Mr. Speaker, Sir, I beg to ask the Vice-President and Minister for Home Affairs the following Question by Private Notice:- (a) Could the Vice-President and Minister for Home Affairs confirm that Mr. Daniel Mutiria MâIkiugu, the Superintendent of Prisons in charge of the main Meru G.K Prison and eight other prison officers, were interdicted on 2nd May, 2009 and that a nolleprosequi was subsequently entered on 14th July, 2009, thereby discharging them? (b) What steps has he taken to ensure that the officers are re-instated as prison officers and their powers and privileges reinstated in compliance with the rule of natural justice? (c) Could he also give an undertaking that the said officersâ dues will be paid for the time they have been out of office?
Mr. Speaker Sir, I beg to reply. (a) I hereby confirm that Mr. Daniel Mutiria MâIkiugu, a Superintendent of Prisons and the then officer in charge of Meru G.K. Prison and eight others from the Prisons Service were interdicted. However, the interdiction date was 2nd May, 2008 and not 2nd May, 2009. I further confirm that the Attorney-General entered a nolle prosequi in respect of the charges against the officers on 14th July, 2008 and not 14th July, 2009. (b) The officers were discharged by the Chief Magistrates Court and their case is now subject to administrative process in accordance with the Civil Service Code of Regulations and will be settled soon. (c ) The officers under interdiction receive their half salary each month in accordance with the Code of Regulations.
Mr. Speaker, Sir, the Assistant Minister has admitted that those people were interdicted and the matter is undergoing an administrative process. I remember sometimes in February, the Vice-President and Minister for Home Affairs had committed himself to have those officers reinstated in their positions. In view of that, could the Assistant Minister tell us when that matter is likely to end and when those
Mr. Speaker, Sir, upon being served with letters to show cause why disciplinary action should not be taken against them, those officers went to court and the matter is still pending in court awaiting judgement.
Mr. Speaker, Sir, noting that, that was a case of alleged brutality - and we had many such cases especially during the events of early this year - could the Assistant Minister confirm to this House whether there is a policy within the Ministry on how to deal with cases of brutality or alleged brutality? In particular, what happened to the officers from the Kamiti Maximum Prison who were responsible for some prisonersâ deaths?
Mr. Speaker, Sir, when the Attorney-General entered the nolle
the case was referred to an administrative process within the Ministry. So, it is being handled and very soon, we shall know the outcome.
Mr. Speaker, Sir, I notice a contradiction in the Assistant Ministerâs answer. When a nolle prosequi is entered by the Attorney-General, the understanding is that the case is withdrawn. So, nothing else should be pending. Is the Assistant Minister satisfied that when the Attorney-General entered a nolle prosequi, the case was not finalized? Are those officers not being subjected to double jeopardy by having administrative proceedings again?
Mr. Speaker, Sir, when they were served with the âshow causeâ letters, they went to court. So, the case is still in court.
Mr. Speaker, Sir, it is really unfortunate because I feel that the Assistant Minister is not able to answer this Question as we would have expected. I am saying that because the matter she is referring to is a matter of judicial review that was filed by some of the officers because the State was taking too long. In my view, this Question might not be adequately answered by the Assistant Minister. I request that you defer this Question until such a time when the Vice-President and Minister for Home Affairs will be able to answer it. This matter was here again in April and he had committed himself before this House that he would settle it in a monthâs time. If I remember, last week, I gave the indulgence because of the situation that was in the House. It was my view that the Vice-President and Minister for Home Affairs will come to answer this Question. I seek your indulgence on this matter. Those officers are really suffering and even as they receive---
Order, Mr. Linturi! You cannot go on forever. Hon. Members, we all agree that this is Question Time. The first Question by Private Notice has been asked by the Member for Igembe South and we have already spent five minutes on it. The Assistant Minister, Office of the Vice-President and Ministry of Home Affairs has given her answers as best as she could. If any Member, and in particular the Member for Igembe South, feels the Question has not been answered well and he has, indeed, said that he is not satisfied with the answers given by the Assistant Minister - then the reasonable and sensible thing to do would be to ask further questions. We have given you an opportunity to ask further questions, which you have chosen not to do. So, we must move on to the next Question.
Mr. Speaker, Sir, I beg to ask the Vice-President and Minister for Home Affairs the following Question by Private Notice. (a) Is the Vice-President and Minister for Home Affairs aware that in the past seven days there have been deaths of 18 convicts/remandees at Kodiaga G.K Prison in Kisumu caused directly by lack of sufficient food, drugs, overcrowding, unhygienic conditions and poor water and sanitation? (b) What action is he taking to punish prisons officers who are responsible for this state of affairs? (c) What action is he also taking to ensure that all prisons in the country are not death-traps?
Mr. Speaker, Sir, I beg to reply.
(a) I am not aware that there have been deaths of 18 convicts/remandees at Kodiaga G.K Prison in Kisumu in the past seven days. However, I am aware that there have been ten deaths in the past two months. There is sufficient food and drugs. Water and sanitation are at acceptable levels and subject to frequent testing by prison authorities and the District Public Health Office, Kisumu. I admit that certain sections of the prison accommodate an excess number of inmates above the recommended figure, but the situation is not critical.
(b) For prisoners who die while undergoing treatment in hospital, postmortem results will guide as to the cause of death. Other deaths in custody are subjected to both inquests by police as well as postmortem. All the reported cases died in hospital. The results will guide as to any liability where pre-existing medical conditions are not the cause of death. As final results are awaited, there is no action contemplated against the officer in charge or staff of Kodiaga Prison.
(c) I wish to assure the House that inmates in all prisons are accorded the same level of treatment obtainable in our public health institutions. The Prisons Service works closely with the Ministries responsible for health and the Kenya Medical Supplies Agency (KEMSA) to ensure sufficient supply of medicine. Whereas the prisons have several seconded Ministry of Health staff, efforts are being made to increase these staff as well as the Prisons medical staff, through recruitment and training. Medical camps with partners are also routinely held. The department has increased the scale and range of feeding, clothing and supply of all prisoners to ensure that they enjoy provision of their basic human rights. Staff are undergoing continuous training and measures are being undertaken with stakeholders to reduce congestion and ensure adequate provision for inmates.
Mr. Speaker, Sir---
Order, Mr. Olago! Whoever catches the Speakerâs eye has the first opportunity.
Mr. Speaker, Sir, the Assistant Minister has admitted that there is overcrowding in Kodiaga GK Prison, Kisumu. Could she, therefore, tell us what is the recommended number of inmates in this prison and what is the number the prison is actually holding now?
Mr. Speaker, Sir, what the hon. Member has asked is a different Question. However, I know that all prisons in Kenya have a problem of congestion. The number of inmates in Kenyan prisons is more than the required number, but the reforms currently going on in the Prisons Service will address such problems.
Mr. Speaker, Sir, the core function of the Prisons Service in Kenya is to rehabilitate offenders and keep in custody those who are awaiting trial. However, it is too much when you have ten deaths in one prison within a period of two months. There must be something wrong at Kodiaga GK Prison despite the effort of the officer in charge of the prison. Under these circumstances, what has the Ministry done to facilitate intake of clean water and sufficient food into the prison?
Mr. Speaker, Sir, the main cause of the ten deaths reported in two months in the prison is unhygienic water and sanitation. About three cases are linked to malaria and pneumonia. The rest of the deaths are related to waterborne diseases. However, efforts are being made to ensure that they are provided with clean water because there has been scarcity of water.
On a point of order, Mr. Speaker, Sir. Is it in order for the Assistant Minister to say that the cause of the deaths is related to waterborne diseases, when she is aware that the water system at Kodiaga Prison is in a very pathetic state?
Mr. Speaker, Sir, the water system is in a pathetic state, but we are trying to find ways of, at least, improving it.
Order! Mrs. Assistant Minister, the answers you have given, beginning with the answer that you gave regarding the question by Ms. Karua and now the answer to the hon. Member for Kisumu Town West, point to the fact that you do not seem to be well prepared to answer this Question. This is because this Question pertains to what has happened to inmates at Kodiaga GK Prison in Kisumu. So, in getting up to answer it, you ought to have anticipated supplementary questions covering such areas as the capacity of the prison, causes of the deaths and all the issues relating to Kodiaga Prison. So, when you say that a question asking you about the capacity of the prison is a different Question, then obviously you are in error. So, I will defer this Question to Thursday, next week so that you have enough time to get all the information that you require to respond to it adequately, inclusive of supplementary questions. At least, now you have had a feel of what the House is like.
Mr. Speaker, Sir, I beg to ask the Minsiter for Education the following Question by Private Notice. (a) Does the Government consider regional balance in admitting students to public teacher training colleges? (b) Could the Minister table the per-college list of admissions to public teacher training colleges for the year 2009 and provide a breakdown of the admissions on constituency basis?
Mr. Speaker, Sir, I beg to reply.
(a) Regional balance is considered in admissions to public teachers training colleges. Admissions are determined by the needs for all regions and capacity of the colleges. The quota for each district is calculated by using this approved formula. The district approved teacher establishment plus district teacher needs, divide by the national teacher establishment plus national teacher needs, then you multiply that by the total vacancies in colleges.
