Mr. Speaker, Sir, I beg---
Order, Mr. Ethuro! Your Motion has not yet matured for you to give notice. You may, if necessary consult with the Chair, after this sitting.
Mr. Speaker, Sir, I beg to ask the Minister for Forestry and Wildlife the following Question by Private Notice. (a) Is the Minister aware that hippos have caused havoc in Syokisinga Village of Katangi Division of Yatta Constituency? (b) What action is the Minister taking to avert the hippo menace in the area? (c) Could the Minister consider compensating farmers for loss of crops caused by the hippos?
Mr. Speaker, Sir, I beg to reply. (a) Yes, I am aware of the hippo menace in Syokisinga Village of Yatta Constituency. (b) My Ministry is working together with the Provincial Administration and has already deployed an animal control team on the ground with adequate supplies and a vehicle to handle the hippo problem. In fact, the team has been on the ground since Monday 7th July, 2008. It is still there up to today. (c) Under the current Wildlife Conservation and Management Act, Cap.376, there is no compensation for crops and property damaged or destroyed by wildlife. However, my Ministry has initiated review of Cap.376, Wildlife Conservation and Management Act of 1989, with a view to exploring sustainable options for conservation.
Mr. Speaker, Sir, I want to thank the Assistant Minister for that good answer. Indeed, I have confirmed that his officers are on the ground in that particular village. However, there is a serious famine in that part of my constituency. My people have no problem with helping the Ministry to reduce the number of hippos. Apparently, hippos are very delicious. Could he consider allowing my people to slaughter a few hippos since there is a serious famine and he is not compensating them for the loss of their crops and property?
Mr. Speaker, Sir, the area we are talking about is located near the place where Tana River and Athi River meet. This is a fertile area and people have settled there and are farming 1748 PARLIAMENTARY DEBATES July 10, 2008 along the river bank. Late in the evenings, hippos come to the village to forage around. That is where the conflict comes in. I need to tell the hon. Member that, in the current Act, there is no provision for compensation for loss of crops and property. The Bill that we are soon going to present to the Cabinet for approval and to this House for enactment, will provide for compensation for crops and property damaged by wildlife.
Mr. Speaker, Sir, just to inform the Assistant Minister, there is also a serious problem of hippos in another village called Mamba in Ndalani of Yatta Division. Nevertheless, what plans has the Government put in place to deal with the issue of monkeys along Thika and Athi rivers?
Mr. Speaker, Sir, I want to thank the hon. Member for raising that issue. Indeed, animal/human conflict, particularly with regard to hippos, is a perennial problem in many other areas. It is not only in the hon. Member's constituency. There is animal/human conflict around Lake Victoria and many other places. Indeed, the Kenya Wildlife Service and the Ministry are making every effort to combat this menace. One of the things that the Kenya Wildlife Service is doing, on a trial basis, is to see whether we can be able to translocate some of the hippos. We do not have an experience of this anywhere else like we have with rhinos and elephants. We will do it on a trial basis in Ruai. If it becomes successful, then we will do this in other areas where there is human/wildlife conflict and see how we can resolve the problem. With regard to the issue of monkeys, I would like to urge the hon. Member to ask a substantial Question and then I will give him a substantial answer. RAISING OF ELECTRICITY TARIFFS
Mr. Speaker, Sir, I beg to ask the Minister for Energy the following Question by Private Notice. (a) Considering that electricity tariffs in Kenya are already among the highest in the world, could the Minister explain the facts that informed the recent sudden decision to raise electricity tariffs by up to 21 per cent, including Value Added Tax (VAT) of 24 per cent? (b) Could the Minister also explain the specific and deliberate plans he has to develop alternative energy sources to enable the country stay on a competitive edge against her neighbours? (c) What urgent and specific interventions has the Government put in place to stem imminent huge loss of revenue by the Government, which will result from Kenya's neighbours developing their own refineries and enhancing their energy bases?
Mr. Speaker, Sir, I beg to reply. (a) The Energy Regulatory Commission (ERC), established under the Energy Act, 2006, in raising electricity tariffs by 21 per cent took cognisance of the following factors:- (i) Since 1999 when the last electricity tariff increase was effected, several power industry costs drivers had changed. Electricity purchase costs borne by the Kenya Power and Lighting Company (KPLC) had continuously increased on account of rising inflation. Since KPLC could not cover such increased costs induced by high inflation through the electricity tariffs, its revenues had continued to be eroded to the extent that by June, 2003, the company was technically insolvent. The Government had, therefore, to step in to restructure its balance sheet and provide the critically needed liquidity by reducing KenGen's electricity sales price to KPLC by Kshs0.60 per killowatt hour. This arrangement, even though inadequate, remained in force until 30th June, 2008. However, due to its sharp adverse effects, it was discontinued with effect from 1st July, 2008. July 10, 2008 PARLIAMENTARY DEBATES 1749 (ii) Power purchase costs from new and upcoming power generation projects as well as the operation and maintenance cost for the growing transmission and distribution infrastructure have resulted in increased revenue requirements for the electricity sector. Without a tariff increase, it would have been virtually impossible to expand the generation capacity, upgrade the power distribution system to sharply reduce blackouts and maintain and operate the power supply system. (b) To develop alternative energy, the following plan is currently under implementation. (i) Commissioning of a 35-megawatt of geothermal power plant by November, 2008, by Orpower, an IPP. (ii) Commissioning of a 26-megawatt cane fibre (bagasse) fired power plant by Mumias Sugar Company by January, 2009. (iii) Thirty five megawatt Orpower Geothermal, (IPP), by October, 2008. This is the one at the Sagana Bridge. (iv) Ten-megawatt redevelopment of Tana Power Station by July, 2009. (v) Thirty five-megawatt Olkaria II Third Unit geothermal by July, 2010. (vi) Twenty-megawatt Sang'oro Hydro Power by December, 2010. This is near Sondu Miriu. (vii) Five-megawatt Ngong Hills Wind Project by May, 2010. (viii) Twenty-megawatt Kindaruma Third Unit by December, 2010. (ix) One hundred and forty megawatt Olkaria IV by July, 2012. (c) I am not aware that development of oil refineries by Kenya's neighbours will result in loss of revenue by the Kenya Government since our neighbouring countries import all their requirements from the Persian Gulf. Kenya hardly exports any petroleum fuel to these countries because our refinery is not competitive. I am, however, aware that Uganda has made hydrocarbon discoveries around Lake Albert. Nevertheless, the Ugandan Government, in the short-term, intends to develop a small refinery with a processing capacity of 4,000 barrels per day. These quantities are not adequate to meet Uganda's requirements and, therefore, the country will continue to import shortfalls through Kenya.
Mr. Speaker, Sir, I have heard the Assistant Minister's answer, although I have not received it in written form. I have heard him very well and there is only one new item that he has talked about, namely, geothermal. The rest is the same stuff that we have heard for many years. For example, hydro- electricity. The rest of the world is moving away from that. With drought and climate change, we need to have an alternate base of moving our nation forward. The Vision 2030 explains very well that electricity rates are supposed to be cheaper. We want electricity to be supplied to the villages. Industries should be put up in the villages instead of being put up in the city. The cost of electricity in Kenya is the highest in Africa. This is a critical component and driver of development. The high cost of electricity in Kenya has generally made manufacturing increasingly uncompetitive regionally and internationally. Apart from hydro-electricity and geothermal power, what is the Ministry doing to make sure that we actually move forward as a nation, with an alternative source of energy that is less costly and more reliable?
Mr. Speaker, Sir, I agree with the hon. Member that we need to diversify our sources of energy. Indeed, wind energy should be explored to the maximum in this country. The Ministry has put in place some data logging process for wind energy in northern Kenya. In fact, this should be intensified. I agree with him. We must intensify the exploration and exploitation of wind and solar energy. Geothermal energy is also renewable energy and we need to expand on this area. I agree that we must invest in alternative sources of energy. However, hydro-power is known to be the cheapest after the initial construction. The initial cost is very expensive, but in terms of the unit cost of energy, it can be cheaper. So, we will not 1750 PARLIAMENTARY DEBATES July 10, 2008 discourage that. But looking at our demand, in many years to come, we need to look at all the sources and not only one sources.
Mr. Speaker, Sir, it is quite disappointing that despite the critical cost of energy in the world, this Government still refuses to think outside the box. We have seen the success of community-based hydros in Central Province. Why is this Ministry not encouraging people in Arid and Semi-Arid Lands (ASALs) to have community-based wind-based energy generation projects? The Government can come up with incentives to encourage the people to generate wind power. We know that a small market only needs about five to 10 kilowatts. Why is the Government not deliberately coming out to assist Kenyans in these areas to access this available source of energy?
Mr. Speaker, Sir, I agree with the hon. Member that we need to encourage investments by small community-based projects. Indeed, only last year, the Ministry gazetted some feed-in-tariffs where people can develop their own hydro-power, wind or any other sort of energy and feed it to the system. So, I agree with the hon. Member that, that should be encouraged. Maybe the pace has been slow, but our people have not taken advantage of that tariff. However, wind power, biomass and any other individual power systems are encouraged. In fact, that is why the Ministry gazetted Legal Notice No.43 of 2008 to establish the feed-in-tariff. This tariff provides that if you have your energy, you can sell it to the KPLC.
Thank you, Mr. Speaker, Sir, for giving me this opportunity to raise one question. What remedial measures is the Assistant Minister going to take to protect new investors in this nation and to stem the threat that is likely to be posed to the existing industries in this nation? If we allow this kind of rocketing of electricity prices, the existing industries will be closed down.
Mr. Speaker, Sir, I do not think investors will divert from Kenya because of the increase in tariffs. First of all, we need to secure the financial integrity of our own utilities. If they are not financially stable, they will not be able to provide services. Secondly, we must be able to generate a sustainable revenue base for the sector to finance these investments in addition to power generation, transmission and distribution projects. Without proper tariffs, I do not think we would be able to have even the power that we have today. So, I do not think that anybody will divert from Kenya because of the tariff increase. Our power tariff compares very well in the region.
Mr. Speaker, Sir, it is shocking to hear about the 21 per cent increase of the energy tariffs. Even after the Departmental Committee on Energy, Communications and Public Works discussed with the Ministry on ways and means in which it can raise money for doing its projects, it still came up with a 21 per cent increase. At the moment, the Kenya Pipeline Company (KPC) is paying over Kshs800 million per year in terms of electricity costs. That will trickle down to the pump. The KPC needs to pump oil upcountry. If Kshs800 million is increased by 21 per cent, people will not afford---
Order, Eng, Rege! May I remind you that it is Question Time and not debate time? Ask your question!
Mr. Speaker, Sir, I would like to tell the Ministry that they need to have alternative ways and means of raising the money they need to generate power, and not to raise the electricity tariffs by 21 per cent.
Order, Eng. Rege! Are you able to put that as a question? Please, try!
Mr. Speaker, Sir, could the Assistant Minister tell this House the alternative July 10, 2008 PARLIAMENTARY DEBATES 1751 ways of raising the tariffs of electricity?
Mr. Speaker, Sir, Eng. Rege is asking for alternative ways of raising the tariffs. However, I am not aware of alternative ways of raising the tariffs.
Last question, Mr. Lekuton!
Mr. Speaker, Sir, with the power demand projected to go between 6 per cent and 10 per cent every year, for the next five years, and with the current inflation of 29.3 per cent in this country, our citizens have continued to suffer. They pay high fuel prices to go home. They pay high food prices. They are now going to pay higher electricity bills. We well know that the higher the electricity bills, the more the effects to be felt. Even now food prices will come up, because industries use electricity to process our products. So, could I humbly request the Ministry to consider reducing the electricity tariffs, so that poor Kenyans can have something at the end of the day in their payslips?
Mr. Speaker, Sir, there are five categories of electricity tariffs. One is for domestic consumers, which is not changed significantly. The other categories are small commercial, the commercial industrial, the interruptible IP and street lighting. So, there are different segments of tariff increases. There is a mechanism whereby small consumers are protected. Maybe, it is good for people to know that also Kenya Power and Lighting Company (KPLC) staff houses used to get preferential treatment. That has now been abolished under this new tariff regime.
On a point of order, Mr. Speaker, Sir. Is the Assistant Minister in order to mislead the House that the tariff increases for the commercial category do not affect the poor, which is the question Mr. Lekuton asked? Is he in order?
Mr. Speaker, Sir, I agree that it affects them. However, I just wanted to clarify that there are five different categories of consumers. The 21 per cent increase is not applicable across the board. This is the maximum increase. But I agree with the hon. Member that an increase in the cost of electricity at any level will affect everybody in this country.
Hon. Members, we will take Question No.073 by Mr. Lessonet, because he is travelling out of the country on parliamentary business.
asked the Minister for Education:- (a) whether he is aware that Koibatek District has a shortage of over 250 teachers, and that Uhuru-Kabiyet Secondary School, which is set to present candidates in the Kenya Certificate of Secondary Education (KCSE) examinatin this year, has only two TSC-employed teachers; and, (b) when he plans to post more teachers to the district in general, and to Uhuru- Kabiyet Secondary School, in particular.
Mr. Speaker, Sir, I beg to reply. (a) I am aware of the shortage of 167 secondary school teachers in Koibatek District. The 1752 PARLIAMENTARY DEBATES July 10, 2008 district is, however, over-staffed by 63 teachers at primary school level. It is true that Uhuru- Kabiyet Secondary School has two TSC-employed teachers. (b) Koibatek District will be considered for the shortage at secondary school-level alongside other under-staffed areas in the country during this year's recruitment of teachers. Uhuru- Kabiyet Secondary School will, therefore, be given priority based on the curriculum-based establishment.
Mr. Speaker, Sir, the Minister has acknowledged that we actually have a shortage of teachers in our district. I would like him to give us further assurance that, in the forthcoming recruitment, the shortage of 167 teachers he has referred to will be catered for. Secondly, since we are supposed to be under the so-called "Free Secondary Education Programme (FSEP)", in terms of tuition, to what extent will the Ministry compensate our Boards of Governors, which currently incur a monthly cost of Kshs3.3 million on employment of teachers?
Mr. Lessonet, you have already asked two questions! So, you have had your share. Mr. Minister, could you answer those two questions?
Mr. Speaker, Sir, the action by Boards of Governors to employ teachers at the secondary school level is always welcome. It is a partnership action. We welcome it in this country. However, I have already given tacit information that Uhuru-Kabiyet Secondary School will be given priority. Let me inform the House that it is not only Uhuru-Kabiyet Secondary School which is under-staffed. We have a shortage of 12,000 teachers in the country, at the secondary school-level, and a countrywide shortage of about 47,000 teachers at the primary school level. If the hon. Member was here yesterday, he must have heard me indicate that, this financial year, we shall be employing 6,000 new teachers. In addition, we shall have 8,000 more teachers to replace those who have exited the service through retirement or death. I indicated that the Printed Estimates have given us a leeway to employ intern teachers. We are now working on modalities of how to issue guidelines in support of that programme.
Mr. Speaker, Sir, shortage of teachers is a national problem. Going by the pace of the Ministry of Education, and the paces of many other Ministries, this country will take a long time to ease the staffing shortage in the key sectors affecting Kenyans. There is no shortage in every part of the country. There are some areas which are over-staffed. What plans does the Minister have to move teachers from over-staffed areas and re-distribute them to areas which have serious shortages?
Mr. Speaker, Sir, when we talk of shortages of teachers, we take into account even the areas that are over-staffed. Even if we were to distribute them evenly, we would still be running short of 47,200 teachers in the primary sector and 12,000 teachers in the secondary sector. So, whatever mathematical formula we may use, we will still be ending up with that shortage of teachers. I have said that last year's Budget provided for 4,000 teachers. This year's Budget has provided for 6,000 teachers. It was our expectation that our request for provision for recruitment of 10,000 teachers per annum over a period of four years would be met. That would, definitely, have taken care of the deficit, but that was not so because of Budget ceilings.
Mr. Speaker, Sir, education is very important to anybody's life. Of the shortfall of 12,000 teachers that we have at the secondary school-level, Koibatek District seems to have more than a proportionate share. We have almost 120 districts in Kenya. If we were to share the shortage of 12,000 teachers equally, every district would have a shortage of less than 100 teachers. However, in Koibatek District, we have a shortage of 167 teachers. I appreciate that the Minister has given---
Mr. Lessonet, could you come to your last question?
Mr. Speaker, Sir, I appreciate the fact that the Minister has said he will look July 10, 2008 PARLIAMENTARY DEBATES 1753 into the problem in the forthcoming teacher-recruitment exercise. I would just want him to assure us on that undertaking.
