Agen­cies deny­ing women, youth, the dis­abled jobs to be pun­ished

The Star (Kenya) - - Politics -

MPs have said they will is­sue tough sanc­tions on govern­ment agen­cies that scut­tle a pref­er­en­tial pro­cure­ment pol­icy. Par­lia­ment has en­acted the Ac­cess to Govern­ment Pro­cure­ment Op­por­tu­ni­ties law com­pelling govern­ment de­part­ments and agen­cies to re­serve at least 30 per cent of pub­lic pro­cure­ment for women, youth and peo­ple liv­ing with dis­abil­ity. How­ever, there seems to be not much progress made so far in terms of com­pli­ance and pay­ments to ben­e­fi­ciary groups are said to hold bil­lions of shillings in ar­rears. Pres­i­dent Uhuru Keny­atta ear­lier this month said govern­ment of­fi­cials who fail to pay the youth, women and per­sons with dis­abil­ity on time will be sacked. the Co­he­sion and Equal Op­por­tu­nity com­mit­tee is charged with over­see­ing im­ple­men­ta­tion of the pol­icy. It is chaired by John­son Sakaja (pic­tured). Yes­ter­day he said the team will con­sider slap­ping strin­gent ac­tions on in­dicted govern­ment de­part­ments and agen­cies. “Agen­cies are tak­ing the is­sues at hand lightly. The law re­quires that the Pub­lic Pro­cure­ment Over­sight Au­thor­ity ta­bles a progress re­port ev­ery six months on im­ple­men­ta­tion of the pol­icy,” Sakaja said. “We are yet to see that re­port, some peo­ple are asleep on their jobs.” Tough mea­sures in the off­ing to com­pel govern­ment agen­cies to em­brace the pol­icy in­clude declar­ing ac­count­ing of­fi­cers re­spon­si­ble un­fit to hold pub­lic of­fice and block­ing ap­proval of their bud­gets in Par­lia­ment.

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