in Kuresoi District?
Mr. Deputy Speaker, Sir, this Question was deferred to this week because the list of beneficiaries of the ADC farms I tabled had not been certified. However, I now have a certified list of the beneficiaries of the ADC farms totaling to 59,873 acres. The list is certified by the Permanent Secretary, Ministry of Agriculture. It is an extract from the famous Ndung’u Report. Mr. Deputy Speaker, Sir, I would like to table the list.
Mr. Deputy Speaker, Sir, while I thank the Assistant Minister, I do not agree with what he has said. This is because the list he laid on the Table last week did not contain genuine squatters and the landless, and yet those were the people who were supposed to be allocated that land. The beneficiaries of those farms were rich people. I would like the Assistant Minister to confirm to this House, and to the whole nation, whether that list contains genuine squatters or the rich few people in the Republic of Kenya.
Mr. Deputy Speaker, Sir, first of all, I humbly request the hon. Member to peruse through the list and see who is named in it. Furthermore, the list I have just tabled shows that the original owner of the land was the ADC which was subsequently required by the Government to surrender the land as a block to the Settlement Fund Trustees (SFT) for onward allocation. As the Ministry of Agriculture, we cannot know who is who in terms of the allotees. I would like the Chair to guide this House because I believe that this Question can be answered appropriately by the Ministry of Lands.
On a point of order, Mr. Deputy Speaker, Sir. From the list the Assistant Minister has tabled here, could he confirm who gave the authority for this land to be allotted? This is because as I speak here now, there is information from the ground-- - Could the Assistant Minister confirm to this House whether the Molo Potato Cold Plant has requested the Ministry to sell to it the ADC farms in Molo for research? Could he also confirm whether the ADC Farm the Molo Potato Cold Plant has requested the Ministry to sell to it will also be allocated to the same people or not?
Mr. Deputy Speaker, Sir, the ADC was requested by the former Government to surrender eight farms to the SFT for onward allocation. Out of 59,000 acres, the ADC is left with 1,330 acres currently. I would also like to confirm that the management of the ADC has approached the Ministry of Agriculture to allow it acquire more land. So far, the Ministry has acquired 700 acres for the ADC in the Asante Farm. Since the policy of the Ministry of Agriculture is to continue supplying farmers with seeds, we have an obligation to support the ADC to acquire fresh land because the previous one was grabbed.
Mr. Deputy Speaker, Sir, out of the eight ADC farms, how many were in Trans Nzoia District? Who were the beneficiaries of the ADC farms allocated in Trans Nzoia District?
Mr. Deputy Speaker, Sir, that is a completely different Question, but I have tabled the list showing the eight ADC farms. The list includes the beneficiaries who acquired more than five acres of this farm.
Mr. Deputy Speaker, Sir, I have perused the list. It contains names of Ministers who are serving in this Government, and senior civil servants. In include people who cannot, in the faintest imagination, be termed “squatters”. They are the high and might in this country. So, would I be in order to ask the Assistant Minister to own up to the fact that they gave the land to their friends and people who are powerful in the Ministries, and that they did not give land to any squatter?
Mr. Deputy Speaker, Sir, it is true that part of the list may read as who-is-who in Kenya today but, maybe, at that particular time, in the 19990s, they were squatters.
Last question, Mr. Kiuna!
Mr. Deputy Speaker, Sir, I would like the Assistant Minister to tell this House and the whole nation--- If he continues with this trend of dishing out the little land we have in this Republic to the mighty and strong people on this land, surely, where
Mr. Deputy Speaker, Sir, the land was bought on willing seller, willing buyer basis. So, I would like to request the hon. Member to, first of all, bear in mind is the fact that the Ministry of Agriculture was requested by the KANU Government to surrender this land to the Ministry of Lands and the Settlement Fund Trustee. It was actually the Ministry of Lands that allocated the land. It is not the duty of the Ministry of Agriculture to allocate land. So, he can re-direct that question to the Ministry of Lands.
Let us go back to the first Question by Private Notice. Is the Minister ready with the answer?
Mr. Deputy Speaker, Sir, the Minister has gone for the answer. He asked whether he could be given a few more minutes. This Question is very important.
Question deferred to tomorrow afternoon! STALLING OF MT. KENYA ELECTRIC FENCING PROJECT
to ask the Minister for Forestry and Wildlife:- (a) Why has the electric fencing project around Mt. Kenya stalled even though construction materials are available at the site? (b) When will the construction commence? (c) What measures is the Minister taking to keep away wildlife, especially monkeys, from farmlands around the Aberdares?
Next Question by Private Notice, Mr. Shakeel Shabir! Is Mr. Shakeel not here? The Question is dropped! ILLEGAL ALLOCATION OF ASK WATER SPRING LAND TO CHURCH
to ask the Minister for Water and Irrigation:- (a) Is the Minister aware that the large parcel of land, which is a spring source of water flowing to the Nairobi ASK show ground water dam, previously occupied by the Ministry of Energy, has been allocated to a church? (b) Could he clarify whether the church had authority to construct the concrete barrier at the water source, resulting in the drying up of the dams serving the ASK show ground? (c) What measures will the Minister take to remedy the situation?
asked the Minister for Gender, Children and Social Development:- (a) whether she could provide a list of individuals and organisations that have benefited from the Women Enterprise Development Fund (WEDF) in the last two years, showing distribution by region; (b) how many among the beneficiaries are marginalised women, women with disabilities, female-headed households and pastoralist women; and, (c) what measures she is putting in place to reach out to the categories mentioned in (b) above.
On a point of order, Mr. Deputy Speaker, Sir.
What is it, Mr. Olago?
Mr. Speaker, Sir, when this Question came up before the House last week, the Minister was ordered to supply details of names of individuals and groups that were loaned monies. I was just wondering whether this has been complied with before the Question can be answered.
Which Question are you talking about, Mr. Olago?
Mr. Deputy Speaker, Sir, I talking about Question No.325.
Are you the Minister? The Question is to the Minister. It is only after the Minister responds that you can rise on a point of order.
Then I will do it, Mr. Deputy Speaker, Sir.
Minister for Gender, Children and Social Development! Next Question, Mr. Nkoida ole Lankas!
On a point of order, Mr. Deputy Speaker, Sir.
Order, Mrs. Noor! We will come back to your Question!
On a point of order, Mr. Deputy Speaker, Sir.
What is it?
Mr. Deputy Speaker, Sir, this Question was on the Order Paper last week. It was deferred because the Minister did not address the issues raised. However, the answer I have now is the same one that was given last week. There is nothing that has been changed.
You will express your sentiments on a point of order when the Minister is here.
Thank you, Mr. Deputy Speaker, Sir.
asked the Minister for Tourism:- (a) how many tourist circuits exist in Kenya and what packages they offer; and, (b) what the Ministry is doing to ensure sufficient promotion and publicity for all of them.
Minister for Tourism! Is he not here? We will come back to this Question. Next Question, Mr. Mungatana!
asked the Minister for Energy:- (a) whether he is aware that there has recently been a major transaction involving the purchase of all Chevron Oil Company outlets, trading in Kenya as M/s Caltex by French multinational Total outré’ mer SA (Total); (b) whether he could state the respective oil market share of M/s Total Kenya before and after the above acquisition; and, (c) how the Government will protect citizens against possible monopolistic pricing and accompanying exploitation resulting from the transaction.
Mr. Deputy Speaker, Sir, I beg to reply. (a) I am aware. (b) Before acquisition, the market share of Total Kenya was 12.373 per cent. After the acquisition, it was 19.67 per cent in the period ended March, 2009. (c) Competitiveness and inter-relationship within the Kenya petroleum industry will make it difficult for Total Kenya to employ monopolistic tendencies. However, my Ministry, through the Energy Regulatory Commission, is and will continue monitoring the operations of Total Kenya and, indeed, all other oil marketers with a view to safeguarding citizens against any monopolistic tendencies. Thank you, Mr. Deputy Speaker, Sir.
Mr. Deputy Speaker, Sir, Total Outré’ Mer SA is a French company that trades in Kenya as Total. M/s Caltex is an American company. When you look at what has happened, you will see that Total has acquired a lot of the things that Caltex used to own. In particular, Caltex had 165 service stations in East Africa, 89 of which were in Kenya, eight logistical facilities, six aviation facilities and a lubrication plant in Mombasa. This is not the first time that Total has acquired huge interests in the energy sector, in particular, the oil sector. When Exxon Mobil was exiting the Kenyan market, Total acquired the entire 14 subsidiaries. What we are seeing is an actual ceding of the entire energy sector to foreign multinationals. The question that begs is: What strategy is the Government putting in place to avoid total control of the energy sector by these private multinationals? A clear example is what happened recently.
You have made your point. Can you put the question now?
Mr. Deputy Speaker, Sir, can he tell us what they are doing? It is strategically dangerous for this country.