Mr. Speaker, Sir, I am sure the hon. Member is fully aware that, based on the curriculum-based establishments, Uhuru-Kabiyet Secondary School has an enrolment of 145 students. The number of classes are four and, therefore, it qualifies for a single stream. Mr. Speaker, Sir, when looking at the establishment itself, it shall be based purely on the number of streams available in that school and, in this case, Uhuru-Kabiyet Secondary School will be entitled to nine teachers. But, at the moment, they only have two teachers and a shortage of seven teachers. Accordingly, using that formula, we will be able to give them priority based on that shortage alone.
asked the Deputy Prime Minister and Minister for Local Government, in view of the public transport problems and traffic congestion currently being experienced in the City of Nairobi, what steps the Ministry is taking to avoid a similar build-up in the fast-expanding cities of Kisumu, Mombasa, Nakuru and Eldoret.
Mr. Speaker, Sir, I beg to reply. Arising from studies undertaken earlier and which gave rise to the Kenya Urban Transport Infrastructure Project (KUTIP), various recommendations were made that, when implemented to the full, will alleviate the problems of traffic congestion in our major cities. Some of the recommendations include:- Road networking development, including the construction of missing links, bypasses, radial and circumvential road system and non-motorised transport facilities. Secondly, signalization of intersections within the Central Business District (CBD), improvement of public transport, including bus incentives and priority policies, restructuring of bus routes, introduction of shuttle bus systems as well as improvement of parking within the CBD. Mr. Speaker, Sir, coming now specifically to the major towns which include Kisumu, Mombasa, Nakuru and Eldoret, we intend to take the following specific steps to ease congestion. With regard to Kisumu City, the municipality, in liaison with the Ministry of Roads, is looking forward to the completion and opening of a bypass from Nairobi Road through Mamboleo to Otonglo. That will not only divert buses, tankers and other vehicles, but it will also strengthen the lifespan of the city roads. We intend to construct three more bus parks at already identified sites. We intend to establish designated matatu termini outside the city centre. We intend to relocate major bus companies to areas outside the town centre. We intend to reorganize traffic within the town, including designating points and areas for matatus and buses. Lastly, we intend to review the council building bylaws to ensure that all the new buildings in the city provide for adequate parking spaces. Mr. Speaker, Sir, for Mombasa City, we intend to re-route the traffic, provide designated
stages and car parks, provide proper maintenance of council roads and drainage systems to foster smooth flow of traffic, introduce flyovers and additional traffic lights on junctions and roundabouts. For long-term measures, we intend to introduce dual-carriageways on some of the roads where the road reserve allows, for example, Mbaraki, Archbishop Makarios Road, Mwakirunge Road, Machakos Road and Mijikenda Road. We also intend to establish a fixed link crossing to 1754 PARLIAMENTARY DEBATES July 10, 2008 Kilindini Harbour from the western terminus of Moi Avenue to Gombeni on the South Mainland. For Nakuru Municipality, again, the Ministry of Roads is currently finalizing the dualling of the main Nairobi Highway, A104, to ease traffic flow. We intend to segregate local and through traffic by encouraging the use of alternative roads such as Oginga Odinga Avenue. We intend to finalize the planned bitumenization of the eastern end of Maragoli Avenue commencing from the junction with Nyahururu Road to the end of the bitumen section of Menengai Drive. Lastly, the council has planned the rehabilitation of the missing links within built-up areas to reduce travel time and ease traffic flow on congested streets. Lastly, Mr. Speaker, Sir, for Eldoret Municipality, the congestion there is mainly attributed to the major road which passes through the town. So, in conjunction with the Ministry of Roads, there are plans to construct bypasses and a ring road to guard against congestion in town. The council is also restructuring seats along matatu and bus routes. That, coupled with reinforcement, will ensure smooth flow of traffic. Lastly, the council is also rehabilitating roads using funds from the Roads Maintenance Levy Fund. Thank you, Mr. Speaker, Sir.
Mr. Speaker, Sir, the Assistant Minister's answer lacks in actual ideas that can be implemented. His answer is conventional wisdom for alternative traffic congestion. What needs to be done is not to re-route roads. We need to redesign and expand alternative transportation modes. So, in view of all this, when is the Ministry going to implement the ideas that the Assistant Minister has set out before the House?
Mr. Speaker, Sir, this is a very, very important question in the sense that Kenyans are really suffering, particularly in the morning and evening because of traffic jams. All those steps have started; some are on the way, some are ongoing and the others will be finished as soon as is practically possible. Mr. Speaker, Sir, I need not mention that, for example, if you take Nairobi, we have already started on the missing bypasses and links. I am also aware that the Minister for Nairobi Metropolitan Development is also working on flyovers. So, those are ongoing projects. Some have started and some are going to start next year. Those are ongoing projects because we must bring to an end the traffic jams. They must end. We are spending so much time, unnecessarily, when we are held up in traffic jams. Thank you, Mr. Speaker, Sir.
Mr. Speaker, Sir, what immediate action is the Assistant Minister taking to decongest Uhuru Highway, Mombasa Road and even Outer Ring Road, because those are the areas which have been having very heavy traffic jams in Nairobi City for a long, long time. We want immediate action by the Assistant Minister.
Mr. Speaker, Sir, Uhuru Highway, including Mombasa Road,
Last question, Mr. Olago!
Mr. Speaker, Sir, traffic congestion is not a one-day affair. The build-up takes a long time. I insist that if the idea that the Ministry has is going to see the light of day, then the Assistant Minister must indicate clearly if these ideas are going to be implemented and how soon. It is important!
Mr. Speaker, Sir, I have already said that, about 20 percent of the works are ongoing and I have given examples of the missing bypasses and linkages, which are already under construction. Others are being planned. For example, the Ministry of Nairobi Metropolitan July 10, 2008 PARLIAMENTARY DEBATES 1755 Development is working on flyovers. There will be construction of flyovers at Nyayo Stadium and Museum Hill roundabouts. Those plans are there. Widening of roads is also going on and the construction of dual-carriage ways has started. For example, Langata Road is now a dual-carriage way. Ngong Road is also planned to be a dual-carriage way. So, all these plans are ongoing. But I can assure my learned friend that latest, by the year 2030 when we will realise our Vision, these projects will be over. Thank you!
asked the Minister for Co-operative Development and Marketing:- (a) whether he is aware that Turkana Fishermen Co-operative Society and Lokichoggio Livestock Marketing Society are moribund; and, (b) what urgent steps he is taking to revive these two important co-operative societies that deal with livestock and fish in Turkana
Mr. Speaker, Sir, I beg to reply. (a) I am not aware that Turkana Fishermen Co-operative Society is moribund. I am also not aware of the society by the name Lokichoggio Livestock Marketing Society. (b) The performance of the Turkana Fishermen Co-operative Society has been on a decline due to poor management, inadequate and inappropriate fishing gear, inadequate cold storage facilities on the landing beaches, general lack of skilled and experienced manpower, lack of designated and organized market for fish, poor road network and exploitation by fish traders and other middlemen. To address the problems facing the Turkana Fishermen Co-operative Society, our Ministry has undertaken the following measures:- (a) facilitated a feasibility study to establish the viability of the society; (b) facilitated the preparation of a business development plan to restructure the society; (c) intensified capacity for members, staff and management committee in readiness for the revival of the society; and, (d) finally, the Ministry has prepared a Kshs96 million rehabilitation project proposal and has submitted it to the Treasury and other development partners for consideration.
Mr. Speaker, Sir, I want to thank the Assistant Minister for answering the Question, particularly part "b", very well. But you recall that the Assistant Minister said that the society is not moribund. But she goes ahead to give explanations such as poor management, inadequate, inappropriate and even a feasibility study--- The society is actually dead! I am surprised that the Assistant Minister is not aware of the existence of Lokichoggio Livestock Marketing Society which is one of the best abattoirs built by AMREF in northern Kenya. Everybody can see that project for himself or herself. But let us leave that one for another day and concentrate on the Turkana Fishermen Co-operative Society. I would like the Assistant Minister to look into the issue of poor management which has to do with elements of co-operative officers and management committees who do not do their work. Is she aware that the Turkana Fish Co-operative Society Limited has not held elections since 2005? That explains some of the problems. When will the society hold proper and democratic elections as part and parcel of the rehabilitation of this society?
Mr. Speaker, Sir, hon. Ethuro should have included what he has said in the 1756 PARLIAMENTARY DEBATES July 10, 2008 Question; that the last the time the society held elections was 2005. But by saying the society is moribund, it means it is not in operation, but the structures are still there. In the last answer which the Member has, we said that we have prepared a proposal of Kshs96 million for the rehabilitation of the society. Secondly, he talked about co-operative officers and mismanagement. The Ministry of Co-operative Development does not have teeth over mismanagement of co-operative societies. Hopefully, when we will bring the SACCOS Bill to this House, we will establish an authority that will check on mismanagement of co-operative societies. At the moment, the members of a society elect their own office bearers. They are the ones who know who can manage their projects properly. When the Ministry wants to come in, in most cases, they go to court. Mr. Speaker, Sir, my Ministry intends to visit Turkana and see what we can do to revive that co-operative society so that they can have meaningful income for the people. There is another issue which he said we will raise another day, but because I am here, why does he have to take it to another day? The Member talked about Lokichoggio Livestock Marketing Society, but this society does not appear in our register. What we have in our register is Lomidad Pastoral Multi-purpose Co-operative Society Limited, Registration No.CS/107/97, which was registered in 2005. The co- owners are the Turkana Pastoralists Milk Processing Factory.
Mr. Speaker, Sir, the Assistant Minister has said that they have prepared a Kshs96 million rehabilitation proposal. When will she avail this money to rehabilitate this society? We will revisit the Lomidad Pastoral Multi-Purpose Co-operative Society another day. We need the money. When are we getting that money so that fishermen of Lake Turkana can benefit?
Mr. Speaker, Sir, myself and hon. J. Nyagah took over the Ministry just three months ago. But we will fast-track this proposal which was prepared before we took over the office. Definitely, this is our priority. We will follow it and, of course, we will seek for funds from the Treasury. We will also follow it up with other development partners whom we gave the proposal to.
Order, hon. Members! I am afraid that will be the end of Question Time! The balance of the Questions that have not been asked will be given priority on Tuesday. They will come in the order in which they are, according to their class. To clarify further, Eng. Gumbo's Question will be number one among the ordinary Questions on Tuesday afternoon.
We have a number of important areas which need to be covered in Ministerial Statements. First, those who are seeking Ministerial Statements will have this opportunity beginning with Mr. Ababu Namwamba. UPGRADING OF KENYA PETROLEUM REFINERIES
Thank you, Mr. Speaker, Sir. I rise to seek a Ministerial Statement from the Minister for Energy. In the Statement, the Minister should clearly explain the following:- (a) What is the status of the programme to upgrade the Kenya Petroleum Refineries in Mombasa as recommended by the Foster Wheeler Report of 2004? (b) What is the justification for the escalation of the projected upgrade budget from the initial US$322 million or Kshs20 billion to the current US$430 million or Kshs28 billion especially in view of the fact that, Esal Company of India has made an offer of US$400 million or Kshs26 billion? (c) How did the said Esal Company of India and Oil Libya of Libya come into the upgrade picture? Is it true that plans are afoot to have those two favoured foreign firms irregularly share out that lucrative venture to the detriment of the Kenyan taxpayer? (d) Is it true that the said upgrade programme has become hostage of wheeler-dealing within the Ministry of Energy and Ministry of Finance, respectively, which has resulted in a litany of irregularities that include a unilateral decision to ignore a competitive process of selecting the upgrade partner, which process was to be managed by Stanchart PLC of the UK? (e) What became of the Kshs1 billion which was allocated to the upgrade programme by the Treasury in the 2007/2008 Fiscal Year? Finally, has the Government paid Stanchart PLC any public funds for their consultancy services that have been largely ignored in this process?
Order, Mr. Wambugu! Mr. Namwamba is on a point of order. The Standing Orders do not allow you to rise on a point of order when another hon. Member is on a point of order! At least, not before he concludes! Mr. Namwamba, could you proceed!
Mr. Speaker, Sir, there are many who are still learning the ropes in the House. Mr. Speaker, Sir, the final part of my Question is: Has the Government paid Stanchart PLC any public funds for their consultancy services that have been largely ignored in this process? If so, how much has been paid? Could the utility of those monies to the Kenyan taxpayer be 1758 PARLIAMENTARY DEBATES July 10, 2008 demonstrated? What is the guarantee that the Government will conduct that upgrade programme above board and protect the interests of the Kenyan taxpayer who subsidises the operations of the Kenya Petroleum Refineries to the tune of US$40 million or Kshs2.6 billion annually? Thank you, Mr. Speaker, Sir.
The Minister in charge of Energy?
Mr. Speaker, Sir, we undertake to issue a Statement on Wednesday next week. ATTORNEY-GENERAL'S ABSENCE FROM THE HOUSE
Mr. Speaker, Sir, I stand to seek Ministerial Statements on two issues. One from you and, possibly, the other one from the Prime Minister. Under Section 39 of the Kenya Constitution, any hon. Member missing sittings of the House for eight consecutive times automatically loses his or her seat in this House. I would like to know whether those provisions apply to the Office of the Attorney-General and, if they do, why the Attorney-General does not sit in this House to answer Questions that are addressed to his office! If, under the provisions of Section 39 he has the President's permission to be away, what is the procedure of communicating that to the House, so that we can know when to address Questions to the Office of the Attorney- General? ROLE OF GOVERNMENT SPOKESMAN REGARDING PARLIAMENTARY BUSINESS The second Ministerial Statement that I seek arises directly out of the Prime-Minister's Statement last week. After he gave his Ministerial Statement, a Government civil servant, I think in the Office of the President, Dr. Alfred Mutua, purported to explain what the Prime Minister was stating with regard to the Statement to this House that the Minister for Finance had resigned. Does the Prime Minister's Ministerial Statement require further clarification from the Director of Information in the President's Office?
Order, hon. Members! With respect to the first statement that the Member sought, the Chair will give appropriate directions on Thursday next week. That is a fairly weighty matter. We will look at the provisions of the Constitution as relates to the Attorney-General. We will also verify the facts from the HANSARD as to when the Attorney-General was last in this House, so that we can give appropriate direction. With respect to the matter relating to the Government's Spokesman, I would want the Leader of Government Business, or whoever he has delegated to this afternoon, to indicate to the House, under which Ministry the Government Spokesman falls, so that the appropriate Statement can come next week. Could I have an indication please?
Thank you, Mr. Speaker, Sir. The Office of the Government Spokesperson falls under the Ministry of Information and Communications. I would like to understand the issue that hon. Imanyara would like to be clarified. I did not hear him clearly. July 10, 2008 PARLIAMENTARY DEBATES 1759
Mr. Imanyara, could you repeat your request for the Ministerial Statement, please?
Mr. Speaker, Sir, I am glad that the Deputy Prime Minister does not appear to have listened to me. I asked whether the Government Spokesman, Dr. Mutua, has supervisory jurisdictions over Ministers who give Statements in this House. That is because last week, when the Prime Minister gave a Statement in this House and indicated that the former Minister for Finance had gone, Mr. Mutua purported to explain that to mean the Minister had not, in fact, gone, but had just stepped aside contrary to the provisions and the Statement given to this House by the hon. Prime Minister. What is the role of the Government Spokesman with regard to parliamentary business when Ministerial Statements are given in this House?
Mr. Speaker, Sir, on behalf of the concerned Ministry, we undertake that a Statement will be given next week on Tuesday.
Order! Hon. Okemo, I thought you indicated that you had a request?
I was waiting for you to give me the time.
I do not have to give you. You only catch the Speaker's eye when you are on your feet!
Mr. Speaker, Sir, have I caught it?
Mr. Speaker, Sir, I stand to seek a Ministerial Statement from the Minister for Finance. We have information to the effect that there were some loans which were extended to private companies and individuals by the National Bank of Kenya totalling to about Kshs20 billion. The Attorney-General's legal opinion was sought on the same and he gave his opinion saying that those could not possibly be classified as loans guaranteed by the Government. Mr. Speaker, Sir, the Government does not guarantee loans by individuals or private companies. The Minister for Finance, sometime last year, undertook to repay those loans, and actually wrote a cheque of Kshs20 billion and paid it to the Central Bank of Kenya (CBK). The same cheque went through CBK and went back to the Government, which means that they did not pay them. What is more interesting is that National Bank of Kenya (NBK) went ahead and floated a 20-year Bond which was not supported by anything, because the money went back to the Government. So, I would like the Minister for Finance to come and clarify, first, the issue of why loans borrowed by private companies and individuals should be paid by the Government. These are companies of people who are known; they have the ability to repay.
Order, Mr. Okemo! While seeking a Ministerial Statement you first indicate the base of it, which you have done very well then specify areas that you want clarified. Do not go into a debate!
Mr. Speaker, Sir, I thought I was doing very well, including asking for clarifications, because I was actually clarifying the issue---
Order, Mr. Okemo! You do not seek clarification by stating certain things that you believe are facts according to your information! Those are matters that you may bring to the fore when the Minister brings the Ministerial Statement.
