NAIROBI, Kenya, Oct 13 – President Mwai Kibaki at his Harambee House office met and held talks with members of the Presidential Private Sector working Forum who paid him a courtesy call.
During the discussions, the general economic climate in the country and fast-tracking of issues agreed upon in different forums were discussed.
The Forum reaffirmed its readiness and willingness to partner with the government and other stakeholders in sensitizing Kenyans on the benefits of the new constitution.
Kenya Private Sector Alliance (KEPSA), a focal point of the Private sector in the Country, appreciated the spirit of the new constitution as a business friendly and expressed its commitment to fully participate in its implementation.
The alliance also undertook to participate in the implementation processes that require private sector participation and has already made the necessary proposals on the rules of engagement.
“We will make strong proposals for Ministries that will ensure the government is restructured to deliver on the aspirations of the constitution,” the Forum assured the President.
During the talks, it was noted that the logical conclusion of the process of operationalizing the new constitution is the implementation of the comprehensive and transformative development programmes captured in the Vision 2030 and entrenchment of the development blueprint into the new constitution.
The Forum noted the government needed to expedite the timeframe guiding implementation of the national land policy alongside other Bills that have been earmarked as priority.
President Kibaki assured members of the forum of the government’s commitment in smooth implementation of the constitution.
The President noted that the new Constitution would ensure political and social stability, which are key ingredients to economic growth, are attained.
President Kibaki said his government would continue engaging in dialogue with private sector players.
The Head of State especially affirmed the need for the private and public sectors to continue working closely in the area of job creation to cater for the growing needs of the country’s youthful population.
In this regard, the President said that the government was working to fast-track investments in the Information Communications Technology (ICT) sector that held much promise in job creation.
Members of the forum called on the Ministry of Energy and the Treasury to consider convening a stakeholders consultative forum to identify viable solutions that would lead to lower power tariffs.
The forum urged the government to consider lowering tariffs for industrial users to spur production, while working on long term solutions.
The government has already embarked on an ambitious programme to boost electricity generation by 300 megawatts.
With regard to transport in Nairobi and its environs, KEPSA appealed to the government to hasten implementation of the commuter railway system project for the Nairobi metropolitan to reduce congestion and traffic jams in the city.
The Alliance commended the government for the efforts made on the reform agenda.
Other issues concerning private sector performance that were discussed included the improvement of the business environment for Industrial development, infrastructural network improvement to promote investment in the East African region, local and regional market development and reorganization and rationalization of institutions that support industrial development.
KEPSA was led by Lucy Karume.
In attendance were Permanent Secretaries, Cabinet Ministers Kiraitu Murungi, Prof Helen Sambili, Chirau Ali Makwere, Henry Kosgey and Head of Public Service and Secretary to Cabinet Amb Francis Muthaura among others.