(b) The per-college list for 2009 intake is here and I wish to table it. The process is still on-going and will be finalised by the end of September, 2009.
The hon. Member wanted us to give a breakdown based on constituencies but that has not been done. What we have done and that is the way we do it, is to give the breakdown, first of all, on the admission to a particular college. The admission to that particular college is broken down into districts, divisions and zones. The hon. Member can take advantage of this information.
Mr. Speaker, Sir, I wish to thank the Assistant Minister for giving us a very comprehensive mathematical formula on the admissions to the teacher training colleges. However, could he consider distributing the various slots on constituency basis in order to ensure equity and fairness, now that constituencies are the centres of planning where the Government is heading to?
Mr. Speaker, Sir, if constituencies are already districts, then it is there in that file because the intake in those constituencies that are already districts is based on that. If your constituency is already a district, go and look for it in that index list.
Mr. Speaker, Sir, it is a known fact from historical perspective that some districts are seriously under-staffed. Given that the teachers taken to the training colleges are meant to go and work later in those areas, could the Assistant Minister take affirmative action by deliberately taking more teachers to training colleges from those areas where there is under-staffing?
Mr. Speaker, Sir, that is taken care of by the formula because it talks of the teacher-needs. That is the shortage of teachers within that particular district. If the district is a constituency, then the intake is within that particular constituency.
Mr. Speaker, Sir, while I appreciate what the Ministry is doing and as a follow-up on Mr. I. Muokiâs question, some parts of this Republic have excess trained teachers. Would I be in order to request the Ministry to take those extra teachers to those other areas where they have a shortage and if not, is it necessary to keep on training P1 teachers while the Government cannot employ them?
Mr. Speaker, Sir, we cannot afford to stop training teachers. We shall keep on training teachers because we know we do not have enough. Even the trained teachers that are not employed, if we deployed all of them today, we shall not have enough yet. Regarding those places which do not have enough teachers, we try as much as possible to post teachers outside their districts.
Mr. Speaker, Sir, I would like to ask the Assistant Minister to tell this House what criteria is used in selecting those who are to be trained.
Mr. Speaker, Sir, selection of those to be trained is simply based on academic merit. They should have a minimum grade C (plain).
Mr. Speaker, Sir, I want to know from the Minister, because I know in my constituency and others, there are those teachers who graduated way back in 2000 but they have not yet been absorbed by the Teachers Service Commission (TSC). Why do we continue training teachers every year and yet those who qualified over ten years ago are still not employed?
Mr. Speaker, Sir, I have said that the teachers that are trained and are not yet employed are not enough for us in this country. Regarding employment, avail the money to the Ministry of Education through this House, then we shall employ all of them.
On a point of order, Mr. Speaker, Sir. You heard the Assistant Minister clearly say that the teachers who have been trained are not enough in this country and yet they are out there doing nothing. They are not employed. Why has the Government not been able to employ those who are not anywhere instead of saying that we do not have enough teachers?
Order, Assistant Minister, you need not respond to that. The hon. Member stood on a point of order and has instead asked a question.
On a point of order, Mr. Speaker, Sir. My point of order is that the Assistant Minister seems not to have understood the question. The question is; can there be a balance between training and employment so that the people you have invested in are not outside waiting? That becomes a waste of resources. So, is the Assistant Minister in order not to understand the question put to him?
Mr. Speaker, Sir, I understood the question very well. I also think that the hon. Member did not understand my response and I still maintain the response; that we shall keep on training teachers. We shall keep on doing our work until we have enough trained teachers. Today, we do not have enough trained teachers. It is up to this House to give us enough money to employ those trained teachers.
Last Question, Mr. Mwaita!
Mr. Speaker, Sir, I seek your indulgence now that the Assistant Minister has laid the list on the Table of the House. The Question should be deferred so that I get time to peruse it.
Order! This is time for Questions. If you are not satisfied with the answer given by the Assistant Minister, the purpose of this time is for you to interrogate him further by asking suitable questions that will enable him to give you desired answers, if not explanations.
We cannot defer every Question because an answer at a given point is not satisfactory.
Mr. Speaker, Sir, he has just tabled a document showing the list as required in part (iii) of the Question. So, I was seeking indulgence from the Chair so that I get time to peruse the list that he has tabled. However, could he consider affirmative action especially for Arid and Semi-Arid Areas now that he has given grade C (plain) as the minimum qualification?
Fair enough! Hon. Members, if you ask a Question in a particular manner and you receive the answer as sought, then you cannot complain that the answer therefore gives you a reason to ask for more time. That ought to be understood because part (ii) of the Question, for instance, on Question No.3 by Private Notice asks:-
âCould the Minister Table the list?â
The Assistant Minister has proceeded to lay the list on the Table. So, what wrong has he done?
Proceed, Assistant Minister!
Thank you, Mr. Speaker, Sir. Regarding affirmative action to ASAL areas, the people in disadvantaged areas, particularly in ASAL areas, are given more time to apply but we cannot lower the grade below grade C (plain) because it will lower the quality of teachers.
On a point of order, Mr. Speaker, Sir. This is not a serious professor.
On a point of order, Mr. Speaker, Sir. I never met this man in the class where I was teaching. How can he say that I am not a serious professor? I am not professing here. We are dealing with Questions directed to the Ministry of Education.
Mr. Abdirahman, Prof. Olweny is conceding that he was properly awarded the degree that led to his being designated a professor.
Mr. Speaker, Sir, the professor is the Assistant Minister for Education and what he is giving us in terms of information is not right. That is why I am saying that Ministers, whether professors or ordinary Ministers, must take work seriously in this House. I rose on a point of order because he said that recruitment for teacher training colleges in ASAL areas or disadvantaged areas is given more time when we know that it is standardized across the country. Is he in order to mislead this House by telling us that people in northern Kenya or the disadvantaged regions are given more time when in essence they are not? That is what I am raising.
Mr. Speaker, Sir, I will repeat that. I am telling him that we have given them more time. His constituents were given more time to apply than the rest of the country. We also know that North Eastern Province is much further away from the rest of the country to Nairobi.
Mr. Speaker, Sir, I beg to ask the Deputy Prime Minister and Minister for Finance the following Question by Private Notice. (a) Could the Minister state why motor cycle owners, including boda boda operators, are being arrested and detained in Kisumu and Mombasa for not having the new generation number plates? (b) Could the Government provide the plates in time and also grant a grace period within which motorists should comply, to avoid harassment and arrest of the operators?
Mr. Speaker, Sir, I beg to reply. (a) I am not aware of any arrests or detention of motor cycle owners and boda
operators as a result of the inability of the Kenya Revenue Authority (KRA) to provide them with new generation number plates. (b) KRA has adequate number of new generation number plates. There has never been a shortage of the same at any given time. All those who meet the set requirements and would like to be issued with the number plates, should be advised to contact the KRA as the number plates will be issued to them free of charge.
Mr. Speaker, Sir, the Assistant Minister, perhaps, has not been properly advised. At the moment, there are over 20 motor cycles laying at Kisumu Police Station. I am sure there is equivalent number in Mombasa, Nairobi and other towns. Furthermore, the police officers are charging between Kshs3,000 to Kshs5,000 for a breakdown to ferry these motor cycles to police stations. The police officers have clearly told us that it is their job to arrest the motor cycles owners without the prescribed number plates. The prescribed number plates are the new generation plates. It takes KRA three weeks to give a new generation number plates. Boda boda operators cannot afford to wait for three weeks. However, KRA is unable to provide the number plates immediately.
Order, hon. Shakeel! Could you come to the question? What is your question?
Mr. Speaker, Sir, could the Assistant Minister order those number plates to released immediately? Could the KRA give boda boda operators three weeks within which to have the new generation number plates? Could he also make sure during these three weeks nobody will be harassed or arrested?
Order, Assistant Minister! There is no question for you to respond to.
Mr. Speaker, Sir, I want to ask why the Government cannot license motor cycles and other boda boda operators because they ferry people and goods. It is important that they are licensed. Why can the Government not license these people since they cause a lot of accidents?
Mr. Speaker, Sir, the boda boda and motor cycles are very importance means of transport for the poor echelon of the society. The Government, therefore, cannot refuse to issue licences to them. The new generation number plates are issued immediately on application. It takes a maximum of three hours to issue the number plates.
Mr. Speaker, Sir, if the answer by the hon. Minister is true and he believes in it, could he kindly confirm to the House that no boda boda rider will be arrested for failure to have the new number plates when the number plates are being held by the KRA or sellers of the motor cycles?
Mr. Speaker, Sir, my Ministry has not issued any orders for arrests for those who do not have the new generation number plates. If this is happening, then it is not because of the new number plates. It is the Registrar of Motor Vehicles who issues the deadlines and gives orders to the police. As yet, we have not issued any such order to police to arrest any motor cycles without the new generation number plates.
( Mr. Linturi walked towards the Dispatch Box)
Order, Mr. Linturi!
