Hon. Members, we are back to our old habits. We do not have quorum. Can we have the Division Bell rung?
Hon. Members, we now have quorum and we may begin our business.
Hon. Obura, you have a notice of Motion?
Hon. Deputy Speaker, thank you. I beg to give notice of the following Motion:- THAT, aware that the provisions of Standing Order No.87 prohibit referral to the personal conduct of among others, the holder of an office whose removal from such office is dependent upon a decision of the House except upon a specific substantive Motion of which, at least, three days’ notice has been given; knowing that the principles of national security include the protection against internal and external threats to Kenya’s territorial integrity and sovereignty; also aware that the Government has the primary and cardinal duty to protect the lives and property of the people of Kenya as provided for by Articles 26, 29, 40 and 238 of the Constitution of Kenya; knowing that Kenya has suffered from a series of constant and brutal terrorist and criminal attacks all over the country which have been characterized by the dismal failure of the Government and the national security organs to stop or contain the endless loss of life and property; this House expresses its dissatisfaction with the conduct of the Cabinet Secretary for Interior and Coordination of National Government, Mr. ole Lenku, and censures him for his total inability and incompetence to secure peace and security.
I just wanted to give that notice of Motion that will, hopefully, be scheduled for some time tomorrow afternoon or latest Tuesday afternoon. Thank you. The electronic version of the Official Hansard Report is for information purposesonly. A certified version of this Report can be obtained from the Hansard Editor.
Hon. Obura, you are not in the House Business Committee (HBC). You will not decide when it will be scheduled, but you have given your notice. Hon. Members, as we are all aware, there is a schedule of approved responses to Statements. We shall begin with the Chairman of the Departmental Committee on Energy, Communication and Information; a Statement requested by hon. Macharia.
Thank you hon. Speaker. The hon. Member for Molo Constituency hon. Macharia requested for a Statement from the Chair of the Committee on Energy, Communication and Information regarding the amount of money or resources invested by the Government to the Geothermal Development Company (GDC). The hon. Member felt that the power produced by the company to the national grid is lower than the optimal power expected for the resources invested. In particular, the Member wanted to know:- (i) The amount of money that the Government has invested in the company. (ii) How many megawatts the company produces to the national grid. (iii) The staff establishment in the company. (iv) The recruitment policy or the strategy of the company.
Hon. Musau, I notice that it is a very long response. You will really need to summarize.
Yes, I will summarize. I have a response signed by the Principal Secretary. It will just take about two minutes because it is summarized. It reads as follows:- I refer to the letter of April 17th, 2014 on the above subject in which hon. Jacob Macharia, Member of Parliament for Molo Constituency, requested for a Ministerial Statement on the amount of money or resources which has been invested by the Government in Geothermal Development Company. I hereby attach a copy of the response letter from the Managing Director, GDC. The summary of the response is as follows:- (i) On the amount of money that the Government has invested in the company, GDC is 100 per cent fully owned by the Government and receives funding from the Exchequer based on approved annual budgetary allocations, grants and loans procured by the Government of Kenya. For the last five years, GDC has received a total of Kshs23.2billion in form of loans and grants secured by the Government and Kshs28.6billion from the Exchequer based on annual approved budgets. (ii) On how many megawatts the company produces to the national grid, GDC has 59 wells in Olkaria, whose potential is estimated at 409 megawatts. So far, they are not generating any power for connection to the national grid. (iii) On the staff establishment in the company, the Company has a staff establishment of 1,057, out of which 782 are posted at various levels. The electronic version of the Official Hansard Report is for information purposesonly. A certified version of this Report can be obtained from the Hansard Editor.
(iv) Lastly, on the recruitment policy strategy of the company, GDC is an equal opportunity employer and recruits personnel on the basis of professional and academic qualifications, merit and ability to contribute to the achievement of its objectives. The company has almost achieved gender parity as it is at 71 per cent male and 28.3 female, respectively. I beg to table the Report.
Thank you. The Member who asked the question, I will give you the first opportunity. That is only if you have any further clarifications.
Yes I have a further clarification, hon. Deputy Speaker. I think the Report by the Energy, Communication and Information Committee is quite brief. It is not an inquiry as I had requested in my Statement. It is a brief Statement that they quickly got from GDC. My concerns are as follows:- That company has so far spent Kshs23 billion of taxpayers’ money and we have not lit any single bulb in this country. We have issues with the staff establishment. I would have expected the Committee to probably give us a list of employees because we have claims of nepotism. We have various issues with that company and I would like to seek further clarifications. I would like to know the reason why the Board Chairman was hauled out of the Company recently. He was trying to get to the bottom of the issues such as: The Company being managed by the Managing Director single-handedly from his house with no minutes of the Board. Finally, we have issues of the residents where GDC operates. We have been having demonstrations. We still have them even now. I think this report is unacceptable. It is a brief simple report to try and answer my question and not getting into facts. I would like to challenge the Committee on Energy, Communication and Information. They did not call me to their Committee. They sent me a text message at 8.00 a.m. in the morning telling me to go to the Committee at 10.00 a.m. I think I had further information which I would have shared with the Committee. Thank you, hon. Deputy Speaker.
Hon. Eric Keter, you have further clarification?
Thank you, hon. Deputy Speaker. My concern is the impression given that the company receives about Kshs23.8 billion in terms of loans and grants and Kshs28.6 billion from the Exchequer. What is surprising is the fact that there is no generation of power to the national grid. I would like more clarifications on that.
Members, please, you will assist us if you do not put your cards to request to speak when you are waiting for a matter that is coming, maybe, after three other matters before. That is because, hon. (Dr) Pukose, I have called you twice since you are number one on my list here and yet, you are saying you are not interested in getting a further clarification. What about hon. John Kihagi. Are you seeking a clarification on the same?
I want a clarification on the cost per megawatt because we are told from the spent Kshs23.2 billion, only 409 megawatts are expected. That put to the cost of the megawatts at Kshs56 million per megawatt. Then the interest rate, because we are The electronic version of the Official Hansard Report is for information purposesonly. A certified version of this Report can be obtained from the Hansard Editor.
told some of the money is loans – that is from the Report I had seen earlier--- Some loans are more than 10 years old. How much has accrued on those loans especially given that this is idle money and yet, no electricity has been fed into the national grid? The other thing is the community interest part of the GDC because right now, GDC is busy drilling in Longonot area without co-operating with the local community. There is a lot of tension and riots there. We have seen the Narok-Mai Mahiu Road being closed because of lack of involvement of the local community by GDC.
What is it about hon. Cyprian Iringo? Is it a clarification?
Thank you, hon. Deputy Speaker. I need to get a clarification because the Statement which has just been read is quite superficial. There are problems which we are encountering in this country. In each and every corner of this country, people are complaining of power surges and people are going without power for many hours. The question is: What is being done to address this situation of the national grid which is lower than the requirements? What is the future so that we do not keep on getting into those problems?
I want to seek a clarification on whether it is true that KenGen is owned 100 per cent by the Government, knowing that there is a time the shares were floated and Kenyans bought them. Two, I want to know why KenGen has moved from where they are investing to Ngong Hills and started investing without involving the community, leaders and stakeholders in the area.
Hon. Deputy Speaker, I would like to seek a clarification as to whether the investment that is being made especially on geothermal power production considers the health impact assessment of the people who live within those communities.
Thank you, hon. Deputy Speaker. The Report from the Chairperson is not satisfactory. We are investing more than Kshs20 billion. If there is no output, we need to be given adequate explanations. So, I want to support my colleague---
Remember you are seeking a clarification, hon. Bett.
Hon. Deputy Speaker, I am seeking a clarification as to why there is no output from the investment made so far.
Hon. Arthur Odera, is yours a clarification?
No, hon. Deputy Speaker. I was seeking an opportunity to clarify as a Member of the Committee.
Then you will have to ask the one who was given that responsibility. Or you can share the information you have with him so that he can come and give it to the Members. We cannot have so many of you responding at the same time. Is that okay?
It is okay, hon. Deputy Speaker.
Hon. Mbadi, are you seeking a clarification? Hon. Members, we are almost repeating ourselves. The point on the investment with no return has been made.
Hon. Deputy Speaker, I will not go that way. My concern is the way this Statement should come to the House. This is because we are not supposed to receive letters written from the Ministries. The request is that you inquire into and report The electronic version of the Official Hansard Report is for information purposesonly. A certified version of this Report can be obtained from the Hansard Editor.
on. Therefore, I expect the Committee to have inquired and the report to the House should be from the Committee and not a letter from the Ministry. That is because we are not engaging you as part of the Executive. We are engaging you as a Chair of a Committee who has done some investigations and is now reporting to us. I have a problem. I do not know whether this Committee inquired into and is reporting on this matter. The other Committees should, in future, change the way they report to us. They should report to the House as it should be by telling us that they have enquired and this is the response that they have got from the Ministries rather than reading to us verbatim letters from the Principal Secretaries.
You are advised to take the advice from the hon. Member. Could we have a response to those issues that have been raised because there is still a long list of Members here who want to seek clarifications?
Thank you, Deputy Speaker. First of all, the Committee could only respond to a request by the Member. Some of the issues that the Member is talking about were never part of what he requested. That is because the request was straightforward. However, I will address some of the concerns that the Member and other Members have raised. The GDC was established to mitigate or remove the risk that made independent power producers not to have interest to invest in geothermal power. So, there is a lot of risk in geothermal drilling, which is a process. You start with exploration and then do appraisal drilling. The concern that there has been a lot of investment without power being fed into the grid is a genuine concern, but we need to look at the geothermal process. It took 23 years for KenGen to put 100 megawatts on line. The GDC is only five years old and we expect that company to put on line 100 megawatts next year. That is basically six years.
Why the investment in geothermal would seem a concern to some of the Members is that the company has only been able to get probably 400 megawatts. Part of the process is to do with what we call “appraisal drilling”. When you strike a dry well, it does not mean that you are not doing the right thing. It is expected that you will strike a dry well so that you can establish what we call the “production field”.
So, the money that has been given to GDC has not been meant specially to drill wells. It has been used to invest on the assets, infrastructure and buy machinery that will be used many times in drilling geothermal wells. If you look at what the GDC has been doing for the last couple of years, we have moved from dry wells to wells that are striking, maybe, 5 megawatts. Now, we are striking 10 megawatts. Since the GDC has already established that there is power in Menengai and has done appraisal drilling, we expect it to give us more and more steam as we progress.
Given the fact that Kenya is rated second in the world in experience in geothermal, I do not think that it is right to say that GDC is not doing well.
Hon. Deputy Speaker, there is a concern by hon. Eric Keter that GDC is not feeding any megawatt to the national grid. Again, this was not the mandate of GDC. The company was to explore, put steam on line and the independent power producers would come on board, buy the steam, produce power and feed it into the national grid.
As we speak, we have over 400 megawatts of steam that has been drilled by GDC. That is both in Olkaria and Menengai. The electronic version of the Official Hansard Report is for information purposesonly. A certified version of this Report can be obtained from the Hansard Editor.
With regard to hon. Kihagi’s clarification on cost per megawatts, again, you cannot take the total investment that has been given to GDC and divide it by the total number of megawatts. That is because part of the money is in infrastructural investment. The equipment and assets are still there.
Hon. Deputy Speaker, on hon. Iringo’s clarification on power surges, it is not the responsibility of GDC. That falls under the purview of Kenya Power. Probably, GDC will address some of those issues. We have many problems.
It needs to be noted that a single megawatt from geothermal has more value than 20 megawatts from a generator. That is because the cost of a geothermal megawatt is very small. Again, geothermal power can be fed to the grid 24 hours. However, the power we get from the generators operates only for four hours per day.
Hon. Deputy Speaker, hon. Rachael also asked about the social responsibility, but we have to confirm that one. That is a supplementary question that I will not be able to handle now.
The hon. Member also sought a clarification on the establishment. However, I want to say that the breakdown was not requested but we have it. We have 159 Kikuyus working for GDC. We also have 136 Luos working for the GDC. The Luhya who work for the company are 112, Meru – 56, Kamba - 47 and Maasai - 42---
Order, hon. Members! Was that part of hon. Macharia’s question?
That is what he asked in the supplementary question, hon. Deputy Speaker.
Did he ask about the tribal component? Hon. Member, was that part of your question? Can we hear from you? I heard you telling us about names; I do not know what the interest was.
Hon. Deputy Speaker, I talked about nepotism and I think what he is saying is in order. He is now answering the question. He had not answered it using the Statement. He is giving information that is not here, and which is what I was looking for or what we wanted addressed.
You wanted that information. Well, he has it. You can share it with him. That is the object of his argument or what he was looking for.
Order, hon. Members! The owner of the question was very clear on what he was looking for. What was he looking for? Was it the contribution of GDC to the national grid or he was looking for the personnel?
Order, Members! Can you not allow the Member to finish responding to the question?