Thank you very much, Mr. Speaker, Sir, for your assistance, but I think my 1760 PARLIAMENTARY DEBATES July 10, 2008 point has been made. I do not want to belabour it. Therefore, I would like the Minister for Finance to make that Ministerial Statement and clarify to this House since when the Government began paying loans by private companies that are purportedly guaranteed by it.
Mr. Speaker, Sir, we shall be able to respond to that point of order next week.
The Speaker should give direction. I think Thursday afternoon will be appropriate.
Could you issue the Ministerial Statement on Wednesday next week?
Yes, on Wednesday afternoon.
It is so ordered! Hon. Members, we are out of time as you will note. The next business is supposed to start not later than 3.30 p.m., but we have two urgent matters that we must deal with. So, we have to be prepared to add extra time to our Sitting today. I want the two Ministers concerned to share the next ten minutes. So, you will all have to be very precise on what you want to say. We will begin with a Statement from the Ministry of Planning, National Development and Vision 2030.
Mr. Speaker, Sir, first, let me apologise to the House, because we were supposed to issue this Ministerial Statement yesterday. I will be very brief. We did give an update at the end of June on how much had been remitted by the Treasury to the Constituencies Development Fund (CDF). I want to confirm to the House that a further sum of Kshs3.5 billion was remitted to the CDF yesterday, leaving a balance of Kshs1.1 billion, which I will ensure is remitted tomorrow.
That Ministerial Statement is short and clear!
On a point of order, Mr. Speaker, Sir. Could the Assistant Minister be clear on what he is going to do in respect of the CDF monies meant for the new financial year, because that is money which all these hon. Members never appropriated in the first place?
Mr. Assistant Minister, could you note that? Is there anybody else seeking a clarification on this? Let us do it very quickly as I have already cautioned hon. Members over the shortage of time.
Mr. Speaker, Sir, as the Chairman of the CDF, Committee we have been pursuing this matter relentlessly, because the law requires that the Minister, on a quarterly basis, disburses the funds to the CDF. I would wish to seek clarification from the Minister, as to what evidence does he have to demonstrate to this House that the Kshs3.5 billion has already been released? What is he going to do to ensure that the next allocations will be as per the requirements of the Act; that is, quarterly disbursements of the funds?
Mr. Speaker, Sir, it seems that this Ministry has been struggling to get money from Treasury for purposes of CDF disbursements. I want to ask the Assistant Minister to tell us what he is doing to ensure that, that money will be with the Ministry of State for Planning, National Development and Vision 2030 so that they can appropriately answer questions without having to go to the Ministry of Finance.
Mr. Speaker, Sir, first of all, let me address the Chairman of the CDF Committee regarding the evidence. I am sure we are going to be with him tomorrow in the seminar, and a copy of the cheque will be given to him as the Chairman. So, it has gone. It is in the interest of this House, and my own interest, to say the truth here and nothing but the truth. Secondly, regarding this year's allocation, one of the problems of the previous year's allocation was the fact that the Board had to be put in place, arising from the amendments that were passed in this House. I want to appeal to the House to further make another amendment to ensure that the Board is able to collect the money directly, so that the money is remitted into the accounts of the new Board. I am hoping that when we meet in Mombasa, over the weekend with the CDF Committee, we will bring to the Floor of this House an amendment to ensure that this kind of a position does not prevail again.
Next is the Ministerial Statement on the Rift Valley Railways. STRIKE BY RIFT VALLEY RAILWAYS WORKERS
Mr. Speaker, Sir, I wish to issue the following Ministerial Statement sought by Mr. Yinda regarding the strike by the staff of the Rift Valley Railways (RVR) Company Mr. Speaker, Sir, it is true that RVR staff went on strike on 1st July, 2008 due to a delay in payment of their June, 2008 salaries. The workers were, however, notified on 9th July, 2008 that their salaries would be transmitted to their respective bank accounts as soon as possible. The RVR are the concessionaire currently operating the Kenya-Uganda railways and, at this point in time, they are operational. It is correct to say that they have not bolted out. In respect of the Managing Director's salary, this is a matter that relates to the operations of a private company and the Ministry is not involved in setting up the salary scheme for the workers of the RVR. There is no process in place of transferring back the RVR to the Government, or to the Kenya Railways Corporation as a concessionaire is still operational. However, certain breaches relating to the concession document have been detected, and the appropriate notices have been prepared as required under the concession agreement. It is important to note that the concession was a joint concession of both the Kenya Railways Corporations and the Uganda Railways. Both Governments are bound by the interface agreement to consult and concur before any major action is taken with regard to the concession agreement. The Kenya Government is currently consulting with the Government of the Republic of Uganda, and other stakeholders, as agreed in order to seek the best way forward.
Mr. Speaker, Sir, I would like to thank the Assistant Minister for the answer although I am not satisfied with it. As we all know that with the concessioneering of Kenya Railways to Sheltam DTY of South Africa was, almost, fraudulently done. Kenyans are yearning to have their railways back. The Rift Valley Railways (RVR) has failed. It owes the Kenya Railways almost Kshs600 million, which is against the regulations of the contracts that they signed. This alone, is enough for the Government to repossess the railways, so that it can be run by the Kenya Railways. The RVR has not put a penny into the railway line. This was also stated in the agreement. They were supposed to invest more money. Up to now, they have not invested any money, apart from recycling the money that they are obtaining from the taxpayers and users of the railways. Therefore, I would really still want a clarification and confirmation from the Assistant Minister to this House, that the RVR has failed. They should make a move to repossess the business from them and give it to the Kenya Railways.
Mr. Speaker, Sir, according to the Assistant Minister's Statement, the industrial action taken by the RVR employees was merely because of delayed pay. This is not true. 1762 PARLIAMENTARY DEBATES July 10, 2008 There is a litany of issues that the staff have raised, which indicate that the Managing Director of RVR, Mr. Roy Puffet, is running this company like a fiefdom. These employees are actually working more as slave labourers than employees. There is a litany of irregularities which I would want to hand to the Assistant Minister here, if he does not have access to them, that show clearly that all the employees of RVR that joined this company in 2006 are still working on probation, two years down the line, in contravention of labour regulations that require that they should be on probation for only six months. So, the clarification that I would want from him is whether he has taken time to consult and look deep into the issues bedeviling this company, that contribute to the current scenario, where this company is not delivering services. In fact, the services are worse than before this company was apparently or allegedly privatised. Mr. Speaker, Sir, I would also want clarification---
You can only seek one clarification!
Mr. Speaker, Sir, could you indulge me a second one?
Yes, if you are going to be brief!
Mr. Speaker, Sir, I will be very brief. I would also want the Assistant Minister to clarify the fate of the Kenya Railways employees who were retrenched before the RVR came into the scene. They also have serious issues that require to be addressed. Mr. Speaker, Sir, thank you for your indulgence.
Mr. Speaker, Sir, could the Assistant Minister tell us whether this is a Kenyan or South African company? Could he also give us a list of the directors?
Mr. Speaker, Sir, maybe I will start with hon. Yinda's question. It is true that the RVR had breached the concession agreement. That is the reason why notices as per the concession document have been put into place. That is the first process of dealing with the issues at hand. The same applies to hon. Namwamba's question. First of all, we must agree that the workers went on strike because of salaries. That shows that the company did not pay them the salaries on the due date. That also means that the company is not doing well. The company is not doing well. It is true, as Mr. Yinda says, that it owes the Kenya Railways Corporation money. That is also another ground upon which notices have been prepared to that effect. In response as to who are the Directors, first of all, I am not aware of a South African company called Sheltam which is holding concession, as Mr. Yinda has said. The concession agreement is between the Kenyan Government, Kenya Railways Corporation and the Rift Valley Railways Kenya Limited. The Directors are:- Roy Puffet W.G. Kruger D.K. Luptigan C.C. Church T.G. Cadge G.M. Gachui A.P.K Wainaina P.K. Mwangi P.R. Sharon G.L.C. Salvoden Three of them are South African, three Kenyans and two Mauritians.
Hon. Members, before we move to the next Order, I have the following Communication to make. You will recall that the House was yesterday afternoon adjourned pre-maturely due to the fact that the districts allocation books for the Ministry of State for Youth Affairs and Sports had not been availed to Members, and that the Permanent Secretary and other officers of the Ministry were absent. Hon. Members, the House Business Committee, during its sitting on Tuesday 24th June, 2008, decided the order of debate for the Committee of Supply on individual Votes. A letter to this effect, dated 26th June, 2008, was sent to all the Accounting Officers. The letter to the Permanent Secretary, Ministry of State for Youth Affairs and Sports was received and signed for in the Ministry on 30th June, 2008. The letter had indicated that the debate on the first Vote could start any time after Tuesday 8th July, 2008. Therefore, the Accounting Officers of the first ten Ministries were advised to be ready immediately. The Ministry of Youth Affairs and Sports was listed as the first Ministry. The Programme for Parliamentary business for the week commencing Tuesday 8th July, 2008 was submitted to the Ministry on Friday 4th July, 2008. The Chair commends the hon. Minister for her comprehensive presentation of the Estimates. We have, since what transpired yesterday, received apologies both from the hon. Minister, Prof. Sambili, and her Permanent Secretary. The Chair acknowledges the apologies on behalf of the House. While appreciating the efforts of the Minister, I direct that all Ministries do submit their districts allocations books and any other relevant details to the Clerk not later than two days before the respective Vote is considered, for distribution to hon. Members. The Ministers are equally advised to ensure that their respective Accounting Officers, accompanied by key officials of the Ministry, are present when their Votes are being considered. This will help, I believe, in the implementation of programmes as envisaged in the Budget. We will resume debate on the Vote of the Ministry of Youth Affairs and Sports since it had already been moved, seconded and the Question proposed.
Mr. Speaker, Sir, I would like to take this opportunity, through the Chair, to apologise to this House because yesterday I said that my officers were here. However, I came to realise that they had not arrived. Today, they are all here. This problem will not be repeated. I am happy that the District Allocations Budget has been circulated and hon. Members will note that the allocations are in three categories, namely, Youth Development, Youth Training and Sports. Where the allocations for a district look high with regard to the category of sports, it is because the officer in that district looks after three or more districts. My Ministry is committed to developing the youth in every corner of the country, but we have targeted interventions for marginalised youth such as those living in the slums, those that are infected and/or affected by HIV/AIDS, particular categories of female youth, those in remote pastoral areas, as well as youth living in the streets, among others. Mr. Speaker, Sir, such interventions will include, environmental programme, HIV/AIDS awareness programme, employment creation programme and so on. We are committed, therefore, to our vision in the Ministry of Youth Affairs and Sports, to have a responsible and empowered 1764 PARLIAMENTARY DEBATES July 10, 2008 youth building a better Kenya. I would like to add one clarification to the presentation that I made yesterday with respect to the way forward for the Youth Enterprise Development Fund (YEDF). With regard to the way forward, we would like to pursue the Fund Board's strategies through leverage and loan guarantee scheme and other ways that are there in the document that I read yesterday. The Fund is only one year old and it is still evolving. It is not yet perfect, but we are still improving it to meet the needs and challenges of the youth in different locations and situations. We have asked for a Speaker's Kamkunji to explain this in detail and get the valued views of hon. Members on how to improve this further. Thank you, Mr. Speaker.
Very well, Minister! Next Order!
Yes, Mr. ole Metito!
I thank you, Mr. Speaker, Sir, for---
On a point of order, Mr. Speaker, Sir. I have listened to the hon. Minister. To enable me to participate meaningfully and interact with other hon. Members, if we could get proper direction, I have heard the Minister talk about substantive issues. I have also seen the District Allocations Books that have been provided in our pigeon holes. On the Books, it is written Ministry of Youth Affairs and Sports, 2008/2009: Estimates of Recurrent Expenditure and Development Expenditure. I have had an occasion to look at it albeit the short time we were given. I have only seen the part on Recurrent Expenditure only. Perhaps, the Minister could inform us where the Development component is.
Madam Minister, are you able to respond to that point of order?
Mr. Speaker, Sir, the allocation point was the headquarters as there were no district expenditure heads since the district offices were being established in the period 2007/2008. In view of this, the information on the 2007/2008 allocations is not captured in the 2008/2009 District Allocation Budget. In 2007/2008, allocations amounted to the following:- July 10, 2008 PARLIAMENTARY DEBATES 1765 (a) Development Expenditure, Kshs 274 million (b) Recurrent Expenditure, Kshs696.7 million. With regard to 2008/2009, the allocations are as follows:- (a) Recurrent Expenditure, Kshs795 million (b) Development Expenditure, Kshs1.1685 billion. I do not know whether I have answered the hon. Member.
Order, Madam Minister! I think you have done the best you can in those circumstances. From that explanation offered by the Minister, it will appear to the Chair that, indeed, there is a dichotomy in those presentations covering Development and Recurrent Expenditures respectively. As to the details of the District Allocation Budget, Ms. Odhiambo and, perhaps, other hon. Members, you will be at liberty in your contributions to, among other things, capture and point out to the Minister where there are weaknesses in the Estimates that relate to that Vote. So, the Minister will then, before the close of the debate, respond to those issues that will have been canvassed by hon. Members. I think we should now proceed.
On a point of order, Mr. Speaker, Sir. I respect your ruling. This is not the first time we have had this issue where district allocations are not specified. This results to misuse of funds. We would like to see---
Order, Mr. Sirma! Much as you may be having a valid point to make, you are out of order to speak from that microphone at the Dispatch Box. You do not belong to the Cabinet. You cannot contribute from the Front Bench!
Mr. Speaker, Sir, many a times, we get allocations which are not specific. This results into misuse of funds or a tilted way of allocating money to certain regions. We would like the Minister, even if she does not specify--- You have given a leeway to this Minister and so let all other Ministers give us district allocations. This is because there has always been mischief before and we have always observed that.
Order, hon. Members! If that is meant for purposes of emphasis, yes, that is a valid concern. Indeed, I have captured it in my earlier communication to the House this afternoon wherein, among other things, I urged all Ministers to ensure that they supply the requisite information not later than two days before the Vote comes up for debate in the House. I think the Minister has done very well for the moment. Hon. Members should be at liberty to interrogate the details as they have been provided. If there are any shortcomings, they must be pointed out. Hon. Members know what other powers they have to deal with the Ministry's Estimates, if they are dissatisfied.
On a point of order, Mr. Speaker, Sir.
Order, hon. Members! I seem to be getting an impression that this House does not want to transact business that it is supposed to. We are beginning to witness what is appearing like a trend that we raise matters on technicality and get the House to adjourn. Will hon. Members, please, note that they are under a duty to deal with serious, or substantive business on behalf of Kenyans? From my background, I have always known, and this House, indeed, ought to know, that this country, among other things, subscribes to the doctrines of equity. Equity looks at the substance and not the form. I believe that the substance is reasonably captured by what the 1766 PARLIAMENTARY DEBATES July 10, 2008 Minister has presented. Of course, hon. Members are at liberty. If they feel that they want to stop the business of this House on some technicality, then you are at liberty.
On a point of order, Mr. Speaker, Sir. Thank you, especially for your last remark. I take the business of this House seriously, as has been the evidence from my contribution in this House. That is why I seek your indulgence to explain your ruling on the point of order I had raised. I would like to know because if you actually look at, for instance, what we have, you will find communication, telephone, telex, facsimile and mobile phone services.
Order, Ms. Odhiambo! Is it not possible that you can capture those aspects that you are pointing out in your contribution, and give the Minister an opportunity to respond? I know they may be legitimate concerns, yes, but why do you not capture them in your contribution? You have a document and you are now saying to the Chair, which I perfectly understand, that, that document, perhaps, is not satisfactory. Why do you not, in your contribution, indicate areas where it is not satisfactory and the Minister will respond? If you are not satisfied, you still have other avenues within the Standing Orders. You can find other remedies! I would love that at this point you let Business proceed, mark those areas where you see weaknesses and point them out in your contribution. I recognise and agree that, indeed, your contributions in this House have been substantial, but that is not a rule of general application to the rest of the membership, as a matter of course.
Thank you, Mr. Speaker, Sir, for this opportunity you have given me to contribute in support of this Vote. I want to start by saying that the Ministry of Youth Affairs and Sports is a very important Ministry in this country.
Order, Mr. ole Metito! Hon. Members, please, bear with me. Taking into account the time that we have started on this Business, we have so far done 15 minutes. So, this House will continue until 6.50 p.m. this evening.