Thank you, Mr. Speaker, Sir. I want to hear from the Assistant Minister whether he is aware of the dangers posed to pedestrians and other motorists by the boda boda riders. It is true that they ferry people and goods from one point to another, but they do not have passenger insurance. So, I want to know whether he is making any arrangement to make it a condition that before the motor cycles carry people they have third party insurance covers.
Mr. Speaker, Sir, the role of my Ministry is to change and issue these new generation number plates to boda bodas and motor cycles. It is also a requirement that the motor cycles have insurance for their motor bikes. Those who do not have the insurance are actually breaking the law. The law enforcement officers should deal with them accordingly. We cannot issue----
On a point of order, Mr. Speaker, Sir. Is the Assistant Minister in order to talk about general insurance for motor cycles when the question by hon. Linturi was specific; passenger cover insurance?
Mr. Speaker, Sir, I do not know what the hon. Member means by passenger cover insurance because when you have an insurance the insurance it is to the third party which is the passenger you are carrying and the motor cycle itself.
Point of information, Mr. Speaker, Sir.
Order, Mr. Olago! Dr. Oburu, do you want to be informed?
Yes, Mr. Speaker, Sir.
Thank you, Mr. Speaker, Sir. I wish to inform the hon. Assistant Minister that passenger cover relates to the cover of the insurance for the person who is paying fare while third party insurance only relates to the motor vehicle insured and not the passenger or the goods carried therein.
Mr. Speaker, Sir, he was just informing me. He was not asking a question.
Mr. Speaker, Sir, now that it is quite clear that motor cycle owners who are mainly the youths, for whom the main means of employment is those motor cycles or boda bodas, are being harassed by the police under the guise of being asked for these licences and also noting that the Government is one, could the Assistant Minister consider liaising with his counterpart in the Ministry of State for Provincial Administration and Internal Security and getting a general announcement that the deadlines for the new number plates has not been given and, therefore, there should be cessation of harassment for the boda boda riders.
Mr. Speaker, Sir, the police arrest boda bodas or motor cylces for very many other reasons. It is not just because of the new generation number plates. If a motor cycle operator does not have a helmet, he is arrested. But I will talk to my friend here the Assistant Minister, Ministry of State for Provincial Administration and Internal Security. If, indeed, there is such harassment it should be stopped. But I am not aware of that kind of harassment.
Mr. Speaker, Sir, could the Assistant Minister further please instruct those motor dealers---
I want to ask the Assistant Minister if there is any requirement for motor/ycles to be released by dealers without the necessary registration because that is also causing a problem.
Mr. Speaker, Sir, it is now a requirement that no vehicle or motor/cycle will be released without, first, getting the number plate. That is the case. I do not know whether he wants that to be reversed.
Order! Order, Mr. Assistant Minister! You only answer questions; you do not ask questions.
Mr. Speaker, Sir, my answer is that, that is the practice and it is the law.
On a point of order, Mr. Speaker, Sir. I would like to inform the Assistant Minister that---
Is the Assistant Minister in order to mislead the House because we know for a fact, and I can give him numbers of motor/cycles which have been released by dealers in Kisumu without the number plates being released? The number plate is held because of a loan. So, could he please, make a point of asking the dealers why they are doing that?
Mr. Speaker, Sir, if there is any illegal activity by any dealer, I think there is the law enforcement to deal with that because that is what the law says.
asked the Minister for Medical Services:-
(a) whether he could table the number, location and distance of district, sub-district hospitals, health centres and dispensaries in Turkana Central, Turkana North and Turkana South districts; and,
(b) what urgent measures he is taking to ensure that adequate health facilities are provided in the Turkana region, in compliance with Millennium Development Goals (MDGs).
Minister for Medical Services not here? We will revert to your Question later, Mr. Ethuro.
Next Question, Mr. Were!
asked the Minister for Medical Services:-
(a) when he will elevate Matungu Sub-district Hospital to a district hospital in view of creation of Matungu District; and,
(b) when the Government will provide sufficient infrastructure to the hospital.
He is here!
Prof. Anyangâ-Nyongâo, proceed to answer Question No.209!
Did you say Question No.209? There are two Questions.
Mr. Speaker, Sir, I beg to reply.
Matungu Sub-district Hospital---
Order! Proceed, Mr. Minister!
Mr. Speaker, Sir, I beg to reply.
(a) Matungu Sub-district Hospital is the designated district hospital for Matungu District---
On a point of order, Mr. Speaker, Sir. I would like to inform the Minister that he is answering the wrong Question!
Order! Order, hon. Members! Mr. Shakeel, I know that this afternoon, you may be in the mood of providing entertainment to the House but, please, refrain from any further comics.
Proceed, Mr. Minister! Answer Question No.209!
Mr. Speaker, Sir, Mr. Shakeel had something white during lunch time. However, I beg to reply.
(a) Matungu Sub-district Hospital is the designated district hospital for Matungu District in line with the recommendation of the local leaders. It will be gazetted as such when it acquires the necessary infrastructure for a district hospital. These include a theatre, a radiology unit, a 100-bed in patient service provision unit, a supplies services unit and a mortuary, among others.
(b) Matungu district is among more than 100 new districts created since 2007. The Ministry has received requests to upgrade lower level facilities like Matungu Sub- district Hospital to become district hospitals in all these new districts. However, the Ministryâs annual development allocation of Kshs300 million is insufficient to meet the upgrading needs averaging close to Kshs500 million per facility. So what we have is less than what we require to upgrade a single facility. In view of this inadequate budget, the Ministry will progressively prioritize construction of key infrastructure in the facilities earmarked for upgrading within the available budget. Such infrastructure improvement will be matched by commensurate deployment of personnel. Matungu Sub-district Hospital will be given consideration within this framework alongside other proposed district hospitals.
Mr. Speaker, Sir, I asked a similar Question one year ago and apparently, I am receiving nearly the same answer. What particular plans does the Minister have for this specific sub-district hospital? What plans does he have?
Mr. Speaker, Sir, the hon. Member is right. What pertained one year ago still pertains today because the Office of the Deputy Prime Minister and Ministry of Finance has not changed its mind regarding allocation of resources to the Ministry in regard to Development Budget. Indeed, the allocation this year was a carbon copy of the allocation of the previous years. So, we have planned to put in place the necessary infrastructure that Matungu Sub-district Hospital needs but unfortunately, Prof. Anyangâ-Nyongâo does not have the account to withdraw from to
On a point of order, Mr. Speaker, Sir. Is the Minister in order to mislead the House that it is Parliament that will provide him with money yet he is quite aware that it is the Executive that must prioritize and budget? In fact, he has a responsibility to push for the budgetary provision for this particular line item.
Mr. Speaker, Sir, the Executive proposes and Parliament allocates. If Parliament abrogates that duty then, indeed, the people of Kenya will hold Parliament responsible for abrogation of duty.
Order, Mr. Minister! You can see you are provoking additional points of order on that matter. Please, acquaint yourself with the budgetary making procedure and process; where proposals come from, who prepares the Estimates and what Parliament does because what you have said is not accurate.
Anybody else interested?
Order, Mr. Ruto! Sometimes you should let matters rest where they are.
Mr. Speaker, Sir, Matungu District was hived off from Mumias District and as we speak today, Mumias District does not have a district hospital. While I do not have an objection with my colleague asking for a district hospital, a law of common sense requires that a parent district should also be given a district hospital first before---
Order! Order! Mr. Washiali, this is Question Time! It is not time for you to critique your colleague. I will not allow turf wars to be fought here.
Mr. Speaker, Sir, when will the Minister also consider providing Mumias District with a district hospital?
Mr. Speaker, Sir, I think I have said time and again in this House that our aim is to provide every district with a district hospital. The people of Kenya demand and require that. Indeed, in our hospital reform system, we have planned to have, first, sub-district hospitals where district hospitals do not exist and then upgrade those sub-district hospitals to district hospitals. This is our commitment.
Mr. Speaker, Sir, however, the only way we can do that is if we have resources. We have tried within what we can to seek concessional funds. This year alone, we are dealing with 23 sub-districts and district hospitals. Subsequently, if we get more concessional funds, we shall continue to do so. The responsibility, really, is on the Exchequer to realise that health is a basic need and that these district hospitals are necessary. Therefore, it is for Parliament, when the Budget is read here to make sure that it is examined so that the Executive can be informed in no uncertain terms by the House of Representatives that these services are needed.
Ask the last question, Mr. Were!
Mr. Speaker, Sir, while I appreciate the request for a district hospital by my colleague from Mumias, this sub-district hospital has been serving the whole district. So, it has been there by right and by agreement by all the local leaders.
Order, Mr. Were! Could you ask the last question? I gave directions that I will not allow turf wars to be fought in the House.
Mr. Speaker, Sir, the Minister has indicated clearly that while a single facility requires Kshs500 million to be upgraded, he only got Kshs300 million for the whole nation. Why has he not considered giving some percentage out of the Kshs300 million to improve this sub-district hospital?
Mr. Speaker, Sir, I agree entirely with the hon. Member. Indeed, as I have said, all the sub-district hospitals have been prioritised. We are quite prepared to work with the Member of Parliament to get a certain percentage out of the Kshs300 million to supplement with the CDF to put certain facilities in Matungu.
