Uhuru tells Parliament to speed up Uwezo Fund law

November 29, 2013 4:29 pm

, CUTTING-CAKENAIROBI, Kenya, Nov 29 – President Uhuru Kenyatta has urged Parliament to speed up the law that will govern the Uwezo Fund arguing that the delay is holding up the disbursement of the funds.

Speaking during a thanksgiving ceremony of the Joyful Women Organisation (JOYWO) on Friday, Kenyatta noted that the Sh6 billion Fund had been set up to empower youths and women as the country works towards achieving economic growth.

While comparing the Fund to the table banking concept used by JOYWO, Kenyatta argued that the politics surrounding the legislation of the Fund was retrogressive and that MPs should stop complicating the process.

“This money was already budgeted for about six months ago. And we are yet to come up with a legislation that will guide this Fund. There are so many wrangles about who will be involved and who should not,” he argued.

“But what do we need the regulations for and we can see a working model? Let us just follow the working model.”

But on Tuesday this week, Devolution and Planning Cabinet Secretary Anne Waiguru refuted concerns that Parliament was holding up the laws that would govern the Fund.

She also downplayed claims that legislators were up in arms over who would control and manage the Fund.

She added that once the law governing the Fund was gazetted by the Attorney General, then money from the Fund would become available.

“Parliament finished with the regulations but we are waiting to receive them. The procedure is that they’ll send them to the Finance Ministry and then they will go to the Attorney General for the final gazettement,” she said.

He further commended JOYWO for starting a model that can be replicated by other womenfolk countrywide for successful financial management, mobilisation and corporate governance to boost economic growth.

“To have a membership of over 100,000 women and to be operational while growing a revolving fund of over Sh450 million has been a truly impressive and inspiring achievement,” he said.

Deputy President William Ruto added that the money borrowing concept from the group should be transferred to the rest of the country because it would create tremendous opportunities for women and youths.

According to Ruto, the group was founded four years ago with about Sh20 million. It is now worth Sh425 million with the dividends expected to be shared this year amounting to Sh100 million up from Sh47 million worth of dividends last year.

Its patron is Ruto’s wife Rachael Ruto.

“This organisation has brought women together and has given opportunity to women with no access to credit to get money and do business. Women who never had a chance to earn dividends are now earning dividends like the shareholders of big companies,” observed Ruto.

Kenyatta further directed the National Hospital Insurance Fund to ensure that its services were available to all rural clinics countrywide so as to ensure that all Kenyans had access to healthcare.


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