Mr. Speaker, Sir, I was saying that this is a very important Ministry in the Republic of Kenya. The population of Kenya is predominantly young, about 38 per cent is aged between 15 and 35 years, which is defined as the youthful age. I want to say that youth development is an on-going growth process in which all youth are engaged mostly in trying to meet their basic personal and social needs, to be safe and to feel cared for, useful and even spiritually grounded. The other objective of youth development is building the skills and competencies that will allow them to function and contribute in their daily lives. So, we should look at it as a two-component issue: the development and empowerment of the youth. Some people think that youth development is a very highly sophisticated and complicated prescription. Mostly they say that it is a process of trying to fix the "troubled youth", but I want to say that it is not. Youth development is about people. It is about putting programmes in place. It is about setting up institutions and systems that will provide all youth with the support and the opportunities they need to empower themselves. I would really like to thank this Ministry, because among the new Ministries---This Ministry is virtually "young"; it is about two years old now. In fact, it is the only Ministry I could say moved very fast to establish offices all over Kenya, and have a feel of youth virtually in all divisions in this country. Even if you look at the district allocation book, the one we are talking about, almost all districts have a District Youth Officer. Some of the divisions have Divisional Youth officers. So, they have had the feel of the youth.
July 10, 2008 PARLIAMENTARY DEBATES 1767
Mr. Temporary Deputy Speaker, Sir, I would like to say that for a nation like ours - this great Kenya - with such a very rich diversity of youth, we require youth development in all shapes and sizes. This is the very critical aspect, where we need the public-private partnership in youth development. All should contribute! When we talk of youth development, or empowerment, we are talking of not only the skills which emanate from academic qualifications. It is also important that we even get adults who can act as tutors and mentors to bring up the young persons, because even the issue of character is very important. If we are not to witness what we saw in the recent past, in the beginning of this year; mostly the youth were used to do some things that are not good for this country. We need to start from school-going youth, who are 15 years and above. We need to mentor the character of the young person. Therefore, the reason why I talk of private-public partnership in youth development is because we can have a school at the grassroots level partnering with a community-based organisation that can keep its doors open up to late in the evening, even up to 10.00 p.m. This will provide all the youth with very safe environment, a supervised place where they can undertake their homework and support activities, physical and mental health services, taken care of. We also need to develop and nurture the young person with regard to leadership. We would like to see some leadership institutions, or academies, where we can have leadership development programmes that are offered to the youth from all walks of life; it would be a place where they can sit, relate to one another as individuals and build their skills as a group. It is also good to see the need for the central Government to engage the youth in the policy-making process through youth councils and positions in Government departments. I would like to believe that the Ministry is going to use some of its allocated resources in the Budget to develop youth councils and institutions and lobby the central Government to ensure that the youth are engaged in all policy- making institutions. The private sector should employ the youth in meaningful and relevant institutions or work. This is the support! What we are saying is that the youth need the support, opportunities and quality services for them to develop this nation. This should be made a rule for all youth rather than an exception. In line with Vision 2030, I would advise the Minister that youth empowerment is a very essential objective. About 38 per cent of our country's population comprise of the youth. Therefore, youth empowerment is actually a good goal in sustainable development that can be achieved. We must empower the youths in this country. We would like to see them as vanguards of our future. Actually heirs of this nation and partners in our quest for development. Mr. Temporary Deputy Speaker, Sir, when it comes to business oriented-activities that could easily help the youths, if we venture into the agricultural sector, entrepreneurship and sports clinics for the youths all over the country, it could help in youth development and empowerment. In the past, I have seen the Ministry of Youth Affairs and Sports reach out to the youths and involve them in motivating and challenging programmes, trying to bring out the best out of them. Last year, the Ministry had a business competition plan with the slogan of "Believe, Begin and Become", which helped many youths to start their own businesses. If this could be modelled into an annual national students' art competition, it could boost a number of our artistes. This event should be done annually to tap in their potential. I believe that this Ministry can come up with activities which can make our youths to become very engaged, not only at the grassroots-level, but also at the national level. Regarding promotion of sports clinics, the Ministry has allocated Kshs1 million per constituency for sports activities. First of all, I would like to thank the Government for shielding our athletes from double taxation. The Ministry can actually 1768 PARLIAMENTARY DEBATES July 10, 2008 tap that talent of our current champions in athletics, soccer, boxing, basketball and other sports, to train our future stars in the respective fields of sports. We should come up with structures that can ensure proper utilisation of the Kshs1 million sports kitty in each constituency. The Ministry could come up with regulations to guide the disbursement of the money and the activities that can be undertaken using that Kshs1 million. It may be a small amount of money, but it is a good start. That will really strengthen the youths' programmes and cease to engage in retrogressive activities. Even their health and well being will improve. We need to have the youths engaged. Above all, the most common problem of youths in this country is unemployment. If we do not come up with programmes that can give our young people opportunities to work, and be absorbed in all Government agencies, departments and the private sector, we will be treating the systems of the problem and not the real problem. This is a cross-cutting Ministry. The issues affecting the youths are related to education, health, environment, et cetera . That is why I said the youths issue needs an integrated approach, whereby all the Ministries can come together---
With those remarks, I beg to support.
Thank you, Mr. Temporary Deputy Speaker, Sir, for giving me the opportunity to contribute to this debate. I rise to, reluctantly, support this Vote. I support the Vote reluctantly, because I feel that there are lots of gaps. I must say that I am very encouraged by the attitude of the Minister and her Assistant Ministers. Since they came into office, they have had an open-door policy of accepting a lot of criticism, especially positive criticisms. It is in that spirit that I want to make the following suggestions. With regard to the issue of lack of employment for the youths, we, as leaders, have played into the notion that the youths must be supported to start their own businesses. The issue of job creation has taken the back seat. This is very sad. The truth of the matter is that I have a son who is now in Form Three. I expect that when he completes Fourth Form and goes to university, he will get a job. I do not expect to look for Kshs100,000 to give him to go and start a Jua Kali business. However, that is what we have been preaching as leaders. I have heard it said even from within the Ministry itself, with the idea of the Youth Enterprise Development Fund (YEDF). Mr. Temporary Deputy Speaker, Sir, I want to say that, from that very basis, we are getting it wrong. The YEDF can supplement job creation by providing funds to the youths who have not been able to get education. The truth of the matter is that most of our youths are educated. It is unfair for us to tell a university graduate that the best we can do for them, as a Ministry, is to give them money to start a business, especially given that the kind of money we give them is not enough to start a sustainable business. We did have a national youth policy, which was put in place through the Ministry sometime back, which has not yet become a policy. Even when the President opened this Parliament, he mentioned it. I wonder at what point it will become a priority to bring the national youth policy to this House, so that it becomes a policy of Government, so that it can start guiding us on how to deal with the youths of this country. I feel that we are making the youths of this country to move from one Ministry to another. I believe, this is the Ministry which should be taking into consideration the issues of the youths. Mr. Temporary Deputy Speaker, Sir, I would like to ask the Minister why, for instance, the National Youth Service (NYS) is not under the Ministry of Youth Affairs and Sports. If the NYS is supposed to work with the youths of this country - even going by its name - why then must it be under another Ministry? This is where the confusion is. There are also some departments that are in different Ministries. For instance, the Directorate of Personnel Management (DPM). If employment is about young people, why would the DPM not be under the Ministry of Youth Affairs and July 10, 2008 PARLIAMENTARY DEBATES 1769 Sports? If training is supposed to be for young people, why would the Directorate of Industrial Training not be under the Ministry of Youth Affairs and Sports? What am I saying? I am saying that the formation of the Ministry of Youth Affairs and Sports could have been a good idea, but in terms of the way it was formulated, in terms of departments, and the kind of work that it has been given to do, it will never be effective; if certain departments are not put under the Ministry. We are debating this Ministry's Vote as the first one. I hope that this is because of its importance, and not because we want to get rid of the least important Ministries as we wait to debate the more important ones. Mr. Temporary Deputy Speaker, Sir, there is the issue of leadership among the youths. Any country that has been successful on issues of the youth, has taken seriously the issue of mentorship, or developing leadership among the youth. Unfortunately, again, under the Ministry, I have not seen any disbursement of funds towards leadership training, or mentoring. It will be a big mistake to give money to youth who do not know how to look after it, and who do not even have the capability to be leaders in their own organisations. Mr. Temporary Deputy Speaker, Sir, if you go to many of the youth groups that we are part of, you will find that the patrons are people of the older generation. They comprise of Members of Parliament and village elders. Never will you find a youth group that is run solely by the youth themselves. This is because they believe that leadership is still not within them. Then how do we expect the youths of this country to ever develop into the leaders that we are today? Mr. Temporary Deputy Speaker, Sir, I also want to raise the issue of retirement. I am worried that in this country, we are not retiring people at the right age. Therefore, we are not creating space for young people to take up positions. I dare you to visit any Ministry, including the Ministry of Youth Affairs and Sports. You will find that the people working there are not young. Why? Because, they have either not been retired or when recruitment is done, it is not done with the aspect of young people in mind. Therefore, I am asking the Government to be serious on the issue of job creating. The Government should retire people when they reach retirement age. If money needs to be given to people to develop businesses, let us give it to the older generation to go and start business and give an opportunity to young people to work and acquire the experience they need, which can only come through working. Mr. Temporary Deputy Speaker, Sir, I also want to talk about education. I think it is the Ministry of Youth Affairs and Sports which needs to take seriously the issue of education, which is becoming an issue of concern. In the last few days, we have had issues being discussed about the education system in this country. I want to say categorically that since the advent of Free Primary Education Programme - and now Free Secondary Education Programme - the young people coming out of these schools do not have the quality that was there before. It is a problem that we must face head on! We have said that we do not have enough teachers and facilities. The truth of the matter is: The young people who are now coming out and going to universities cannot be compared with the past generations. Therefore, even the job market is not ready. That is a problem that I think the Ministry of Youth Affairs and Sports should take up squarely with the Ministry of Education. If the Ministry of Youth Affairs and Sports must be effective, it must produce young people who are marketable. If the education system continues the way it is going, the Kenyan youth will no longer be as marketable as it used to be. I really think that issues cross-cutting across Ministries, when it comes to young people, please, let the Ministry of Youth Affairs and Sports take the lead! That is without apologies because the young people are in your hands! Mr. Temporary Deputy Speaker, Sir, I also want to address the issue of sports. If sports could be taken seriously by the Government in terms of the allocation of funds, then we could be solving half of the problems that we are trying to solve in trying to keep the youth occupied. The 1770 PARLIAMENTARY DEBATES July 10, 2008 kind of sports that we excel in are known! We excel in athletics. We talk about football. But I am wondering what happened to cricket! That is because there was a time it was doing very well in this country. There was a time when we were the African champions in boxing. I am talking about issues of tennis. We had young upcoming ladies who were playing very good tennis! But what is happening? We have brokers in the name of sports development agencies. I call them "brokers" because if you look at the background of those people, they do not, necessarily, have any qualifications within that sport. In fact, most of the people who are running sports in this country are people who are looking for political mileage. I would advise them to look for constituencies to vie for, and not go to meddle in sports. I think the Ministry should keep those people away from sports! Let us look for credible past athletes who are here in this country, really doing nothing and yet, they have international status. Why can they not run cricket, football, boxing, et cetera . Let us take those people on board so that, even as young people are taking on sports, they know that they will be recognized. Lastly, Mr. Temporary Deputy Speaker, Sir, let me say this about Harambee Stars, because I am a mother of boys. Please, pay the team good money. They will not let you down. It is a matter of taking care of your sports people, pay them well and let them not be embarrassed to go out of this country like paupers and beggars! That is why they are changing their citizenship status. Our athletes are going to other countries because of the payment. I believe that if we can have the kind of money that we had for the Initial Public Offering (IPO) of Safaricom, we can get people who are willing to support you, Madam Minister, to pay our athletes well, so that sports in this country do not take a back seat. With those few remarks, Mr. Temporary Deputy Speaker, Sir, I beg to reluctantly support.
Thank you, Mr. Temporary Deputy Speaker, Sir, for giving me the opportunity to support this Vote and to congratulate, like those who have spoken before me, that particular Ministry because it is actually one of the newest Ministries. I must say that the people who have been there - the bureaucrats - including the Permanent Secretary, have done a big job in getting the Ministry on its feet. It is easy for us, sometimes, to criticize them, but not realizing how difficult it was for them to start. Mr. Temporary Deputy Speaker, Sir, I should also congratulate the Minister and the politicians in that Ministry because they have shown a great deal of interest in sports. This year alone, we have seen the Minister, the Assistant Minister along with the President and the Prime Minister out there supporting our athletes. It is that kind of visibility that we will need, even for our young people to begin to have faith in sports and for us, as politicians, to also appreciate it and show to the wider public that, indeed, we should support and be proud of sports. In this connection, I congratulate the politicians along with the Permanent Secretary and members of his team. Mr. Temporary Deputy Speaker, Sir, there is no need to repeat why issues to do with our youth are important. They happen to be the majority. They are also the poorest. They are the ones who are most affected by drugs and alcoholism. It is a group, being young and youthful, that we cannot leave out, if we want to reap the benefits of development in this country. You cannot leave your youngest and most energetic people! It is for this reason that we need to pay the greatest attention to our young people. Mr. Temporary Deputy Speaker, Sir, there are issues to do with the allocation of money. For example, there is the allocation of Kshs1 million for sports for every constituency, money for youth polytechnics, money for the Youth Enterprise Development Fund and so on. There are questions, especially for the Youth Enterprise Development Fund, as to whether or not the mechanism for deciding how that money is to be allocated is still being perfected in terms of ensuring that only the most deserving group benefit. The money should cut across the whole July 10, 2008 PARLIAMENTARY DEBATES 1771 constituency, so that it is not the same group that is known that eventually gets the money. It is a way of just democratizing and ensuring that, that little amount of money is allocated in the most transparent way, to the most needy groups and that it also reaches out to groups that have not benefitted previously. So, the mechanism to do that is still an issue. That will apply to other issues. Mr. Temporary Deputy Speaker, Sir, there is also the issue of equity. We like to avoid that issue when we talk about districts or constituencies. When you give Kshs1 million to a constituency like Embakasi, is it fair? How many youths do we have in Embakasi, compared to another constituency with fewer than 5,000 youths? These are important issues! As we talk about distribution in the future, it is important to ask questions about per capita so that, when we release that money, it makes the biggest difference in the various constituencies and districts of this country. As it is now, even though it looks equal and fair, it is, actually, quite unfair and inequitable when you consider the numbers that are involved. Mr. Temporary Deputy Speaker, Sir, the idea of wealth creation is very critical. It is good for us to tie our young people in micro-enterprises and other activities that can help them generate income. But are we linking our young people with the real big money? What is it that we are doing to ensure that, apart from those small micro-enterprises which will lend them Kshs5,000, Kshs10,000 or Kshs20,000, many of our young people have access to real big money with big banks? I know it is not easy because many young people do not have collateral. But it is important to begin to think of ways of making it look like it is just a drop in the ocean and that, for the young people who are initially poor, that is enough. For example, is it possible to get those young people to partner with more established business people? Can we convince those rich people who have such big businesses to attach some of those young people, as a requirement or a matter of national or social responsibility, so that we can create more wealth from families that are established and have made all the money? That is because the people we are talking about are young people who have problems with what they have inherited in terms of education and in terms of all the disadvantages you can talk about. So, it is very, very difficult for them to, therefore, break into that cycle. So, how can we get those that have been lucky to make it, to want to support those younger people from backgrounds that do not have the connections and resources to be big? Secondly, Mr. Temporary Deputy Speaker, Sir, how can we get the young people to be bigger beneficiaries of Government projects? Again, it is much easier for established contractors and those with better connections to get Government jobs. There are jobs that the youth can do, but what deliberate efforts do we need to make to ensure that, as a matter of affirmative action, many Government jobs in districts and constituencies actually go to those youth groups as a way of supporting them? There has to be a deliberate effort because, if you leave it to open competition, you may as well forget it! We are talking about infrastructure, development programmes and doing big roads, stadiums and all the other things as a way of getting young people to actually get more jobs and contracts that can support them. Mr. Temporary Deputy Speaker, Sir, in the area of skill development and training, yes, I am delighted that we are going to be supporting one youth polytechnic in every constituency. But as the team has seen, if you go around to the polytechnics, they are extremely poorly endowed with equipment. I am glad you are making that effort. We need to do much more in terms of ensuring that we review the content, curriculum and equipment and also to ensure that we support these institutions to give those who go to them hope that they can move from there to diploma training institutions to universities. So, we need to have a mechanism that makes it possible for these young people to move from the polytechnics all the way to universities and attain a degree in a related field. That is a matter we should look into, as we review the curriculum. Mr. Temporary Deputy Speaker, Sir, we should also think how best we can use the resources that we have. For example, how can we leverage what we have? We have money which 1772 PARLIAMENTARY DEBATES July 10, 2008 we are expending on empowerment centres, which are outside polytechnics. We have money we are spending on village polytechnics. Would it not be ideal, if those empowerment centres and the youth polytechnics were one and the same thing. We should concentrate our resources so that those who get skills from our village polytechnics can use those empowerment centres and the empowerment centres can also benefit from that. I think we should consider that seriously, because constituencies are not too big. So, if we concentrate our resources, maybe, we are likely to get further. After all, empowerment can also support skills training. In this regard, we also need to ask, what we are doing to ensure that we can train our young people in our polytechnics to an internationally recognised skill. I am saying that, because if you go to most parts of Europe, America and Japan, you will see that there are no young people to work in those countries as masons, carpenters, plumbers and painters and so on. But there are certain standards which they ask for. To what extent can we look at our polytechnics and encourage them to have curricula that is international or make it possible for our young people to do examinations that are of international standards to prepare them for those markets, as long as we would make the relevant arrangements? Of course, we will always need them in this country. But if there are opportunities out there, we should also take advantage of those opportunities. That will depend on how we review our curricula. Issues of equity in other sectors should also be addressed. We cannot just talk about the youth and assume that giving them Kshs100,000, will solve their problems. We have to address the issues of inequality in this country. The reasons why so many young people are poor is because of our society that has continued to intensify inequalities between the poor and the rich to the extent that the gap is becoming even bigger. We are getting more poor people, but the rich are doing even better. So, unless we address these issues from a more comprehensive perspective, in terms of inequalities in education and employment, we will not solve these problems. This is because there are young people who are graduating from polytechnics and other institutions, but because of their background, they do not find jobs. There are students who come from other backgrounds even though they are not as qualified, they will be the first ones to get the jobs. In terms of making our polytechnic attractive--- It is one thing to train young people and to talk about skills, but we must make it attractive for young people who want to go there in terms of there being opportunities for self-employment, in terms of there being jobs that are well paying and in terms of society, generally, recognising the value of these artisans. If you go to Europe and America, you will find that artisans are very well paid. So, it makes it attractive. We need to come up with mechanisms of making these kinds of professions more attractive. On sports, I think the point has been made about not just agents but about the managers themselves. Some of the people who have managed sports monies in these countries; tracks and field, for example- I used to hear about Okeyo for ages. It is the same people we are hearing about. They are there. We know how much they are messing these athletes. I think we need to come up with mechanisms of getting athletes themselves to be involved in sports management because they are the ones who know where the shoe pinches. They are not involved, as it is now. So, therefore, we let these old men, who use this as an opportunity to travel to Beijing and to other countries, to just mess up the future of our young people. We must get the athletes involved and we must come up with a mechanism of doing that. We also need to popularise sports. We must diversify it, as it has already been said. We must repossess stadia that has been grabbed. We must support Kenyan sports. We should also get the private sector into sport. Finally, talking about leadership, we cannot address the issue of the youth if we do not help them to be politically organised. Political parties in this country are about old men and women and for old men and women. We have to find a way of getting young people to be in politics. This is because if they are in politics, they will be able to make decisions about their future, including July 10, 2008 PARLIAMENTARY DEBATES 1773 ensuring that they have resources allocated for their own problems. As it is now, our young people are just out there to be misused by politicians to cause trouble, for ethnic fights and so on. We need to organise them politically. With those few remarks, I beg to support.