Let me confirm to the hon. Member that we shall divide that Kshs300 million as fairly as possible and in terms of the need in each particular facility. So, this is not a lot of money and if you spread it too thinly, it may not be effective. However, in the case of Matungu, we shall give priority to a theatre, a radiology unit, a 100 bed in-patient service and the supply of other services, for example, mortuary. You will realise that we cannot do all of that, but we shall, in consultation with the Member of Parliament, decide what we should do given the allocation of Kshs300 million that we have for the whole nation.
asked the Minister for Medical Services:-
(a) to table the number, location and distance of district, sub- district hospitals, health centres and dispensaries in Turkana Central, Turkana North and Turkana South districts; and,
(b) what urgent measures he is taking to ensure that adequate health facilities are provided in the Turkana region in compliance with the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs).
Mr. Speaker, Sir, this Question has been deferred for the last two weeks.
The Minister is here and he will proceed to answer.
Mr. Speaker, Sir, I apologise to the Chair and the hon. Member for coming a little bit late. However, I beg to answer.
(a) In the Turkana region, the Ministry has three hospitals located as follows:-
(i) Lodwar District Hospital in Turkana Central
(ii) Lopiding Sub-district Hospital in Turkana North
(iii) Lokitaung Sub-district Hospital in Turkana North
There is no hospital in Turkana South District. As regards the health centres and dispensaries, these fall under the mandate of the Ministry of Public Health and Sanitation. I am sure that the responsible Minister can provide the information about the distribution that the hon. Member requires.
Mr. Speaker, Sir, while I thank the Minister for the answer, I beg for your consideration. First of all, in his answer to part âaâ of the Question, the Minister has said that he is unable to get information because he is in a different Ministry. The Constitution is clear that Ministers are collectively responsible to the House on this information. I will proceed only after the Chair has given me guidance on this aspect. It is this Ministerâs responsibility to get us the information because they are sharing the same building! What does he need---
Order, Mr. Ethuro! Your point is made. Mr. Minister, that explanation, seen in the light of directions previously given by the Chair, is not acceptable. Could you indicate when you will have this information to fully respond to the Question?
Mr. Speaker, Sir, I beg your indulgence because I am responsible for hospitals. I will do my best for the hon. Member to meet his concerns and requirements. If, indeed, I am expected to provide information from other Ministries, I can do so within the context of Cabinet responsibilities. That can be done if I am given time.
How long do you require to do that?
Mr. Speaker, Sir, I could do it within the next two weeks.
Fair enough. Is there anybody else who is interested in this matter?
Mr. Speaker, Sir, I listened to the Minister carefully and I think he did not answer the Question adequately. While he has given the number and location, the issue of distance has not been tackled and yet it is key in this answer. Could he give us the distance between these hospitals?
Order! Mr. Minister, I do not think you need to respond to that. The Question states: âcould the Minister table the number, location and distance of district, sub-district hospitals, health centres and dispensaries in Turkana Central---â The Question does not require him to give the distance between hospitals or distance from where to where. So, you need not respond to that question because I do not think it is valid.
On a point of order, Mr. Speaker, Sir. While you are right by saying âbetweenâ, he has not given âeitherâ, that is, even from one hospital to the next one. The distance in this Question---
Order, Mr. Ethuro! If you are confirming that I am right, then you have no concern over the response of the Minister. This Question does not ask distance from what to what or where to where. So, there is nothing out of order, the way I see it.
On a point of order, Mr. Speaker, Sir. The hon. Minister has told us that there is no hospital at all in Turkana South. Is it because a large part of Turkana
Mr. Speaker, Sir, that question is better addressed to the Ministry of State for Provincial Administration and Internal Security. Ours is to put up health centres, dispensaries and hospitals. If they are not there, we shall say so. The reasons why they are not there can be explained as I did before in terms of budgetary allocation. When it comes to bandits and creatures like those, there is a Ministry responsible for them.
Mr. Speaker, Sir, I am a bit baffled by the nomenclature describing hospitals, dispensaries and all these. Is it possible to have a sub-district hospital without a district hospital? If my logic makes sense, you cannot talk about a sub-district hospital when you do not have a district hospital. Is it based on geography or facilities? Which is which?
Mr. Speaker, Sir, it is quite possible to have a college in a particular locality without a university. The university can be very far from that particular location, but it means that there is a facility somewhere to which a college refers to as a university. The same is true of medical services. You can have a sub-district hospital in Turkana South District without necessarily having a district hospital in that particular district, but there maybe, indeed, within the medical zone, which is constituted by several districts, a district hospital to which that sub-district refers. That is why we talk about a national referral system.
Last question, Mr. Ekwe Ethuro!
On a point of order, Mr. Speaker, Sir. I am seeking the indulgence of the Chair---
Order! Order, Mr. Ethuro! You have been given an opportunity to ask the last question. If you want to proceed---
Mr. Speaker, Sir, I did not even ask the first question!
You will utilise this opportunity. If you choose not to, then we will proceed to the next Question.
Mr. Speaker, Sir, I declined to utilise the opportunity, because I did not have the opportunity in the first place.
I asked for direction about seeking more information. I expected further direction to proceed. I have been rising on a point of order, so that I can know whether---
Order, Mr. Ethuro! You will not direct the Chair on how to conduct the business of this House. As long as the Chair lives within the spirit and intent of the Standing Orders, I am afraid, I will not permit that kind of conduct.
I will, therefore, defer this Question for two weeks for the Minister to come with further information as was sought at the beginning in the first intervention by Mr. Ethuro. But you must stand corrected on how to conduct yourself.
Mr. Speaker, Sir, I oblige.
Next Question by the Member for Kandara!
asked the Minister of State for Defence:- (a) whether the Government has considered re-locating the Eastleigh Airbase from the city centre for safety reasons; and, (b) whether the Government is taking any other measures to ensure safety of the people around the airport, given the growth in population and economic activities around it.
Mr. Speaker, Sir, I beg to reply. (a)The Government has not considered re-locating Moi Airbase at Eastleigh from its current location. However, the Ministry is greatly concerned over the encroachment on land in an area known as âKiambuâ that is about 200 metres from the campâs Bomb Dump, contrary to international minimum safety distance of 400 metres. This is potentially dangerous, more so in an event of an accident inside the Bomb Dump, which could be catastrophic.
Secondly, the construction of tall buildings in the area has also posed great danger to landing aircraft as pilots have to dodge the buildings in order to align aircrafts for landing. The problem is grave at night as the buildings are still under construction and have no lights. The situation is worse for the inexperienced pilots, who at times veer off the flight path centre line as they approach the landing, and could easily crash into buildings. (b) The Ministry of State for Defence has written to the Permanent Secretary (PS), Ministry of Lands, as well as to the Town Clerk, Nairobi City Council, recommending the following measures to ensure safety of the people around the airport:- (i) moving of Kiambu slum dwellers to another site; (ii) stopping by Nairobi City Council of construction of all buildings next to the runway or inside the approach panel; (iii) stopping of further allocation of land around Moi Air Base (MAB) until land officials determine boundaries since some of the land could be within the cantonment area. (iv) We have invited the Town Clerk, Nairobi City Council, and the Director of Planning, Ministry of Lands, for a tour of MAB to assess the danger posed by these buildings and settlement. The Ministry is, therefore, waiting for the concerned Ministry to act as recommended. Thank you, Mr. Speaker, Sir.
Mr. Speaker, Sir, I would like to thank the Assistant Minister for attempting to answer the Question. This country is famous for acting when disasters have occurred. Recently, we had a near-fatal disaster when a light aircraft crashed into Nyayo High Rise Estate. What is easier to re-locate, is it the Airbase or the people around it?
Mr. Speaker, Sir, you cannot control accidents. An accident can even occur in the safest of airports. So, as regards MAB, that is the location.
Mr. Speaker, Sir, now that the Assistant Minister has said that they do not intend to re-locate the airbase despite the dangers that it poses, could he assure this House that he is confident that the military, as is constituted now, will be able to deal with any emergencies that may arise in case of an accident, given that the younger officers have been retired and the older ones are the ones running the military?
Mr. Speaker, Sir, my friend, Dr. Eseli, is a retired Major who served in the Kenya Army, and he should know that our pilots are very competent. Since we established MAB, the accident rate has been very low. So, I do not think the retirement of junior officers and the retaining of senior officers will have anything to do with the safety of MAB.
Mr. Speaker, Sir, recollecting what happened in Tanzania some two months ago, what steps has the Ministry taken to ensure that such incidents do not occur given that, that place is heavily populated?
Mr. Speaker, Sir, we are very much prepared for any eventuality.
Mr. Speaker, Sir, the issue of airports and security is extremely important to us. Do we have a code? What is the estimated height of buildings along aircraft flying routes?
Mr. Speaker, Sir, the landing approach area to the airport should have no building at all. So, the issue of height should not even arise. We have asked the Nairobi City Council and the Ministry of Lands to remove these people, because the landing funnel of the airstrip should be very clear. So, the issue of height of buildings should not even arise.
Mr. Speaker, Sir, what is the justification of having a military airbase right in the middle of the city? The noise made by the supersonic jets is harmful to the ears which are not protected.