Hon. Deputy Speaker, when you look at the list that I was reading, which shows how many people work for GDC by ethnicity---
The electronic version of the Official Hansard Report is for information purposesonly. A certified version of this Report can be obtained from the Hansard Editor.
Order, Members! Clearly, you are going into something that is extremely dangerous. What you have been asked in part (iii) is: What is the staff establishment of the company? Is that asking about the tribal composition? Hon. Members, please--- And, already, that information has been given.
Hon. Deputy Speaker, I only went to that direction because the Member requested that in his supplementary question.
Order, hon. Ken Obura! Allow him to continue.
Hon. Members, I only took that direction because the hon. Member requested that in the supplementary question. This information is now public and you will read it. You will then know how many Subas are there – if that is important to you. The composition reflects the diversity in the country and the population from the different ethnicities that we have in this country. Again, very interesting is the following:- How many people apply for those jobs when they are advertized? It is not the responsibility of GDC to cause people to apply for jobs when they have advertised. I also have a list of the people who applied for jobs since GDC was established. That information is tabulated in terms of ethnicities. Some of them, like the Kurias, have only had two people applying for positions at the GDC since it was established. Out of the two, only one was shortlisted and employed.
Thank you for doing well in responding. We want to move to the next Statement. Remember your colleague is an MP just like yourself. He may not have the details, but he has done well in his response.
Hon. Deputy Speaker, before I respond to this Statement, I need your guidance. That is because you are giving us conflicting instructions as Chairpersons of Committees. I need to respond to what my friend Mbadi has just said, that we are supposed to bring a report when answering a question. I remember that the ruling given earlier by the Speaker was that we are supposed to invite the Member who sought the Statement to appear before the Committee. When we come here, we are supposed to read the Statement as it is given by the Cabinet Secretary. That is because we do not work for the Executive. We need that clarification so that we are not seen as if we are part of the Executive. You could give us that clarification later. As of now, I will issue the Statement.
Order, hon. Members! Your consultations are too high!
Hon. Deputy Speaker, the other one is:- (b) What emergency measures have been put in place by the Ministry to repair and improve the roads to motorable conditions, especially during the rainy season, since some part of the road is cut off at Kiambuya and Magunga and between Magunga and Kigwa Market? I beg to answer as follows:- (a) The Minister has programmed to upgrade the Mbita-Sindo-Magunga Road, D210 to bitumen standards. Towards this end, feasibility studies and a detailed engineer design has been carried out on that road in readiness for upgrading to bitumen standards. The Kaguta-Nyambira Road which links D10 and C19 has not been designed due to funding limitations. The section of the road from Mbita to Sindo was tendered, but could not be awarded due to insufficient budgetary allocation to the Ministry. However, discussions are at an advanced stage and an MoU has been negotiated with the Government of China for funding of that road. Since the allocation budget is not sufficient to construct the whole road in one project, the project is expected to commence as soon as the funding agreement is approved by the Government of Kenya and China. (b) The Ministry has been maintaining those roads. In 2013/2014, the Ministry had given maintenance money to a tune of Kshs3 million for the two roads. On this 2014/2015 Financial Year, the Ministry has allocated Kshs10 million for the maintenance of the roads.
Hon. Mbadi! Order, hon. Members! Please follow your Standing Orders regarding standing in front of the hon. Speaker, between the hon. Speaker and a hon. Member contributing. Hon. Wamunyinyi and hon. Mungaro.
The Minority Chief Whip should sit down because they are between me and the hon. Deputy Speaker. I want to thank the Chair of the Committee, hon. Kamanda together with his Departmental Committee on Transport, Public Works and Housing because they, indeed, invited me to that meeting. We had a fruitful discussion. He has really been fighting so hard on this matter. The Ministry was initially promising to give Kshs3 million for the maintenance. Through his efforts, it was raised to Kshs10 million. There are two clarifications that I want to seek. I would like to ask the Chair of the Departmental Committee on Transport, Public Works and Housing to continue pushing this matter further. That road was, in fact, tendered for. The first tender was for 41 kilometres and I remember that. It was to cover a section from Mvita to Olano. It was discontinued because the Chinese Government had offered to give us funding for the entire section of the road up to Muhuru Bay. From that time, that road has not been maintained because the Ministry told us not to put money in it. We are waiting for it to be improved to bitumen standards. From the engineer’s point of view, the road has become impossible to maintain. It needs heavy investments. The Government has an annuity program and that is one of the roads that had been prioritized. The only issue that I will raise with the Chairman of the Departmental Committee on Housing, Public Works and Housing is to ensure the Government gives priority to that road when they start the process in July. The electronic version of the Official Hansard Report is for information purposesonly. A certified version of this Report can be obtained from the Hansard Editor.
Finally, the Kshs10 million may not be sufficient to improve that road. It is better than the Kshs3 million but it is not sufficient to improve that road. As it is today, the road is impassible. We are required to maintain 55 kilometers with Kshs10 million. That is a drop in the ocean. But with the zeal in which the Chairman has taken this matter, if he continues that way, then something positive will come out of it. Thank you.
Hon. Joseph Limo. Are you seeking a clarification on this?
Thank you, hon. Deputy Speaker. I want to say one thing concerning the Statement that hon. Mbadi is seeking. It is important to note that there is a big problem in the designs of our roads. The design that is currently being used on our roads is on the basis of a design that was done in 1982. A good example is the B1 Road, which is going from Mau Summit to Kisumu. The population has grown in those areas. They have not been provided with stages and proper parking. Camp David is an example of a place which does not have a stage for buses and it is causing a lot of havoc. There is a problem in the maintenance program---
Order! Order Members! The consultations are too high.
The maintenance of our roads, as hon. Mbadi has mentioned, is very wanting. The maintenance programme begins on the beginning of long rains. That becomes counter-productive because the roads are swept away. The Ministry must consider how their programs are running. If you look at the current roads, the markings are wanting. What hon. Mbadi has raised touches the whole country. It is important that the Ministry takes it seriously.
Okay. Hon. Millie Odhiambo.
Thank you, hon. Deputy Speaker. If you heard the response given earlier on by the Chairman of the Departmental Committee on Transport, Public Works and Housing, he said that when they interviewed members, two Subas were interviewed and they did not succeed because they failed the interview. The reason is that, if you look at the state of the roads, they probably reach the interview when they are very dirty, tired or look like they have come from another country which is not Kenya. What I would want to ask, because that is a road that also comes from Mbita, which is adjacent to hon. Mbadi’s constituency. Protect me from hon. Amina who is saying Subas are extinct. Hon. Mbadi and I have proved that we are Subas. They are from Mbita to Gwassi. My concern is that the Chairman has indicated that they are going to prioritize those roads. Could the Chairman assure us that, that road is not going to be granted to the Chinese because Mbita Bridge, which was granted to the Chinese, they have already abandoned it? There is no information about what is going on and whether there is any budgetary allocation. If we still award the Chinese that cannot complete work in the same neighborhood, how is it going to help us? I am hoping that the Chairman can also respond because that road from Mbita to hon. Mbadi’s constituency is a continuation of the road from Homa Bay to Mbita. Even as we are allocating money to those roads, The electronic version of the Official Hansard Report is for information purposesonly. A certified version of this Report can be obtained from the Hansard Editor.
have you, in the same vein, prioritized giving money to complete the Homa Bay-Mbita Road? Thank you.
Okay, those are the clarifications. The Chair!
Thank you, Deputy Speaker. I want to assure hon. Mbadi that we are going to put a lot of pressure on this. The entire length of that road initially was not tendered because the money required at that time was Kshs10 billion, which the Government was not able to fund. With negotiations that are going on, it will all be put together with what hon. Millie Odhiambo has said. On hon. Limo’s issue, I want to say that some designs are being changed. They have, in fact, taken long to be implemented. The Ministry normally changes the design to the current use. If there is a design in one of the roads in his constituency that has taken long, he can talk to the Ministry and agree. For hon. Millie, that is a project that needs a lot of money. Concerning the incomplete bridge by the Chinese that she mentioned, I am going to take up this matter with the Ministry. On the Homa Bay-Suba Road, it is one project which should cost more than Kshs10 billion.
Okay, I think we can now dispense off that Statement and move to the next one, which is still in your Department of Transport, Public Works and Housing Committee, hon. Kamanda. The Statement requested by hon. Muluvi. Is he in the House?
Hon. Deputy Speaker, this is also a Statement sought by hon. Muluvi, Member for Kitui East, regarding a bridge which has taken too long. I want to assure the Member that the problem was about the money and, as we speak, Kshs33 million has already been released and now, some of the work has started. By the time this matter came to the Committee, we were told that some of the structures that were supposed to be brought from Mombasa were on the way. I want my brother here to confirm to me because, already, one week has passed. I want to confirm whether some of those structures which were coming from Mombasa have arrived on site.
Okay, hon. Muluvi.
Thank you, hon. Deputy Speaker. First, I want to thank the Committee for conducting thorough investigations into the issue I raised. From the outset, I was at that bridge on Sunday - that is three days ago. I want to report to the House that what was promised to be en-route to the site has not yet arrived. Of course, I was also told the same when I went to the site; that there are things they are expecting from Mombasa. They had been cleared, but I want to confirm that they have not yet arrived. However, it is very interesting to see that the completion date was supposed to be November last year. The Committee investigations reveal that 65 percent of the job has been done and 35 percent is yet to be done. If it has taken about three years to do 65 percent, I do not think that the 35 percent will be done in less than one month. That is because the completion date, which is indicated here, is 22nd July, 2014. It is important for the Kenya National Highway Authority which gave this answer to be very accurate. That is because I am sure it cannot be finished in the next even four months. I was there The electronic version of the Official Hansard Report is for information purposesonly. A certified version of this Report can be obtained from the Hansard Editor.
on Sunday. If it is true that the things that are being brought from Mombasa will arrive, then, at most, in the next three or four months, they would be through. So, that is the position.
The old suspended bridge which was being used - and I am sure they have told you - was swept away. Children will, maybe, in the next two weeks, start coming for their mid-term and it will take them about seven to eight kilometers to get a crossing point from that bridge, which connects the two districts. That is Nzambani District and Mutito District. This is a matter which, hon. Chairman, you need to hasten and I will work very closely with you so that they deliver as promised. With those few marks, I am very grateful to the Committee.
Okay, you are not supposed to be making remarks; you are supposed to be seeking clarifications. Hon. Benson. Mulu, is it a clarification you are seeking?
Yes. Thank you, hon. Deputy Speaker. I just want to find from the Chair what strategies have been put in place to ensure that timely completion of projects is actually achieved. That is because the delay, which has been experienced in the completion of that bridge, is not unique. Many projects have been delayed and it looks like it is just the order of the day. So, I would want to hear what strategies are being put in place to ensure that there is timely completion of projects.
Thank you, hon. Deputy Speaker.
Thank you, hon. Deputy Speaker. I appreciate the concerns of the area Member, but I want to assure him that, now that there is money, let you and I push for this and see, at least, within the course of, maybe, one month, something has been done on the ground. I undertake to do that and push. The problem was that all the contracts for the last one and a half years have not been paid. In this Financial Year, money has now been released and contractors are now on site taking up the old contracts. I hope that is one of those contractors and because now he has been paid, let us see, within a month or less, if the bridge will be done.
On hon. Benson Mulu’s issue on stalled projects, I want to say that in the 2013/2014 budgetary allocation of Development, the Ministry was allocated Kshs20.8 billion. In the Financial Year 2014/2015, I am happy to report that we have been allocated Kshs56 billion and Kshs41 billion is for the ongoing projects. That is part of what Mheshimiwa has raised. I do believe now those old projects are going to be completed on time now that, at least, we have some money to go to the ground.
Thank you, hon. Deputy Speaker.
Okay, thank you. Hon. Yusuf Chanzu, is that a clarification because we are about to close this.
I just want to say that the explanation given by the Committee Chair is good. I just want him to assure this House that he is talking to the Ministry and those people who are involved in supervising that project. That is because there is a lot of wastage and talk about big monies but, when you look at the outcome or the results out of that, there is nothing. Like here in Nairobi, they go and do patching and are paid. But when you go back after one day, they have left big potholes. So, the quality of work and The electronic version of the Official Hansard Report is for information purposesonly. A certified version of this Report can be obtained from the Hansard Editor.
following specifications is what I want to ask the Chair to assure this House; that he is going to make sure that the Ministry takes this seriously.
It is true, and I want to support what hon. Chanzu has said. My Committee has toured some projects in the country and we have witnessed the wastage and alerted the Ministry to take the necessary steps to prevent that.
Okay, thank you. The County Women Representative from Nyandarua, hon. Wanjiku Muhia, you have not requested?
I had not requested hon. Deputy Speaker. I was waiting for my Bill to be reached but either way, I can introduce some people.
Yes, I am just talking of requesting to speak. It is okay. Go ahead. I have given you the chance.
I wish to recognize some guests who are in the Public Gallery, though they are not hearing. But there is an interpreter there from the Deaf Society of Kenya.