Thank you, Mr. Temporary Deputy Speaker, Sir. I stand to support the Motion. I will make my contribution very short and simple. I would first of all like to congratulate the Minister for carrying herself very well yesterday and today. However, we still do not find the development agenda on the documents they gave us. So, we have managed to get a few copies for ourselves. I see in the development agenda, there is Kshs465 million for polytechnics for skills training. I would like to request that this money be speedily spent to transform the polytechnics into universities. This was announced last year but very little was done. This has caused strikes within the polytechnics. This is because some of the polytechnics know that they are supposed to be operating as universities, but they have not shown any indication of being universities. So, that transformation should be fast-tracked so that our polytechnics can move to university level so that we begin to feel the impact. Secondly, I would like to make a suggestion to the Ministry to create a mentoring department; a department that can mentor, as the hon. Member who has just contributed said, from youthship to political leadership and also from youthship to jobs on wealth creation. We are talking about investors coming to our country and investing a lot of money. The next thing they do is to import, at least, a quarter of their staff and the rest of the vacancies are advertised locally. We have people moving from one company to another. The Ministry of Youth Affairs and Sports can simply link with other Ministries, especially the Ministries that deal with investors so as to get jobs for our youths. In the meantime, the youth should line up and wait for those opportunities to come so that they can position themselves. That way, we do not have to transfer somebody who comes from job "a' to "b' when it is the same person who has a job yet we have so many youths who are jobless. I would suggest that a mentoring department be established because it will do a lot of good for wealth creation, leadership and everything else. We should mentor our youths towards that direction. I would also like to say that we have done very well on sports. So much has been said by hon. Members concerning sports, but I would like to request that we add incentives for our sportsmen. The incentives are so low that our sportsmen would rather lose their Kenyan identity instead of even coming to the Ministry to negotiate for better incentives. I kindly request you to look into the issue of incentives for sportsmen. Finally, Mr. Temporary Deputy Speaker, Sir, let me touch on the issue of the Youth Enterprise Development Fund. We have so many bottle-necks. I do not know whether it is because of the intermediaries. The Ministry should simplify the criteria of disbursing the Youth Enterprise Development Fund to make it easily accessible by the youth. Let us also zero it down to one youth instead of waiting for a group. When we talk about groups, sometimes they do not want to work as groups but you can find an individual who has got very good ideas. With those few remarks, I beg to support.
Thank you, Mr. Temporary Deputy Speaker, Sir. I beg to support the Motion. But I want you to allow me to be saddened by the revelations that the Minister made during her presentation that only 1 per cent of our youth access university education. So, from one million pupils, we get 78,000 graduates. Even after graduation, it is only 25 per cent who are absorbed in the job market. It is a sad situation that requires very urgent and serious approach to correct it. Mr. Temporary Deputy Speaker, Sir, I will propose that the Government should move with 1774 PARLIAMENTARY DEBATES July 10, 2008 speed to improve the facilities that are responsible for skills training as it continues to imagine on how to expand the economy to create employment opportunities in future. So, it is important that all the facilities in this country should be improved. This is because we are sitting on a time-bomb. If that situation is true, then, I think we need to move with speed to improve the existing facilities and even increase them. Mr. Temporary Deputy Speaker, Sir, I want to note that an organisation like the National Youth Service (NYS) has equipment which is obsolete. Nothing is moving there and we continue to rely on this institution to train our youth in various skills. If we say 99 per cent of the youth should be skilled to fit in the job market, then it is a very serious situation that requires urgent attention. I want to congratulate the Ministry for moving with speed to put together systems that will address the problem that we have with the youth. I want to appreciate the fact that the National Youth Policy is already in operation, and that the Ministry has drawn its strategic plan from the policy. That is very important; I also want to note that resource centres have already been established in several constituencies. In particular, I want to thank the Ministry because the resource centre in Makadara Constituency is already in operation. The objective of these resource centres is to tap and appreciate the level of skills that we have in the constituencies, and be able to create and direct the youth in the creation of employment and into businesses. I want the Ministry to move into the next level. The promise was that these resource centres would tap the skills and then create employment for the youth, both locally and internationally. We want to see that happen and we want the Ministry to pay a lot of attention to that, so that even those who are not academically endowed are also able to access jobs both locally and internationally. That is why we supported the resource centres. Mr. Temporary Deputy Speaker, Sir, regarding sports, it has been mentioned that sports nowadays create employment. Let us not only look at one aspect of sports. Let us be broad and support all disciplines, because some people can play soccer and others can go into boxing. Dr. Khalwale here supports boxing like me. So, we want to see that also. People have taken boxing to be like a bad sport. We want the Ministry to pay attention to it, because boxing is a sport like any other, and can create employment. So, kindly open up and support all disciplines, because they can help in the creation of employment.
I did not talk about bull- fighting. Dr. Khalwale will talk about it. I beg to support; thank you.
Mr. Temporary Deputy Speaker, Sir, I rise to support this Vote for this Ministry. This is one of the most important Ministries. We have other older Ministries, but in terms of posterity, and the importance of the future, this is the Ministry. If you look at our statistics, most of the people who are considered the youth are the majority in this country. I want to say that the Minister for Finance did recognise that in allocating Kshs7.2 billion to this Ministry. That is Kshs4.1 billion for Recurrent Expenditure and Kshs3.2 billion for the Development Expenditure. I want to say that this Ministry has a very wide mandate, if it has to shape the youth of this country for the future. I would want us not to look at it narrowly only with regard to the employment of the youth of this country. In my view, this Ministry should spearhead the building of the character of our youth, so that tomorrow we have a citizenry that is of good contact, have values and have ambitions that can move this country forward, once we, who are seated here, are long gone. Mr. Temporary Deputy Speaker, Sir, I would like to say that this Ministry should move to schools and support boys and girls scouts clubs, which teach the youth patriotism, hard work and good values of life. So, this Ministry should broaden its vision to seeing that the youth are responsible for the July 10, 2008 PARLIAMENTARY DEBATES 1775 future of this country. We all say that the youth of this country is a time bomb. I do not look at it that way. I do not look at them that way. I look at the youth of this country as a resource that needs to be directed and guided for the productive purposes of this country. If we look at them as a time- bomb, then we are already negative, but if we look at them as a resource that we need to guide and marshall, then we will be doing justice, not only to this Ministry but also to the youth of this country. Even the amount allocated to this Ministry, maybe it could be good for a start, but this is a Ministry that ought to have been allocated Kshs15 billion. Look at the Kshs900 million that was allocated for a road in Tana River. We are told that the youth will be used to construct the road. Kshs900 million can only construct 18 kilometres of road at Kshs50 million per kilometre, and can only construct 118 of gravel road. How many youth can we take to Garissa to construct that road? That is a joke. That is why I am saying that this Ministry ought to be allocated more money, because it is such a central Ministry. It is an important Ministry, yet we are wearing blinkers and not seeing that this Ministry---
On a point of order, Mr. Temporary Deputy Speaker, Sir. Did you see the hon. Member for Kitutu Chache crossing from the centre to the other side of the Chamber without bowing?
Mr. Temporary Deputy Speaker, Sir, we have lost two and a half minutes on that point of order, and I take it that you will increase my time by that amount of time. Mr. Temporary Deputy Speaker, Sir, one area that this Ministry should put more resources and efforts into is polytechnics. I have always felt that the education policy in this country is misdirected. We only go by historical perspectives, and what the colonialists left with us, that is theory-based education. We do not look at the market requirements in relation to our schools. Now, this is the Ministry that could offer a paradigm shift. It has already done so by supporting polytechnics. It is not only in this country, but also elsewhere in the world, where the only people who get jobs outside the country are those with skills. Skills- oriented education is what guarantees you a job. I am happy to note that the Kenya Polytechnic and Mombasa Polytechnic have been upgraded to college universities status. The village polytechnics will now channel the youth to those polytechnics, so that we can have people in the future who can be inventors. They will be able to make aircraft and invent other machines. They will save this country enormous amounts of money that we use to import useless things, that, otherwise, would have been made here. So, I want to appeal that the issue of polytechnics be really high on the agenda. For example, in Kinangop Constituency, we have only three village polytechnics which are really struggling. I have eight locations. In my vision for Kinangop, I want to establish a village polytechnic for each location, so that we can have, at least, eight village polytechnics. I hope this Ministry will support this because that is the only way to guarantee that the so-called youth do not drop out of school at Standard Seven or Form Four levels, and become a menace to the rest of the society. Mr. Temporary Deputy Speaker, Sir, there are youth empowerment centres that will be set 1776 PARLIAMENTARY DEBATES July 10, 2008 up. Hon. Wathika said that his is already in operation. I would suggest that these youth empowerment centres be spread all over the country. If possible, away from the urban centres. This is the only way to keep the youth away from coming to towns. If we were able to develop the rural areas and other parts of the country, the youth can fend for themselves and develop those areas to be productive. We should avoid this idea of locating everything in towns. Mr. Temporary Deputy Speaker, Sir, I am happy to note that, at least, Kshs1 million will go to each constituency for sports development. However, Kshs1 million is little money. I believe sports are not only soccer and athletics. We have other sports, for example, golf. We must liberate ourselves and our minds. Golf is a sport I love. I have played it for 17 years. Golf is a sport that those who know its value are making millions out there. But in this country, many people think that golf is a sport only for the rich. It is not! Even caddies who do not have a lot money, have the ability to play this game. We should encourage the Ministry of State for Youth Affairs and Sports to encourage any youth with any sporting talent, whether it is yatching, golf, boxing, mountaineering or whatever talent they have, to develop them. They can go outside this country and make money and remit it to this country, help themselves and their families and develop this country. Mr. Temporary Deputy Speaker, Sir, in a nutshell, this Ministry should broaden its vision. It should not be inward looking. It should not be held captive by the crime rate that is in this country. It should even approach that from a very comprehensive perspective. This is the Ministry that will either destroy or build this country. That is why I say that this Ministry ought to be supported and given more allocation than it has. I beg to support.
Thank you, Mr. Temporary Deputy Speaker, Sir. I wish to congratulate the Minister for Youth and Sports because, being a first-timer, she has done a wonderful job. I wish to tell all the hon. Members here that we all need this Ministry. It is the heart and backbone of this country. I am very pleased to see that the Minister has sat down and thought very seriously. I am happy about the polytechnics that she has promised to give us in every constituency. The only thing that I would like to ask is: Can we move away from the traditions? Most of the village polytechnics were used to doing masonry, carpentry, et cetera. Let us move from there, and go the way the world is going, that is, the Information Technology (IT) world. We also have the youth resource centres. I believe we are going to use these centres to promote the education of our youth and sports. We have talked a lot about sports today. These youth resource centres should be used as an exposure for the sportsmen and sportswomen of this country who are developing their national or international talents towards sports. As we all know, Kenya is recognized worldwide as a sports power house. We need really to exploit this. In the past few years, we have exploited it only in athletics and a little in football. Let us start looking elsewhere. Let us move away from the traditions. There are also other sports like river boating, cricket and rugby. We have many of our youths who are doing very well in rugby, but we do not see the Ministry or Government really encouraging them. I think it is high time we started looking at all the sports that are practised in this country. When you give every constituency Kshs1 million to promote sports, I feel very happy. After the general elections, we saw the energy that the youth had. That energy has to be harnessed positively. Otherwise, it will backfire again on us like it did in January. With the sports going to the rural areas and everywhere in the Republic, we shall be able to harness that energy and use it. If the youths could pluck a whole railway line using bare hands, you can imagine what we can do with that energy. That energy has to be used. I believe the Ministry of Youth Affairs and Sports is the one that will harness this. July 10, 2008 PARLIAMENTARY DEBATES 1777 We are now using youth to construct roads in the rural areas. I am happy to see the Minister for Water and Irrigation here. We are also constructing dams. Why can the youths not also be used to construct those dams? Let us not only use machinery, but also the youth. We have been saying that we are sitting on a time-bomb. That is true! Anybody who was in Kenya saw it in January. This happened only because the youth are idle. If we can use them well, I am sure this country will go to places we have only dreamt about. About 38 per cent of our population is made up of youth. An amount of Kshs7.5 billion is peanuts. This is because we are looking for ways to create jobs and enhance the education of our youth. As we all know, an illiterate person is also defined as somebody who even has a degree, but has no skill. So, we need to really sharpen the skills of the youth. We need to ensure that every youth leaving Form Four or university can go out to the world and be an entrepreneur. If we are only producing Bachelor of Arts and Bachelor of Education graduates or other professions, but they have no skills, we are doing nothing. So, we need to really revitalise this Ministry. We need also to add skills to whatever we are giving our youth. That is why I said that innovative ideas should largely be adopted. This is a Ministry that used to work across board. We have the Ministry of Information and Communications which is creating the digital villages. I believe the digital villages are really being created for the youth. So, we need to really work in conjunction with that Ministry to ensure that the digital villages are in place and our youth are already computer literate. That is why I am very happy about the Youth Resource Centres. They should be established where the youth can access information, say, about what the youth in other parts of the country or in other countries, are doing. That way, they will be able to exchange ideas. I, therefore, wish to support this Vote. Next year, the Vote should be allocated more money than Kshs7.5 billion if we really expect to help our youth and ensure that they reach where we want them to reach.