Mr. Deputy Speaker, Sir, the Government has been aware of the impending sale of Chevron Oil Company outlets in East Africa over the last year. Indeed, my Ministry was actually involved in supporting the National Oil Corporation of Kenya (NOCK) to bid for the outlets of Chevron Oil Company in Kenya. However, Total, with the support of its parent company, outbid the NOCK and other bidders. In fact, the NOCK was third. My Ministry has subsequently been involved in the approval of the acquisition, and has engaged severally with Total. Indeed, as an avenue for reducing the holding of Total, and safeguarding the country against monopolistic tendencies, the Government, through the Ministry, has supported the NOCK to negotiate the acquisition of ten retail stations from Total. The two companies have subsequently signed a Memorandum of Understanding for the acquisition of ten stations. Total has proceeded to advertise for sale another 12 stations, over and above the ten stations being sold to the NOCK. So, the NOCK has increased competitive pricing for its products by taking lower margins than other marketers. So, the Ministry is aware of this, but I assure the House that the said acquisition will not distort the share of Total, which, as I said, is now 19.67 per cent.
Mr. Deputy Speaker, Sir, a while ago, the Government has been saying it wants to participate more seriously in the issue of fuel retailing through NOCK. If there were 165 stations which were being offered for sale in the market, why did the Government not aid the NOCK to buy them?
Mr. Deputy Speaker, Sir, it was a long process. What were on sale from Chevron were the assets in Kenya and Uganda. Initially, the NOCK was interested in all of them. Later on, we zeroed down to the Kenyan assets. There are 86 active stations of Chevron in Kenya. There are five aviation operations just to correct what Mr. Mungatana said. There are two LPG storage facilities. There is one lubricant plant. There are five lubricant warehouses, one fuel terminal and three fuel depots. At the beginning, the NOCK were not even allowed to go to the next process. The Government did intervene and talked to the Chevron headquarters. They were allowed to proceed to the third stage. They reached a level where they said they would offer US$130 million which we found to be much lower than the other bidders. It was again decided that because the acquisition must be cleared by the Government, they must concede and sell some of their assets to the NOCK. The NOCK bought ten stations. We need 100 per cent interest in Chevron Nairobi filling stations. Up to now, we have not finalized. We are also seeking hospitality accommodation for the sale of percentage share by Total Kenya Limited or Chevron Kenya Limited in our Mombasa LPG facilities owned by one of them. Up to 25 per cent share in Total Kenya Limited, lubricants blending plant in Mombasa. Up to 20 per cent share of joint storage facilities is at Mombasa Joint Terminal owned by Total Kenya Limited and Chevron Kenya Limited. Up to now, we are targeting these assets. The deal has not been finalized yet. With all this effort, the Government tried its best to acquire some of Chevron assets.
Mr. Deputy Speaker, Sir, this is a very important Question. The answer the Minister is giving does not address the seriousness of the issue. Last year, these multinationals held the Government at ransom in terms of price until the Government had to threaten to get involved in price controls. These two multinationals hold 80 per cent of the fuel outlets in this country. What is he doing to ensure that the multinationals do not keep on holding the Government and Kenyans at ransom by ensuring that Kenyans are also involved in this business to ensure a level playing field?
Mr. Deputy Speaker, Sir, the bid was open. It was an international bid. So, everyone who was interested in doing so, could bid. In the past three years, the Government through the NOCK, has been trying very hard to increase our market share to enable us to have the critical mass to carry out and achieve the mandate of the NOCK. In 2004, the NOCK had a market share of one per cent. Now it has got five per cent. So, the Government is trying. The bid was open. We bid, but being an open tender and this being a competitive market, they were---
On a point of order, Mr. Deputy Speaker, Sir. As I said, this Question is very serious. The Assistant Minister is not addressing the concerns of Members of Parliament. What is the Government doing to ensure that the locals are involved in a level playing field, so that the multinationals do not continue holding the Government and Kenyans at ransom as far as prices are concerned?
Mr. Deputy Speaker, Sir, the hon. Member should be aware that there are quite a number of players in the oil marketing field who are Kenyans. Apart from the multinationals which are Kobil, Total, Caltex and Kenol, we have Kenyan firms which include: Gapco, Haas, National Oil, Fosil, Dalbit, Gulf Oil Company, Pakari and Engen, among others. The percentage share of Total Kenya is about 19 per cent now. Kenol/Kobil is about 15 per cent. So, the greater part is actually owned by Kenyans. It is not true that the Government is not trying to create a level playing field in the sector.
Mr. Deputy Speaker, Sir, if you take the market share of Kenol/Kobil, Total and Shell Kenya, you will have about 70 per cent of the total market share within three companies. This Government must have priorities on what is strategic and what is not. About 75 per cent of the oil industry is in the hands of three players. We cannot have this kind of situation when the Government is sitting there. In 1981, this Government set up the NOCK whose role was supposed to be price stabilization of the oil market. The Government has watched and the Minister has confirmed that they just sat there as a big tender was floated and they lost it. A whole Government lost in a tender! If today, for whatever reason, our Government has difficulties with these multinationals and they raise the price of fuel, what will they do? How can they sit and surrender our sovereignty to multinationals? What pricing mechanisms do they have? I do not think this Question is being given the necessary attention it deserves.
Hon. Assistant Minister, address the concerns of Members of Parliament. Why is it that majority of the oil market is in the hands of multinationals? What do you intend to do to mitigate that?
Mr. Deputy Speaker, Sir, it did not start yesterday. We are in a different position from where we were some time back. I assure the House that the Government has over the past few years tried to level the playing field. In the past, oil companies here used to import oil left, right and centre and charge any price they wanted. Now, we have the OTS system and a lot is being done. All these small companies I mentioned came to play in this sector. Three years ago, the situation was not the same. I assure the House that we are trying to empower the NOCK. In fact, there is plan to build strategic reserves, so that the NOCK can put up storage facilities and other infrastructure. We need to give it enough finance. Within the limits of what we have in the economy, we are doing our best. We cannot throw out these companies overnight.
On a point of order, Mr. Deputy Speaker, Sir. The Assistant Minister will not get away with this issue. There is the question of pricing mechanisms. It is common knowledge that the Energy Regulatory Commission (ERC) has made its proposals and they are lying in the Ministry. Right now, we have a situation of almost near monopoly by these foreigners, especially after this transaction we are talking about. What has he done with that proposal from the ERC to do some pricing controls within the energy sector? We are being fleeced. I do not know whether he drives the same cars we drive or pays the same fuel prices.
Mr. Deputy Speaker, Sir, I will not get away with it as Mr. Mungatana said. It is true that when the price of oil went out of hand, we came up with a proposal for price control. However, we were stopped by the National Economic Council from implementing it. We have that proposal. If the Government gives us the go ahead, we will do so.
On a point of order, Mr. Deputy Speaker, Sir. Is the Assistant Minister in order to mislead the House that the Government is playing a crucial role in the oil sector when they have just sold the oil refinery?
Mr. Deputy Speaker, Sir, we have not sold the oil refinery. We had 50 per cent share before and we maintain the same shares. I do not agree with the Member that we sold the oil refinery.
What did you sell? What did you sell?
Mr. Deputy Speaker, Sir, I said, we have not sold---
On a point of order, Mr. Deputy Speaker, Sir. Did you hear the Assistant Minister say they did not sell the oil refinery? What were they selling?
Mr. Assistant Minister, you realize the sensitivity of the ---
Mr. Deputy Speaker, Sir, I understand. Yes, we sold it. This is nothing new! We had 50 per cent of the shares before and we maintained the 50 per cent. It is only the shareholders that changed.
On a point of order, Mr. Deputy Speaker, Sir. The Assistant Minister should not take the House for a ride. If you sold something, what is that you sold if your 50 per cent holding is intact? Whose shares did you sell and at how much?
Mr. Deputy Speaker, Sir, that is public knowledge. You know who sold the shares. It is the other shareholders; Shell and Chevron.
asked the Minister for Labour:- a)whether he could confirm that when M/s Swan Industries Ltd in Kisumu was placed under receivership, the receiver entered into a written agreement with the Bakery, Confectionery, Food Manufacturing and Allied Workers Union, under which redundant workers would be paid all their dues on or before 30th June 2009; (b) why the receivers have not fully complied with all the terms of the agreement; and, (c) what action he will take to ensure that the receivers honour the agreement and pay the former workers.
Mr. Deputy Speaker, Sir, I beg to reply. (a) I confirm that Swan Industries Limited in Kisumu was put under a receiver manger and is still under receivership. The receiver entered into an agreement with the Bakery, Confectionery, Food Manufacturing and Allied Workers Union to pay dues by 30th June 2009. (b) The receiver has not complied with all the terms of the agreement because the issue of casuals is still being discussed between the receiver and the Union. (c) I am awaiting the outcome of the discussions between the receiver and the Union on the issue of casuals to enable me take any further action. My Ministry has however, appointed a conciliator to resolve the issue of under-payment for ten former employees in accordance with Section 65 of the Labour Relations Act.
Mr. Deputy Speaker, Sir, I find this answer totally unsatisfactory because part “b” of my Question asked why the receivers have not complied with the terms of the agreement. One of the terms of the agreement is that the workers would be paid all their dues on or before 27th March 2009. They have, however, not been paid. There is no answer given as to why they have not been paid. Mr. Deputy Speaker, Sir, with your permission, I wish to Table a copy of the agreement that the receivers entered into with the Union.
Why did the receivers not comply on or before 27th March, 2009?
Mr. Deputy Speaker, Sir, I want to confirm that all the permanent employees have been paid all their dues except for the ten who have a small dispute. The casual workers have, however, not been paid because there is a trade dispute. The Union brought in some issues which were not binding with the agreement as
Mr. Deputy Speaker, Sir, KENATCO has been in receivership for the last 15 years. What is the Ministry doing to ensure that it goes back to its original form as a parastatal? Most of the workers in KENATCO have been suffering as a result of low remuneration.