( Applause )
They are accompanied by Mr. Jack Owiti and he is a dancing interpreter as well. They will be with us in the Session of Persons with Disability Amendment Bill.
Thank you, hon. Deputy Speaker.
Thank you. They are welcome in Parliament. Okay, we now move the next Order.
Thank you, hon. Deputy Speaker. I beg to move the following Procedural Motion:- THAT, pursuant to the provisions of Standing Order No.256(1), this House resolves to exempt the business appearing as Order Nos.9 and 10 from the provisions of Standing Order 40(3), being a Wednesday Morning, a day allocated for business not sponsored by the Majority or Minority Party or business sponsored by a Committee.
This is a very straightforward Procedural Motion because we have Order No.9, where we want to reduce the publication period of the Appropriation Bill. Then we have Order No.10 which we concluded yesterday. It is just a matter of putting the question. That is because Wednesday is a day preserved for Members of Parliament, Private Members Bills. We thought that we have to bring this Procedural Motion as per Standing Orders, so that we get clearance from the House.
I beg to move and request hon. Midiwo to second.
Thank you, hon. Deputy Speaker. I rise to second. This is not and should not be anything controversial. All we are trying to do is to fast-track the Bills that The electronic version of the Official Hansard Report is for information purposesonly. A certified version of this Report can be obtained from the Hansard Editor.
have financial implications and we all know what they mean. including the Constituencies Development Fund (CDF).
Hon. Deputy Speaker, I beg to move the following Procedural Motion:- THAT, notwithstanding the provisions of Standing Order No.120, this House resolves to reduce the publication period for the following two Bills:- (i) The Supplementary Appropriation (No.2) Bill, (National Assembly Bill No.27 of 2014) from 7 to 2 days and;
Proceed, hon. Katoo.
Thank you, hon. Deputy Speaker. I stand to second this Motion. For the same reasons that the Mover has said, this is fairly a straightforward Motion that we want to discuss this Bill in Order No.9 possibly in the afternoon, if the House agrees with the Motion. Just for Members to know, this is about the Appropriation Bills of the Supplementary Estimates that we resolved yesterday, and the financial year is coming to an end tomorrow, being the last Sitting Day. That is because when we come back on Tuesday, it will be the first of July and we will have started the new financial year and, therefore, we need to conclude this business of this financial year today before we reach Tuesday, which is the beginning of the next financial year.
I beg to second.
Hon. Mbadi. The electronic version of the Official Hansard Report is for information purposesonly. A certified version of this Report can be obtained from the Hansard Editor.
Thank you, hon. Deputy Speaker. I see the Leader of Majority Party is worried that I may oppose this Motion but I am not going to do so. I want to support it but I want to say for clarity that the reason why we have to pass the Appropriation Bill by tomorrow; if we do not do so tomorrow, then we will have to sit on another day before 30th to pass it because the courts ruled that we cannot even pass the Vote on Account unless we have already passed the Appropriation Bill. So, the Appropriation Bill must be passed by 30th June; I hope that when we pass this Bill today or tomorrow then the President will assent to it over the weekend so that we have money to run the Government. Actually, it is not just the CDF. You know I heard hon. Jakoyo talk of the CDF. This is the money to run the entire Government of the Republic of Kenya, including the devolved systems of Government.
Hon. Cecily Mbarire.
Thank you, hon. Deputy Speaker. I also rise to support this Motion and say that time is ticking and we need to really get down to business. We are seeing a lot of stalled projects across the country like roads, bridges and many other infrastructural projects that we need to get moving. So, I guess it is time to do it; the time is now.
Thank you, hon. Deputy Speaker.
Thank you, hon. Deputy Speaker. I also stand to support this Motion and really say that it is time to give money to the Government, and do so at the right time. I want also to say that since the new dispensation under the new Constitution started we have really been progressing well. I want to encourage this House that we also try as much as possible to keep time in terms of bringing and passing Bills at the right time. We do not really need to bring a lot of Procedural Motions in future to reduce timings.
Thank you, hon. Deputy Speaker and I support.
Esther Murugi lastly. Members we need to move. It is just a Procedural Motion.
Thank you, Deputy Speaker. I also want to support this Motion; I want to say that time is of essence. I think we should stop telling people that we do not have funding. The sooner we pass this Appropriation Bill the better for us, so that we can now get down to work. When we go on recess in the next month we hope we will have some funds to do our projects in the constituencies.
Thank you, hon. Deputy Speaker.
I cannot resist Bishop Mutua, just lastly.
Thank you, hon. Deputy Speaker. I would like to add my voice to this Bill and say these are days of performance contracting and we would like to see inefficiencies being done away with. Therefore, the sooner we do our part the better for this country. It is quite in order for us to debate and conclude this job, if possible, by tomorrow, so that we can have money to do the business.
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Hon. Members, remember this was a Motion that had been debated and we were only waiting to put the Question, so that we determine its passage. Hon. Members, before you go out, can we please dispense of this agenda? Let us dispense of the putting of the Question of this agenda before you go for your committees. Hon. Members, you are not in the House. Can you please come back.
We now have a quorum and I will put the Question.
Hon. Mbadi, you have five minutes.
On a point of order, hon. Deputy Speaker.
What is it, hon. Millie Odhiambo?
Thank you, hon. Deputy Speaker. I would like to raise a point of order in relation to the Victim Protection Bill, which does not appear on the Order Paper. I have had an informal discussion with hon. Jakoyo Midiwo, who sits in the House Business Committee. He told me that the issue was raised at the House Business Committee and that the Committee directed that the Bill comes up for debate next week. It is important that I put it on record that the matter was raised last week and the Speaker had directed that it comes up for debate this week. I appeared before the Committee on Justice and Legal Affairs in relation to this Bill when the Witness Protection Agency was supposed to come but they did not come. Last Thursday, I went and saw the Head of the Witness Protection Agency. They have given me their amendments because the Departmental Committee on Justice and Legal Affairs is taking its time. Hon. Deputy Speaker, the import of my point of order is that the Vice- Chairperson of the Committee on Justice and Legal Affairs has indicated twice to the House Business Committee that they have consulted with me when, indeed, they have not. It is not in order for a whole parliamentary committee to misinform and mislead the House. The procedure is that when you want to delay a Member’s Bill, you do so in consultation with the hon. Member. If they had consulted me, I would have told them that because they were taking time, the Agency had already given me their amendments. The Government side, led by the Leader of Majority Party, has no problem with my Bill. So, I do not know why the Departmental Committee on Justice and Legal Affairs is fascinated by this Bill. Can, they, please, just let my Bill be?
Your point has been made, hon. Millie. Leader of Majority Party, can you mediate between the Committee and the owner of the Bill?
Hon. Deputy Speaker, I do not want to use the word “mediation” because of the current dialogue issue.
Hon. Deputy Speaker, I want to confirm that last night we spoke for her. I can confirm that hon. Millie Odhiambo’s Bill is one of the Bills that have constitutional deadlines. The Vice-Chairperson of the Justice and Legal Affairs Committee was there. The electronic version of the Official Hansard Report is for information purposesonly. A certified version of this Report can be obtained from the Hansard Editor.
We have told them that the last chance we are giving to that Committee is this week. We expect them to table their Report on Wednesday next week, so that we can do the Second Reading of the Bill.
So, hon. Millie, we spoke for you. You do not need to speak for yourself today. Despite the issues that you raised last week, last night we settled your matter very well. Even the Speaker has given the Committee a directive. Hon. Jakoyo can agree with me.
Hon. Millie, your matter is actually being looked into. Can we proceed? Hon. Mbadi can have his five minutes.
Hon. Deputy Speaker, I will take about three minutes to reply.
First, I would like to thank this House for supporting this overwhelmingly. I was pleasantly surprised that both sides of the House supported this Bill unanimously. Despite some fears that this Bill would probably polarise this House or divide it along party lines, the contrary happened. Therefore, I want to thank the hon. Members of this House.
Hon. Deputy Speaker, as I conclude, I want to say two things: First, the issue of Clause 3 is still contentious. It is on the suggestion that in order for one to benefit from this Bill, one needs to quit politics. That bit has been talked about. It is unconstitutional. Above that, you cannot ask anyone---
Those hon. Members who are leaving the Chamber, I know that you may have other business but can we conclude debate on hon. Mbadi’s Bill? We need your presence here for us to conclude this matter?
Thank you, hon. Deputy Speaker, for pleading on my behalf. If we do not have a quorum, we may not conclude this Bill. Quorum is there. So, can we maintain it?
Hon. Deputy Speaker, I just wanted to say that, really, asking someone to quit politics is unconstitutional. I have even heard hon. Members asking that we incorporate into this Bill Members of Parliament who have served just one term. If that is the case, Clause 3 will work against all of us. I do not think that anyone would want to be told to quit politics to get their benefits, especially Members of Parliament. We should live to the spirit of the second stanza of our prayer. I think we have taken this prayer just like a poem. This prayer has a meaning. The second paragraph says:- “Let your blessings descend upon us hereby assembled, and grant that we treat and consider all matters that shall come under our deliberation in so just and faithful a manner as to promote your honour and glory and to advance the peace, prosperity and welfare of our country and of those whose interests you have committed to our charge.”
God has committed the welfare and the interests of some people to our charge. So, when we make contributions in this House, we should remember there is a prayer we recite every morning and every afternoon.
With those remarks, I beg to move.
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I can see hon. Ken Okoth. Do you want to contribute to the Bill?
No, hon. Deputy Speaker.
Order, hon. Members! This is really bringing confusion. Please put your card in the order that you want to make your contributions. Is hon. (Ms.) Rachael Amolo here? She had a balance of two minutes. If hon. (Ms.) Amolo is not here, those two minutes are forfeited. Hon. (Ms.) Wahome, are you ready to contribute to this Bill? She is also not even here! Let us have hon. Dawood to contribute to this Bill. Hon. Members, we just have a balance of 55 minutes to conclude debate on the Bill. Let us have five minutes per Member.
Thank you, hon. Deputy Speaker. I would like to congratulate the Mover of this Bill, my sister hon. (Ms.) Wanjiku Muhia. This is a very timely Bill for persons living with disability in this country. What she has proposed in this amendment Bill will go a long away in helping our people living with disabilities get the services they require. They have been forgotten for a very long time. We have buildings, for example Parliament, whose certain areas are not accessible to disabled people in our society. With this Bill, it should be mandatory that every public place is accessible by the disabled. Not just to the physically disabled persons, but to even all those visually impaired, the deaf and the dumb. That is what has been lacking in this country. There should be a will to implement this kind of law in buildings; people should take cognizance of the truth that disability is not inability. It is not by choice that people are disabled; it is the way they are born or something happened to them. For example, they could have been involved in an accident or something of the sort.
Therefore, with this Bill we will have more information accessed by disabled people like what has been happening in the mainstream television channels. I think the Kenya Television Network (KTN) should be commended for having started a programme for the disabled. The other channels should be doing the same with the passing of this Bill.
Hon. Deputy Speaker, with regard to buildings, many of them do not have a provision for disabled persons to go upstairs. They do not have lifts and there is need for ramps; it should be a policy. Every new building should have provision for disabled persons to access every part of it. There should even be washrooms for the disabled. Facilities for them should be in every building. They have a problem when they need to go and answer calls of nature, as they cannot go to the washrooms. I think we need to make it mandatory for existing buildings to have ramps and other facilities for people The electronic version of the Official Hansard Report is for information purposesonly. A certified version of this Report can be obtained from the Hansard Editor.
living with disabilities. Owners of buildings should be given a grace period of two to three years, so that they can comply by providing for the needs of disabled persons. Also, media houses as well as the television stations should be given a timeframe of at most six months to comply.
Thank you, hon. Deputy Speaker. I wish to support this amendment Bill. I was supposed to second this Bill earlier on, but I was not in the House at the time it was moved.
Hon. Deputy Speaker, Article 35 of the Constitution provides for the right of access to information. This is also supported by the UN Convention on the rights of persons with disabilities; it reaffirms this Article. The right of access to information is a fundamental right; it ought to be enjoyed without restrictions. The amendment Bill aims to achieve something that should have been achieved a long time ago; the Act provides that owners of media houses ought to provide service; especially interpretation when news is being aired. This has not happened even though it is more than ten years since this Act came into existence. This amendment will require facilitate access to information by persons living with disabilities.
Many a times, it is seen as if it is a favour when something is done for persons with disabilities. It is high time we started providing what is necessary for any Kenyan regardless of their physical condition. It is a right to access information, buildings and any service; many times you find difficulty in accessing public transport and buildings. Even within this Chamber, the only place for me to sit is where I am sitting, right at the back of the Chamber. I cannot access the front benches. This also violates our rights; I have several times approached even the management of Parliament on this matter. I have asked them to make this place more accessible but this has not been heeded. Accessibility even of washrooms is also a problem; many other places cannot be accessed. For example, we cannot access the office of the Speaker, which is upstairs, because there is no lift or an access ramp. It is actually violating our fundamental rights of access to information.