Mr. Speaker, Sir, the justification is the decision of the Government of the Republic of Kenya. It will remain so, until another Government decides otherwise.
asked the Minister for Roads:-
(a) whether he could confirm that the eastern bypass will pass through Jua Kali Estate in Embakasi area next to Mugoya offices; and,
(b) what plans he has to compensate the owners of the affected houses at the estate which have been earmarked for demolition.
Mr. Speaker, Sir, I beg to reply.
Mr. Speaker, Sir, I have just conversed with the Assistant Minister. We have agreed that there is another Jua Kali which is not in his records. The housing unit which the bypass is earmarked to pass through will be demolished. He has just informed me that the bypass was surveyed in 1970. Could he avail the survey documents that show that, that bypass was surveyed in 1970 and that that land was Government land and not a private land?
Mr. Speaker, Sir, quite clearly that is a different Question. We have all the records, from 1970, of all the land that was acquired by the Government for the purposes of expansion of the bypass. This will be availed at the appropriate time. Members of the public can access this information at the Ministry of Roads Headquarters.
Hon. Members, the Chair is satisfied that that Question has been adequately dealt with. So, we will take Question No.368.
asked the Minister for Roads:-
(a) why the Ministry used the design of 1970 in contracting for the construction of the northern bypass without considering the changes that have taken place since then;
(b) why M/s China Roads and Bridges Corporation, a company blacklisted by the World Bank on allegations of corruption, has been awarded the single-sourced contract of constructing the bypass; and,
(c) why the Kshs8.6 billion loan from the China Government to the Government of Kenya is being paid directly to the China Roads and Bridges Corporation and not through the Exchequer and whether the decision was meant to circumvent the procurement procedures and regulations.
Mr. Speaker, Sir, I beg to reply. (a) The design used for contracting out these works was carried out between 2006 and 2007. (b) China Roads and Bridges Construction Company has carried out major works in Kenya for the last 20 years and was selected due to their previous record of work in Kenya. The Nairobi eastern and northern bypass project is an engineer-procure and contract project, what we call a turnkey project financed by the Chinese Government who appointed the China Roads and Bridges Construction Company as the contractor, in consultation with the Government of Kenya, in line with the mutual understanding of the two countries. It is therefore, a government to government understanding.
Mr. Speaker, Sir, it is believed that when two countries are entering into contract; each country tries as much as possible to safeguard its own interests. I believe that the Kenya Government in entering such a contract, should have carried out due diligence to make sure that the interest of the Kenyan public and the taxpayersâ money is safeguarded. Could the Assistant Minister tell this House what the total contract sum is, how much is coming from the Chinese Government and how much is coming from the Kenya Government? What is the rate of interest payable on the loan that the China Government is giving us to warrant single sourcing from a Chinese company?
Mr. Speaker, Sir, what the hon. Member is asking are the terms of contract and under what circumstances we were able to take up the loan. But that is an entirely different Question. The Question sought to find out why the Kenya Government gave the China Roads and Bridges Construction Company the contract, which I have clearly answered. Nevertheless, the terms of the loan are available at the Ministry. They can be made available on request. However, under the Public Procurement Act passed in this House, whenever we have a concessional loan, the interest of the country that is giving the concessional loan will be put into account and that can be verified.
Mr. Speaker, Sir, is it really in order for the Assistant Minister to evade my Question deliberately? My Question is talking about single sourcing. By just referring to single sourcing, he should have known that I intended to know the due diligence that the Ministry has taken. Why did they single source? Were the terms so favourable?
Mr. Mbadi, you have made your point, that the Assistant Minister has not responded to your Question as to why the Ministry single sourced. So, you rest it there. Let us hear the Assistant Minister.
Mr. Speaker, Sir, about 70 per cent of the funds for doing this bypass is coming from the Chinese Government. One of the conditions set out is that the company that would undertake this particular project would be a Chinese company. In this case, the Chinese company, in consultation with the Government of Kenya, arrived at the China Roads and Bridges Construction Company. This was one of the key conditions given by the financier that the China Roads and Bridges Construction Company should be contracted for the loan to be given to Kenya. It is given at very extraordinary terms, for example, there is a grace period. We are talking about 2 per cent interest. It is really a concessional loan to the Government of Kenya.
Mr. Speaker, Sir, let me refer to the statement that the Assistant Minister made referring to the payment being made in proportions to the China Roads
Mr. Speaker, Sir, I am not so sure I have understood the question, but if I may answer, it is not the first such project that we have undertaken. The project from the Jomo Kenyatta International Airport (JKIA) to United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP), Gigiri is one such project that we have undertaken under very similar terms. I want to assure the hon. Member that this is exactly as is stipulated in the Public Procurement and Ethics Bill.
Mr. Speaker, Sir, the Assistant Minister has told the House that China Roads and Bridges Construction Company was not blacklisted at the time this contract was entered into. Is it not true that the parent company was blacklisted on the 14th of January this year when the Kenya Government entered into commitment on 20th January this year? Our Government knew that this company was blacklisted by the World Bank!
Mr. Speaker, Sir, I want to clearly state that the bypass project is not a World Bank project. When China Roads and Bridges Construction Company was blacklisted in another foreign country, Kenya was not party to that contract. Therefore, the terms of the contract in this particular case included the Kenya Government, the China Government and the China Roads and Bridges Construction Company. We are not interested parties in the contracts---
On a point of order, Mr. Speaker, Sir. Is the Assistant Minister in order to evade Mr. Olagoâs question which was very simple? Is he implying that we are not bound by decisions made by the World Bank? The World Bank blacklisted the parent company for eight years for being involved in corruption in the Philippines. It is very clear and it was posted on the World Bank website on 14th January. The Kenyan Government went ahead and awarded a contract to the same company that was blacklisted yet the public will pay for the same.
Mr. Speaker, Sir, I think it is important that we clearly distinguish contracts awarded by the Ministry which are not subject to the World Bank procedures. The issue in question is about China Roads and Bridges Construction Company in another foreign country. They are incorporated here in Kenya and therefore, the troubles out there cannot be extended to the situation here in Kenya. I want to assure Members that China Roads and Bridges Company has undertaken major projects including the Construction of Mombasa â Nairobi Road and the Gigiri â JKIA project, many of which have been very successful projects.
Last question, Mr. Mbadi!
Mr. Speaker, Sir, I had a number of questions on this issue and I feel not satisfied. I feel the answer that the Assistant Minister has given is not satisfactory, but probably, I will pursue it in a different way. Mr. Speaker, Sir, the Assistant Minister has indicated that the design work was carried out again between 2006 and 2007 yet the earlier design was done in 1970. From 1970 to 2006, a lot of things have taken place including the coming up of human settlement, especially the Githunguri slums. Has the Ministry taken into consideration
Mr. Speaker, Sir, I have indicated that the bypass concept was started in the year 1970 but the project that we gave out was an engineer, procure and construct. This simply means you design, procure and construct. You do the whole project. We are doing what we are calling over-passes and under-passes in most of the roads. So we will not have roundabouts. In all areas that we are going through human settlement, we have done all the necessary mitigation factors and we will ensure that where we ought to pay or compensate, we will do that. However, where there is illegal settlement on Government lands, we will not compensate.
Hon. Members, because of where we are on time, I am afraid we will have to defer the balance of the Questions to Tuesday next week. We will now accommodate two Ministerial Statements beginning with the Minister for Foreign Affairs.
Mr. Speaker, Sir, I have a Statement requested by Mr. Olago, my learned senior. This was first directed to---
For purpose of record on the HANSARD, much as I said we take Statements I think the Order needs to be read out.
Mr. Speaker, Sir, I wish to make the following Statement:- Following the request made on the 18th August 2009 by the hon. John Olago Aluoch, MP, I am happy to provide an annexed record, a list of international treaties ratified by Kenya. I have already furnished my learned senior with a copy. The list covers all subjects of public life including trade, investment, environment, human rights education, culture, transport, communication, narcotic drugs and psychotropic substances, physical matters, among others. Mr. Speaker, Sir, I want to state that it is not possible to provide a comprehensive list of all the treaties ratified by Kenya in this Statement because it is quite long and it keeps changing and is scattered in many Ministries. The compilation is still on and I have informed my learned friend that an additional list will be provided to him. Mr. Speaker, Sir, information regarding these treaties is also readily available in the treaties database of the organizations under which these treaties were negotiated such as the United Nations (UN), the African Union (AU) and the East African Community (EAC).
Mr. Deputy Speaker, Sir, the list that has been provided by the international instruments is not complete, as the Minister has said. The fundamental issue is that some of these international instruments have such serious ramifications for our country. However, before the Cabinet approves them, they should be brought to the House for debate before we commit our country. Recently, the Cabinet approved the Rome Statute without bringing it to the attention of the House. Later on, the House ratified it by the domestication of the International Crimes Act. However, we are now seeing how serious that matter was, that the Cabinet entered into that without consulting Parliament. Under those circumstances, what is the Ministry doing to ensure that before the Cabinet commits Kenya in international instruments, they are brought to the House for debate and directions?
