NAIROBI, Kenya, May 29 – Cabinet Secretary for Public Service, Youth and Gender Affairs Margaret Kobia has said that all pending bills under access to government procurement opportunities will be paid by 30th June 2019.
This follows numerous complaints from suppliers over delayed payments which in turn disrupts their business.
Kobia says some may have done poor paperwork that hampers smooth payment once they deliver their services.
“Quite a number of people have mentioned they obtained Access to Government Procurement Opportunities (AGPO) but are not paid … there are reasons why some are not paid. What we have done right now the auditor general is processing documents from all counties where the payment should be cleared by 30th June,” she said.
This means the government needs to set aside Sh300 billion to clear the pending bills of suppliers across the region come next month.
CS Kobia was speaking during the launch of Kenya Private Sector Alliance Sector (KEPSA) Supplier Diversity Summit that intends to bring more women, youth and people with disabilities to participate under AGPO.
Currently, only 10% of the marginalized group are actively involved in AGPO.
Kobia has now urged KEPSA to develop strategies that will see all groups are considered under this service.
“In this summit, I call upon KEPSA and its membership to think of innovative strategies and come up with more new approaches to track the progress of AGPO. It is an opportunity that has not been fully exploited by the intended target groups,” she said.
At the end of the financial year 2018 and fourth year of the implementation of the 30% and Reservation Regulations, Government awards cumulatively close to Sh73 Billion to the AGPO beneficiaries.
Gender and Youth Sector Board Chairperson Eva Muraya said they expect to work with different organizations that will boost the participation in AGPO.
“From this summit we expect to work more closely with the Ministry of Public Service, Youth and Gender Affairs, the National Gender Commission and other relevant stakeholders to organize programmes and workshops that will increase the skills and capacity of women to participate in Government and private sector procurement,” she said.
She further urged that the agenda should not be pushed as a service of charity where people offer substantive services.
“Supplier diversity programs should no longer be seen just as an ordinary act of charity. It has been tested and proven that with considerable amount of support, women, youth and people living with disabilities (PLWD) owned enterprises are showing their true business prowess and have been registering larger growth in comparison with other businesses over the last decade,” she added.