Hon. Deputy Speaker, I wish to support this Bill and maybe, in future, we need to overhaul the Persons with Disabilities Act, to make it more accessible in order to actualize some of the provisions in that Act. This is because there are so many things in the Act that have not been actualized because it is not properly aligned in the new Constitution.
With those remarks, I wish to support and I say that this amendment has come at the right time and all of us need to support it.
Thank you. Let us hear from hon. Lenard Sang.
Thank you, hon. Deputy Speaker, for giving me this opportunity to contribute on this Bill. I want to congratulate the Mover of this Bill, hon. (Ms.) Muhia. This Bill came at the right time and I want to confirm that this is the time for people living with disability to also access information. This Bill has come at a time when people with disabilities have not been getting information for a very long time.
Hon. Deputy Speaker, as my colleague has rightly put it, this Bill came into being almost ten years ago. For this amendment, I want to confirm that people living with disabilities will have advantage of getting information just like any other Kenyan. I want to say that people with disabilities have had a lot of challenges everywhere in accessing The electronic version of the Official Hansard Report is for information purposesonly. A certified version of this Report can be obtained from the Hansard Editor.
buildings and accessing more other basic necessities. I want to say that this Bill came at a good time.
I want to congratulate the Mover because she came up with this at a time when we are supposed to align all our activities to the new Constitutional dispensation. With those remarks, I support.
Very well! Let us have the Member for Mwingi East.
Hon. Temporary Deputy Speaker, I am not from Mwingi East; I am from Mwingi West. I think that is a mistake.
That is how it is recorded here, so you may have to approach the relevant persons to indicate specifically that you are from Mwingi West.
Hon. Temporary Deputy Speaker, I have done it twice but they are not amending it. But I rise to support this amendment realizing that we live with people with disabilities and we know how they suffer. This amendment has come at the right time and we hope that when it goes through, we shall have all the amendments agreed upon. Accessing buildings is a big deal and we hope that a law will come up that will ensure that any building coming up has such facilities for people living with disabilities.
This is the time when people with disabilities should enjoy the life everybody is enjoying in the whole country. Therefore, I wish to support the amendment so that our people can live the way they want to live.
Hon. Temporary Deputy Speaker, thank you for this opportunity to contribute to this amendment Bill and support the Mover. One of the issues I have is that the freedom to information has been enshrined in the Constitution and, therefore, if we continue airing news, information and development projects, a lot of engagements including governance through our media houses leaving some sections of our community without the benefit of the information that is coming to the country or community, then we are denying them basic rights to education and information; basic rights to opportunities to develop and enhance their lives. Therefore, I think the law was not properly captured and this is a timely amendment by Member for Nyandarua County. I want to commend her action in bringing this amendment because we will provide opportunities for these members of our communities.
The sign language at this time should be mandatory in all Government public institutions for passing information. Right now, many activities are happening and people have been educated. The University of Nairobi is graduating young people with this skill and, therefore, we will also be creating jobs for our university graduates. In line with that, the right to information in this country has not been taken seriously because you wonder why even without the law there is nothing preventing our media houses and TV stations from taking it up, save that they have an option which the law seems to support. But you The electronic version of the Official Hansard Report is for information purposesonly. A certified version of this Report can be obtained from the Hansard Editor.
know responsible journalism and passing of information would require the media houses even as it were to pick it up; embrace this amendment even before it is signed into law and start employing people so that we can start seeing our stations using our language. I am happy to note that the leaders in that sector are in the public Gallery this morning to participate in this discussion on the Floor of the House. It means that they have taken an interest and they are proactive and would like to see how the House supports this particular issue. It is, therefore, timely and necessary and the right to information is enhanced.
With those few remarks, I beg to support.
Hon. Temporary Deputy Speaker, thank you for giving me this opportunity. I want to thank the hon. Member, the Women Representative for Nyandarua for this beautiful Bill. I want to congratulate her especially because I have heard the women representatives many times complaining that they do not know what their role is. I think it is frustration in terms of the work they should do and I am glad she is showing the way. This is what their primary role is: To represent the marginalized, the women and those who are voiceless in this country. So, I want to congratulate her. I was a Nominated Member in the last Parliament and I did a lot of work in this area because as nominated, my mandate was similar to their current mandate. This is what we foresaw even when we were coming up with the Constitution in terms of the roles of women representatives. That is why I want to give her a big congratulation for this.
I have worked a lot in this sector on mainstreaming what we call cross cutting issues on women, youth, persons with disabilities and children. At one time I was called, before I came to this House, to talk to persons with disability on the UN standard rules on persons with disabilities. When I went, there were persons who could not see but when I went to speak with them, beforehand I asked them to give me the materials that they were using. I was given the writing materials in Braille and for the first time I understood what it meant to be disabled because I was not able to read the material that they had written in Braille. I am not just saying it because it was really an awkward situation and it made me think that a lot of times we do things that are not sensitive to persons with disabilities as persons who are able bodied. I have worked a lot in this area. The organization that I was the chief executive of before I came here, the CRADLE Children Foundation has brought a similar matter to the High Court that the hon. Member is seeking an amendment. It is the CRADLE Children Foundation versus the Nation Media Group. The court awarded orders in the High Court. The Nation Media Group has appealed where basically it was to ensure that there must be interpreters for sign language for persons with disabilities.
I am happy because even when we brought this matter, the Nation Media Group was not happy with us because they were wondering why we were singling them out but we were basically using them as a test case for all the media houses. I am hoping that this passes because then it will not be a case just about the Nation Media Group but it will cover the entire media houses. I hope as we move on we will also look at issues that deal with persons with disability who are also women or who are also poor or who are also very old because they suffer multiple disability. I know that when you talk about disabilities and you do not package it, you will not see it how a woman who cannot see is more affected than a man who cannot see. So, I am hoping that even as we move on, we The electronic version of the Official Hansard Report is for information purposesonly. A certified version of this Report can be obtained from the Hansard Editor.
should start looking at issues of inter-sectionality. I would also want to congratulate the hon. Member because it covers a lot of issues in terms of rights in the Constitution; issues of freedom of information under Article 35; issues of non-discrimination in the Constitution that is the subject of the matter that was brought by the CRADLE. Even as I congratulate the hon. Member, I want to also blow my trumpet that for this work that I have done, I was given two awards by two organizations last week, one the Coalition on Violence Against Women (COVAW), but do I say.
Very well and congratulations!
Hon. Temporary Deputy Speaker, I stand to first congratulate hon. (Ms.) Muhia for a fantastic job, for remembering the less fortunate in society and people with disabilities. I want to say that this is very important and it is important that we recognize the people who are living in society who have various challenges including sight, physical and other disabilities. From the outset, the laws governing the buildings in this country should be amended so that it will be made mandatory that before you construct a building, you must show in your design specific provisions made for people with disability to access the buildings. We also want to say that it is important for this country to recognize the importance of ensuring that people with disabilities have a special entrance and seats in various public transport facilities. When it comes to communication, other than at a television--- We want to encourage both the national Government and the county governments to work together to ensure that at various county governments’ headquarters, we have specific centers for people with disability. They should provide areas for proper communication in line with Article 35 on access to information. They should be able to walk in and access internet, the television and so on free of charge. If any person with disability requires specific assistance, for instance accessing various Government services, these centers will ensure that they get such assistance. People with disability really struggle in major towns to cross roads and look for offices; it is very bad. In view of what the Government is doing in Huduma centers, I would actually urge this House and the Government to ensure that these centers have specific counters for people with disabilities so that their needs are catered for very quickly. Finally, you realize that people with disabilities have special needs to be taken care of; in fact, those with serious disability can be put under care in those centers. They should have an option of either going home or staying there. The centres could become their special homes. Again, we have various schools in this country which cater for people with disabilities. They are, however, not catered for in a special way. I want to recognize the contribution of those schools; I want to urge that we have a special budgetary allocation for those schools and for provision of special washrooms for these people. You know they really get into trouble. It is not said loudly but I am sure that when they look for washrooms they face a big challenge. I thank you for this opportunity and, once again, I thank hon. Muhia for bringing this Bill; I want to urge the House to really support it.
Very well; let us have hon. (Bishop) Mutua. The electronic version of the Official Hansard Report is for information purposesonly. A certified version of this Report can be obtained from the Hansard Editor.
Thank you very much, hon. Speaker. I would like to start by saying that information empowers people. Every time we deny people information, we actually disempower them. This Bill is seeking to empower a certain section of the population of this country. When we are talking about disability issues, we are talking about serious issues. In 1993, I tried to import a car and I was seeking an exemption. The question I was asked by the people who were in the revenue authorities was: “Are you going to be specifically the one driving the car so that we can tax-exempt it for you?” It took me a lot of time to show that I could not drive that time, and that I would get someone to drive the car. These are some of the insensitivities that affect the disability sector. We are talking about empowering people and understanding disability issues. Even the Civil Service can begin to offer service to the disability sector in a more effective way. This Bill is actually like a tip of the iceberg. There are many other major issues that will require to be addressed. Therefore, this is a very good start; I want to congratulate our sister for giving us a starting point. But this is not all; we would like to see a scenario where the sign language is actually a compulsory language taught from class one, all the way through, so that people can communicate. The Uwezo Fund is going to groups. How hard is it to form a group of the disabled? Are we saying that we want more disabled people, so that they can form a group? You might find in a village two or three disabled people who want to access the Uwezo Fund; they may be told to be in a group; how do they form a group? They cannot even meet every now and then. We need to become sensitive to the disability and tailor services to that category. We are talking about issues of access and inclusion. The disability sector is actually excluded from very many things. We need to become alive to the disability sector; it is actually excluded from very many things; very many little things are not done for the disabled. We need to become alive to disability challenges and model our system and services to those in that category. As I conclude, if you look at our services at our airports--- Many times you will find at an airport people are not ready to help the disabled. When a disabled arrives he or she has to wait for a long time for somebody to help them. This wastes time and makes us feel excluded. I would like to see sensitivity all the way through and everywhere where services are given; disability matters must be brought on board, so that our people can feel they are also benefiting from the advancement that we are making as a nation. This Bill gives us the starting point. Thank you very much for the opportunity.
Very well; let us have the hon. Member for Central Imenti.
Thank you, hon. Temporary Deputy Speaker. I congratulate the Mover of this Bill. It is very timely. It was only the other day when one of senior citizens in this country was denied some service at the airport by one of the airlines. When people read about that, they asked whether the disabled have no room in this country to participate in its affairs and also to do things. The Mover has brought in this Bill at the right time, I support it and further say that county governments should look at the example of the county government of Nairobi; it has created parking spaces for the disabled. Other counties should also have parking spaces for the disabled. Banks too The electronic version of the Official Hansard Report is for information purposesonly. A certified version of this Report can be obtained from the Hansard Editor.
should have spaces for the disabled, so that they get service instead of queuing all the time. They should look at interest rates. If they are disabled, they are not able to work like people who are not disabled. Interest rates should be checked. Even Members of Parliament who are disabled should be given mortgages here at no interest rates. The disabled should be taken care of at all levels. Sign language should be taught from primary school all through. I support this Bill and say that we should be the example. People should learn from here. When the disabled seek to lead departments and committees we should allow them to lead us; we should give them posts, so that they can see that Parliament really practises what we say here. With that, I support the Bill.
Thank you very much, hon. Temporary Deputy Speaker for giving me this opportunity. It is my humble desire that this nation---
Order, hon. Mitaru! What is it hon. Okoth?
On a point of order, hon. Temporary Deputy Speaker. I have always indicated that disability is not inability. Is it in order for Members of this House to consistently use the word “disabled” when we know the proper term is “people with disabilities”? Having disability does not make you disabled. We have very many able Members in this House. I think you should rule it out of order for Members of this House to use the word “disabled”. They should say “people with disabilities”.
I will actually rule you out of order. I think that is just a description. I think there should be no major issue whichever language somebody wants to use as long as it describes a certain condition. I think there is no major issue.
Hon. Temporary Deputy Speaker, the hon. Member is correct.
I want to start by congratulating my sister---
What are you saying? Are you saying that hon. Okoth is correct? I have just ruled that he is not correct. Are you challenging the Chair?
Hon. Temporary Deputy Speaker, both of you are right.
Hon. Temporary Deputy Speaker, as I congratulate my sister for bringing this Bill, I want to tell Kenyans today that this is the best thing that ever happened to this country. I believe that almost 10 per cent of our population has disability. I have trained children in both high schools and primary schools together with their parents and teachers on life skills. My saddest day was when I went to those schools and found children who wanted to use facilities, particularly washrooms, stranded. Our rural areas really need this Bill to ensure that persons with disabilities are taken care of. This should start with us here in Parliament.
I was very sad when the Member of Parliament seated there said that he can only access the Speaker by the Speaker going to where he is. It is very sad that even here in The electronic version of the Official Hansard Report is for information purposesonly. A certified version of this Report can be obtained from the Hansard Editor.