Mr. Deputy Speaker, Sir, under the international law and following the practice and precedence in this country, treaty-making and execution is an Executive function. Treaty ratification is an Executive function and treaty domestication is a Legislative function. So, the Executive negotiates and signs a treaty, and then brings it to the Executive, which is the Cabinet, to ratify it. When there is need for domestication, then it is brought to the legislature for domestication through Legislation. That is the standard procedure under the international law and has been the practice in this country since Independence.
Thank you, Mr. Deputy Speaker, Sir. If we agree with the Minister that treaty signing is an Executive function, could he explain to us why we are unable to trace the different treaties that have been passed? We have been tossed between his Ministry and the Attorney-Generalâs Chamber. Is there any plan for his Ministry to set up a database so that Kenyans can be aware of when those treaties were signed without reverting back to the database of the UN agencies under which those treaties were signed?
Indeed, Mr. Deputy Speaker, Sir, I said that most of these treaties are scattered around Government Departments and Ministries. A couple of months ago, the Cabinet directed that the depository of these instruments will be my Ministry. We are now in the process of gathering all of them from various Ministries and various Government Departments. Within a short time to come, we will provide a comprehensive readily available list of each and every treaty, whether ratified or domesticated or both.
Thank you, Mr. Deputy Speaker, Sir. The hon. Minister has told us that ratification is basically an Executive function. Has he contextualized the fact that, historically, the ratification of treaties or emanation of that law that allowed the Executive to ratify these treaties started in the last century when countries were being led by kings who considered themselves as sovereigns? I think the sovereignty of the Republic of Kenya repossess on Parliament. It is incumbent upon the Government to consult Parliament whenever it purports to enter into any treaty that binds this country.
Seek clarification now!
Could the Minister clarify the basis of the latest court rulings by Mr. Ringera that Parliament is the one that ought to ratify these treaties?
Mr. Deputy Speaker, Sir, I would want the Minister to clarify what he has said in his Ministerial Statement that the Executive has the overall responsibility to negotiate the treaty. Is that power over and above the normal power that the Government has on policy issues where it lays on the Table the policies for discussion and debate by hon. Members? If the Government had the power to commit the country without discussion, debate or policy by Parliament, then it would be executing without the mandate of the Kenyan people. Secondly, do we have a list of undomesticated treaties that require to be domesticated? Could we have that list?
Mr. Deputy Speaker, Sir, starting with my good friend, Mr. Isaac Ruto of the Mau fame, under Article 23 of the Constitution of Kenya, the Executive authority of this country is vested upon the President who exercises it in conjunction and with the support of the Cabinet which includes the Rt. hon. Prime Minister and Ministers. That Executive is vested with authority to negotiate and execute treaties on behalf of the country. It also has the residual responsibility and duty derived from the Constitution to ratify those treaties. When it comes to domestication, we have to turn those treaties into laws of this country and only this Parliament can enact laws for the country. That is why I said that the Executive function is to negotiate, sign and ratify. The parliamentary function is to domesticate. On Mr. Baiyaâs question, I have just provided a list here but I was humble enough to admit without being prodded by anybody that it is not conclusive. There are many
Mr. Deputy Speaker, Sir, the Government brings policy papers for debate and discussion before the House. On the same basis, why can the Government not have a foreign policy position on various aspects before concluding the contracts? One day we will wake up and find that some Executives have sold this country and they will even have hidden the cake to themselves.
Mr. Deputy Speaker, Sir, the nature and texture of treaties is very complex. Some are negotiated at multi-lateral levels such as the AU and the UN. It would be impractical for the Government to bring drafts here before they execute or sign them. The Government or the Executive is an elected arm of leadership in this country. It represents the interests of all Kenyans including Mr. Baiya. We must operate on the basis of good faith, good conduct and reasonable representation at all levels. The Government will at all time act in the best interest of the people of this country, including my learned junior, Mr. Baiya.
Order! We can take one more Ministerial Statement from the Office of the President. Proceed, Mr. Assistant Minister.
Mr. Deputy Speaker, Sir, on 20th July, 2009, Dr. Khalwale rose on a point of order to seek a Ministerial Statement from our office, regarding what he termed as harassment of reporters by the police. I wish to state as follows:- Mr. Deputy Speaker, Sir, the Star Newspaper published a story in their edition No.635 captioned: Fazul Dossiers Missing from Malindi 2008, Mombasa 2002. Police Lose Vital Files on A l Qaeda. In the main story that followed, the reporters, Andrew Teyie and Maina Kamore, gave un-substantiated details alleging that Kenyan police officers had either lost those vital files on the worldâs most wanted terrorist Harun Fazul Abdullah Mohammed, thus raising questions on the integrity of the national security agencies. When police read the story which, by itself, was termed as alarming, they launched investigations immediately on the alleged offence of destroying evidence contrary to Section 116 of the Penal Code Cap. 63, Laws of Kenya. Guided by the Judges Rules, they summoned the two reporters to appear before Senior Assistant Commissioner of Police, Mr. Nicholas Kamwende. Rule number one of the Judges Rules states:- âWhen a police officer endeavours to discover the author of a crime, there is no objection to questioning in respect thereof to any person or persons, whether suspected or not, from whom he thinks that useful information can be obtained.â The Judges Rules are rules of practice which act as guidance for police officers when interviewing persons, whether they are suspected of any crime or not. Those rules
Mr. Deputy Speaker, Sir, I thank the Assistant Minister for that honest answer. To me, it sounds like the Government is friendly to the media in this country. There is only one judicial system in this country. I am wondering: Why did it require the intervention of the Chief Magistrate in Mombasa to have those gentlemen freed? Why did the Government take those people to court when, in the first place, they were neither accused, nor witnesses or officers of the court? Could the Assistant Minister clarify why the police are acting in total disrespect to the law that gives insulation to reporters from disclosing the source of their stories? Finally, since the Assistant Minister has said that the Government has no intention of harassing the reporters and raiding media houses, could he also use this opportunity to apologise to KISS FM, KISS TV Station, Star Newspapers and other sister publications for the harassment that it visited on those reporters?
On a point of order, Mr. Deputy Speaker, Sir. Could the Assistant Minister confirm or deny---
Order! As much as the Chair is giving a leeway, this is a Ministerial Statement. You can only seek clarification!
Mr. Deputy Speaker, Sir, I want the Assistant Minister to assure this House that, indeed, the Government has not been systematically targeting Radio Africa Group from the time they exposed the error in the Supplementary Budget? The arrest and arraigning in court of those two journalists in court is just a tip of the iceberg. Their main aim is to close Radio Africa, the Star Newspaper and continue harassing other media houses.
Mr. Deputy Speaker, Sir, just a quick one. Could the Assistant Minister clarify whether this Government will respect and protect the media when it is carrying out its duty and, especially, when the reporters are quoting their sources? He should confirm today that the Government will protect the journalists as they expose the issues that are affecting the Government. To date, the Government has refused to release Members of Parliament who want to serve in the Opposition and, therefore, the media is really the one that is bringing out issues that are affecting this country.
Mr. Deputy Speaker, Sir, I will start with Dr. Khalwaleâs clarification. First, the reporters were not under arrest at all. They were summoned - and I have evidence which I can lay on the Table of the House - to explain their source of the story. I wish to lay the document on the Table for ease of reference.
Mr. Deputy Speaker, Sir, we do not arrest those who accurately come up with a story. The reporters were summoned to explain the source of their story. This is what the summons say: âExplain to the officer the source of the information on your edition No.635 of 20th July.â That, in itself, does not necessarily mean that they were arrested.
On a point of order, Mr. Deputy Speaker, Sir.
It is a clarification! The Assistant Minister is making clarifications. Hon. Members, you cannot use a Ministerial Statement to debate. If you want to debate or to scrutinize the Assistant Minister in the manner that you are proceeding, then use the right provisions in the Standing Orders. Do not do it in form of a Ministerial Statement. You can only seek clarification. He is clarifying now and you have to listen!
Mr. Deputy Speaker, Sir, I went a notch higher and spoke to some of those reporters. They indicated to me that they were not arrested. They were required, through the summons, to explain.
On a point of order, Mr. Deputy Speaker, Sir. The rules of debate require that a Member should not mislead this House. Indeed, by laying the document on the Table, the Assistant Minister is misleading the House. We know that in law, a newspaper reporter is not under any duress to disclose the source of his or her information. Indeed, Magistrate Felix Kombo ruled in a similar case involving Ms. Kwamboka of the Standard Newspapers when she was taken to court to disclose the source of her information. He set her free. He is misleading the House by laying a document on the Table. It is simply a document that the Government used to arm-twist those young reporters, so that they could feel intimidated and so, something illegal by way of disclosing the source of their information.
Mr. Deputy Speaker, Sir, you will agree with me that we are not in a court of law. Those reporters were never charged. I have evidence here to show that. The other clarification that Dr. Khalwale wanted was for the Government to apologise. He wants us to apologise for what and yet, the reporters were never charged? So, why should we apologiSe? I want to make it clear here that the police officers never intimidated or harassed those reporters. If there is any evidence to the contrary, I will take stern action to any police officer who harassed or intimidated those reporters. I said that no arrest had been made. I would like the reporters to be friendly in terms of accuracy. They should report accurately. Otherwise, there was no intimidation and there has never been any harassment.