Mr. Deputy Speaker, Sir, I think that is a very different Question. I had not researched on KENATCO.
Indeed, yes! Last question, Mr. Olago!
Mr. Deputy Speaker, Sir, in view of the answer in part “c” relating to the appointment of the conciliator, could the Assistant Minister be candid enough to tell the House when he can report on the conciliator’s findings within a week or a fortnight, at the very most?
Mr. Deputy Speaker, Sir, the Labour Officer, Kisumu, started acting on this matter on 21st April 2009. Personally, I am going to follow it up and in a fortnight, I should be able to give this House the outcome.
Next Question by Mr. C. Kilonzo!
asked the Minister for Environment and Mineral Resources:- (a) how he was able to attain the clean and pleasant looking state of most rivers in Nairobi city; (b) if he could give an assurance that, come the rainy season, the rivers in Nairobi and other major towns will not be polluted; and, (c) what action he is also taking to clean Thika River and Athi River in order to ensure that farmers have good water for irrigation and for their livestock.
Mr. Deputy Speaker, Sir, I beg to reply. (a) Allow me to briefly inform the House on the status of Nairobi City at the time I was appointed to lead my current Ministry. I noticed that the rivers within the city had become depository of all effluent discharges and solid waste from the city dwellers and its enterprises. In addition, most estates especially those located in Eastlands, had several illegal dumpsites which were in most cases swept into the city’s rivers by storm waters. Mr. Deputy Speaker, Sir, my immediate reaction of the same was immediately to prepare a programme document on rehabilitation of all rivers within the Nairobi River Basin. The document focused on major interventions to restore the former status of the rivers. They include:- (i) Stopping illegal affluent discharges from flowing into the rivers,
Could you table your answer if it is very long?
Mr. Deputy Sir, for many years, all the dirt and sewer discharge end up in Athi River, which is in my constituency. Looking at this answer, what the Assistant Minister is doing is a good job. There is no question about it. However, I am curious because that is the work of the Ministry of Local Government and, in particular, the Nairobi City Council. I want to get a confirmation from the Assistant Minister that the Ministry of Local Government has failed in its duties to a level where another Ministry has taken over its duties and done a very good job.
Mr. Speaker, Sir, it is true that some local authorities have failed to render services to the people in their respective towns. My Ministry has already written to seven local authorities in this country to do their work of collecting garbage. If they do not do it, my Ministry will have to flex its muscles and do the work on its own.
asked the Minister for Youth Affairs and Sports:- (a) whether he is aware that potential National Youth Service recruits from Kamara Division, Kuresoi District were turned away and referred to Molo District at the recently concluded National Youth Service (NYS) recruitment; (b) the basis of the decision made by NYS officers; (c) whether any youths from Kamara Division were eventually recruited and, if so state the number; and, (d) if the exercise in both Molo and Kuresoi districts could be repeated in view of the above anomalies.
Mr. Deputy Speaker, Sir, I beg to reply. It is true that some potential NYS recruits from Kamara Division of Kuresoi District were referred to Molo District during the recently concluded NYS recruitment exercise, since it was established that Kamara Division falls on the two sides of the two districts. The decision to refer the candidates from Kamara Division to Molo was arrived at after considering the fact that Kamara Division falls on the boundary between Kuresoi and Molo districts. In order to give the candidates from both sides of the division equal opportunities, it was resolved that all candidates from the said division should be interviewed centrally at one venue, and Molo District Headquarters was considered to be the most convenient centre for the exercise. Out of the 14 candidates recruited from the three divisions of Molo District; namely, Molo Central, Kamara and Elburgon, four were from Kamara Division. The request for a repeat exercise in both Molo and Kuresoi districts is not practical for the following reasons. There was no better way of handling the situation fairer than what was done and, until such a time when Kamara Division will be confined to either side of the two districts that problem is likely to recur during future recruitment exercises. The candidates recruited from the two districts have since reported to NYS College in Gilgil, and have already begun their basic training course.
Mr. Deputy Speaker, Sir, that answer is ambiguous. The Assistant Minister keeps on referring to Kamara Division in Kuresoi District. For her information, Kamara Division is composed of Sirikwa, Koige and Kamara locations, which clearly fall under Kuresoi District. That is a problem facing the Coalition Government. We have two answers and two columns within the same Government. I am not satisfied with this answer. I will refer the question to the Ombudsman.
How does the Ministry make a mistake?
Mr. Deputy Speaker, Sir, the Ministry does not make a mistake. We are not the ones who create boundaries. Until that problem is resolved, we will continue to have it. Kamara Division will have to fall under one district. That is the work of the Office of the President and the Commission on Boundaries. It is not under the Ministry of Youth Affairs and Sports.
Does your office still maintain that you do not know where Kamara Division falls under? What is your position? Where does Kamara Division fall?
Mr. Deputy Speaker, Sir, Kamara Division---
On a point of information, Mr. Deputy Speaker, Sir.
The hon. Member for Molo wants to give you information. Are you willing to be informed?
Mr. Deputy Speaker, Sir, let me advise the Assistant Minister and the hon. Member for Kuresoi. We are creating those districts so that wananchi can have easy access to services. Right now, Kamara Division is, in fact, in Molo District.
Mr. Deputy Speaker, Sir, I think you can now see the confusion. One hon. Member is claiming something else. However, the records show that Kamara Division falls on both sides of the two districts. That is something that needs to be looked into in the future. That is the work of the Commission on Boundaries.
Mr. Deputy Speaker, Sir, it is public knowledge that I am an expert on matters of administrative units. I know for a fact that Kamara Division falls under Kuresoi District and recently, when the handing over was being done between Molo and Kuresoi, it was clearly indicated that Kamara Division falls under Kuresoi District. I know that because I am an expert on the subject.
Mr. Deputy Speaker, Sir, the Member for Molo is claiming otherwise. But I think we need to refer that matter to the Commission on Boundaries.
Order! The Commission on Boundaries has got its own mandate. There is a Government. For God’s sake, a Government cannot be confused on where a division falls.
Mr. Deputy Speaker, Sir, I have said that it falls under both districts.
Order, hon. Assistant Minister! A division cannot fall under two districts, unless you are saying that part of the division is in Molo and part is in Kuresoi. Is that your position?
Yes, Mr. Deputy Speaker, Sir!
How is that possible? You are an Assistant Minister and other Ministers are here.
Mr. Deputy Speaker, Sir, I need to go back to the records and check because that is the information that I have.
There is collective responsibility on the part of the Government. This Question will appear on the Order Paper on Tuesday next week. Proceed with the next Question!
asked the Minister for Justice, National Cohesion and Constitutional Affairs when the Ministry will establish court services in Mbita and Suba District Headquarters to serve the people who require legal services.
The two districts; Mbita and Suba, are some of the newly created districts. The Government recognizes its responsibility to provide access to justice to Kenyans in order to protect and promote human rights of all Kenyans. However, the Government’s efforts to provide access to Justice by constructing law courts have been curtailed by financial constraints. The Government appreciates that Suba and Mbita districts are in need of court services. The Judiciary is currently considering constructing a law court at Mbita Trading Centre, the district headquarters of Mbita district. The judiciary will consider constructing a law court in Suba District Headquarters as soon as land for that purpose is allocated and funding secured.
Mr. Deputy Speaker, Sir, I want to thank the Assistant Minister for that answer. Now that he admits that the Government is committed to protecting human rights, is he aware that the vulnerable, especially children, who are victims of violence especially sexual and gender based violence are actually subject to traditional system of justice which does not respect their human rights? People sort out their issues as per traditional systems especially in the far flung islands. The Assistant Minister is saying that will be done when funds become available. Could he clarify if this is not the reason why we are having problems with Uganda since Kenyans run to Uganda to seek justice?
Mr. Deputy Speaker, Sir, as I said, we are committed, as a Government and as a Ministry, to ensure that the court services are availed to our Kenyan
On a point of order. Mr. Deputy Speaker, Sir. When I raised this Question, the districts were two and Suba District was in existence. What basically it means is that it was an old district called Suba. Is the Assistant Minister in order to mislead us by saying that they are new districts and we have not had courts? We have not had courts not because they are old but because the Government has not made efforts. Could the Assistant Minister please clarify that?
Mr. Deputy Speaker, Sir, now, we have two districts. Originally, it was one. The basis of my point is that we are not just looking at Mbita or Suba; we are looking at all the districts in the country. This particular district, Mbita, we are already considering it among the districts to be given funding to build the law courts. For Suba District, once land is availed, it will be considered for allocation of funding by the Ministry.
Thank you, Mr. Speaker, Sir. I happen to represent Suba District. From the answer that the Assistant Minister has given what is stopping them from allocating funds for the construction of the courts is unavailability of land. I really do not know what level of consultation the Assistant Minister has done to come to conclusion that land is not available because as far as I am concerned, the district headquarters is going to be at Magunga Trading Centre, and there is adequate land.
What is your question, Mr. Mbadi?
What level of consultation the Ministry has done to come to the conclusion that there is no land yet I am aware there is land for the construction of the court?