Nairobi people with disabilities are not able to access places, yet such places are only two or three minutes’ walk away from where they are.
I support this Bill; I believe that it should not just be about buildings, Braille or sign language. We should look after every child. Many parents do not take their children to school because nobody knows how to take care of them. Many people will not get jobs because there are no facilities. Many disabled people, particularly those with hearing impairment, will not attend seminars or workshops because there is nobody to interpret the language used for them. We should start with ourselves in this House and make sure that people who represent those with disabilities--- It is not all the time that you are born with a disability; many people get hurt and become disabled. Some of them get sick and lose their eyesight. Some get sick and lose their hearing capacity. Therefore, we should know that all of us cannot remain the way we are. We can be normal today and tomorrow become disabled. So, we should work very hard and make sure that this Bill---
Your time is over. Let us have the Member for Likuyani.
Thank you, hon. Temporary Deputy Speaker. Let me start off by also congratulating the Mover of the Bill. I would like to go a little further and say that for us to be able to properly, adequately and comprehensively deal with the issue of people living with disabilities, we need to start from the beginning. The beginning means parents and education. My plea to parents out there is that if you have a child who has disability, please make sure that this child gets all the opportunities available. Let us make sure that our institutions have facilities to be able to cater for these children.
Why do I say so? I say so because we have seen great people in this country and in the world excelling in areas where even people who are 100 per cent able have not excelled. I have in mind, for example, my mentor – the doctor who made me a gynecologist, the late Dr. Elon Wameyo. He was somebody who became disabled along the way but his parents made sure that he went to school and attained the highest level of education in the field of medicine. He taught me gynecology like nobody else has ever done. For those who can remember, one time, he also represented Mumias Constituency in this august House.
I am thinking of people like the double amputee in South Africa. That is the one who has been in the news lately for all the wrong reasons. However, he has excelled in his field of athletics.
I am also thinking of people like Stevie Wonder, who was a great musician because his parents and the community at that time gave him the opportunity to attain the highest level in his field. So, my plea is to parents; make sure that you do not hide your children because they are born with either physical or mental disability. In our education system, let us open avenues for people with disabilities, so that they can attain the highest level in whatever field they are.
Hon. Temporary Deputy Speaker, as I conclude I would like to, for once, congratulate the Jubilee Government for coming up with this programme under which they are giving one-third opportunities to the youth. I can see Mhe. Sakaja is looking at me. I would like to congratulate his Government for giving one-third opportunities such The electronic version of the Official Hansard Report is for information purposesonly. A certified version of this Report can be obtained from the Hansard Editor.
as contracts, procurement and everything else to the youth, women and people with disabilities.
I concur with all the Members who have contributed. Let us make sure that our buildings have conducive environment for people with disabilities to operate in. Let us make sure that our schools have opportunities for these people. Let me also congratulate hon. Member for moving this Bill. I hope that everybody will support it.
Thank you, hon. Temporary Deputy Speaker.
Very well. Let us have hon. Sakaja return the favour.
Hon. Temporary Deputy Speaker, a first class country can never have a second class citizen. That, indeed, is our mantra at the Joint Committee on National Cohesion and Equal Opportunity; we look at everything to make sure that every Kenyan, no matter their status, where they come from, their physical abilities and ethnicity gets equal opportunities in this country. I commend the hon. Member for bringing this Bill. For a long time, people living with physical challenges have not been able to really feel that they are in the mainstream of our political, social and economic life in this country. That has also been the case with the youth and women in many respects. I would like to commend this House for overwhelmingly passing the Bill that I brought to this House to ensure that 30 per cent of all Government procurement goes to youth, women and people with disabilities. About one month-and-a-half ago the Joint Committee on National Cohesion and Equal Opportunity undertook a study tour to the USA to look at issues of both cohesion and equal opportunities. One of the Members of the Committee, Senator Omondi, did not want to come back. This was because in the USA they have taken it upon themselves, very deliberately, to address issues of people living with disabilities not as a by the way, but as a matter of priority. Every pavement in the USA has a ramp. This is in the law. You cannot have a pavement which somebody with a wheelchair cannot access. Every bus in the USA used for public transport must have a door of a certain width, so that if somebody has a wheelchair they can access the bus. The law prohibits discrimination on those grounds even by those offering public transport. I would like to inform the House and the Member that the Joint Committee is working on a Bill for access by persons with disabilities. We have had very many embarrassing situations even where Members of Parliament cannot access facilities. I have heard it being discussed it here. We actually are currently doing investigations. We had a complaint in the media; Bishop Jackson Kosgey alleged to have been mistreated by one of our airlines, Fly 540 – I can mention names because this matter is in the public domain. We have been having hearings not just to take retributive action--- We have also listened to the Kenya Airports Authority, the Bishop and the management of the airline to agree on the best way to provide facilities, and on who is to provide those facilities among hotels, airlines, public buildings or even this Parliament. Hon. Temporary Deputy Speaker, you might be aware that when hon. (Ms.) Ghati got injured, she could no longer access the House Business Committee room because there was no way she could get there on a wheelchair. We need to think very critically on the proactive measures we need to take to provide equal opportunities for people The electronic version of the Official Hansard Report is for information purposesonly. A certified version of this Report can be obtained from the Hansard Editor.
living with disabilities, especially in the area of access. I urge the House to support that Bill once we bring it here. Disability can befall anybody at any point in their lives. Yes, there is a category of people who might be born with disability, but at any one point--- I was very disheartened yesterday when I saw on television the story of a young boy who has been kept in a sheep’s pen for ten years because he has a disability. He has been staying with sheep. It is almost like living with a pig. It is really hurting considering that this child did not choose to be disabled. We must outlaw such things in the country. We must also be able to provide facilities, so that parents with children who have certain challenges can have places to take their children to for education. Those children should be transported to schools. There is a certain centre in Nairobi called “Therapies for Kids”. A lady called Simaton has done a very good job going round estates and slums to ask parents to give her their children, so that she takes care of them during the day and then she returns them home in the evening.
Your time is over, hon. Sakaja. Let us have the hon. Member for Kabete.
Thank you, for giving me this opportunity to speak to this Bill. I want to begin by congratulating hon. Wanjiku Muhia for making a wake-up call to all Kenyans to the realization of the plight of persons living with disabilities. A right is right, no matter how many people are against it and a wrong is a wrong no matter how many are for it. Hon. Muhia has brought a right Bill for persons living with disabilities. As has been said by the previous speakers, every able-bodied person has the potential to become a disabled. I want to cite a case. Before the last general election, I was a victim of an armed gangster attack, where I survived both death and disability by a whisker. I speak to this Bill with a lot of passion because on the operating table my doctor told me, “You nearly lost your leg!” I imagine what it would have meant had I actually lost the leg. I want to look at this issue more broadly because there are certain things that I do not think the Bill adequately addresses. At the appropriate time during the Committee Stage, and in consultation with hon. Muhia, I will be seeking to bring some amendments to this Bill. One, I would like to bring an amendment that all buildings that do not conform to the requirements of the intended law by the time the law comes into place must be required to conform. Secondly, with regard to access to all places, let us not just look at the buildings. We have Zebra Crossings. I am a very widely travelled person. I know the globe like the back of my palm. In certain developed countries, you will find that at Zebra Crossings a warning is afforded to a person who is visually impaired to know that the lights have turned green for them to go across. So, when we talk about access to places, we must be broad enough to include even Zebra Crossings, so that we remove from the mind of the people that when you talk of “all places” you mean only buildings. Let us be alive to the fact that we are not only providing this law for Kenyans living with disabilities in Kenya. We should be alive to the fact that we will also have visitors coming to this country who may also be living with disabilities; we must ensure that in the expansion of our cities we provide adequate facilities for persons living with disability. The electronic version of the Official Hansard Report is for information purposesonly. A certified version of this Report can be obtained from the Hansard Editor.
I once again want to congratulate hon. Wanjiku Muhia for thinking very deeply about the plight of persons living with disabilities and coming up with these amendments to the law governing their plight.
I beg to support.
That now brings us to the end of that bit. We now give this opportunity to the Mover to reply. She has 15 minutes; I am sorry; it is five minutes.
Hon. Temporary Deputy Speaker, there is a request that I donate some time, but five minutes is a short time.
You can if you wish; you have your five minutes.
Maybe hon. Gumbo, who was involved in the very initial stage of this Bill, will speak for just a minute because there are issues which he would like to share with the Members.
Hon. Gumbo, please be faithful to the one minute.
I thank the Mover of this very important Bill for donating a minute to me.
As we debate this Bill, it is also an opportunity for us to recognize and congratulate those organizations which have gone out of their way to accommodate those among us with disabilities. The other day, I saw a lady who has no arms working at Safaricom; and here Safaricom needs to be congratulated. The lady has been integrated and is feeling very much part of the service.
I would like to tell Members of this House that some of the people who have changed the world we live in today were actually disabled people. A lot of us may not know but the International Monetary Fund (IMF) and World Bank, as we know them today, were actually ideas of the 32nd President of the United States of America (USA), the late Franklin Roosevelt who in fact is the only American President to has been elected four times. He ruled most of the time and brought most of the changes in America, when he was on a wheel chair. So, it is an opportunity to celebrate those of us who have risen above disability to prove, indeed, that disability is not inability. I thank you.
Yes, you can now use the remaining minutes.
Thank you, hon. Temporary Deputy Speaker. I wish to apologize to Members because I was not able to grant their requests. I wish to use the next four minutes. First is to appreciate all Members who have contributed very positively, particularly the Committee on Labour and Social Welfare, who were very fast at establishing what was pending in this Bill. I started this Bill in July last year and possibly by now it could be in another level. I want to thank hon. Members and especially hon. Millie Odhiambo for encouraging me. I hear she has vast experience in the Persons with Disabilities Act. I will be getting more insights from her. The several Members who have spoken very well, I will not mention them, but I thank them very much. The electronic version of the Official Hansard Report is for information purposesonly. A certified version of this Report can be obtained from the Hansard Editor.
On the amendments, I wish to ask hon. Members to bring them at the Third Reading stage. We will address the issue of buildings that are not accessible to the disabled. Even here in Nairobi, without going outside, we have buildings still where disabled people cannot access. Even right here in our own Parliament, there are places where they cannot access. So, it is our duty as a House to implement some of those Acts that exist.
Persons with disabilities in this country have not been taken care of. Very quickly I would like to share something on a person with a condition known as dyslexia. This is a condition where persons cannot read, but they are smartly dressed and can express themselves. One time a person with dyslexia went to a bank and he wanted credit card. He went to a cashier and requested for one. The banker asked him to fill a form, but he could not. When he requested to be assisted, the banker did not understand what he meant; he thought it was a swag. The banker said, “You are dyslexic; that is nice.” When the person explained what it meant, the banker was very sorry and quickly helped him fill the forms. These are the challenges that these people face. When you travel across the world, in most airports there is only written information, for example “connect from gate A to gate B.” Considering the level of education that these people have, it would be impossible to connect from one point to the other. They have been grossly discriminated in all aspects. This is just the beginning and we should look at this Act more. I will personally bring more amendments, particularly on public and private institutions. For the banks, there should be an interpreter at least even if it is in one branch in a town. Even in police stations, there should be an interpreter; someone may be going there to report something. Even in some hospitals, they face problems. If they go to Kenyatta National Hospital; a person who has hearing difficulty cannot explain what she or he is suffering from. So these people have continued to suffer even as we approach Vision 2030 in our country.
In the Third Reading, when we have these amendments, I am sure we shall come up with a very good Bill. I want to urge media houses to emulate KTN. They should use sign language to air their news. They should not even wait for the Bill to be assented to, they should embark on that. We saw what happened in Mpeketoni. You can imagine these people watching news. They could only see burnt cars and people running. They did not know whether all this was happening in Kenya or elsewhere. The drafter of the Persons with Disability Act was mischievous enough to have given media stations a simple choice. He said that news should be cast with subtitles or sign language. That is why I want us to compel them to remove “or” and put “and”. They must cast news in sign language, have subtitles and the ordinary way.
I am so grateful that the House Business Committee allocated time for this Bill. The Clerk’s Department has been of great assistance to me. I thank you. I am still learning; I do not know if I am supposed to say, I beg to do something?
Yes, to reply.
I beg to reply. Thank you very much, hon. Temporary Deputy Speaker.
We will also not put the Question because of obvious reasons. Therefore, the putting of the Question is deferred. We will now go to the next Order. The electronic version of the Official Hansard Report is for information purposesonly. A certified version of this Report can be obtained from the Hansard Editor.
Yes, I see hon. Chachu Ganya. I am sure you are aware that we shall have an hour and a half and you know the time which you will use to move that particular Motion.
Thank you, hon. Temporary Deputy Speaker, I am well guided. I seek to move that the National Drought Management Authority Bill (National Assembly Bill No.42 of 2013) be now read a Second Time.
