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Kenya

Raila shores up Kazi Kwa Vijana funds

NAIROBI, Kenya, Jul 10 – Prime Minister Raila Odinga has directed respective Ministries to identify and compile estimates of labour intensive projects befitting inclusion to the Kazi Kwa Vijana (KKV) programme to facilitate funding prospects.

Mr Odinga asked Permanent Secretaries to compute all related projects which were factored in the current financial year for purposes of future evaluation and timely disbursement of allocated funds to avert lapses during the implementation.
 
Speaking during a meeting of the programme\’s National Steering Committee, Mr Odinga emphasised on the need to delink the youth-oriented programme from routine operations of government funded projects ran by line ministries.

He noted that the project in its current state could not attract donor funding from development partners and create the anticipated impact unless the initiative was partially separated from the ordinary activities of the ministries.

“The current arrangement of the programme must be tilted to open up avenues to woo donor funding which the government desperately needs to inject some impetus that could propel the initiative to greater heights of development in the country,” he said.

The Premier expressed fears that the initiative risked stalling due to inconsistencies in disbursement of funds from the Treasury and stressed on the necessity to draw a line between normal and the KKV projects.
 
He also raised issues on policy guidelines in the remuneration of casual labourers under the programme and told the committee to work out modalities to harmonise the discrepancies in wages offered by respective ministries.

In the same meeting, Deputy Premier and Finance Minister Uhuru Kenyatta said the preliminary estimates in the current budgetary allocation indicated that at least Sh12 billion was set aside to KKV related initiatives.

Mr Kenyatta however revealed that at least Sh2 billion earmarked for the project was surrendered to the Exchequer at the closure of the last financial year but would be released for the same purpose.

Preliminary evaluation of the programme pointed out that the better part of the funds allocated to various Ministries were spent on administrative and procurement at the expense of wages.

On his part, Deputy Premier and Local Government Minister Musalia Mudavadi suggested that the committee finds ways to harmonise the monitoring and reporting agencies to present a factual picture of the scenario on the ground.

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He noted that some of the Ministries were misrepresented due to lack of proper coordination of KKV activities adding that some projects consumed most of the allocated funds on inputs including equipment and materials.

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