Mr. Speaker, Sir, this is a new district and the consultation to know whether land is available or not is an issue that should rest with the leadership of Suba District. It is true that when a district is created, they have to provide land to build the services either the district headquarters or the law courts or any other departmental heads offices. So, it really follows that when a district is created, land is availed. We are waiting for them to confirm so that we include them in the list of the institutions or the districts to be considered for funding.
Mr. Deputy Speaker, Sir, could the Assistant Minister please assure us, as we are waiting for them to avail that court, that the Ministry will provide mobile courts including mobile boat courts to the island?
This is a good proposal but I do not want to make commitments which I am not able to deliver. We will consider that proposal and be able to consider if it is possible and attainable within this financial year---
Are you sure it is a point of order, Ms. Odhiambo?
Mr. Deputy Speaker, Sir, the Assistant Minister is saying that he is not able to commit the Government. If we provide him with a boat, could he give us a magistrate?
We can give them a magistrate when there is a court.
Next Question, Mr. Abdirahman!
asked the Minister for Education:- (a) how much money the Government allocated for bursary to Wajir South Constituency in the last financial year (2008/2009); and, (b) what informed the decision that caused the disparities.
Thank you, Mr. Deputy Speaker. (a) The bursary fund allocation for Wajir South Constituency in the Financial Year 2008/2009 was Kshs187,474 being the affirmative component of the minimum of Kshs500,000 allocated to constituencies including Wajir South in the previous financial years. This was withdrawn due to reduction in the constituency bursary fund by the Treasury, and the introduction of free secondary education in 2008. (b) These two factors mainly explain the disparities in the amount allocated in the Financial Year 2008/2009 compared to the previous years as shown in the table that I have provided here. In 2003/2004, the total allocated was Kshs767.7 million; 2004/2005 Kshs762.4 million; 2005/2006 Kshs800 million and 2006/2007 Kshs800 million but in 2007/2008, it fell to Kshs597.4 million, and 2008/2009 Kshs486 million, a total of Kshs3.6 billion.
Mr. Deputy Speaker, Sir, I appreciate the Assistant Minister’s response, but they seem to have a data that is obsolete, in terms of information, exist. Habaswein or Wajir South district has three secondary schools. They have a total number of 671 students as we speak and I have a copy of a paper initially provided by the Ministry of Education giving us the Kshs187,000 with an enrollment of only 380 students from my constituency. That money has not been distributed to date. I want to ask the Assistant Minister to tell us how we are going to share Kshs187,000 against a population of students totaling 671.
Mr. Deputy Speaker, Sir, bursary money is allocated to the most needy students. So, it is not allocated to the total number of students that appear on the roll.
Mr. Deputy Speaker, Sir, the Assistant Minister says that Kshs187,000 was allocated for bursary in Wajir South. A figure that is, of course, outrageous in terms of the demand on the ground. The Kshs500,000 was withdrawn from the Treasury without consultation with the Member of Parliament. With that knowledge that this money was withdrawn, could he assure the House that no needy student in Wajir South will be sent away from school on account of lack of fees?
Mr. Deputy Speaker, Sir, I would like to explain again that each of the students in secondary school is allocated a total of Kshs10,625 from the Government kitty on free secondary education. The bursary is an additional amount. So, for those who are in day schools, no child should be sent home because the full amount is catered for. It is only those in boarding schools that we allocate extra money for bursaries.
Last question, hon. Abdirahman!
Mr. Deputy Speaker, Sir, we need to address the question of disparity even within the same region. As I speak, we have 200 students out of the 600 students who have applied for this bursary. Could the Assistant Minister consider allocating more money? The Kshs187,000 is not enough. Many of our students are not only in Wajir South, but the greater Wajir District which we initially shared. Could he consider increasing the allocation, at least, to something closer to what we used to get, so that we can have the needy students benefiting?
Mr. Deputy Speaker, Sir, I share the concerns of the hon. Member, but may I also advise the Member that the Constituencies Development Fund (CDF) component of 15 per cent should play a big role in helping to educate our students.
On a point of order, Mr. Deputy Speaker, Sir. We know that the CDF has allocations for bursary. I, personally, use mine for tertiary institutions and universities. We have to benefit from the Ministry. I am asking him to tell us by how much he can increase the allocation he gave us. Is he in order not to address the actual question and somehow divert our attention to CDF, which they constantly do as Ministers?
Hon. Assistant Minister, the question is: What can your Ministry do? That is what the hon. Member is asking. He is not asking you how he should spend his CDF money!
On a point of order, Mr. Deputy Speaker, Sir. As the Chairman of the Committee on CDF, I have the obligation to inform this House and Assistant Minister that, yes, the CDF is being used to allocate bursaries, but it also has limitations just like the Ministry. The limitation is 15 per cent. So, you cannot exceed even if you wish to give more. So, what are you doing as a Ministry?
Mr. Deputy Speaker, Sir, similarly, the Ministry uses a formula and we cannot exceed it.
Order, hon. Assistant Minister! You owe this House an answer that essentially befits the dignity of your own Ministry. You cannot say that there was a formula. What was the formula used when you allocated the same constituency Kshs500,000 and you have another formula now? Is it statutory because the CDF formulas is statutory?
Mr. Deputy Speaker, Sir, of the total amount of money that is allocated for bursaries, we take the figure of the enrolment of the constituency over the national enrolment, multiplied by the constituency’s poverty index, over the national poverty index. This is a formula we have used. The only way we can increase bursary, therefore, is for an allocation of extra amount from the Treasury and not by the Ministry itself.
On a point of order, Mr. Deputy Speaker, Sir. This Government, through many agreements that they have signed, both national and international, has
Hon. Assistant Minister, you have a formula there. Is it the same formula that you used the previous year when that same constituency got Kshs500,000?
Yes, it is the same, Mr. Deputy Speaker, Sir. May I make it very clear that we are really committed. Personally, I am very committed to ensuring that our children can get education.
Question by Mr. Warugongo!
to ask the Minister for Forestry and Wildlife:- (a) Why did the electric fencing around Mt. Kenya stall even though construction materials are available on the site? (b) When will the construction commence? (c) What measures is he taking to keep away wildlife, especially monkeys from farmlands around the Aberdares?
Is Mr. Warugongo still not here?
Question by Mrs. Noor!
On a point of order, Mr. Deputy Speaker, Sir. After hon. Abdirahman I had a Question that was following.
Order! The Chair determines the priority on the Questions! Yes, hon. Noor!
asked the Minister for Gender, Children and Social Development:- (a) if she could provide a list of individuals and organizations that have benefited from the Women Enterprise Development Fund in the last two years, showing distribution by region;
Mr. Deputy Speaker, Sir, I beg to reply. (a)The Women Enterprise Development Fund (WEDF) targets all Kenyan women as individual, registered groups or companies owned by women. The Fund uses two distribution channels to reach the clientele, namely, the Constituency Women Enterprise Scheme, through the constituency, and each constituency has Kshs1 million, and also through the financial beneficiaries, which are twelve micro-financiers. (b) The financial intermediaries are free to lend money to individual groups or companies owned by women. The various women groups were funded as follows: Nairobi, 152 groups, Kshs7 million; Coast Province, 489 groups; Eastern Province, 615 groups; Western Province, 430 groups; Central Province, 484 groups; Nyanza Province, 663 groups; Rift Valley Province, 914 groups and North Eastern Province, 166 groups. A total of 3,913 groups composed of 91,910 individual women members were funded. Mr. Deputy Speaker, Sir, under the financial intermediaries we have lent as follows:-
Mr. Deputy Speaker, Sir, I would like to appreciate the answer given by the Minister with a heavy heart because she is misleading us by giving us some institutions that she says are found countrywide. For instance, she indicated that Family Bank is countrywide while we know that it is not in North Eastern Province, Pokot, Samburu, Turkana and Narok. We also do not have the Co-operative Bank in Pokot, Samburu, Narok, Turkana and the whole of North Eastern Province. K-Rep Development Agency is not in Pokot, Samburu, Turkana and Narok. I also do not know where it is in North Eastern Province. So, is she in order to mislead the House by telling us there are some institutions that are countrywide while they are not?
Mr. Deputy Speaker, Sir, I think what I have given is what I have and these banks are there. We have now created intermediaries. The problem that we had with North Eastern Province is the Sharia compliance. Out of the 27 intermediaries that we have now included, two of them are now Sharia compliant. We also have the Kshs1 million which is in North Eastern Province which women are allowed to apply for.
On a point of order, Mr. Deputy Speaker, Sir. We appreciate the Kshs1 million that is going directly to the constituency. We do not have a problem with that. We have a problem with the issue where the Minister is lying to this House by saying that those banks are countrywide. Is she in order? She did not do her research properly to get the figures right.
Order, Mrs. Noor! The word “lying” is not acceptable Parliamentary language. If you want to say that the Minister does not have the facts you say “misleading”. So, you better apologize.
I apologize, Mr. Deputy Speaker, Sir. She is not lying but misleading this House. Is she in order to mislead the House?
Mr. Deputy Speaker, Sir, I do not think that the Minister can create banks where they are not. It is up to wananchi of the area and the banks to feel compelled to take banks to those areas.
On a point of order, Mr. Deputy Speaker, Sir. We have no problem with the Minister’s understanding of “countrywide” but we want to tell her that there are some parts of this country that do not belong to a definition of countrywide. Is she in order to insist that those banks are countrywide while I can confirm that Family Bank and K-Rep are not in Lodwar? Give us another country then you can talk of countrywide.