On 22nd July, 2009, the National Assembly passed a Motion urging the Government to establish the National Drought Management Authority (NDMA). I sponsored that Motion in the 10th Parliament. Thereafter, His Excellency President Mwai Kibaki, by Legal Notice No.171 made the NDMA Order of 2011. This Order established the NDMA as a State corporation and vested in the authority its functions and powers.
The NDMA would be responsible for all drought management aspects and phases in this country, including drought preparedness, drought mitigation, drought emergency responses as well as drought emergency co-ordination. The NDMA Bill of 2013 which I have published as a Private Members’ Bill seeks to transit the authority established under a gazette order to a statutory body that will be established by an Act of Parliament. This Bill does not affect the powers and the functions of the county government. As per the Constitution, drought management and mitigation falls within the ambit of disaster management which is a shared function between both the county governments and the national Government.
Part one of the Fourth Schedule of the Constitution allocates the function of disaster management to the national Government. Similarly, Part Two of the Fourth Schedule of the Constitution allocates disaster management and fire fighting to country governments. This observation is contrary to the last paragraph under the memorandum, objects and reasons of the Bill, which I intend to amend in the Third Reading, having been wholly guided after the Bill was published.
I have been involved with this Bill for quite some time; almost five years. My effort to anchor the NDMA in law to an Act of Parliament started in the 10th Parliament. On 22nd July, 2009, I certainly moved a Motion to establish NDMA in this country. That was five years ago. On 1st March, 2012, I published a Private Members’ Bill, called the Drought Management Authority Bill of 2012. This Bill progressed successfully until the Second Reading on 5th September, 2012, but it could not be allocated time for the Third Reading due to so many constitutional Bills with various deadlines, which hampered many of Private Members’ Bills from reaching their successful Third Reading in the 10th Parliament.
As a result, during the 10th Parliament, this Bill never saw the light of day. Having been elected by the great people of North Horr, who I thank dearly from the bottom of my heart for the second term, I began this initiative again in the 11th Parliament and again I published this bill for the second time on 13th November, 2012. The electronic version of the Official Hansard Report is for information purposesonly. A certified version of this Report can be obtained from the Hansard Editor.
Let me look at the impact of drought in our country to really give the background of the need for this Bill.
Hon. Temporary Deputy Speaker, drought affects about 10 million Kenyans in 23 counties. According to the Government of Kenya’s Post-Disaster Needs Assessment, that is the period between 2008 to 2011 which is four years, drought cost this country an estimated Kshs12.1 billion in damages and losses combined. During the same period of those four years, the Gross Domestic Product (GDP) would have been on average 2.8 per annum higher had these damages and losses been prevented or mitigated for all those four years.
Hon. Temporary Deputy Speaker, similarly, the Kenya Human Development Report, 2013 on the theme of Private Sector and Human Development, produced by Ministry of Planning and Devolution in partnership with the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) estimates Kenya’s vulnerability at 0.5 on the National Climate Change Index (NCCI). The worst possible national NCCI for any country is 1.0. This index shows how vulnerable we are to climate extremes such as drought.
Hon. Temporary Deputy Speaker, even this vulnerability conceals significant inequality in this nation. Certain parts of Kenya such as drought prone regions that are targeted by this Bill are far more vulnerable to the effects of climate change because of their low human development. Just to give an example, in 2012 the human development index in Turkana was 0.37, the same as for Afghanistan. In Mandera, it was 0.42 and my own county of Marsabit it was 0.43. However, in counties closer to Nairobi the human development index was 0.59, the same as for Morocco, one of the most prosperous nations in this continent.
Hon. Temporary Deputy Speaker, we are seeing a lot of impact of drought in our nation. We are seeing increased average surface temperatures in many parts of our country. Rainfall is increasing in some regions while it is decreasing in some others. We see increased vulnerability in rainfall, both over time and space and as a result, serious and recurrent episodes of drought and floods that have devastating consequences for the economy, society and the environment and which actually lead to even increased conflict in this region.
Hon. Temporary Deputy Speaker, the State of Environment Outlook Report by the National Environment Management Authority (NEMA) of 2010, which is the latest one estimated that Kenya will need about USD1.2 million per year by 2030 to address current and future climate effects. It is essential that strong institutions are established to guide and co-ordinate any investment on this scale, particularly in areas such as drought management where special knowledge and skills are required, which is really the target of this Bill.
Hon. Temporary Deputy Speaker, let me look at the institutionalisation of drought management sectors in Kenya. This is really why I brought this Bill to this House. The National Drought Management Authority (NDMA) Bill of 2013 seeks to institutionalise the drought management sector in the country which has been evolving over time since 1985. In 1985 the Government of Kenya sent a drought monitoring and planning system in Turkana. Later on in the late 1980s and 1990s the system was expanded to other drought prone arid districts with the support of the Netherlands Government. The electronic version of the Official Hansard Report is for information purposesonly. A certified version of this Report can be obtained from the Hansard Editor.
Hon. Temporary Deputy Speaker, in 1992 it was further expanded and named “The Emergency Drought Recovery Project” funded by the World Bank. It was later renamed “The Arid Lands Resource Management Programme Phases I and II” which covered 28 arid land districts. This covers 23 of the current counties.
Hon. Temporary Deputy Speaker, in 2011 the Arid Lands Resource Management Programme was succeeded by the National Drought Management Authority (NDMA) when the presidential order established the Authority through the Executive Order which I have referred to earlier.
Hon. Temporary Deputy Speaker, the Bill which I published in 2013 seeks to anchor the NDMA in law as a statutory body – a body created by an Act of Parliament. A permanent institution rather than the projects that we have seen in the past is a better place to provide stability and leadership on the critical matter of drought management facing 10 million Kenyans and affecting 23 counties.
Hon. Temporary Deputy Speaker, let me look at the structure of the Bill, having given you the necessary background. The Bill is standard legislation for a State corporation in Kenya. The Bill has five parts. The first part is preliminary, giving definitions of basic terms used in the body of the Bill.
Hon. Ganya, you will have to move quickly because you have quite a few seconds remaining.
Hon. Temporary Deputy Speaker, Part Two covers the structure of NDMA as a State corporation with a common seal under a corporate name. Part Three basically states the functions of the NDMA which are to co-ordinate and manage drought in this country; to implement drought management policies and also co-ordinate all aspects of drought management between Government and other humanitarian institutions. The Authority will also minimise duplication and also harmonise responses to drought management with other humanitarian organisations. As a State organization, it will have a board of directors and it will also have powers to do all activities as mandated by the Order.
Hon. Temporary Deputy Speaker, Part Four provides provisions for the State corporation. Part Five is about miscellaneous provisions and Part Six provides for savings which is really common for all State corporations in this country. The Constitution demands for stakeholder participation and the NDMA, which is already established under the Executive Order, is very much seized of this matter and they have provided their input in writing. The Departmental Committee on Environment and Natural Resources is seized of the Bill and they have been studying it very closely. Even in 2012, we had a stakeholders workshop in Naivasha where we got a lot of contribution.
Hon. Temporary Deputy Speaker, just to finish, the Report of the Presidential Task Force on Parastatal Reforms presented to the President on October 2013 recognised the NDMA as a strategic corporation. The NDMA’s mandate was stated in this Departmental Committee on Environment and Natural Resources as follows: “---on its own or in a situation with other authorities or persons establish a mechanism to ensure that drought does not become famine and the impacts of climate change are sufficiently mitigated.”
Hon. Temporary Deputy Speaker, as I conclude, this Bill will establish a statutory body which will manage a major and ever recurring disaster which affects over 10 The electronic version of the Official Hansard Report is for information purposesonly. A certified version of this Report can be obtained from the Hansard Editor.
million Kenyans. The Bill will enable the country to actualise Article43(c) of the Constitution which mandates the Government to provide adequate food to all Kenyans. Finally, it will enable Kenya to be a leader in drought management. I move and ask Dr. Ottichilo to second my Bill.
Very well. Let us have hon. Ottichilo seconding. You have five minutes.
Thank you, hon. Temporary Deputy Speaker. I rise to second this Bill. First, I want to congratulate my brother, Francis Chachu Ganya for being persistent and consistent to ensure that this Bill is re-tabled because I am aware he started the process in the 10th Parliament but because of shortage of time the Bill could not go on. So, I want to congratulate him that he has been able to re-table this Bill. Hon. Temporary Deputy Speaker, the issue of drought is an issue that now requires a national consideration. Droughts have become a normal phenomenon in our country and they are really affecting our population, particularly our social economic development. Hon. Temporary Deputy Speaker, droughts are a result of climatic change and climate change is the biggest and worst ever disaster that has taken place or is taking place on our planet today and it is here with us. Climate change is here with us and, therefore, we must prepare and adapt to it. Therefore, this Bill seeks to ensure that our people who stay in arid and semi-arid lands have a mechanism whereby when droughts strike, they can be safe. Long time ago drought used to strike after every five or ten years. These days droughts virtually occur every year and our Government is spending a lot of money on food aid. Our people in the ASAL areas are virtually on food aid. Therefore, it is noble that we set up an Authority which can come up with long-term programmes to address the issue of drought because drought is with us. It is not going to go away. Due to its importance, retired President Mwai Kibaki had to have the Drought Management Authority established through a presidential order. This Bill seeks to give this body a legal mandate, so that it can operate as an Authority.
Hon. Temporary Deputy Speaker, as we plan on how this organisation should work, many issues have been raised. Drought is the major impact of climate change, but there are many other factors like floods, landslides and disease that come out of climate change. Many other stakeholders have been asking that the Bill be expanded, so that it can cover all other disasters, and not just drought. So, we will bring some amendments during the Third Reading of this Bill to take care of the concerns of other stakeholders. This Bill is very necessary. It is important that we enact a law to deal with drought, particularly regarding its impact in ASAL areas.
Therefore, without saying much, I beg to second.
Let us have the Member for Kajiado, hon. Seneta, to have the first shot.
Thank you, hon. Temporary Deputy Speaker. The electronic version of the Official Hansard Report is for information purposesonly. A certified version of this Report can be obtained from the Hansard Editor.
I want to thank the Mover of this Bill. The Bill is timely because drought has been occurring in this country, costing lives and having a lot of negative impact on our communities. Despite all this, we have not had a body to coordinate preparedness for drought and drought-related vagaries. Therefore, if the Drought Management Authority is given power legally, it will be very useful to ASAL communities because they will be prepared. The Government will also be advising the people in good time in order for them to prepare on what to do. Even the county governments will be setting aside money for use during particular times. I would also like to support the Authority because it will coordinate other activities, with the advice of the stakeholders. With those words, I beg to support this timely Bill.
Let us have the Member for Kacheliba.
Hon. Temporary Deputy Speaker, I want to take this opportunity to thank you and the Mover of this Bill because a lot of poverty in the northern part of Kenya is related to drought. We have heard through the BBC and our local newspapers announced threats posed by drought. As a nation, we must be responsible. It time that we reacted to drought and put in place mechanisms that can curb the threat of drought. Livestock have been lost. The economy of the northern region has been affected by drought. Other countries which do not receive adequate rains, like the whole of North Africa do not rely on relief food. As a nation, we have no reason to continue depending on relief food. We can put in place mechanisms that can set us free from reliance on food aid. We need to establish irrigation projects in all the areas that are affected by drought. With established irrigation projects, we will not rely on rainfall for agriculture. Introducing drought resistant crops and drought resistant livestock will ensure that the people in ASAL areas can have sustainable means of livelihoods, which can empower them economically. I have had an opportunity to work with the World Food Programme. Constant news of hunger is shameful to this country. We would not want to identify ourselves with any news that tend to threaten human life. I want to urge my colleagues in the Jubilee Government that we support this Bill, so that we can save this country from embarrassment arising from drought. It is not the wish of the people of those areas to seek for relief food all the time. It is the circumstances they find themselves in which compel them to ask for food aid. We can actually do with this kind of reliance once the Government sets aside resources and puts in place mechanisms that can get us out of this bad situation. The Mover of this Bill kindly and honestly, thought that we should legislate on this matter in order to cushion our people from this bad situation. Like other social problems, drought can be dealt with. There are ways of intervening. If resources are allocated for the fight against drought, we can get this country out of this situation once and for all. With those few remarks, I beg to support.
Let us hear the Member for Shinyalu. The electronic version of the Official Hansard Report is for information purposesonly. A certified version of this Report can be obtained from the Hansard Editor.
Thank you hon. Temporary Deputy Speaker, for giving me this opportunity. Let me first of all say that the Government of Kenya, within the context of Vision 2030, has already indicated a foresight on the need to manage instances of drought in Kenya. This is because of the litany of sufferings that Kenyan communities experience because of drought seasons. We have dependency on agriculture and the amount of diminishing returns farmers experience because of unexpected droughts is enormous. We need to mitigate against this.
Therefore, I would like to thank my brother, hon. Chachu Ganya for coming up with this amendment which will ensure that the National Drought Management Authority is established by an Act of Parliament. This will be important because then the necessary facilitation for the operation of NDMA will be guaranteed because with experiences now, we are not sure whether everything done by NDMA is guaranteed annually. This cannot guarantee a sustainable development and good planning. Therefore, it is important that even as we establish the Authority we should give specific provisions that will embrace all concerns and challenges that are brought by climate change.