On a point of order, Mr. Deputy Speaker, Sir.
Order, hon. Member! Hon. Members, when you seek a Ministerial Statement, you must understand that the Minister will bring a Statement. You might not like the Statement. You can only seek clarification on the content of the Statement. Let us live by the rules of the House. If you want to scrutinize and prosecute, then use other provisions.
Mr. Deputy Speaker, Sir, I am not challenging your ruling but definitely, there is an issue. This is because you were here when that letter was tabled regarding the utilization of the Office of the Prime Minister to collect Kshs50,000 from ODM Members of Parliament. The hon. Member wanted to know whether that was ethical, because we have a clear prohibition of utilization of the office of any Minister, Prime Minister or---
Order, hon. Mungatana! To begin with, once the Chair gives a direction on a matter and rules, that becomes the end of the debate. That has been the tradition of the House. Nonetheless, the Chair wants to reiterate again, that there is a cardinal separation of powers in a democracy. There is the role of the Executive, the Legislature and the Judiciary. The Chair will not play the role of the Executive. This is clearly a matter for the Executive. The Chair has appreciated that such matters will only be best dealt with by the Executive. Parliament or the Legislature for that matter has got to understand its role and the Chair understands its role. Under those circumstances, the Chair will not debate now as to whether or not there is an issue here that meritS action. The Chair does not want to get dragged into that. There is an arm of the Government that deals with that. If it has to be acted upon, it will be acted upon by that appropriate arm of the Government.
On a point of order, Mr. Deputy Speaker, Sir. With due respect, I had also raised an issue with regard to who can communicate to Parliament from that office. I did not hear a ruling in relation to that, and yet you alluded to it in your ruling. You have said that there is somebody styling himself as the chief of staff and yet there is a Permanent Secretary in that office duly appointed by His Excellency the President and is possibly the Accounting Officer for that Ministry. Who in that office should be communicating to Parliament?
Order! This matter is closed! But nonetheless, it is for the Government to determine who will communicate on behalf of the Government. Mr. Ruto, this is your third or fourth term in Parliament. The Executive has got its own prerogative. It arranges its process in its own way. The Chair cannot, will not and shall not determine who speaks for the Government. The Executive does that on its own.
Mr. Deputy Speaker, Sir, there was a ruling on that!
This is not a communication that was directed to Parliament. It was directed to a Member of Parliament in his capacity as a Member of a particular political party.
Hon. Members, if you respect your basis for being here and the traditions of the House, once the Chair gives a ruling, the matter ends there. You might not like the way the Chair has ruled, but you just have to accept it, because that is it. There is no appellate unless you, as Parliament, change the rules of engagement in the House. However, I do not see why you should do that because this is the way all democracies work. You have got to accept that! Next Order!
Hon. Oparanya was seconding! Proceed!
Mr. Deputy Speaker, Sir, I had started seconding this Bill when I was interrupted. I rise to second it. Mr. Deputy Speaker, Sir, the youth of this country comprise of about 40 per cent of the total population, which is about 15 million Kenyans.
Mr. Deputy Speaker, Sir, we shall establish the exact figure when we finish the census that we are undertaking. We have always said that the youth of this country will be the leaders of tomorrow. We have been saying that since Independence and we still say so even now. The youth of this country face many challenges. They face problems of unemployment, high levels of poverty, lack of finance and credit when they want to start
On a point of order, Mr. Deputy Speaker, Sir. This is a Minister in this Government and he is supposed to be seconding what the Government has agreed upon. But he is now already criticizing it. Is he part of the Government or against the Government? There is confusion here. What is going on?
Mr. Deputy Speaker, Sir, there is no confusion at all. I have been seconding this particular Bill and where there should be some amendments, they should be suggested. Obviously, this particular Bill will come to the Committee Stage. So, I am suggesting what should be looked at. I am not wrong on that particular issue. Do not forget that I am also a Member of Parliament. I have also personal interest for the youth of this country.
Mr. Deputy Speaker, Sir, the second issue is on the appointments. I feel that on the appointments, the Minister has suggested that she would appoint six people to the Council. I suggest they should be eight people, so that we have one representative for each province. These appointments should be given to the youth, so that they elect their own representatives. Those representatives should be forwarded to the Minister for the appointment.
On a point of order, Mr. Deputy Speaker, Sir. Even if you are to give leeway, this is not acceptable. He is either seconding the Government Bill or he is opposing it. He cannot eat his cake it. Is he really in order?
Hon. Minister, it is very unusual for the Government to move a lot of amendments. There is threshold on which you cannot go on with the Bill in terms of moving with the amendments. My presumption is that you are in agreement with the Minister on those amendments that you are moving now.
Hon. Minister for Youth Affairs and Sports, is that the position? The Minister is actually seconding this Motion and moving amendments; is he in consultation with you and is this the Government position.
Mr. Deputy Speaker, Sir, yes the hon. Member is seconding the Bill. The amendments will come during the Committee Stage. As I said, we shall take all the suggestions on board during the Committee Stage.
Madam Minister, are you satisfied that the amendments being proposed by the Minister for Planning, National Development and Vision 2030, right now will not be way beyond the threshold that is acceptable under our Standing Orders. Essentially, you will have to rewrite the Bill again afresh if you will move amendments that are in excess of the required threshold.
Mr. Deputy Speaker, Sir, the Minister has suggested we increase the number of youth representatives in the council from six to eight to represent eight provinces. I think he is in order to do so.
Fair enough! Proceed, Mr. Minister!
Mr. Deputy Speaker, Sir, let me assure the House that I have already discussed some of these issues that I have mentioned with the Minister concerned.
The Chair appreciates that you are also the Minister for Planning, National Development and Vision 2030. Proceed!
Mr. Deputy Speaker, Sir, the last point I have is that within the Bill, the age bracket of the youth is from 15 years to 30 years. This is not consistent with the Vision 2030 and international standards. Within the Vision 2030, we recognise that the age limit of the youth should be 15 years to 35 years. So, that is also another issue that I need the Minister to consider.
With those few remarks, I beg to second the Motion.
Thank you very much, Mr. Deputy Speaker, Sir, for allowing me to join my sons in this discussion because I too I am concerned about their welfare.
Mr. Deputy Speaker, Sir, this Bill has come at the right time. It has come at the right time because the Government has initiated many programmes for the youth. There is the Youth Enterprise Development Fund (YEDF), creation of centres of excellence, polytechnics will be improved and others set ups. There is genuine concern about the future and welfare of the youth within the Government. I, therefore, want to support these proposals and volunteer some suggestions as to how the service to the youth could be improved.
Mr. Deputy Speaker, Sir, I have had an occasion to discuss with the Minister about certain thoughts that I have. For example, it is my opinion that the current groupings of youths, so that they can benefit from the Fund has to be improved. New ideas must be injected into it. I hope the Minister will consider in effect, actually spending money to hire a consultant who will identify the inclinations and vocations that the youth hold. By so doing, the youth of this country will be grouped according to their vocations and not because the Youth Officer in a given constituency wants certain youth to form a group. Let us identify those who are interested in football, so that we can invest in football throughout the country. Let us identify those who are interested in agriculture and polytechnics; we assume that all the youth are interested in them. Let them identify those who will fit according to their inclinations, and so on and so forth. The marathon runners are among these youth. We need to identify them so that as we invest in sports, we are being specific and not generalising the ambitions o f the youth. So, I suggest that this exercise is carried out. The youths should be grouped and investments made accordingly. Others may want to be trained as veterinarians. Let us not just get youth
Mr. Deputy Speaker, Sir, I rise to support the Bill. The Bill comes at a very crucial time when the youth of this nation are losing hope. The problem of unemployment and the high cost of living has eaten into their resolve to be optimistic and hard working Kenyans; that they have resulted in a state of despair. The youth of this nation, who are the majority of our population have, indeed, instead of being the greatest asset, being almost 70 per cent of our population, turned into a menace because of the hopelessness that has set in. You have heard many of our youth turning to gangs like Mungiki, Sabaot Land Defence Forces (SLDF), Chinkororo and other illegal gangs. They have turned to crime because they have been to school; they have failed to secure any meaningful employment or a way to earn a living and put bread on the table. Recently, there was a very sad case recently when I heard of a young man in Nakuru who was arrested with bhang. That young man was called Mukabwa. When they asked that young man to give his defence, he told the magistrate that he had to smoke bhang because unless he did so, he would not be able to earn a living. Every day, that young man has to smoke some bhang and go and hit the stones very hard so that he could get a shilling per stone. You can imagine how many stones the young man would have to cut in a day to raise, at least, Kshs100.
Thank you, Mr. Deputy Speaker, Sir for giving me this chance to contribute to this very important Bill. At the outset, I would like to say that the youth of this country have hope today. The boys and girls in this country feel that there is light at the end of the tunnel today. They also feel that their issues are of national importance.