Mr. Deputy Speaker, Sir, it is also the duty of the Members of Parliament to create SACCOs in their relevant areas if they want the women to access that money but not the Minister to create banks in those places.
Last question, Ms. Noor! Hon. Members, it is a Private Members’ Day!
Mr. Deputy Speaker, Sir, the Minister says that it is the responsibility of every Member of Parliament to create SACCOs. Yes, we agree, but what is the mandate and the responsibility of the Ministry itself?
Mr. Deputy Speaker, Sir, the responsibility of the Ministry is to create awareness that this money is there. In the region that I come from we have a saying, and with all due respect to women, that you can take the cow to the river but you cannot force it to drink. That is what we are doing.
Order, hon. Members! The Question by Mr. Warugongo, Question by Private Notice is not dropped. I had actually deferred it. It is just a mix up. Question No.317 by ole Lankas is deferred to tomorrow and it should be given priority in tomorrow’s Order Paper. Question No.114 by Mr. Ethuro will also appear on the Order Paper tomorrow afternoon---
Mr. Deputy Speaker, Sir---
Order! Question No.368 by Mr. Mbadi, Question No.205 by Chepkitony and Question No. 410 by Mr. James Maina Kamau will appear on the Order Paper on Tuesday next week.
to ask the Minister for Forestry and Wildlife:- (a)Why did electric fencing around Mt. Kenya stall even though construction materials are available at the site? (b)When will the construction commence? (c) What measures is he taking to keep away wildlife, especially monkeys, from farmlands around the Aberdares?
We note that this is a Private Members’s Day so we will only be able to take one Ministerial Statement by Mr. Kosgey.
On a point of order, Mr. Deputy Speaker, Sir. I am requesting that Question No.410 which you have deferred to Tuesday be brought forward to tomorrow afternoon.
Under the circumstances, Question No.410 is deferred to tomorrow afternoon and not Tuesday. Proceed, Mr. Kosgey!
On a point of order, Mr. Deputy Speaker, Sir.
What is your point of order, Ms. Odhiambo? UPSURGE OF CHILD SEXUAL ABUSE/EXPLOITATION
On a point of order, Mr. Deputy Speaker, Sir. I would like to seek your indulgence that the Minister gives direction. I had asked for a Ministerial Statement over a month ago - but I have not been around – from the Minister of State for Provincial Administration and Internal Security on the alleged case of sexual abuse of young boys by Father Kizito. Could you, please, indulge me by giving me directions as to when I can get it?
Indeed, I remember that Ministerial Statement being sought by the hon. Member way back. Mr. Assistant Minister, are you ready with that Ministerial Statement? Much as you are not going to be allowed to do it today, but can you have it on Tuesday next week? It is an old issue!
Mr. Deputy Speaker, Sir, can I give it on Wednesday or Thursday next week because I have several of Ministerial Statements to make?
Wednesday afternoon next week!
Mr. Deputy Speaker, Sir, yes, or Thursday!
It is so directed! Order, Mr. Ojode! It is so directed that the Statement will be issued on Wednesday next week! When you say Wednesday or Thursday, you have given two options to the Chair and the Chair has decided on Wednesday which you indicated that you have no problem with. Proceed, Mr. Kosgey!
Mr. Deputy Speaker, Sir, Mr. Sambu, the hon. Member for Webuye asked for a Ministerial Statement on the current state in Pan Paper Mills and when it is going to be opened and why there is delay in re- opening it. I beg to give the following Statement: Pan African Paper Mills (PPM) in Webuye, under receivership, closed down abruptly on 30th January, 2009, due to power disconnection arising from non-payment of bills to the Kenya Power and Lighting Company (KPLC) estimated at Kshs209 million. At the time of the closure of the factory, the company had incurred a huge debt broken down as follows:- Long-term lenders; IFC, Kshs2,560,000;140; PTA Bank, Kshs622,034,000; EADB, Kshs317,352,000; KCB, Kshs112,148,000; Deutche Bank, Kshs1,898,000,873; DBK, Kshs52,915,000; Proparco, Kshs380,531,000 making a sub-total of slightly over Kshs6 billion. For short-term lenders; the KCB, Kshs689 million, Barclays Bank, Kshs331 million; Bank of Baroda, Kshs200 million; Eco Bank, Kshs47.5 million; DBK, Kshs67 million, a sub-total of Kshs1.2 billion. Subordinate and loans unsecured; IFC, Kshs212 million; the Management Company itself and the owner, Kshs610 million, sub-total, Kshs823 million making a total outstanding loan of slightly over Kshs8,102,837,000. The total debt owed does not include monies owed to the Government for unpaid royalties estimated at Kshs680 million. Key suppliers such as Kobil which is owed Kshs540 million and the KPLC owed Kshs209 million, as I said, IFC and Proparco agreed to write off their loan amounting to Kshs3.3 billion reducing the indebtedness to Kshs5.2 billion. The company’s performance prior to the closure had deteriorated tremendously and was on the verge of collapsing. The poor performance was blamed on the lack of operating licence, failing plants, inadequate wood supplies, high cost of fuel and power and stiff competition from cheap paper and paper products imported into the country. The prevailing circumstances compelled the management of Pan Paper Mills to seek Government intervention to rescue the company from imminent collapse. In an effort to address PPM’s problems, the Government formed a task force of various Ministries. The task force and the PPM management had reached a consensus and were jointly working towards implementation of the turn-around strategy when it closed on 30th January, 2009, abruptly as a result of mainly power bills. However, the PPM management who also doubled as directors of Orient Paper Mills (OPIL), the major shareholders in the company, abandoned the company and returned to India on March 2009 without the Government knowledge. The company was, therefore, left at the disposal of long-term and short-term lenders whose debenture holding gives them a right over the company’s fixed and floating assets, respectively and possible litigation from unsecured lenders aimed at liquidating the company to redeem their debt. In view of the turn of events and the impact of the closure of the factory to the economy of the country, and in particular to the people of western Kenya, the Government’s task force that was working on the turn- around strategy was mandated to work on modalities towards reviving the company since the Government, as a minority shareholder, had no legal rights to commence the revival process directly. The task force had to mobilize all lenders and key suppliers to negotiate
Order, Mr. Minister! Can you be brief and lay the document on Table? The Statement is so long. It is a very long speech, from the look of things Why do you not lay it on the Table?
Mr. Deputy Speaker, Sir, I thought I would give a comprehensive Statement since this matter is very---
Indeed, it is comprehensive but let, it also be concise!
Mr. Deputy Speaker, Sir, the long and short of it is that we are still negotiating with the long-term and short-term lenders and they are very difficult. They have given conditions and one of the conditions that the short-term lenders have given is that they be allowed to appoint a receiver of their choice but the Government to underwrite the receivership cost, indemnify them against any future claims, renew the expired insurance cover for the company’s assets and pay rent to the landlords of all the premises occupied by the company. Also, that the receivership costs which will be treated as a loan from the Government to the receiver remains subordinate to the lenders’ debt when the company starts operating. The KPLC and Kobil, the major suppliers of oil and energy, have said that they want to be paid before they can even think of starting. So, we are still negotiating and the process has been very painful. One other legal question which we have not been able to answer is that legally this company is still owned 54 per cent by OPIL. If you revive it the way it is by putting a joint receivership and it is revived, they have a legal right to say” Thank you very much, you have revived our company, we have 54 per cent shareholding and anybody who has put in money, we will treat it as a debt!” . We have sought the Attorney-General’s opinion on how to treat this shareholder who ran away. I think we are almost reaching a conclusion and I will not read the remaining part of the comprehensive Statement. Even yesterday, as we passed the Vote for the Office of the Deputy Prime Minister and Ministry of Finance, we saw that we had been allocated Kshs800 million. We have already stepped up our current budget for the revival of Pan African Paper Mills in Webuye. Negotiations are on-going and the company will be operational maybe in the next two months. I. Hon. Members can ask supplementary questions because I have a lot of information.
Mr. Deputy Speaker, Sir, I would like to thank the Minister for issuing the Ministerial Statement although it was not complete. However, what is the role of Orient Paper Mills in the goings on? Is the Minister aware that as we delay the re-opening of Pan African Paper Mills, the machinery will be exposed to a lot of corrosion because
Mr. Deputy Speaker, Sir, this is one of the most useless Ministerial Statements I have ever heard in my life. The Minister warned me last week when he was supposed to issue this Statement. I have now realised the meaning of that warning because he was simply going to give me the history about how the Government will not try to re-open Pan African Paper Mills. We are wasting time at this juncture. With due respect, I call upon the Chair to invoke Standing Order No.97(f) on false information. I am saying this with deep regret because in April this year, the Minister gave an undertaking that the factory would re- open on1st June, 2009. All the history he has just read was there and well known. In May this year, the Minister gave us a second undertaking. He gave us the reasons why the factory would not re-opened on 1st June, 2009. However, he said that it would be re- open before the end of June, 2009. By undertaking that, it means that the information he has given us now was already understood. Mr. Deputy Speaker, Sir, last week---
Order, Mr. Sambu! If you are convinced that you have to resort to other provisions of the Standing Orders with other actions, then you proceed on that basis. However, if you want to seek a clarification, then you should do that. Do not make a speech. Do you want to seek a clarification from the Minister?