Hon. Temporary Deputy Speaker, we have come from a history with rich traditional knowledge. There is no community in traditional terms in Kenya that does not have interventions or traditions that deal with drought effects. This also needs to be incorporated so that we have research undertaken into this traditional knowledge which can help us develop our calendar and help us to develop management of drought. As a result, we can be guaranteed of food security. We will also have mitigating measures that will guarantee us food security and safety of our livestock. All this depends on consistency in management of rains. For instance, we have rainmakers in Shinyalu, Bunyore and there are many other communities that have rainmakers. Let us also establish this indigenous knowledge and see how we can incorporate it in modern technology so that we do not continue experiencing suffering caused by drought.
There is the issue of climate change---
I want to have a clear picture; hon. Member for Shinyalu. What role is that you want us to give these rain makers?
That is with a light touch. Proceed with your contribution. I was just thinking aloud.
Hon. Temporary Deputy Speaker, we have had instances where we have too much rain that destroys crops. Sometimes, it even interferes with the ecosystem through floods. With the intervention of indigenous specialists, we could have control over these emergencies. Let us not take them for granted. God created the world and created every aspect of it for a purpose. Sometimes we have underestimated the abilities of these rain makers to our own detriment.
Hon. Temporary Deputy Speaker, the last one is about---
You are not on record.
Thank you, hon. Temporary Deputy Speaker. The electronic version of the Official Hansard Report is for information purposesonly. A certified version of this Report can be obtained from the Hansard Editor.
But with a high note, you have put your point. Thank you very much. Let us have hon. Member for Balambala.
Thank you very much, hon. Temporary Deputy Speaker for giving me the opportunity to speak to this very important Bill. As an hon. Member who represents a marginalized and often drought affected constituency in the northern part of Kenya, I really want to thank hon. Chachu Ganya for taking the initiative to propose this Bill. Indeed, drought recurs every year in our regions and many parts of Kenya. Unfortunately, as Government we have not had the opportunity to have a very organized system or department empowered by law and tasked or given the mandate to deal with emergences arising from drought. What this Bill suggests is that, indeed, we need to empower the NDMA as it exists right now. Literally, it exists on the mercy of an Executive Order. We need to make it an authority that is given the powers of legislation and mandated under specific legislative proposals so that it is able to perform strategic functions. I also want to say that, indeed, the taskforce that was given the opportunity to review and rationalize Government agencies and parastatals; in its report, finds that NDMA, unlike other Government agencies, is very strategic and one which must stand alone. It must be given more mandates which we are trying to right now because of the role and the part that it plays. Hon. Temporary Deputy Speaker, before NDMA, we used to have something that was called Arid Lands Resource Management Project which existed under the then Ministry of Northern Kenya. Indeed, many of our rural citizens, particularly in the drought affected areas like Balambala Constituency, where I represent, will tell you that the Government needs to bring back a more organized form of ASALs. What these people are begging for is that they get a response that is dedicated to address their suffering. Whenever drought occurs, there is huge loss of livelihoods and animals because most of the unfortunate pastoralists use animals for their lives. There is also loss of human beings. The NDMA in its form right now – I think I am on record in this House and in the media last year when drought struck my constituency and I ran to them for help. They told me, “Sorry, hon. Aden, we have no mandate and we have no resources to help you. All we can do is to collect information and intelligence and advise the Government.” That is not helpful to the people of the regions that are affected by drought. So, what this Bill is trying to say is that NDMA should not exist at the mercy of the Executive. It should be an empowered body by law so that it can manage and control resources among other things. That way, it can be given budgetary allocations and also be able to solicit funds from other donor agencies so that it can respond to emergencies. As I end, I just want to say that this is a very noble Bill. We must support it and I call upon my colleagues to support it because this is going to alleviate the sufferings of many of our drought affected areas in Kenya. It is not only for the pastoralist communities. Indeed, even farmers in the lower Eastern Kenya suffer because of drought and they need the response of an organized agency like an empowered NDMA. Thank you for the opportunity. The electronic version of the Official Hansard Report is for information purposesonly. A certified version of this Report can be obtained from the Hansard Editor.
Let us have the hon. rainmaker from Narok West. Sorry, hon. ole Ntutu, you have the Floor,
Thank you, hon. Temporary Deputy Speaker, for giving me this opportunity. Let me first of all declare that, indeed, I am one of those ones.
Hon. Temporary Deputy Speaker, I want to thank hon. Ganya, my good friend, for bringing this Motion. I must say I admire him because all the Bills that he brings here are the ones that are going to make a difference to the people we represent. So, I thank him because I was with him when we were talking about the Bill on wildlife and it has started making a difference. I know that this Authority will greatly help our people. We are told that drought in this country affects 10 million people every year. In fact, it is now affecting them twice a year. So, this Authority is very important. When you look at the counties that are affected by the drought, it is almost half the country; 23 of our counties are affected by this drought and it has become a phenomenon. When you look at the function that this Authority is going to do, it is to coordinate and manage drought responses. When you look at this country, we respond to issues instead of mitigating them before they happen. The departments that we have given to deal with this drought have not done so to our satisfaction particularly on those counties that are dependent on livestock and crops. This Authority will go a long way in helping us to manage our drought. Implementation of drought policies, as a country we have so many policies but no authority or department that goes into details to deal with those policies. Drought emergency response particularly with the national Government has not been properly coordinated and I think if we give this Authority the funds that are required, it will go a long way in helping the two levels of Government. It is only in this country that we do not do what we are supposed to do when there are issues of drought and emergencies. I always wonder when we lack rain particularly in the areas like Narok or North Eastern and nobody goes there to help us and I think this Authority will go a long way in helping us. With those few remarks so that my colleagues can get time because I can see it is almost 12.30 p.m. thank you for the opportunity and I support the Motion.
Hon. Temporary Deputy Speaker, thank you for giving me this opportunity. I also rise to support the National Drought Management Authority Bill, 2013 brought to the Floor of the House by hon. Ganya and thank him for a good job well done. I rise to say that in Makueni Constituency and the lower eastern, most parts are now hit by drought and people are making appeals to the Government to supply foodstuff. There were rains but then plants dried up midway because drought comes in as a disaster. It comes without warning and, therefore, this Authority being created by this Bill is going to coordinate between the Government agencies so that it can take data and stock knowing that most parts of Kenya are likely to be hit by drought in one way or the other. Therefore, it can coordinate even the irrigation taking place in the country so that it can be fairly distributed. We know where we have rivers and a constant flow of water just like the case of Galana and Makueni where now there is a proposed Thwake Athi Dam The electronic version of the Official Hansard Report is for information purposesonly. A certified version of this Report can be obtained from the Hansard Editor.
and the proposed irrigation at Galana. This will help us to distribute this equally and fairly across the country and people can begin to mitigate factors of drought. When drought hits, it destroys crops and there has to be a mechanism of how to compensate those farmers. It kills animals and most farmers in the areas where they keep cattle, they are millionaires but when drought strikes, they cannot sell all their animals at once. Drought kills them one by one and eventually they are left very poor. There has to be a way of taking care of the loss which has occurred and I think the Authority needs to come in, take stock, have data and we can know which farmers have been affected by drought and what compensation they can get. So, we support the Bill. It is a great Bill and it will move a great way to help many poor people in Kenya especially from the dry areas so that when disaster strikes, they can take care of that. Also, when there is plenty of harvest, they can know how to manage it. I do thank you for giving me this opportunity. I support the Bill.
Very well, we shall have the hon. Member for Wajir North.
Thank you, hon. Speaker. I rise to support the Motion. Droughts used to be a natural phenomenon in the early 50s and 40s. Today, they are more artificial because of their---
What is it hon. Leshoomo?
Ahsante, Mhe. Spika. Ningeomba tu kuwe na usawa kwa sababu inaonekana unalalia upande mmoja.
Well, point taken. Hiyo ni
The recurrence of drought used to be after every eight to four years initially, but today the timelines and the frequency with which drought recurs have been reduced to nearly two if not one year. That is an indication of how our environment is being mismanaged. It shows the extent to which anthropogenic activities are taking a toll on livelihoods and entirely the environment. After the promulgation of the 2010 Constitution which had promised so much of expanded Bill of Rights and other goodies for pastoralist communities who have over the years been marginalized---There was promise of Equalization Fund. Pastoralism is a livelihood not yet recognized in our Constitution. That is a very unfortunate aspect, yet it supports over six million of its citizens. It is the only practicable livelihood in over 80 per cent of the country’s land mass. What used to be the White Highlands are slowly moving to isles these days. Due to the impact of climate change, there is that transition from what used to be highlands to arid and semi arid-like conditions. With that kind of development, it is only fair to have an authority in place. We need one like the National Disaster Management Authority, which will take care of livelihoods, especially pastoralists who have always been ravaged by disasters. It is worth noting that drought is the single most obvious disaster in this country. Until it is managed by an institution and we have a legal framework to manage droughts, then disasters will be common and they will be wiping out livelihoods and assets of pastoralists. Just to go into the Bill, there is need to set up regulations and The electronic version of the Official Hansard Report is for information purposesonly. A certified version of this Report can be obtained from the Hansard Editor.
framework to at least satisfy development programmes by the National Drought Management Authority. Unless we regulate what the national Government and the county governments will be doing in terms of development and projects, we will be doing something that will negate the livelihoods of pastoralists and something contrary to the objective of what the National Drought Management Authority is struggling to achieve. It is good to come up with a framework that will satisfy development so as not to interfere with the resilience of pastoralists’ communities. Further on, there are provisions to at least develop contingency plans and early warning systems. We have had early warning systems which were being managed by the former Arid Lands Resource Management Project, which may not have been credible. I believe they were not relevant because they did not reflect what was on the ground. I think we should learn from that and come up with a better way of collecting data qualitatively and quantitatively, so that we will be having a data bank to manage drought issues. Further, the National Drought Management Authority should have the powers to at least determine the capacity of our rangelands, if we are to manage our rangelands and drought. This should be in liaison with the Ministry of Agriculture, Livestock and Fisheries. The Authority should be given powers to update the livestock census.
Hon. Temporary Deputy Speaker, further, we need to improve on the functions of this Authority through legislation. It should be able to support the county governments,especially the ASAL counties to come up with legislation on drought management. That should be a function of this Authority.
Another thing that should come in handy in managing droughts is disease management. That should be a key component. The Authority should liaise with the Ministry of Agriculture, Livestock and Fisheries---
Your time is over! Hon. Leshoomo, you are No.8 on the screen but through my discretion I will give you the opportunity.
Ahsante sana Mhe. Naibu Spika wa Muda. Tunaunga mkono Mswada huu ambao umeletwa na Mhe. Chachu kuhusu ukame. Hii si mara ya kwanza tunazungumza kuhusu mambo ya ukame. Jambo hili lilizungumzwa katika Bunge la Tisa na la Kumi na bado jawabu halikupatikana.
Ukame umezidi katika kaunti nyingi nchini Kenya, hasa katika Kaunti ya Samburu ambayo ninawakilisha. Wazee wanakaa nyumbani katika kaunti za Marsabit na Turkana ilhali mifugo inapelekwa kila mahali. Hili ni jambo ambalo linafaa liangaliwe sana. Wananchi wanaumia kutokana na njaa. Pia, mifugo wanafariki kwa sababu ya ukame. Hata wanyama wa pori wanafariki kwa sababu ya ukame.
Pengine Kamati ya Kilimo katika Bunge inafaa ilete ripoti kuhusu huu ukame. Hii ni kwa sababu ukame umezidi. Hata mashamba ambayo yamelimwa yameanza kukauka kwa sababu hakuna mvua.
Wakati mvua inanyesha tunaona maji yakibeba nyumba na vitu vingine na maji mengi huelekea baharini. Sifahamu kwa nini hatuwezi kuyahifadhi ili wakulima wayatumie kunyunyizia mashamba yao.
Inafaa Kamati ya Kilimo izunguke katika nchi hii kwa sababu mambo ni mabaya sasa hivi. Si ajabu tutapata watu wamekufa kwa sababu ya njaa. Inafaa mifugo wauzwe The electronic version of the Official Hansard Report is for information purposesonly. A certified version of this Report can be obtained from the Hansard Editor.
kwa bei ambayo inafaa kwa sababu wakati mwingine bei yao inashuka kwa sababu wafugaji hawana soko. Njaa ni mbaya na ni lazima tutafute namna tutasaidika.
Thank you very much, hon. Temporary Deputy Speaker. I support the Bill. I am very happy and thankful to the Mover of this Bill. This Bill has been moved at the right time when we expect a long drought in North-Eastern, Tana River and some parts of Eastern Province.
