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