Mr. Deputy Speaker, Sir, I thought I should just clarify a few issues first. May I, in this case, invoke Standing Order No.97. With due respect, I would also like us to involve the Implementation Committee so that the Minister appears before it on this matter. This is because the people of Webuye are suffering and we cannot continue like this.
Mr. Deputy Speaker, Sir, a Government that is in slumber cannot continue to penalise its citizenry because of those things. We know that the Kenya Power and Lighting Company (KPLC) is now handicapped. The Chair has heard that the KPLC is a hindrance to the negotiations and yet this company has been a subject of rescue by the same Government. How come the same Government could not see this company collapsing? Secondly, how come the Government cannot flex its muscles and force the KPLC to write-off that debt so that the Pan African Paper Mills can resumes its operations?
Thank you, Mr. Deputy Speaker, Sir. Indeed, the Minister’s Statement is laughable. He actually stood up and said; “We are worried what Orient Paper Mill would do if we revived the factory”. Orient Paper Mills has run away and yet
Thank you, Mr. Deputy Speaker, Sir. They say that where there is a will there is a way. On the issue of Pan African Paper Mills, could the Minister confirm whether, indeed, the Government is willing to re-open the factory? The Prime Minister visited Webuye and promised that, that factory would be re-opened. The President also visited Webuye and promised that, that factory would be re-opened by 1st June, 2009. We are approaching September and the factory is still closed. Webuye Town is “dying” now because Pan African Paper Mills is Webuye and Webuye is Pan African Paper Mills. Could the Minister assure this House that, that will is not lacking?
Mr. Deputy Speaker, Sir, I will start with the last two questions. I would like to assure Mr. Wamalwa that, that will exists. The Government committed itself to the revival of Pan African Paper Mills. The will still exists and we will revive the factory. Unfortunately, the negotiations between us and the short-term and long-term lenders ran into a hitch. This is because the lenders gave us conditions which are untenable. In the last meeting I had with the officials, and this is part of the answer to Mr. Kombo’s question, I told them that we will now exercise our sovereign right as a Government. We shall seek a court order, in the national interest, to revive the company as the majority shareholders. We will also marshal all the lenders to agree on a revival strategy, which we have worked out, that will see the company sold to an interested party with a condition that the factory is revived. This is the last card that we have. I have already invoked that because the on and off negotiations with the lenders does not yield anything. We have lost nearly three months. I assure Mr. Sambu who is my friend that I am very serious and I want that factory revived. I am committed towards that end. So we are really committed. As I said, the other shareholders ran away but, legally, they still hold the 54 per cent shareholding of the factory. So, unless we actually sell the factory under a joint receivership arrangement to new owners, they cannot forfeit. They can forfeit after its sale. At the moment, if we just walk in and revive it, they can just say: “This is our asset. Thank you for reviving it.” So, I would like Mr. Sambu and myself to remain friends and become serous. I want us to work together on the revival programme of the factory. I will do the last bit when I invoke our sovereign right as a country, in the national interest, to almost forcefully revive the factory in the manner I have outlined. As pointed out by Dr. Eseli, there is corrosion going on. We are aware of that fact. We have been warned by the technical team that we should look into the issue. They pointed out that issue. Incidentally, the technical team wanted Kshs1.6 billion for reviving it. You can see that even Kshs1.6 billion will not revive it; instead of Kshs1.6 million we have provided Kshs500 million. We have the will
Mr. Alfred Sambu, I wish to give a directive on the issue as follows. Indeed, it is not that easy, given the circumstances, for the invoking of Standing Order No.97, which bars hon. Members from deliberately giving false information to the House. This Standing Order cannot be invoked in the sense that it is not very obvious, and it does not appear that there is false information that was deliberately given to this House by the Minister. Understandably, there is an issue that needs to be addressed. There is need for the Government to act fast and address that issue, which is of national importance. Whether the Minister’s hands are tied, because of other factors, or not, is an issue that essentially can only best be investigated by the relevant Committee. The Chair is directing the Implementation Committee to look into this matter and report back to the House, as a national urgency, in a maximum period of three weeks. If they can do it earlier than that, we will appreciate because the matter is of national importance. Undoubtedly, there is also an expression of interest and commitment on the part of the Minister, but there is also a situation that needs to be tackled with a lot more zeal than is currently being exhibited by the Government. I am saying “the Government” because there are many arms of the Government involved in this matter. There is the issue of electricity bill and other organisations that are involved in the matter. So, I direct the Implementation Committee to immediately take up the issue and report to the House in not more than three weeks’ time.
Thank you, Mr. Deputy Speaker, Sir.
Hon. Members, this is a day for Private Members’ Motions. We should have stopped issuing of Statements 20 minutes ago. The only reason as to why we have extended the time this far is because of the importance of the issue at hand, and the fact that this matter has been on and off for quite a while now. With regard to all other Ministerial Statements, I do understand that hon. Members have had arrangements with Ministers and they want those Ministerial Statements delivered. So, I direct that the pending Ministerial Statements be issued tomorrow.
Last week, I was ordered by the Speaker to give some clarification, following an answer I had given to a Question. Dr. Eseli had raised some issues, which he wanted clarified. I have the report. I had it yesterday. I have it today. I do not know whether you are going to allow me to present it.
That matter cannot be addressed today. You will have today. Approach the Chair at your own convenience and it will be able to fix it on another sitting. Next Order!
Mr. Deputy Speaker, Sir, before the interruption of business last time, I had indicated that this rule was introduced, restricting access to benefits and contribution by the employer. We have Kenyans who are affected by the global financial crisis. Over 10,000 of them lost their jobs. From records given to this House by the Ministry of Finance, when I raised this issue earlier, in the period between 2006 to date, over 25,000 Kenyans have been affected by this rule, and they are not allowed to access their employers’ contribution until they reach the retirement age. Indeed, this is a matter that has exposed Kenyans to great suffering. Thousands of lives have been affected. We do believe that the reason for any law is really for public good. This law was well intentioned. Indeed, it is meant to encourage the culture of saving in our society. It is also a law that was supposed to protect Kenyans from themselves. With what has been happening in the past, we have had Kenyans being given their retirement package and blowing it up overnight. We have had cases of some Kenyans marrying second wives after being paid their lumpsum retirement benefits. So, the law as it is, was intended to protect Kenyans from themselves. It was well intentioned. However, we need to look at what has resulted, in terms of suffering by those who have left employment earlier than their retirement age, there are many. There are many cases, but the one that touches me most was the story of a young man called James Gone. His case was touching because he lost his job at the age of 40. He had his employer’s contribution in excess of Kshs1.5 million, which he could not access. He had a house mortgage that had a balance of about Kshs750,000, but he could not access his money.
Madam Temporary Deputy Speaker, in seconding this Motion I want to thank Mr. Wamalwa for bringing up this issue. He never ceases to amuse me by his feeling for the oppressed. You heard him when he spoke about the Agricultural Finance Corporation (AFC) loans. You have heard him speak about Mau Mau . The story of pensioners is a very sad story. Under the current arrangement, once you have your money stuck in this organization, it is like you are condemned to death.
Thank you, Madam Temporary Deputy Speaker for giving me this chance. I rise to oppose this Motion. I would like to begin by requesting the Mover of the Motion, my colleague hon. Wamalwa, to re-think. This is not a small matter. This is a matter that needs discussions. I do not think it is a matter that we can address using personal experiences of individuals. It is a good thing to indulge in people’s lives after work.
Thank you, very much, Madam Temporary Deputy Speaker, for giving me this opportunity to support this very important Motion. I want, first of all, to thank hon. Wamalwa for truly being very progressive. This Motion is very important because I think we have had an experiment which seems to be failing. Therefore, we need to see whether we can correct it. This is because what we are now addressing is what was introduced just two years ago. It is not something which has been in our statutes and laws for many years. It is fairly new since it was introduced in 2006 and now we are in 2009. So, the starting point is that we need, first of all, to see whether we can give workers an option; whether they really want to maintain that particular law, or in fact, it might be useful for them to be given these dues quite early, so that they can start some businesses. Madam Temporary Deputy Speaker, the budget is read every year in line with what the members of the East African Community are thinking. There has been a way of harmonizing our laws with Tanzania and Uganda. That is why the Budget on exactly the same day as is read in Tanzania and Uganda. Why is it that after two years we cannot understand the merits of what the Tanzanian and Ugandan people find viable? South Africa, Tanzania and many other countries around us have taken this route. This route gives independence to our workers. It also gives them an opportunity to decide. If I wanted to maintain the amount of money until I reach 60 years--- I do not know whether
On a point of order, Madam Temporary Deputy Speaker. As a matter of fact, is the hon. Member in order to allege that everybody is forced by law to retire at 55 years or 60 years, when the actual retirement age in Kenya is 50? The compulsory retirement age was 55 years, but it was pushed to 60 years. The age after which you can retire voluntarily is 50 years.
Point made! At the point of response also we are expecting you to do more clarification.