Most of our areas are affected by drought. Year in, year out, we are affected by drought. It is good if this Authority is established to create awareness on drought to the people so that they can know how to stay this month and other months to come. This will also ensure that they sell their animals because of drought and do “a,” “b”, “c” and “d”. Our people do not have information as far as drought is concerned. They just stay and find their animals and themselves dying.
Drought brings about many problems like lack of food and loss of animals by farmers. Drought also affects education because the pastoralists move from one place to another in search of pasture. This destroys the education of the child because the child has to move with his parents. Drought causes lack of water. In Tana River, a few weeks ago, you heard of hyenas roaming into people’s homesteads and eating young children. You have read about this in the newspapers. The wild animals do not get water during drought and so they roam around looking for water. They get into people’s houses. When they miss water they eat children. We need more information about drought. Our people need to be educated as far as drought is concerned. We must have a local radio station to educate people in addition to institutions and newspapers. Tana River is a very fertile place, but without water drought affects this place. The big irrigation schemes in Tana River are not enough to feed the people in that area. People, therefore, depend on relief food. I support this Motion. It has come at the right. If drought is managed properly then I know we will move in the right direction and we shall have a good time.
Thank you, hon. Temporary Deputy Speaker for recognizing gender. It is very important to consider the 20 per cent here in Parliament. I want to join my colleagues in supporting this Bill. This Bill ought to have come earlier on because drought has been disastrous to Kenyans. Sometimes there is destruction caused by floods and then we experience drought immediately afterwards. We need to conserve water during floods so that when there is drought we use the water to irrigate crops. We need to control deforestation. This is because drought is brought about by the cutting down of trees. We need to ensure that we have this Authority managing our environment and educating people that when you cut a tree, you are supposed to plant many more trees so that we control drought. Kenya is a potential country. We should not wait until we have shortage of food for us to act by importing foodstuffs. We should not experience some of these problems in Kenya because we have so many rivers whose waters could be used in irrigation. Drought does not affect only certain regions in this country; it affects the whole country. Even in Kirinyaga where I come from we have a region which gets really dry during certain time of the year. This programme should be spread across all the counties and especially in areas where drought hits most. It should concentrate in areas where we have The electronic version of the Official Hansard Report is for information purposesonly. A certified version of this Report can be obtained from the Hansard Editor.
bare land and, therefore, a lot of soil erosion. It is in such areas that crops do not do well even if there is rainfall. So, I support this Bill and feel that it should be implemented without delay. We want to make sure that the country has enough food, so that we do not import food. I take this opportunity to support the Bill and thank the Mover very much. This is a good and right way for the country.
Thank you, hon. Temporary Deputy Speaker.
Hon. (Prof.) Sambili.
Thank you hon. Temporary Deputy Speaker, for this opportunity to support this Bill. Let me do it because---
Hon. Lati, what is the complaint?
I will speak for only two minutes.
I do not want to be accused of sleeping on one side. Okay, proceed.
( Laughter )
Hon. Speaker, I want to support this Motion very powerfully and I congratulate my colleague for bringing it up. Drought is a national disaster. I remember four years ago or so, the picture of the cattle that had died has never left my mind. We would like to really support---
Order! Hon. Sambili, What is it Member for Ol kalou.
(inaudible). ( Laughter )
My colleague, I will take only one minute for the sake---
Actually, the accusation that was made was that I was sleeping on one side and I am trying to sleep with the other one, now.
Hon. Temporary Deputy Speaker, I am not here because of gender. I am here representing Mogotio, which is one of the ASAL districts in this country. I would like to say that this Motion is very timely. Only this morning, I have just come from seeing the PS for Special Programmes because my schools have no food. What this Motion says is that it should coordinate or integrate drought response activities. I really want to support it and it should coordinate the issue of rain water harvesting so that we do not lose water.
Secondly, the food that is grown using irrigation should be stored appropriately, so that we do not lose it. Thirdly, it is important to also include this knowledge of management of drought into the curriculum of schools so that our young people, who actually form a majority of the population, will know some of the activities which they can use to preserve water and respond to disasters. This Authority, once it is formed, will actually support this country. We do not want to rely on relief and as we know, a very The electronic version of the Official Hansard Report is for information purposesonly. A certified version of this Report can be obtained from the Hansard Editor.
large part of this country is affected by drought. I support this Motion and because I would like other colleagues to have an opportunity, I rest my case there.
Thank you, hon. Temporary Deputy Speaker.
Thank you very much, we will have hon. Member for Matayos.
Thank you, hon. Temporary Deputy Speaker. I rise to support the Bill as brought forward by hon. Chachu Ganya. I think that drought is a big disaster that we should all rise to really fight. It is not just those Arid and Semi Arid Lands (ASALs) that are affected. We know that drought is still increasing. The percentage of the country that is becoming a desert is increasing every other day. So, it is for all of us to really fight it. If the country is spending over Kshs12 billion every year for the damages and losses, really this is a menace that we should be fighting. So, the National Drought Management Authority as proposed by hon. Chachu Ganya is a right move in the right direction because drought affects all of us in terms of food production and it makes us beggars every other time that we do not have enough food. We would like this Authority to work hand in hand with other authorities and boards like the National Irrigation Board (NIB) so that it can irrigate all the lands that are already dry. We also need to have afforestation or reafforestation done in those places as we keep on countering the expansion of drought to other places that have not been affected so far. Hon. Temporary Deputy Speaker, it will also be important to make amendments during the Third Reading so that all other disasters are included. Hon. Temporary Deputy Speaker, with those few remarks, I support.
Very well. Let us have the hon. Member for Samburu West.
Thank you, hon. Temporary Deputy Speaker. Today you are truly a ladies’ man.
Actually, I have always been.
I appreciate that because sometimes the ladies are not recognised in this House. However, on a very serious note I thought when I stood here I would first of all have to thank hon. Chachu but then I remembered before hon. Chachu another great man of this country – hon. Mwai Kibaki – gave an Executive Order to establish the National Drought Management Authority (NDMA). I want to thank hon. Kibaki wherever he is. I know he is a retired man but he is a special man in this country. He did a lot of development projects and I am proud to be associated with him as an economist. Hon. Temporary Deputy Speaker, however, I want to thank hon. Chachu who is my friend and a true colleague. I want to say also that I have shared something with him. The electronic version of the Official Hansard Report is for information purposesonly. A certified version of this Report can be obtained from the Hansard Editor.
We went to a special school in New York called Saint Florence together at different times and he is truly a product of that great institution. Hon. Temporary Deputy Speaker, this Bill establishes a statutory body, away from the Executive Order that President Kibaki gave and I want to support hon. Chachu in that endeavour. This Bill also takes us in the right direction which is to actualise Article 43 (c) of the Constitution of our country which is to provide adequate food for every Kenyan in this nation. I think it is something that we can all be proud of, if it will ever happen. Hon. Temporary Deputy Speaker, it will also give us a leading role in drought management. You know Kenya is a big player in this region of the world and even in finance and everything else. We also want to take a leading role in drought management and more importantly this Authority will co-ordinate drought issues and avoid duplication by the different Non-Government Organisations (NGOs) and governmental organisations that try to manage drought. So, I think it is a wonderful start for our country. Hon. Temporary Deputy Speaker, if you look at drought statistics available in this country, 23 of our counties are affected seriously by drought and I think that is something that we must take very seriously as a country. We are talking of 10 million people who have been adversely affected by drought. Pegging Kenya’s population at about 40 million, it basically means that a quarter of our population is affected by drought in a very serious way. Those are the kinds of things that we need to look at as a country.
Hon. Temporary Deputy Speaker, more importantly, with US$2 billion of our GDP losses that we incur as a result of drought, the double digit GDP growth that the Jubilee Government envisages to realise may not be attainable. This is, therefore, a serious thing we have to look at as a country. I happen to come from Samburu County. Before the creation of the counties, the only development in that region was realised through the Constituencies Development Fund (CDF) or the Arid Lands Drought Management (ALDM) Project. If you find a borehole anywhere in Samburu County today, it would only have been sunk by either the CDF or the ALDM project. I want to appreciate the work that has been done by the ALDM and hope that the National Drought Management Agency (NDMA) will follow suit. I have seen in the Bill that the proposed headquarters of the NDMA is Nairobi. Why not in Marsabit or somewhere else? The reason as to why the UNEP has its headquarters in Nairobi is because the UN wanted to spread its headquarters across the globe, so that other regions could also feel its presence. We cannot have the headquarters of all public agencies in Nairobi. That is the only thing in respect of which I will approach hon. Chachu with a view to finding a way of having the NDMA headquartered somewhere in drought prone areas of our country. Hon. Temporary Deputy Speaker, before I sit down, I would like to talk about the current drought situation in our country. We have a serious drought today in this country. I hope that the Cabinet Secretary for Devolution and Planning is listening. The County Government of Samburu has bought over 5,000 bags of grains to provide relief for the residents. The national Government is providing almost nothing. We want to tell the Cabinet Secretary for Devolution and Planning and the rest, having given them sufficient funds through the Budget and Appropriations Committee; that they should start buying--- The electronic version of the Official Hansard Report is for information purposesonly. A certified version of this Report can be obtained from the Hansard Editor.
We will have the Member for Lafey.
Thank you, hon. Temporary Deputy Speaker, for giving me the opportunity. I must say on the outset that I support the Bill. Hon. Temporary Deputy Speaker, it is said that poverty is unjust; it befalls a man. Most of the droughts that we experience in Africa, and particularly in Kenya, are a result of the climate change that is taking place worldwide. The world shares what is called “common resources”, which include air and the seas. Africa contributes only 2 per cent of pollution in the world. The rest of pollutants are contributed by the industrialised world. The West, and particularly the industrialised countries, which have been destroying our climate, must compensate Africa for polluting our seas and our Ozone layer. Having said so, over the years, Kenya has been divided into two different lands; the arable lands and the arid lands. For a long time, the policy of the Kenya Government has always been to invest heavily in the arable land. However, this very viable land has been fragmented until we cannot produce any more to support the entire population of this country. As a result of the Kenya Government not investing in the arid lands, which form more than 80 per cent of this country’s land mass, we have experienced food deficiency. Kenya can no longer feed her population of 40 million. Hon. Temporary Deputy Speaker, a country that cannot feed her population cannot have the level of security that is required. It is, therefore, important that the Government’s policy of investing heavily in the arable lands changes, so that we now invest in the more than 70 per cent of Kenya’s land mass, so that we can produce for the entire population of Kenya. If we do so, we will realise a surplus in terms of food production. We welcome the recent pronouncement of the Government, through the Ministry of Agriculture, Livestock and Fisheries, of its intention to irrigate more than one million acres, particularly in Tana River and Kilifi counties. This will go a long way in making Kenya self reliant and self sufficient in food production. Hon. Temporary Deputy Speaker, the creation of National Drought Management Authority should have been done yesterday not today. When this Bill is passed by Parliament; which I know will be done overwhelmingly because of its importance, the President should assent to it immediately. Hon. Temporary Deputy Speaker, when this Bill is passed and becomes an Act of Parliament, the NDMA will not exist only as an Act of Parliament and in books. It must work and must be funded, and it should not be a toothless bulldog. We have many authorities which have been created in order to mitigate droughts and enhance development in Arid and Semi Arid Lands (ASAL), but they have never gone beyond their offices and they have never developed those areas. Hon. Temporary Deputy Speaker, we hope that this very important Authority will be well funded to meet its obligations or the objectives it was intended to meet and created for. We have had the creation of the Ministry of Northern Kenya which existed for five years and we have not seen anything much---
Very well, your time is over. We will now have hon. Member for Kajiado East. Hon. Tobiko, they have indicated that you come from Kajiado South, but I know you are from Kajiado East. The electronic version of the Official Hansard Report is for information purposesonly. A certified version of this Report can be obtained from the Hansard Editor.
Thank you, hon. Temporary Deputy Speaker. I appreciate the two minutes that are left.
You still have your five minutes. You can still proceed with it.
Thank you, hon. Temporary Deputy Speaker. Let me begin by appreciating hon. Chachu Ganya for this wonderful Bill and for the many Bills that you have brought that directly affect the lives of pastoralists. We do appreciate your efforts. I believe the people of North Horr will continue electing you back to this House. Hon. Temporary Deputy Speaker, NDMA is an existing Authority at the moment, but as the Mover of the Bill said, it is existing through an Executive Order. For permanence and for this Authority to continue addressing the issue of drought that really affects the lives of our people, we need it as a statutory body. I think what the Mover is asking is really something which is doable. I believe most hon. Members of this House will appreciate. Hon. Speaker, those of us who come from areas that are affected most of the times by drought, the interventions that our people get are through NGOs. In Kajiado, we have had Red Cross coming to assist people and an NGO called ---
Order, hon. Tobiko! Your time is over; you will have your three minutes when this debate resumes. Before I adjourn, I want to ask hon. Members to check their details in the records. I have seen quite a number of constituencies misspelled and other hon. Members indicated to be from constituencies they do not belong; particularly, hon. Tobiko and the hon. Member for Mwingi West.