Thank you, Mr. Temporary Deputy Speaker, Sir. First of all, I would like to thank the Minister for the manner in which she moved the Motion. Being a first time Member of Parliament like me, I must say that I was very impressed with her. My contribution will be very brief. The Youth Enterprise Development Fund (YEDF) is a good idea, but I would like the Minister and her team to find ways for greater involvement of hon. Members. The other day I went to my constituency and I was a bit embarrassed to see a gathering. I was told that the youth officer was disbursing money to the youth groups. Please, if a way can be found for greater involvement of hon. Members, that will be good. Mr. Temporary Deputy Speaker, Sir, university education is good. Those of us who have had the privilege to get university education are grateful both to our country and those who made it possible for us. I have been a consultant myself and I know that at the moment there is a very big gap up there. There are very few skilled people at the top and then very few middle-level skilled people. Therefore, it makes it very difficult. In fact, I remember one day when I raised a Question in this House and we were given a very embarrassing answer that the Rural Electrification Authority has 38 engineers and only four technicians. The rule should be that for every engineer, there should be, at least, four technicians and not the reverse. So, it is a good idea to build village polytechnics. Here, we are not confusing village polytechnics with those polytechnics that offer diplomas. However, let us try to think outside the box. Let not our village polytechnics be a brick and mortar affair where people merely go to learn how to shovel and how to make bricks. I think we should take advantage of information technology to make them more modern. Mr. Temporary Deputy Speaker, Sir, a lot of times we get disappointed when we see our athletes defecting to other countries. At the moment, there is a very sad scenario where Kenyan athletes who have defected to other countries are actually training at the Nyayo National Stadium to go and compete in the Olympics and possibly snatch the gold medals from our own Kenyan 1778 PARLIAMENTARY DEBATES July 10, 2008 athletes. We should not blame the athletes. Every human being, ourselves included, wants a guarantee for the day after. There has been a problem, and I want the Minister to listen to this carefully, because it really saddens me. We have a terrible situation in this country where our athletes only count when they can run and give us medals. I hope the Minister was there when a man by the name Mr. Naftali Temu died, I think, four years ago. Not many people know, but the history of Mr. Naftali Temu should be the history of this country. In 1968, in Mexico City, Naftali Temu became the first Kenyan to win a gold medal for this country. That meant that he became the first man to provoke the playing of the Kenya National Anthem in any Olympic stadium. The year before Mr. Naftali Temu died, he had been diagnosed with cancer of the prostrate. How much money did he require? He needed a mere Kshs60,000! He could not get that money. A year later, Mr. Naftali Temu checked into the Kenyatta National Hospital for the inevitable, and he died soon after. Mr. Temporary Deputy Speaker, Sir, the big news when Mr. Naftali Temu died was not the fact that he was the first man to win Kenya the first Olympic Gold Medal, it was the fact that he had died in a general ward at the Kenyatta National Hospital. The second big news was the fact that his family could not raise the money required to discharge the dead body from the hospital. When Naftali Temu was buried, the only senior Government official at the burial was the local chief of the area. If we compare that with our neighbours in Uganda, to date, it has only one Olympic gold medallist, a man called John Akibwa, 1972, Munich Olympics. I will not go into the story, but John Akibwa died in 1997. When he died, he was declared a national hero. His body lay in state in the Parliament of Uganda. At the burial of John Akibwa in Lira in Northern Uganda, none other than the Prime Minister of Uganda, Mr. Kintu Musoke, was present. We cannot continue to blame the Shaheen Saifs of this world when they go to Qatar for greener pastures when the only thing we care about is the fact that they can give us gold medals. I think it is time that Ministry got into a private-public partnership so that we can establish a fund that cares for our athletes both when they can run for our country and after they are unable to run. The other day I went to Barclays Bank at Yaya Centre. Right in front of me was a fairly slender man. I asked the watchman, do you know that man in front of the queue? He said that he did not know him. I asked the fellow in front of me and he also said that he did not know him. I asked the fellows I had come with and they answered the same way. The gentleman I was talking about was Mr. William Tanui, the first man to win us a gold medal at Barcelona in 1992. We must show greater recognition and respect for the people who have, indeed, made Kenya to be respected worldwide. With those remarks, I beg to support.
Mr. Temporary Deputy Speaker, Sir, I want to join my colleagues in supporting the Vote for this Ministry. From the outset, I would like to say that, as a new Ministry, it has really tried to establish itself across the country. We need to congratulate them for that. Mr. Temporary Deputy Speaker, Sir, youth is a status which is transitory. Therefore, we must prepare our youth for the next stage. One of the areas where we can do that very well is in skills development. As much as there is a high rate of unemployment in this country, Kenya, in the past, has contributed its human resource to the region and beyond. If you go to any country in Africa now, you will find many Kenyans who have been employed in various positions, including very senior positions. You cannot believe it that anywhere you go, you will find Kenyans occupying very important positions. This is because they are well-educated and skilled individuals. Therefore, we must, as a nation, try to develop our youth. With regard to the Youth Enterprise Development Fund (YEDF), it is important that the youth officers should properly engage and prepare the youth in respective areas to be able to acquire loans. In some instances, you might find that the youth have not been able to acquire loans. July 10, 2008 PARLIAMENTARY DEBATES 1779 So, there must be something fundamentally wrong. The Ministry must have a criteria to determine whether the youth officers have been useful or otherwise. The programme that we have started in this Ministry - we have put a lot of emphasis on it - can act just as an example, just as the Constituencies Development Fund (CDF) has acted as an example in Africa and in many other countries. So, if we are able to use this potential that we have in the best manner, we will be a good example of how this country can address its problems or exploit its potential. I must say that the youth in this country have not been properly involved, particularly in leadership areas, because a lot of appointments take into account issues like age, whether it is in politics or outside. I think it is high time that the youth were appointed to senior positions in the Government, so that after sometime they can compete for the Presidency of this country. One way in which this Ministry can be helped, and the Government can allocate more resources as has been suggested by various hon. Members, is by ensuring that all Government work for which the National Youth Service (NYS) has capacity - because the NYS is under this Ministry - must be given--- I hope the Minister is listening; it must be given to the NYS, so that the Government can save money. The Government can thereafter plough back all the savings into this Ministry. It is only in one instance or two where we have heard that the NYS has been used. We can use them in road construction and the maintenance of the Government vehicles. The NYS has a lot of capacity, particularly in that area. You can rest assured that with that kind of an arrangement, there will be enough money for this Ministry to use for this purpose. Mr. Temporary Deputy Speaker, Sir, in areas like drilling, as long as we can acquire the state of the art equipment, we can also use the NYS and the military to ensure that the savings that are realised out of that are ploughed back to this Ministry. While we continue equipping our youth polytechnics, we must also take into account the issue of technology. A lot of things that used to be done manually have now changed and we must take into account the recent developments in technology as we continue equipping our youth polytechnics. This will ensure that the element of efficiency is brought to the fore. It should be for polytechnics across the country, because that is how we can go about the issue of technology transfer into our villages and every corner of this country. One hon. Member alluded to the issue of this Ministry engaging schools. I want to emphasise particulary the area of guidance and counselling, which has been ignored in schools. I think this Ministry needs to take an initiative to make sure that our kids, or youth, are guided accordingly for the purpose of their career development. In this light, I want to appeal to the Ministry to reconsider some of the recent decisions where it was only absorbing "O" Levels. We do not want to see Kenyans who have the capacity to be trained and develop themselves eliminated from that process, because they have not attained the "O" Level standard. Anybody should get entry into the NYS, because many of these people have potential. If you look at kids from the word go, they develop a lot of interest in certain things. They may not be very good in school but they can be trained and develop further, so that they can earn a living. So, guidance and counselling, this Ministry must take them seriously. It must ensure that it involves the Ministry of Education and schools to guide our youth appropriately. In some of the remote areas, particularly, in the arid and semi-arid areas, there are no youth polytechnics. If they are there, maybe you will find only one in a constituency and that is not enough. May be the Ministry should go out and see how we can reach out to the vast districts and constituencies to ensure that students have access to polytechnics, because most of the time they operate as day institutions. We cannot afford boarding institutions; when the nearest polytechnic, like in my constituency, is over 100 kilometres away, then certainly we have many youth left out of this programme. Mr. Temporary Deputy Speaker, Sir, on the subject of sports, we are happy that the 1780 PARLIAMENTARY DEBATES July 10, 2008 Ministry is looking at this matter. This is an area with a lot of potential, and I do not want to repeat what my colleagues have said. However, certainly, the Ministry needs to move fast and ensure that this area is also looked after right from the grassroot level, so that we can tap our potential to the fullest. With those few remarks, I beg to support.
Thank you very much, Mr. Temporary Deputy Speaker, Sir, for giving me the opportunity to contribute to this debate on the Ministry of Youth and Sports, which is an extremely important Ministry. I listened to Eng. Gumbo talk about the fate of our sportsmen and athletes and it was a very moving contribution. Indeed, some of the most interesting information that we have by this Ministry in this debate is the table that shows financial commitment for on-lending to the youth. Here we have a group of 28 companies and organisations which have committed a total of Kshs715,800,000 towards supporting our youth; this is a figure not too far from Kshs1 billion. Supposing some time ago in 1968 when Mr. Naftali set that record in Mexico we had set up a National Youth Foundation to which monies like these were contributed, and a board was established of distinguished men and women; Kenyans who are entrepreneurs could run such a foundation; a foundation that could be of international repute and to which resources could be mobilised internationally, we could have had a source of funds and a foundation with a policy to support our youth in developing their sporting prowess. We could also have been encouraging and guiding them to invest the income they earn from sporting activities, so that we avoid such unfortunate incidents like---
On a point of order, Mr. Temporary Deputy Speaker, Sir. We cannot hear the Minister!
I apologise to my dear friend, Mr. Temporary Deputy Speaker, Sir. I hope she can hear me now. I was saying that one of the most important contributions from this Ministry is the document before us, that shows that we have about 28 companies and organisations, which have committed a total of Kshs715,800,000 towards lending to the youth. My proposal is that we should establish a national youth foundation - Kenya National Youth Foundation - to which such funds could be contributed. A foundation managed by distinguished Kenyans who are entrepreneurs or known in various fields of excellence, and probably, who would attract contributions to this fund internationally. This kind of fund would then help finance all kinds of activities that could promote the development of the youths. Mr. Temporary Deputy Speaker, Sir, I am saying this with respect to the contribution of my dear friend, the Member of Parliament for Rarieda, Eng. Gumbo, who made a very moving speech in this House regarding the fate of our athletes, particularly the late Naftali Temu. If, indeed, we had a fund line and a policy to support our youths and their prowess in athletics, soccer, drama, music and literature--- In doing all this, the youths need to be promoted and supported. Of course, they cannot be supported from nothing. As the Latin say, ex nihio, nihilo - from nothing, comes nothing. So, we must, indeed, realise that we need a foundation to support our youths. If we start a fund like this one, and is not properly vested, and then we spend it purely on recurrent expenditure, we shall never develop the capacity to sustain this kind of thing. It is much wiser to channel a fund like this to a foundation that is well managed. In any case, once you have proper managers for such a foundation, it will develop a reputation for giving good service. It will attract even more funds, nationally and internationally. Mr. Temporary Deputy Speaker, Sir, I know that there are certain philanthropists who are looking around, wondering what to do with their money. What they are looking for are good July 10, 2008 PARLIAMENTARY DEBATES 1781 proposals and good causes to support. When I came into the House, I heard the Member of Parliament for Nyeri Town talking about a time-bomb - that we see our youth as a time bomb. I beg to differ. I think this is arguing from a position of fear. Obviously, there is a problem with our youth if we do not have opportunities for employment. However, every opportunity produces a challenge. The challenge that we have is to come up with opportunities that can give employment to our youth. If we react in that way, they will not be a time bomb. They will be a potential force for revolutionary change in this country. That is, the use of our people to develop powerful productive forces for propelling this nation to a first world nation. That should be the spirit of Vision 2030. We need to use the domestic potential of this country as a powerful force for propelling our nation into a first world nation; a nation of a people with hope, and not fear; a nation of a people aiming for the skies, and not heading for the grave. Mr. Temporary Deputy Speaker, Sir, if, indeed, we see the youths as providing us with such a potential - to aim at the sky; to look at our stars and drive this nation to a first world nation - then we shall realise the potential that exists in the ICT today. People can now get knowledge by just knowing and having the key of access to that knowledge through a computer. Our youths can google and download all kind of information, provided that we build numerous youth polytechnics, where they can have free access to technology and the knowledge that comes with the technological revolution, so that it can kindle the potential in disuse to be part and parcel of the development of this nation's productive forces. To me, that is not a time bomb. To me, that is an excellent opportunity to explore the potential of our youth to push this nation to the pedestal of being a first world nation. So, I would like to appeal to this Ministry to aim high, ride with its shoulders high, and its neck and head held towards the clouds, and not to look down in pity to the problems that face this nation; instead, to turn these problems into opportunities using swords as ploughshares and turning danger into opportunities for positive change. Mr. Temporary Deputy Speaker, Sir, our youths will, indeed, be dangerous if we deny them the opportunities. Our youths will, indeed, be dangerous if we frustrate the potential in them. That, we have already seen. It is not for us to frustrate the potential in our youth, but provide an atmosphere of good governance and hope, an atmosphere in which every individual counts as an individual and no individual counts as more than one; an atmosphere in which individual and people's freedoms means something in reality, and not just something that is recited as a song. If we do so, we shall provide tremendous opportunity for our youths to propel us to a worthy future. If we do that, hon. Gumbo will not find another opportunity to lament and, indeed, tell us a very sad story about Naftali Temu. If we do that, we shall not have another Naftali Temu in this nation, the Kibuas of this world. I beg to support.
Thank you, Mr. Temporary Deputy Speaker, Sir, for giving me this opportunity to contribute to this Vote. I want to thank the Minister for Youth Affairs and Sports for the good work. I want to thank the Minister, especially for providing us with copies of the speaking notes, which give items on the development component that was of concern to me. I know that it is new, but I would encourage this Ministry, and other Ministries, to clearly demarcate the development component in future. I say so, because we do not want to do administrative work, as Members of this House. We do not want to ask Ministries why they make phone calls of given amounts, but we want to contribute as to what amounts they put into development. Mr. Temporary Deputy Speaker, Sir, I want to commend the Ministry for the trends that it is setting. If you look at the Ministry's Financial Year 2007/2008 allocation and its Financial Year 2007/2008 allocation, you will see that there is a lot more allocated towards development in the 1782 PARLIAMENTARY DEBATES July 10, 2008 Financial Year 2008/2009. I hope this trend will continue, so that more resources go towards development as opposed to recurrent expenditure. I also wish to commend the Minister, especially for the establishment of the youth empowerment centres. I would want to encourage the Minister that these centres should not just encourage empowerment, but should be centres for job creation. Many times, when our youths look for jobs, they are asked for experience. Since they never get the opportunity to get experience, they find it difficult to get jobs. So, if the empowerment centres could have an employment unit for a year for the youths, to enable them get employment, they would be meaningful. Mr. Temporary Deputy Speaker, Sir, I also want to lend support to other hon. Members who have indicated that we are in a different era and, therefore, the empowerment centres should focus on ICT and other development areas, as opposed to what we traditionally know. I have seen in polytechnics. Mr. Temporary Deputy Speaker, Sir, if somebody tells you to go to a polytechnic, the notion has always been that it is a place for failures. It is not a place where you will come out with any meaningful engagement. Mr. Temporary Deputy Speaker, Sir, we are now in a global village. We are not competing within the borders of this country only. We are competing with people from Tanzania, United States of America and other countries. Therefore, our village polytechnics and empowerment centres must be equipped to deal with those realities. Therefore, if we want to empower our youth to be skilful in design, it must be the design of the 21st Century and not the design that my great grandmother dealt with. In that relation, Mr. Temporary Deputy Speaker, Sir, I want to urge that, instead of focusing energy in creating a myriad of polytechnics, I want to laud the Minister for actually looking at the model polytechnics. We should actually put more money in them and make them models, not just for Kenya or the next village, but for the world. Mr. Temporary Deputy Speaker, Sir, I also want to commend the Minister for focusing on marginalized areas. For example, she has focused on districts such as Suba, Tharaka, West Pokot, amongst others. I want to encourage this Ministry to continue doing the same in future. The districts have actually been benefitting from the Kenya-Italian Development. We want to encourage that. For those who have visited those districts, they are extremely poor. They do not benefit from other development items that the rest of the country has. Mr. Temporary Deputy Speaker, Sir, I also want to comment on the Tana Basin Road Project that intends to use the labour intensive method. Even though that is laudable because it is going to give our youth job opportunities but, at the same time, that may also provide the opportunity for abusing children and young people, especially girls. I want to encourage the Ministry to put in a component for main-streaming human rights, especially when they are working on labour-intensive methods. Mr. Temporary Deputy Speaker, Sir, I know a lot has been spoken about sports and I am not going to speak a lot about it. In relation to the task force that is being set up, one of the criteria that it should have is that, it should only allocate funds to a sporting activity that takes into account women and men activities. Therefore, if it is giving, for instance, Kshs1 million per constituency or per district on soccer, it should only be given if it also promotes girls to play soccer. We know that there is world soccer for even girls at a very high level. I watched that amazing girl call Daniela in the World Cup for women and I hope Kenya will produce for us another "Daniela". Mr. Temporary Deputy Speaker, Sir, I also wish to comment on the recent crisis that we faced. I hope that, through the empowerment centre, that we can also promote cohesion and exchange programmes, so that those who come from central Kenya do not think that the people from Western look like fish; and those from western Kenya do not think that people from central July 10, 2008 PARLIAMENTARY DEBATES 1783 Kenya look like potatoes. They need to know that, beyond their borders, there are people who are like them; who think like them and are like them. Finally, Mr. Temporary Deputy Speaker, Sir, I want to encourage the Ministry, in future, to allocate a little money to nominated hon. Members to help them in their work. With those few remarks, Mr. Temporary Deputy Speaker, Sir, I beg to support.