This is a very important Bill. When leaders all over the world always stand up, they tell the youth that they are the leaders of tomorrow and yet there is no more tomorrow. We have today! It is important for us to add value to this Bill. I would like to go straight to the Bill and talk about the functions of the Council. As has been indicated, the functions of the Council do not empower the youth. I propose that we have an additional function for the youth Council so that they can have a mandate to provide an oversight management of the National Youth Council kitty. This will enable them know what is happening in the national Youth Enterprise Development Fund (YEDF) because they will monitor and account for the money. They will, in fact, ensure that transparency is upheld in the usage of the YEDF money. They will also be in a position to make recommendation on the proper use of the Fund and the mode of distribution. They will determine what is really important for them and look critically at issues such as the mode of distribution of the money from the Fund. They will also manage and account for the funds.
Mr. Deputy Speaker, Sir, as the youth play these oversight role, they will ensure that no youth organization in this country is discriminated against on the basis of ethnicity, region, educational level or disability as far as the YEDF is concerned. Since we are empowering the youth, they will be in a position to investigate cases of misuse of funds, discrimination, bribery and corruption. They will also be able to commission research. Empowering the youth means giving them an opportunity to commission a research on their issues either with regard to disbursement of funds or other issues related to youth affairs.
This will also ensure that the youth, including young women and the disabled are represented in all youth activities and organs starting from the Youth Council to other youth organizations in the country. This Bill has failed to incorporate the YEDF as part of the functions of the National Youth Council. This is an oversight and it needs to be corrected. Under Clause 5, which is on the composition of the Council, many have already said that the Minister will appoint six people. I propose that we have eight people who will represent the eight regions. This will take care of the principle of inclusivity.
Mr. Deputy Speaker, Sir, amongst the youth, we also need to look into the issue of representation of disabled persons, girls and traditionally unrepresented groups like the urban poor, the homeless as well as those in ASAL regions. People living with disabilities, girls, the urban poor and homeless people have unique challenges. These are the only groups of people who, if involved in the National Youth Council, can critically address their issues, because they know what it means to be homeless, or to live with disability, or to be a girl child. So, this is a special group that needs to be included. We can propose to have two extra persons to represent that category of people.
Thank you very much, Mr. Deputy Speaker, Sir, for giving me an opportunity to also contribute to this Bill. From the outset, I would like to say that I support the Bill.
I am very proud that I was personally the one who moved debate, in the last Parliament, on the National Youth Policy document that paved way for the introduction of the Bill that we are discussing today. I want to agree with my colleagues who spoke earlier on the age limit. The age that we adopted in the National Youth Policy is 35 years. That is the age limit that is internationally recognised. Mr. Deputy Speaker, Sir, we are going by the data that 70 per cent of the population of this country are 35 years old and below. We are going to get the new
Madam Temporary Deputy Speaker, thank you very much. I beg to support and wish to thank the hon. Minister. I think it left a little concern about what we discover in terms of the state of this country. I am glad that the hon. Minister responsible for that, Mr. Oparanya is here. We have a very grave situation in Kenya. I think if one were to rate the issues we face as a nation, one would have to rate the youth question right up there, as one thinks of Agenda 4, issues of governance, the economy, use of natural resources and so on and so forth. I think this Policy, is a bit late but they say better late than never. I commend the Minister for bringing it here. Madam Temporary Deputy Speaker, in the 19th Century, a European thinker by the name Karl Marx told us that the key issues that affect our survival are land, labour and capital. Whereas one may not agree with Karl Marxâs diagnosis of the problem of Europe at the time or the prescription that he gave to this problem, one agrees with the diagnosis of the importance of land, labour and capital. There is one more thing that Karl Marx said that I think we always lose sight of. That was the problem of alienation. I do not think we have said enough about this problem. Any caring leader looking at our youth today looks at faces often fairly blank, of young people who feel vacuumed. They look as if they are rudderless. They have no one to look up to. They have no one that they feel they have faith in; they have no one they feel they can trust with their future. They feel misunderstood and misrepresented. This problem of alienation is a serious problem. I think that is why the young people have found themselves easily attracted to militia groups, to be involved in miraa and a lot of other anti-social behavior. I am not sure we have listened enough to the youth. I am not sure we have listened to the problems of the youth and their predicament and given them enough space as adults and as leaders to hear their problems.
Madam Temporary Deputy Speaker, I also stand here to support this Bill. From the onset, this is a Bill that has come too late. It should have come earlier and it should have assisted in fixing some of the problems that we, who are getting out of the youth bracket, have gone through. There is no way we can talk of the future without looking at the youth. There is no way we can ignore the youth and expect to have a future.
Hon. Members, there being no other Member who is willing to contribute, I call upon the Minister to respond.
Madam Temporary Deputy Speaker, Sir, I would like to take this opportunity to sincerely thank hon. Members for their very useful contributions. I want to assure them that we are going to incorporate the suggestions that they have given. I have taken notes of all the contributions from hon. Members. As the Minister for Youth Affairs and Sports, I agree that it is important to increase the number of youth representatives from six to eight. That is on page 308. That way, each major region in this country will be represented. I agree with the hon. Member who suggested that there should be elections of those youth leaders, right from the locational level up to the provincial level. The youth know their needs. Besides the eight, we are going to look for youths with special needs. The eight should include, at least, three females. We will discuss to see whether the Council could co-opt other people with specific desirable talents. As has been said, we know the challenges that face our youth. We know the level of hopelessness that our youth are experiencing because there are no jobs. I am going to take into account what has been suggested here. We will allow bodies like NACADA, scouts and girl guides to be represented in the Council. Those organizations have very solid structures. They promote virtues like honesty, trustworthiness and others. We would like such virtues to be promoted. I agree that those bodies should be given an opportunity to bring their representatives to the Council or the Board. Madam Temporary Deputy Speaker, the issue of membership is very essential. I am very conscious of the need for mentorship, maybe, because I have been a teacher. I know the problems that students have. When I was doing my post-graduate studies, I had an opportunity to interview the youth who had left school. I was looking at the employment related experiences of the young people of this country. That was ten years ago. One of the things that came out was that those who were mentored by businessmen
Madam Temporary Deputy Speaker, I beg to move the following Motion:-
THAT, this House adopts the Report of the Committee on Administration and National Security on the number of persons killed by vigilante groups in the months of April and May, 2009 laid on the Table of the House on Thursday, 30th July, 2009.
I wish to say that the visit to Nyeri East and Kirinyaga districts arose from the resolution of this House made on 28th May, 2009 by the Chair which touched on the dispute of numbers in this House. Ms. Karua, hon. Member for Gichugu Constituency had requested for a Ministerial Statement on 27th May, 2009 from the Minister of State for Provincial Administration and Internal Security. Arising out of the dispute over the figures, this House resolved that the Committee on Administration and National Security pays a visit to the said areas so that it could come up with the precise numbers of the people who were killed by the vigilante groups and Mungiki in Kirinyaga.
Madam Temporary Deputy Speaker, the Committee on Administration and National Security visited the said areas, took evidence from the Provincial Security Committee in Nyeri, visited Gathaithi Village in Mathira and took evidence at Gathaithi Primary School. The Committee also visited Kerugoya Town and took evidence from the District Security Intelligence Committee and the local leadership. The Committee further visited âthe Hagueâ that is, the Mungiki sect Kangaroo court located in Thiba River in Mwea Constituency. Other areas that the Committee visited included Kiarwi and Gathaithi sites. After that, the Committee took evidence again, in camera this time, from people who had certain fears as regards to their security, in Nairobi, at the Continental House. These were basically people from Kirinyaga.
Madam Temporary Deputy Speaker, what the Committee observed is that the
phenomenon in those areas is something that has grown into a hydra. There is a serious code of silence in those areas. Members of the public cannot easily open up. So, taking evidence from members of the public is not an easy task because nobody is willing to open up. There were serious contradictions that came up from the groups that gave evidence in public and those who gave evidence in camera. Overall, we realized, in our observations that unless something urgent is done, then the security of this country, particularly in those areas is seriously compromised. I wish to state that we further took evidence from the Minister of State for Provincial Administration and Internal Security, the Permanent Secretary, the Police Commissioner, the Director of Intelligence, Internal Division. Out of all the evidence that we gathered, the Committee concluded that 28 people were killed and 14 died of other causes, thus bringing the total number to 42 people.
Madam Temporary Deputy Speaker, the other observations were that a total of 29 persons were killed in Mathira attacks. Twenty two of these were slaughtered in upper Gathaithi village near the border with Kirinyanga West while seven others were killed in Kiraiyu Trading centre. Fourteen Mungiki sect members were killed by vigilante groups prior to the murders on 20th and 21st of April, 2009.
Yes, Mr. Kiuna. You have two minutes to contribute. You will continue when resume.
Madam Temporary Deputy Speaker, I stand to second my Chairman. I was with him and we visited all those places. In fact, I do not have to repeat what he has
Order, Mr. Kiuna! You will have the right to a few more minutes when we resume this debate. Hon. Members, that concludes the business on the Order Paper. Therefore, the House stands adjourned until Tuesday, 1st September, 2009, at 2.30 p.m.
The House rose at 6.30 p.m.