Madam Temporary Deputy Speaker, why then did we have to push it to 60 years in that case? If the Minister could be fair to the country, he would even give us the list of those people who have voluntarily left employment. In this country, people do not leave their jobs easily unless they are forced. Some leave, perhaps, because they had created an alternative. But most of the people do not leave. That is why we have people who are 55 years old and they continue working. Even when they reach 60 years I will not be surprised if the Government comes up with another proposal to move it to 70 years. That is not the point. This particular issue that hon. Wamalwa is trying to address will help nearly 25,000 Kenyans who have left retirement, but have to wait until they are 55 years or 60 years before they can access their little contribution. It is punitive and not fair. We should give people the freedom to decide what they want to do. Madam Temporary Deputy Speaker, I beg to support.
Thank you very much, Madam Temporary Deputy Speaker, for giving me this opportunity to also contribute to this Motion. I want to support this Motion and congratulate my friend, hon. Wamalwa, for bringing it. When the Finance Bill was passed with this particular rule in 2006, I was one of the people who were really very critical about it, only that I could not find a platform to air my opposition to it. Since today I have got that opportunity, I want to support the thinking of the hon. Member for Saboti; that it is not wise for us to lock the funds or contributions made by employers to these schemes, on behalf of an employee, if that employee leaves employment below the age of 50 years. Madam Temporary Deputy Speaker, I was looking at, probably, the reason this particular rule was put in place. One, it could have been to provide some discipline on the part of an individual leaving employment, with an assumption that if one accesses money before the age of 50, he will be irresponsible. What is the magic of age 50? What if one leaves employment at the age of 50? Does that increase responsibility on the part of that particular individual? To me, the answer is no! An individual is the same, whether he leaves the job at the age of 40 or 50. If one can be irresponsible with something then that person can be more irresponsible with nothing. If you leave employment before the age of 50, you will not access the contributions from your employer. If you have no other job, then it means that you are being confined to poverty until, God willing, you reach the age of 50 years. Suppose you do not reach it because you have no money to take care of yourself. To me, this was not the right rule to introduce. The other reason which I find more reasonable is that the Government wanted to lock up the funds because, probably, it was struggling to meet the expenditure on pensions. But then, why do we have to punish individuals, so that the Government can stay afloat? The timing of the introduction of this rule is also a bit curious. This rule was introduced when Kenya was just approaching elections. Did the Government want to retain some money to finance elections? I want to believe that was the case. I want to believe that, probably, there was a reason behind this. I want to persuade my colleagues to support this Motion. Most of people now leave employment below the age of 50 years compulsorily because maybe the company or organization is not doing well or the Government is retrenching excess staff. Then that person should be allowed to withdraw the contribution that the employer had made together with the investment income so that the person can have somewhere to lean on or a have a base from which to start. Otherwise if you quit employment and you have nothing to fall back to then you are being confined to poverty and at the same time it is like being forced to your grave because you have nothing. You were used to some income but all of a sudden you have nothing. Madam Temporary Deputy Speaker, the Mover of the Motion also talked about life expectancy. We all know that life expectancy in Kenya is decreasing yet we are putting more stringent rules even to push accessibility to retirement to a higher age. What the Government needs to do is to allow people to transfer pension to other schemes when,
Madam Temporary Deputy Speaker, thank you for giving me this chance to contribute to this important Motion. I want to say that I support the Motion. I want to take this chance to congratulate Mr. Wamalwa for bringing this Motion so that we may think outside the box and not the traditional way of doing things. It shows that he cares for the future of people and particularly the livelihood of the people who serve this nation. Serving the nation is a great honour. I would like to thank all those people who have served this country in one way or the other. To me, they are our national heroes who need to be motivated by improving their conditions of service. Madam Temporary Deputy Speaker life after work must be enjoyable. It should be a life that you look forward to without indulging yourself in corruption. If you do not know that there are other ways open for you and that you will not easily access your funds after employment, then you could be tempted to steal while in service. Civil servants could abuse their offices if they do not understand how they will be when they retire. Those who work for the Government are supposed to be role models to our children so that they can develop their potential and careers. We do not want to see horrible people in our villages who cannot sustain their own livelihood after they retire. Madam Temporary Deputy Speaker, most people nowadays change jobs from Government to the private sector and Non-Governmental Organizations (NGOs) because they do not see light at the end of the tunnel in Government service. So, people are looking for other short-cuts where they can be able to live descent lives with their families and be proud of themselves. Government employees are not proud of working for the Government because of the poor working conditions. The officers are usually poorly paid and the little that they save, they cannot access it when they retire. First, they must bribe before they get the job and when they retire, they also have to bribe so as to get their retirement benefits. This is not a friendly and conducive environment for the retirees. They have problems during employment and even after employment because getting their pension on time is very difficult. I can give you an example. I stopped working 15 years ago and up to today, I have not got my pension. I will not get it until I attain 50 years of age. Who knows whether I will reach 50 years! Nobody knows! We should not allow the Government to use workers’ pensions to invest.
Thank you, Madam Temporary Deputy Speaker, I stand to support this Motion. From the outset, pension is the most valuable asset any working person can think of on this earth. It is important to note that the Government is the main employer and they are the ones who even started this issue of pension. But it is also worth noting that the very Government plans for five years and anything beyond that period is not sustainable. That is why after every five years, we have to go back for elections. It is also important that every other Government planning at the Ministry level, they always arrange it in such a manner that it expires after every three years. If you check what happens in the co- operative movement, the Government has set directives through the Ministry of Co- operative Development and Marketing. After every three years, you must retire and subject yourself for re-election. In any institution, even in companies, you will always find that after three years, one must be subjected to an election. It is surprising that when we think of pension we also do not look at such employees who would have been in such organizations as people who would also want to merit a bit of pension. It is good to realize that, generally, anybody who has worked for over three has a degree of loyalty. This is an issue which cannot be ignored. If one has worked for three years, for heaven sake, he should enjoy some pension. When we look at pensions and five years having been the set minimum previously, it is too long a period. Let us stick to three years. This is going to be possible even for those who are on contract of three years so that after their three years term, they can be eligible for pension. But it is also good to mention that when we hear of an employer who is deferring one’s pension until he is 55 years old, it is very worrying. How do they expect you to go and utilize your pension when you have been out for the last ten years? You retired at 40 years old, you have been out for the other 15 years, you are expected to go and get your lumpsum or whatever pension they feel that your are entitled to after 55 years. Surely, it is wrong! This pension should be made available immediately after you retire; immediately after you have stopped your employment and preferable if you have served for the three years, you should go home with the pension so that you can utilize it when you are still strong enough, when you can be productive and when you even have other sources of income which you can combine forces and maybe do something worthwhile which can sustain you in the long term. But when you are only told: “Wait until you are 55 years old!” it will be too late. It is good for us to think in terms of how one can start enjoying pension early enough so that you can become productive at an early date. It is also good to mention that the issue of retirement age cannot be ignored at this stage. When we talk of retirement age being pushed up to 60 years, we understand the
Thank you, Madam Temporary Deputy Speaker, for giving me this opportunity to make a few contributions towards this important Motion which was moved by my brother, Mr. Wamalwa. I start by thanking Mr. Wamalwa for this well thought out Motion in respect to our retirees or senior citizens who have made their contributions to this country in serving so diligently. As we read the Motion, I wanted initially to propose an amendment to the Motion because looking at the first paragraph where it says that “in view of the suffering occasioned by the Retirement Benefits law to employees by prohibiting them from accessing their contribution and that of their employers---“It is not true that they do not access the contributions they have made. They do not access the contribution made by the employers. For that reason this Motion should be seeking to enable the retiree to access the employers’ contribution. So, I am proposing that it should read instead of---
Order, Mr. Kigen! You need to have given notice!
Madam Temporary Deputy Speaker, we have done that.
Please submit the amendment and continue.
Madam Temporary Deputy Speaker, the other amendment, because I made two amendments that I am seeking to be included in this, I have already indicated there--- So what I am saying is that when you look at the lives of the retirees after the 55 years mandatory period, most of those people get wasted almost immediately and they die not because of anything else but because of what they can use to sustain themselves or find something else to depend on. We think that it will only be fair for the employers to allow the retirees access both employers’ contribution and their money so that they can use it for whatever reason they would like to use it for. The argument that this money can assist in development or building, for example, infrastructure in the country, is really the Government’s responsibility. Even as the Government does this, it should know that the aspect of using the money for infrastructural development and other forms of development in the country may not necessarily assist the retirees. At the time of leaving their jobs, some of the retirees still have small children and dependants. So, we do not do any service to the retirees and their families by denying them access to this money. This only makes them destitute. It would only be wise if this money is availed to the retirees so that they can invest it. Madam Temporary Deputy Speaker, Sir, there has been an argument that it is because of the irresponsibility of the retirees that the Government feels that it should withhold this money until they are past the retirement age. Surely, that argument is not valid. This is because if a man is not responsible at the productive age of between 25 years and 50 years, it is a far-fetched thought to think that he will be responsible when he retires. This is not being truthful. This is totally unfair to the retiree. The best thing we should do is to encourage the workforce of this country by allowing it access to this money the moment it needs it. That is the time the employees have left employment. They should access the money so that they can also create jobs. I am saying this because there are some retirees who have invested their little money in businesses that have done well. Some of the businesses are vibrant today and have created employment to young people. So, we are being one-sided by arguing that it is better for the law to restrict these people to their contributions and not the employer’s. I support the amendment of this Motion in order to allow these people access this money. By so doing, we will encourage the contributors who join the workforce. Madam Temporary Deputy Speaker, it is not useful for the country to raise the retirement age to 60 years. This is because the life expectancy of our people today--- Even the Bible talks about 60 years as being the ceiling for a man. Anything beyond that is considered as a bonus. So, to take our people to the bonus time is being unfair to them because they also want to use the remaining part of their life to do things for themselves. This idea should be thought out well. It should also be discussed and agreed upon. Even the opinion of the employees should be sought. With those remarks, I beg to move the amendment and request Dr. Eseli to second it.