Thank you very much, Mr. Temporary Deputy Speaker, Sir, for granting me this opportunity to contribute to this very important Vote. I will start by joining my colleagues in thanking the Minister for the way she moved this Motion. I would also like to commend her team in the Ministry; the bureaucrats who have really tried to give us designs and best policies that have, actually, taken us through the last two or three years. Mr. Temporary Deputy Speaker, Sir, the future of our country is in our youth. That is one of the greatest challenges. We must face that challenge as Kenyans and as leaders. If you travel throughout the entire Common Market for Eastern and Southern Africa (COMESA) region, you will find Kenyan youths wandering everywhere looking for jobs and all manner of engagements because they are frustrated. In this case, I am talking about youths who have gone beyond college and universities. That is a small number. When you look at the bottom of the pyramid, the number of youths between the ages of 17 and 30 years, is quite big! Their problems are monumental! So, I want to congratulate the Ministry for coming up with a policy, especially the National Youth Policy and the National Youth Enterprise Fund. But a lot has to be done in terms of increment of the allocations. We need something close to Kshs10 billion under the National Youth Enterprise Fund. As you well know, when you look at the Medium Term Expenditure Framework, you will be told a lot of things about the resource envelopes. You will be told: "This is our priority! The priority is on the other side!" So, we need to prioritize the issue of the youth. I want to appeal to my colleagues here that, when we come up with the Fiscal Management Act which, I suppose we will have very soon, we need to have powers to amend and even allocate some of that money to where we think it is our priority. Mr. Temporary Deputy Speaker, Sir, I support the policy on the youth polytechnics. As we all know, most of them had almost collapsed because of the propaganda among the youth that those institutions are associated with failures. They are not! In fact, most of the people with money at the moment are graduates of polytechnics. That is because when you consider the kind of money those masons and carpenters get in a week, you will be surprised! I mean those who are engaged in construction in one way or the other. Mr. Temporary Deputy Speaker, Sir, the issue of sports is extremely imperative because this country is popular in the world because of sports and athletics. This country is known for bad things and, sometimes, in most cases, for good things. One of those good things is sports through our athletes. Of course, recently, even our senior citizens have promoted this country. For example, the former hon. Member for Tetu, hon. Maathai, promoted the status of this country by being the first African woman to get the Nobel Peace Prize. So, jointly, it is through those achievements that this country is widely known. So, we need to promote sports of all nature. We need to promote rugby, volleyball and football. Indeed, we need football academies in this country. Let us not depend on ligi ndogos . Let us not depend on what is happening in Mathare and these small clubs. We need real academies so that we can tap the talent of the youth. Mr. Temporary Deputy Speaker, Sir, we also need to establish academies for athletics, because this is where our potential is. It is very shameful to hear that gentlemen from Nandi 1784 PARLIAMENTARY DEBATES July 10, 2008 District are changing their citizenship to Americans and then competing against fellow Kenyans. It is really embarrassing when they compete against their brothers from Kenya. The ones who change their status will always do better, because those countries have better and superior policies and better ways of promoting these people. So, I want us to promote sports. Again, we want a bit of benchmarking. We should benchmark our policies with countries that have done well in sports like Cuba. Cubans are very good sportsmen. We also have countries such as Jamaica and South Africa. Let us incorporate their policies in our national youth policy. Mr. Temporary Deputy Speaker, Sir, I want to support the allocation of funds to the Tana Basin. However, I do not want us to consider one section. I used to be a Government officer in this area and I know that the youth in those areas live in abject poverty, especially in Bura Irrigation Scheme and the former Hola Irrigation Scheme. The youth there are really suffering. Their communities are also suffering. I will tell you for those of you who have not travelled, there is a community in that basin that is called Malakote and Munyoyaya. The poverty in that region is very high. So, I want to commend the Ministry for allocating funds for that area but we want other districts to also benefit. We do not want to concentrate or give disproportionate attention to one area. Mr. Deputy Speaker, Sir, there is also the issue of idle youth. We have the famous and notorious Mungiki . Let us have a study on this people. We also have the youth in the North Rift who engage in cattle-rustling? Let us go to the bottom and substratum of what is really affecting these youth. Why do they leave their homes and participate in cattle-rustling. Some of them participate in Mungiki activities. We all know what the Mungiki do. Let us come up with the best way of addressing their problems. This is because they are actually a menace. If we do not confront it, being a very big challenge in this country, we may live to regret. So, let us find the best way of engaging these boys and girls in productive activities. In future, the Ministries should come up with a clear dichotomy of what is in the Development Vote. This is what we are really interested in as hon. Members. In most cases, the Recurrent Expenditure is just traditional. We know that we must have Ministries and heads of departments from the provinces to the districts, but we want the specifics of what is contained in the Development Vote. As we all know, the devil is in the detail. We want to know how we are benefiting. We do not want to approve allocation of funds to other districts at the expense of others. Otherwise, I want to wish the Minister and her team a productive time in this Ministry. We will support this Ministry up to the grassroots level. Lastly, Mr. Temporary Deputy Speaker, Sir, let me touch on the issue of the Youth Enterprise Development Fund. The policy of this Fund in ASAL region has not been operationalised in the manner that is acceptable to the people of that region. This is because we do not have banks. Some of these SACCOs are not even there. So, let us have a better way of operationalising this Fund in the ASAL region. When I talk about ASAL region, I am talking about some remote parts of North Eastern, Upper Eastern and Upper North Rift. With those few remarks, I beg to support.
Thank you, Mr. Temporary Deputy Speaker, Sir. I want to support this Motion. The Government is seriously focused on engaging the youth in socio-economic activities in our societies. It has set aside Kshs465 million for training the youths through the youth polytechnics. The money is not sufficient given the amount of work that we expect this Ministry to do but the problem is that we have limited resources. I would like to have, at least, one youth polytechnic per location. This is because we have many youths in this country who are actually idle. Majority of them already have basic education. They have gone through Standard Eight and some have reached Form 1V, but they are at home doing nothing. If we establish one village polytechnic per location, we will engage many of these youth in training. It is good that the July 10, 2008 PARLIAMENTARY DEBATES 1785 Government has set aside, at least, some money for rehabilitation of polytechnics that we have in the country, although they are few. The level of training in these youth polytechnics need to be addressed. The youth should not be left at the level of Jua Kali training. We need to have the training level in these youth polytechnics to be at such a level that graduates from youth polytechnics can join the universities. After all, some of them are Form 1V graduates. If we had the training at youth polytechnics being comparable to secondary school education, we will have graduates of youth polytechnics going straight to the university; those who do well in that training. That means that the instructors and people who train in these youth polytechnics, in my view, should be thoroughly trained instructors. They should be graduates; people who have been trained at the universities. After all, we have graduate teachers in secondary schools. If some of the trainees in the youth polytechnics have come from Form 1V, why do we subject them to people who do not have degrees to train them in youth polytechnics? We are simply pulling them down because in secondary schools, they were trained by teachers who have university degrees. So, according to me, the level of training in these youth polytechnics need to be addressed. The quality of the training personnel, that is, the instructors and lecturers needs to be addressed. With the devolved funds, we have a lot of work in the rural areas. We have CDF and LATF which have provided very good opportunities for employment for graduates of youth polytechnics. If well trained, the youth polytechnics graduates will be our contractors in the rural areas to do the Constituencies Development Fund projects. Some CDF projects have problems of very poor quality workmanship, because you give money to schools and they just give it to their relatives. The Parents-Teachers Association (PTA) pick people from the village, who do not have good training in construction. If we had our youth properly trained, then they would do the construction. So, the quality of the CDF projects would improve. Mr. Temporary Deputy Speaker, Sir, the Youth Enterprise Development Fund is a very good idea. This is one way of training our youth to be businessmen and businesswomen. They are being trained in how to manage loans and do business. That is one of the weaknesses of many people in this country. They get a little loan to do some business, it is poorly managed and they end up in problems with the banks that gave them the loans. We should start with the youth by giving them the loans and ensure they are trained by the youth officers on how to manage the money. At the end of the day, they will turn into very good business men and women. So, the Government is creating employment through this Fund. The Government is training the youth to do business through this Fund. It is just a question of inadequate resources, otherwise we could have given more money to this Ministry. Look at the population of the youth in this country. We definitely need much more money to train them to do business and also train in various skills in the polytechnics. Mr. Temporary Deputy Speaker, Sir, Kshs1 million has been set aside for every constituency for sports. That is a good move by the Government. Previously, the Government paid very little attention to sports. We know that the Government has just been paying very little attention to sporting activities like athletics, football and others in training institutions like schools and colleges. But, there are youths who are not in those institutions and they have never had the opportunity to participate in sports. This will give them a little opportunity. The money is actually too little. If you look at the sports facilities in this country--- Go to districts and look at the kind of stadia they have. Look at what people call a stadium; it leaves a lot to be desired. Go to Kisumu today, the stadium is in shambles. It is not well-maintained. If a provincial headquarters like Kisumu does not have good sports facilities, what about the villages? We have very few sports facilities and they are very poor. Those ones which we have are in a very poor condition. So, something needs to be done. As I have said, it is just a question of resources. I listened to Eng. Gumbo lamenting on how we have ignored our sportsmen and 1786 PARLIAMENTARY DEBATES July 10, 2008 sportswomen in this country. It is bad because for them to realise the talent and develop it, most of them have to resort to being foreigners. Most of them have resorted to competing against us. If they come back to compete for us, they do not do as well as they do for the foreign countries, because we do not take care of them well, we do not facilitate them and we have ignored them. Look at the performance of the Kenya Football Federation (KFF) in this country. The KFF takes care of soccer in this country. The way the KFF has been managing soccer in this country has been very poor, very demoralizing and very disheartening. Maybe that is because they do not have enough resources. Some of the people who are in the KFF thought that they would make a living out of it, but there are very few resources for them. Something needs to be done, and done well so that we promote sports in this country. But it is good that now there is some move towards that direction. The money set aside will take us somewhere. With those few remarks, I beg to support.
Mr. Temporary Deputy Speaker, Sir, thank you for giving me the opportunity to contribute to this important Vote, Vote 42. Before I start, I wish to take this opportunity to commend the hon. Minister for the manner in which she moved it yesterday. She did it very ably, although we had not got the books; she did it well. The youth in this country comprise a substantial segment of our population. It is known that the youth comprise close to 70 per cent of our population. So, the Ministry handling the affairs of this segment of our population ought to be allocated sufficient funds. When you look at what was allocated to it, according to a summary distributed this afternoon in the House, it comes to less than Kshs2 billion against a Budget of about Kshs768 billion. When you do simple arithmetic, that boils down to below 1 per cent. It is about 0.2 per cent. That shows the lack of seriousness to that segment of our society, which is 70 per cent of the population. To me this Ministry, should be given sufficient resources in order for it to develop and empower our youth, particularly the youth in the rural areas. Our youth polytechnics across the country have been neglected, and are nearly becoming moribund. They need to be upgraded, modernised and equipped with modern equipment in order to be able to train the youth, and enable them to contribute adequately in creation of wealth, particularly in the rural areas. I looked at the Vote and noticed that there is an Item that is marked "Supplies and Specialised Materials". I do hope that the Ministry will use the meagre resources factored into its Vote in this financial year to procure items such as modern computers and other equipment for our polytechnics, particularly those in the rural areas. With that they will be able to train students in those polytechnics in computer skills. This is the computer era and the Information, Communications and Technology (ICT) world. They do not have to be in towns, or urban areas, for them to be computer literate. We Should be able to project that in two or three years most polytechnics will be fully equipped with modern computers, and not the obsolete types. Since the Government plans to come up with ICT "village kiosks", our youth, who graduate from those polytechnics, will be able to contribute to our economic development. Mr. Temporary Deputy Speaker, Sir, I also note that there is an Item known as Capital Grants to Government Agencies, where an amount of Kshs500 million has been set aside. I hope that this amount will be distributed to agencies which tend to focus their activities on empowering our youths. That being the case, that amount is too little. It should be doubled or even increased ten times. I hope those who are planning to do strategic planning for the Ministry should be able to project such a figure to be ten times in the next two or three financial years. That may go a long way in enhancing skills transfer for our youths. On the Youth Enterprise Development Fund (YEDF), I note that Kshs500 million was factored in this Budget. To me, this amount is also still low. When the Minister moved the Vote, she stated that this Ministry is a newly-created Ministry. We can understand that, but I hope that, July 10, 2008 PARLIAMENTARY DEBATES 1787 that amount will also be increased in the next financial year. There is another Item known as the Youth Empowerment Centres. This is a good idea whose time has come. I wish to applaud the Minister and Ministry for this move. To set up, at least, one youth empowerment centre per constituency is an excellent idea. The Ministry has allocated Kshs1 million per constituency, so that, at least, one model polytechnic can be developed per constituency. This is also a good idea whose time has come. It is only the resources that are limited. An amount of Kshs1 million is a drop in the ocean. Mr. Temporary Deputy Speaker, Sir, I want to talk about sports. Indeed, it is a good move to allocate Kshs1 million per constituency to develop sports. I am more particularly interested in athletics. In this country, athletics has been bringing in a lot of foreign exchange. We know that we have many talented youths in the rural areas. We have many Kipchoge Keinos and Tergats in the rural areas, but, unfortunately, their talents are not being developed. The Government should come out and identify ways of developing those talents. I have an idea. We should make an appeal to the international organizations which sponsor the so-called Grand Prix in the western countries, to be able to develop training centres in our country, particularly in areas with potential for athletes. I have in mind the North Rift. Even in my own constituency, there are two good high altitude areas which can be used to set up a sports complex centre. A good example is Mochongoi. We need about Kshs5 million to construct an ultra-modern athletics training centre which will churn out the Tergats of tomorrow. When we get many Tergats in this country, for sure, they will bring in a lot of foreign currency, particulary with the current situation after the Minister harmonized taxation locally and overseas. While still on athletics, our athletes do not have to change their citizenship to the Arab countries in order to bring funding to develop stadia in this country. This is wrong. The Ministry should be able to send ambassadors of goodwill to solicit funding from sports or athletics lovers in the world, particularly the people who organize Grand Prix. They should come and develop stadia in strategic places in this country, particularly where the potential for athletics is feasible. Mr. Temporary Deputy Speaker, Sir, I note also under sports that we have a serious shortage of sports officers. This should not happen in this era. We have many university and middle level college graduates who are unemployed. Since this is the Ministry of State for Youth and Sports which targets youth empowerment, it should be the first to create positions for sports officers, particularly one sports officer per constituency. Mr. Temporary Deputy Speaker, Sir, with those few remarks, I beg to support.