Madam Temporary Deputy Speaker, I would like to second the amended Motion because the Retirement Benefits Funds are very important to both the Government and the retirees. The amended Motion will ensure that both the Government
Anybody wishing to debate the amendments?
Thank you, Madam Temporary Deputy Speaker, for giving me another opportunity to now contribute to the amendment. I do not have much to say. I only wish to say I think this is a good compromise on the part of the Government, or the Ministry, and the rest of the hon. Members of this House; we now agree to amend this Motion, so that one can access up to a maximum of 50 per cent of the employer’s contribution in the event that the person leaves employment before the age of 50 years, and at the same time he has an emergency that one wants to attend to. Thank you.
Madam Temporary Deputy Speaker, I wish to support the amendment reluctantly, so that I can meet my colleagues halfway. However, I still believe that the country should go a different direction. I realise that my colleagues are young. They do not see retirement as something that is nearby. The reality is that it shall come, and the Government should invest is in the future of senior citizens. I have travelled around the country. Recently, I was in Cuba. My colleague, Mr. Kigen, will be surprised to hear that the average age in that country is 80 years. Everybody has something to eat in retirement. What we are not doing is that we are not investing in the future of our country. It is interesting that we are calling 40-50-year-olds people wazee. But, because we do not aspire to anything, I am supporting my colleagues. I can tell you that this is an issue that we shall re-visit in the near future. I would have wished that the Government could hold
Any hon. Member wishing to debate the Motion in the amended form? If not the Minister can now respond.
Madam Temporary Deputy Speaker, Sir, I rise here to support the Motion in its amended form. It was difficult for us, as a Government; to support it in its original form. First, it was inaccurate in the sense that the employees who leave employment before retirement age access their contributions. Madam Temporary Deputy Speaker, I want to take this opportunity first to draw the attention of hon. Members to the definition of pension which is a monetary benefit paid regularly by the Government or company to an ex-employee who is officially considered to be too old or too ill to earn money by working. As defined herein, individuals who leave employment before attaining retirement age and are in good health, therefore, do not qualify to be pensioners. In this regard, such a person is not allowed to enjoy what is preserved for the future as doing so would expose him to poverty at old age. We do not want our population to die early because they are completely helpless. The points made by hon. Members that people can invest this money and make money and can even treble the amount, is true but with a very few people. A majority of people, who access their money at early age, squander it. Some marry two wives and end up being very poor when they reach the retirement age. This is more of the rule than exception. The people they were talking about are more of exceptions than rules. Madam Temporary Deputy Speaker, it should also be noted that in countries with low savings like ours, it is important that retirement benefits are accrued and preserved for survival during old age. Whereas vesting endorses entitlement of benefit rights to members, the right to posses or receive the benefits are, however, earned upon attaining retirement age stipulated in the scheme rules and not any earlier. It is also worth noting that scheme members with locked in benefits retain and are entitled to similar rights as other members. Such members are allowed, under the law, to be appointed to serve as trustees, elect trustees and attend to other scheme duties. It is stipulated in the scheme
On a point of order, Madam Temporary Deputy Speaker. The Assistant Minister said that people marry two wives and so on and they die poor. However, we are aware that the Assistant Minister has more than one wife and he is not poor!
Assistant Minister, please, continue!
Madam Temporary Deputy Speaker, I am not retired. I think I am still earning something.
The advantages of retaining this money are as follows: It ensures that the original intent of the employer to provide a retirement pension is achieved even if a member transfers the money to another scheme. This point is important because there are Members who allege that members who retire are not allowed to transfer their benefits to other schemes. The current regulations allow members who leave employment before attaining retirement age to transfer their benefits to the next scheme. Madam Temporary Deputy Speaker, it also ensures that retirement benefits remain protected from creditors. It ensures a large benefit at retirement due to the power of compounding over a long period. It was alleged here that these benefits are not compounded. That is not true. It is compounded and members enjoy that. It also reduces old age poverty and caused pressures on the Government programmed for old age income. It also allows schemes to invest in long term assets due to the reduced demand for liquidity.That is true. In the last Budget, the Deputy Prime Minister and Minister for Finance introduced regulations to force the retirement benefits schemes which are funded by public institutions to invest in long-term Government bonds. So, some steps are being taken to that effect. That enhances the long-term mobilization of domestic savings in the economy. That is something which we cannot over-emphasize. I also want say that, in addition, it is worth to note that the rationale for re- introducing preservation of benefits vide Legal Notice No. 57 of 8th June, 2005, was informed by the findings by three consecutive pensioners surveys administered by the Retirement Benefits Authority (RBA). The survey findings showed that many retirees who are members of retirement schemes do not earn adequate benefits in return. The surveys further revealed that the primary cause of low benefits at retirement was frequent access and consumption of saved retirement benefits during working life, following the change of jobs. Madam Temporary Deputy Speaker, those were the finding of that survey, and it informed the changes which were, therefore, made by the Ministry. We are now supporting this Motion, as amended. I do not want to go into the details. What I had
The Mover can now respond.
Thank you Madam Temporary Deputy Speaker. I will start by thanking the Assistant Minister, Dr. Oburu. He is truly a gentleman. The definition of a gentleman is a man who says what he means and means what he says. Indeed, we raised this issue in this House in July and the Assistant Minister had indicated that the Government would look into this issue and bring some amendments that can address the issues that have been raised by many Kenyans. I think we have done that today. I want to thank all hon. Members who have contributed to this Motion. We did not expect the Treasury to support this Motion easily because is a matter that involves over Kshs300 billion and, indeed, the Treasury has been very sensitive towards dealing with this issue. I would have wanted the Motion to be passed as proposed but, due to the reasons given, I want to thank those who have supported the amendments that will go a long way in ensuring that, apart from the exceptions already existing in our laws, where if one terminally ill, he or she should be allowed to access their employer’s contribution--- If one is leaving the country permanently they, he or she is also allowed. We are expecting the Minister to bring those amendments to the RBA Act and also to introduce regulations to allow for emergency cases. We have had cases like that of James Gone who lost his House. Due to that emergency, if he had been allowed to access up to 50 per cent of his employer’s contribution - which would have been Kshs750,000 - he would have saved his house. It is a little too late but this Motion will give hope to many Kenyans who are affected by the rule that was introduced by hon. Mwiraria in the 2005/2006 Budget. With those few remarks, I beg to move.
THAT, in view of the suffering occasioned by the retirement benefits law to employees by prohibiting them from accessing their employers contribution upon leaving employment before the mandatory retirement age and in view of the fact that the Government has now extended the retirement age of its employees to sixty years and those who have left employment before the mandatory retirement age will have to wait for an even longer period before accessing their contributions; this House resolves that the Government lifts the restriction under the Retirement Benefits Act in respect of occupational schemes to enable a
Next Order! RECOGNITION OF AMANI FORUM KENYA CHAPTER BY PARLIAMENT
Madam Temporary Deputy Speaker, I beg to move the following Motion:- THAT, appreciating the role played by the Great Lakes Parliamentary Forum (AMANI Forum) in building the capacities of Members of Parliament in peace building and conflict management in Kenya and within the Great Lakes Region and the Horn of Africa: considering that participation of Kenya Members of Parliament in regional and national AMANI Forum activities has Significantly enriched debates in the House, informed committee deliberations, and created strategic linkages between Parliament and other actors in society; convinced on the need to mainstream peace building and conflict management aspects within the National Assembly of Kenya as the country emerges from post-election violence and is undertaking deliberate measures to promote reconciliation and national healing; aware that this is the only legislature in the region that has not given due recognition to this strategic regional organization; this House resolves that AMANI Forum Kenya Chapter be officially recognized as a parliamentary affiliated body of the National Assembly of Kenya. Madam Temporary Deputy Speaker, this Motion is really more of a procedural Motion for purposes of Parliamentary privileges and functions. But more fundamentally, given the history of our country in terms of post-election violence, there is no better time that this particular forum needed this kind of recognition. I am saying that it is procedure in the sense that AMANI Forum was actually registered in 2000 and it has been enjoying Parliamentary recognition and support. Indeed, all the Speakers, starting with hon. Francis ole Kaparo and more recently our new Speaker, hon. Kenneth Marende, have been very instrumental in each and every activity of AMANI Forum. However, we need to appreciate what AMANI Forum is all about. This is an initiative by the African Parliamentarians in the Great Lakes Region in 1999, when we felt that we needed African solutions to African problems. So, the mantra of AMANI Forum is “African solutions to African problems.” Indeed, the Kenyan Chapter has been able to enjoy the distinguished leadership of Prof. Peter Anyang’-Nyong’o and hon. Paul Muite, who were the first regional executive Members in the year 2003. We have also
Order, Mr. Ethuro! You will have four minutes when we resume next.
Hon. Members, it is now time for the interruption of the business. The House is, therefore, adjourned until Wednesday, 19th August, 2009, at 2.30 p.m. The House rose at 12.30 p.m.