Thank you, Mr. Temporary Deputy Speaker, Sir, for giving me this opportunity to also contribute to this very important Motion. First, I would like to congratulate the Minister and her very able team for articulating the youth affairs and problems in the country. Members are not raising many issues because they believe and know that the team is very efficient and able. It is a team that has made Kenya proud. This is the direction Kenya should go. Mr. Temporary Deputy Speaker, Sir, I want to point out a few problems here and there, particularly in my own constituency. One is the issue of disbursement. I know that some of these monies have been going to constituencies, including mine. But because of lack of banks to disburse this money, youths in my constituency, have to travel either to Kisii, Kericho or other places to seek services from the banks that are disbursing the funds. I do not know if the Ministry can help some of those districts which are very remote and are not serviced by banks, so that the youths do not have to spend money to travel to other places like Narok to fill in forms for their loans. Of course, when they go there, they are not able to access the services as quickly as possible. So, this is one of the problems that we know. Mr. Temporary Deputy Speaker, Sir, the issue of the YEDF is so important to this nation. 1788 PARLIAMENTARY DEBATES July 10, 2008 The hon. Member who has just spoken said that the youth of this country form 70 per cent of the population of Kenya. Given that percentage of the youth in this country, there is concern about how we are going to manage them. How we manage them will determine the way this country will develop in future. This is because 70 per cent of the population is such a critical mark and so our youth need to be properly managed for this country to develop. With regard to the problems facing the youth, majority of us here are parents, and when our children are in school, we are okay because somebody is taking care of them. When they are employed after school, they are okay because they are earning a living and they can manage themselves. The problem is this group that is at home. They are neither in school nor in training colleges. These children quarrel with their parents and even steal money from them. They take drugs because they do not have much to do. They also go to discos and, generally, mess up with their lives. This is where the problem lies. These are our potential employees tomorrow and managers of our economy. Therefore, this is a very critical area that we must target as a nation. The Mungiki and all other youth groups that are causing problems in this country exist basically because those youths have nothing else to do and they are trying to make a living by doing wrong which they believe is good. So, to address some of these issues, the YEDF was set up. Yes, it can assist, but it is likely to assist only those ones who are already trained in polytechnics. They are the ones who can start small entrepreneurships. Not all the youth have the opportunity to benefit from the YEDF. I request the Minister to bring another two other items in the Budget for the next financial year for this House to consider. Hopefully, the Minister for Finance will take seriously what we say in this House. This is because it is a serious matter that our youth comprise 70 per cent of our population. So the youth must be managed, protected and supported. Mr. Temporary Deputy Speaker, Sir, we should have a Youth Skills Development Fund. I know that the YEDF money is being disbursed, but that Fund should be managed as a resource centre. Every constituency should establish a youth resource centre. In fact, I am spending part of my CDF money, this financial year, to construct a Youth Development Centre. This is because if I wait for others to do so, we might never get this thing going. It is, indeed, a serious problem. So, what we need is a Youth Skills Development Fund. This will target at training the youth at the constituency level to enable them acquire various skills, especially ICT. Information Technology is now advanced in this nation and so we should prepare our youth to train from the centres in their constituencies so that they do not all flock to Nairobi. They should be able to learn and do jobs in their respective constituencies. We should also think of the Youths Sports Development Fund. Indeed, I am also allocating money from my own CDF to develop a sports complex in my area. We have already got four acres of land on which we shall develop the sports complex and we would like the Ministry to support us. Once you have a stadium in a place like Kilgoris, which is good for the training of athletes--- A lot of them are now making it to the Olympics because of training on the terrain such as the one in Kilgoris. These are very good things for us to develop as a nation. We need to allocate more funds to this Ministry so that it can take care of this big population of the youth, who can actually be a problem, but also a potential group to target if we really want to develop this country. The Government needs to channel funds towards the development of our youth. This is actually a problem that lies with the Minister for Finance. For this country to be able to employ all our youth, who are actually the engine of development, we must channel our resources to areas which will create employment for our youth. Here, I am talking about infrastructure. We have a lot to develop in this country. It is not only our road network, but other infrastructure in the ASAL areas. These are the areas where funds need to be channelled. The marginalised areas in this country have the potential to develop just like the ones that are already developed. We have hardly, as a nation, utilised the potential that we have. We do not have resources July 10, 2008 PARLIAMENTARY DEBATES 1789 in terms of oil or minerals, but we are able to provide services to our people and Africa at large. We can enhance this by training our youth and encourage them to go and look for jobs in various areas. As you travel in countries in Africa, you will meet Kenyans everywhere. Mr. Temporary Deputy Speaker, Sir, another very important item I would like this Ministry to look at is the issue of carrying out a census. We just talk about the youth being 70 per cent of our population, but do we really go where they are? Some may be trained, but they have no jobs. Some may drop out from training even though they have the potential. So, I would wish that the Ministry carries out a national census to ensure that we know the whereabouts of our youth. We need to know what they are doing. If they are at home, we need to ask ourselves how best we can channel resources to them. It is okay to allocate money to every district, but there are areas where there are a lot of youth and the poverty index is so high. We need to channel more resources to such areas so that we can uplift the livelihoods of these people. So, this is an area I would like to request the Ministry to attend to. Perhaps, they are already planning to do that, but it is important for us to have a national census and identify all our youth. We need to know what our youth are doing. We need to tackle the problems facing our youth because they are the future of Kenya. Mr. Temporary Deputy Speaker, Sir, in terms of sports, we have a lot youth athletes training in Ngong and other areas. They are trying to qualify for the Olympics. Some of these young people have the potential, but lack the resources. I know that some of them have had to relocate to other countries so that they can run competitively. When I was a Minister last year, I prepared a Motion that would seek to ensure that Kenyans who relocate to other countries for athletics do not necessarily lose their Kenyan citizenship. They would not need to use other people's passports just for them to gain access to those countries. The Motion was to enable the youth to train and compete in other countries, but still come back home. That would have done away with the embarrassment that some of them go through when they come back and they are viewed as aliens. We even forget that they bring back money to this country. They create an awareness about Kenya in those countries they go. This particular area of sports is one of the best in terms of selling Kenya abroad. The Ministry of Tourism should also promote Kenya by targeting sportsmen. With those few remarks, I beg to support.
Mr. Temporary Deputy Speaker, Sir, I rise to support the Vote presented by the Minister by raising a few points. One of the observations I made concerns the Fund of Kshs1 million to be established in every constituency. The amount of money in that Fund is not enough. This is because the money will not be enough to cover the nature of activities that we intend to introduce in our areas. One of the activities that we intend to bring to our youth is the non-football activities. However, we need to add others like wrestling, athletics, volleyball and netball. Therefore, being aware that these are some of the activities that we need to cover, we should also look at things like offices that we need to put in place. We should think of the personnel, the salary structure and other things in order to make our offices in the constituencies viable and productive. The release of the Kshs1 million to every constituency will be of great help to us because this is going to be a new venture and we need to start the whole thing with a lot of commitment and rendering actual service. With regard to the committees that we are going to set up, we need to have guidelines immediately so that we are clear about the composition and membership of those committees. On the issue of stadia, every constituency must have a stadium. Where there is no land, the Ministry of Youth Affairs and Sports should liaise with the Ministry of Lands to get land, and that land should have a title deed, so as to curb the problem of land grabbing. Mr. Temporary Deputy Speaker, Sir, with regard to sports officers, we should not say that one officer should serve three constituencies. We have our middle level colleges like the Teacher 1790 PARLIAMENTARY DEBATES July 10, 2008 Training Colleges (TTCs), where we have very good athletes and sportsmen. People should be trained there. We should take sports officers on a crash programme for three or six months, and after that they should be taken to the field to train our people. On the Youth Enterprise Development Fund (YEDF), the terms and conditions have not been very helpful in the sense of enabling and attracting our youth to go for the money to improve their welfare. The terms must be revised, so that they are geared towards attracting the youth to acquire the funds to assist them in whatever activities they want to undertake. On the issue of polytechnics, we need to have prudent managers, who should undergo interviews so that we can also improve the standards and performance in our polytechnics. Every constituency should have, at least, two polytechnics with well qualified staff. We should create an inspectorate in every district, where possible, so that quality and effective teaching is maintained in these polytechnics. We should also have computers and electricity, so that the youth are given the best learning environment. We should also think about accountability in these polytechnics. We should introduce account auditors, who will frequently check the use and management of our funds in these institutions. Mr. Temporary Deputy Speaker, Sir, with regard to retention of our glory internationally, because our nation has known as a sporting nation for a long time, we need to have consistent assessment of the progress of our athletes. We need to defend our image gallantly, and the Ministry should be at the forefront by way of staging competitive events where our youth will congregate. We should also think of having a day when we can remember past and present athletes, who have given this nation a very good image internationally. I recall one, a Mr. Nyandika Mayuru, who ran bare-foot in Australia in earlier years, yet this person does not feature anywhere in our history books. It is high time the Ministry of Youth and Sports introduced a day for the purpose of us recognising the contributions made by such people. On drugs, we were almost embarrassed when our athletes went for the Olympics in Greece, and one of them was almost expelled. We should have our medical facilities with our own standards, so that when our athletes are going out they are examined. If they are found to have taken prohibited drugs, they should not be allowed to go out and spoil our name. Mr. Temporary Deputy Speaker, Sir, on the issue of the Olympics, the Ministry of State for Youth Affairs and Sports should also be giving us an update on the preparedness of our teams. By now we should have known the athletics team, the boxing team and other teams that are likely to compete for our nation. With regard to raising of funds for these teams, we should not wait for the 11th hour to solicit for funds from development partners. All systems must be put in place for collection of the required money in good time. If we paid a lot of attention to supporting the youth in this nation, we will see better and more dynamic teams prepared by our nation, not necessarily from the armed forces. Our polytechnics will be able to provide better equipped athletes. With those few remarks, I beg to support.
Thank you, Mr. Temporary Deputy Speaker, Sir, for the opportunity given to me to contribute to this Motion. I am sure - I came in late - that everybody who has spoken has supported this Motion. I am sure that everybody has mentioned the importance of the youth, and what we need to do in this country for the youth. It is gratifying that we have a Ministry dedicated to the youth of this country. Because the youth of this country are vulnerable and delicate, they have been used and abused with abundance by politicians. When politicians want to settle scores, they erect unlawful militia of youths whom July 10, 2008 PARLIAMENTARY DEBATES 1791 they unleash on their opponents. When we want to do something positive, we still go back to the youth. If the youth are in excess of 60 per cent of the population of this country, then a real and positive programme for them must be put in place. I want to urge the Minister of State for Youth Affairs and Sports not to sit and wait for budgetary allocations from the Treasury, because there is never enough money in the Government, particularly in an economy that has so many outlets like ours. There are a lot of opportunities available for the Minister to ingeniously raise funds for programmes for the youth from well-wishers, friendly governments and international organizations. I would hope that the Ministry will put in place a desk at the directorate level that can work with international organizations over and above the Government of Kenya allocations to raise money for youth programmes. I say this because there are - you will get to see this if you check on the Internet, whether it is through the UN, the UNESCO or all organisations and friendly governments, large sums of money dedicated to activities for young people. Whether you are talking of the fight against HIV/AIDS, job creation, capacity building, name it. I hope that the Minister and her staff will look into this. Mr. Temporary Deputy Speaker, Sir, we also have talented youth in this country, particularly those excelling in sports such as football, athletics and other sports. We must, as a country, formulate a clear policy on how to assist these youth come out of the clutches of a group of profiteers called agents, who market and sell them to organisations that exploit them to the maximum. Mr. Temporary Deputy Speaker, Sir, you will find that a successful athlete in the United States of America (US), in the United Kingdom (UK) and in Europe is a multi-billionaires in US Dollar terms. Our youths here are bled dry by European agents, who run them on circuit upon circuit, and they are the ones who pocket all the money. These helpless young people come back with a few US dollars just enough to enable them buy a house and set up a local business locally. All their money is taken by agents. My Ministry would wish to work in collaboration with the Ministry of Youth Affairs and Sports. I have, in the formulation of the new foreign policy for the country, given a prominent chapter to young successful athletes and sportsmen of this country as part of our diplomacy. I will avail at every request, senior protocol officers, to assist these young talented Kenyans whenever they go out there to run or play, so that they are assisted and protected from marauding agents. Mr. Temporary Deputy Speaker, Sir, this will help the youths to not only earn legitimate and just income for themselves and bring it to this country to boost our foreign exchange and their own fortunes, but it will also put them on the map. There is no difference between the Williams sisters and Ezekiel Kemboi! There is no difference between Tiger Woods and some of our youths who have excelled in this country. How much does Tiger Woods earn per year? He earns close to a billion US dollars. Our youths come back home with US$10,000. The rest of the money is gone. The Ministry has also formulated a programme for village youth polytechnics and other training centres. This is very critical. Recently, I was talking to President Thabo Mbeki of South Africa, and he told me that South Africa is now importing labour from Malaysia, Sri Lanka, India and Thailand. What kind of labour? Welders and fitters! These are people we can train in our youth polytechnics and village polytechnics. Obviously, it is easier to have Africans working within Africa than to bring spanner boys and fitters from Malaysia to work in African establishments. Mr. Temporary Deputy Speaker, Sir, in any event, this economy has to grow in order for us to achieve the objectives contained in Vision 2030. I believe that if we stop bickering and start working, we can, in fact, achieve the targets in the next ten years. This economy will turn on the middle-level mechanics. As you know, in medicine, for every doctor, you need about 50 to 60 nurses. For every engineer, you need about 100 fitters, 100 welders and 100 other auxiliary service providers to enable the engineer perform. Do we have those service providers to turn round our 1792 PARLIAMENTARY DEBATES July 10, 2008 economy? We do not, because we had not, in the past, paid attention to training young people. Now that we have a positive and conscious policy to revamp tertiary institutions for training young people, we must back it up. The Ministry should liaise with the Ministry of Education so that they post properly qualified teachers, so that we do not just send those youths to those polytechnics to sail through as a ritual and come out half-baked and ill-trained! We must have proper teachers so that, if it is masonry, welding, mechanics or whatever it is, they can come out qualified. Mr. Temporary Deputy Speaker, Sir, we have the Youth Enterprise Development Fund that was rolled out by the Government in the last financial year. It is a wonderful thing! Unfortunately, not all the youths in this country, particularly those who come from the communities like the one I come from, have got the mind and orientation of enterprise. I would want to see a situation where, instead of telling the youth: "Money is available, walk into the bank and borrow! There is Kshs1 million which an hon. Member, with a lot of difficulties, can be able to distribute!" You should set up training facilities on how to run enterprises! Those youths do not know what a trial balance is. They have never held a bank account. When they go to the bank to borrow money, they do not even know that the right to borrow has a corresponding duty to pay. You find a youth has borrowed Kshs50,000 and is walking home with a mattress and a bed! That is, certainly, not productive money use! If we are able to train them on how to run enterprises, it will be very helpful and it will turn round that Fund to help the youth. With those few remarks, Mr. Temporary Deputy Speaker, Sir, I beg to support the Motion.
Thank you, Mr. Temporary Deputy Speaker, Sir. I also rise to chip in my few comments and support this Vote of the Ministry of Youth Affairs and Sports. Mr. Temporary Deputy Speaker, Sir, the youth are the future of every country. I have known, from the word "go" that the day this Government will work towards the promotion of youth affairs, is the day this country will be laying down the strongest foundation that can be realized now, and for the future days to come. Mr. Temporary Deputy Speaker, Sir, our youth have tried their level best in every sector; whether it is looking for jobs, creating their own issues or participating in sports. The commitment and support from the Government has been very minimal in the first place and from the word "go". Mr. Temporary Deputy Speaker, Sir, I want to cite a good example of one of our local football club, Gor Mahia, that won the Africa Cup of Nations some years back. I do not think there was the right recognition towards that achievement. Gor Mahia won that cup and came here, in their own country! Not even the President of this Republic at that time volunteered to meet and congratulate them! So, to them and to some of those players who did a wonderful job and brought pride to this country, they felt like their efforts, energy and love for their country were not recognised. Since then, I do not think Kenya has ever won any other continental tournament. If at all our Government wants to recognise what these young men have done and the achievements and glory they brought to this country, I think we would have had Gor Mahia winning more continental tournaments. That way, our sports, especially football would not be where it is now. It is has become extremely difficult to produce footballers in this country. This is because their efforts were not recognised and they do not see why they should continue playing. Mr. Temporary Deputy Speaker, Sir, football is one of the most paying sports in this world. I read in the newspapers today that one player can be bought for Sterling pounds 30 million to 40 million. It was only recently when players like Dennis Oliech and others have been accepted in the world of sports. There is a way of promoting sportsmen. Lack of recognition has diminished the efforts of our young people. The issue of our young men changing their citizenship, which is a mother right of their country, has become the order of the day for Kenyans. This is because our young men are convinced and seduced to become citizens of other countries so that they can promote the glory of those countries. They are not doing this for free. They are offered peanuts July 10, 2008 PARLIAMENTARY DEBATES 1793 here. In those countries, they are offered citizenship, a car, a house and they become citizens of some Arab countries just to perform sports. If the Ministry of Youth Affairs and Sports will promote the activities of the youth and more so sports, this country stands to gain a lot. Despite the fact that every constituency will get Kshs1 million to promote sports, in the Budget that was read the other day, the NSIS was allocated Kshs8 billion Service to monitor and gather intelligence on what these young people are doing. That money is not helping us. The same youth, because of lack of jobs, are used to do dirty jobs just like the way they were used during the post-election violence to kill one another and yet the NSIS spends a lot of money to gather information from the youth. This expenditure should be turned the other way round. Instead of allocating Kshs1 million to every constituency which amounts to Kshs210 million, we should talk about Kshs6 billion. The NSIS should be given just Kshs2 billion to listen to what these young people are saying. Mr. Temporary Deputy Speaker, Sir, the money that the Government intends to spend in this Ministry will go into promoting the activities of the youth. In every constituency--- I want to say this on behalf of other hon. Members: In my office I have over 3,000 curriculum Vitae from Form Four leavers and university graduates who are looking for jobs. Kenyans have been moulded to believe that after school, the only place where someone can find a job is in Government departments, private companies and multinational companies, which do not even belong to Kenya. When I look at the money that could be allocated to the youth--- We are talking about a group of 60 young men getting between Kshs30,000 and Kshs50,000. If you do a simple calculation of that, you end up having something like---
Order! Mr. Muthama! You will have two minutes to contribute on Tuesday.