, NAIROBI, Kenya, Jan 28 – Deputy President William Ruto has directed the National Treasury to submit a list of public entities yet to comply with an Executive Order issued by President Uhuru Kenyatta last year, requiring State agencies to publish details of companies doing business with the government.
The DP on Monday directed Treasury Cabinet Secretary Henry Rotich to file a report with the Head of Public Service Joseph Kinyua within 30 days for action.
“I want Treasury to forward a list of all public entities that have refused to comply with Executive Order 2 of 2018 so that we can take head-on boards and chief executives of these institutions because they’re pulling us back,” he said during a forum on open governance.
Ruto said the government will not backtrack on its commitments under the 2018/20 National Action Plan on open governance saying all government entities must align their operations with the Executive Order published on June 13 last year.
“It is not a request that President Uhuru Kenyatta was making; it is a demand. All public entities must publish their contracts, the beneficiaries, and directors of companies doing business with government,” the DP ordered.
While launching the third national action plan on the Open Government Partnership (OGP), a global initiative which Kenya has been part of since its launch in 2011, Ruto said the government was keen on enhancing transparency and accountability in public administration.
President Kenyatta had set July 1 as the effective date of new anti-graft measures he outlined in his June 13 Executive Order which also included the strict utilization of the Integrated Financial Management Information System (IFMIS) from January 2019 by all government agencies to pay for goods and services.
In his remarks on Monday, Ruto challenged other Arms of Government to follow suit and adhere to guidelines on prudent management of public funds.
The government has under the OGP framework set out to attain five broad commitments within the 2018/20 implementation cycle key among them the publication of a central register of company beneficial ownership.
Kenya has also committed to open contracting with the National Treasury and Public Procurement Oversight Authority tasked with the implementation of measures to enhance openness and accessibility of information on public procurement.
Other commitments include enhanced public participation and improved public sector performance through governance indices.
Ruto directed government agencies to publish performance contract obligations for oversight by the public.
CS Rotich has already announced plans by the National Treasury to pay private entities providing services to various government entities directly from the Consolidated Fund.
Rotich who spoke at the OGP forum on Monday said the ministry had linked IFMIS to the Central Bank ahead of the implementation of the new guidelines.
“Cash management is now done under IFMIS and we’ve integrated this with the Central Bank so that very soon we should be able to pay suppliers directly from the Treasury and Central Bank rather than have many accounts in the various ministries,” he said.
The move, Rotich said, was part of the government’s commitment to open governance in a bid to eradicate rampant corruption within State entities.
“We’ve embraced e-citizen which means people are now paying for government services electronically and we’ve replicated the same when it comes to payment of taxes through the -tax portal,” he said.
United Nations Resident Coordinator, Siddharth Chatterjee underscored the importance of open governance, a commitment he said is critical to fostering investor confidence in the country.
Chatterjee said open governance will enhance economic growth, boost transparency, and promote efficient use of public resources.
“I want to commend Kenya for starting their first launch, in July 2011, of the open dataset initiative becoming second after South Africa in the continent to do so,” the UN chief in Kenya said.
He exuded confidence in Kenya’s development trajectory singling out the improvement in ease of doing business over the past five years.
“Kenya is a place where the entire UN family is fully committed to ensuring the success of the Big Four development agenda. The open government data system will be fundamental for the success of the Big Four because it is not just going to skyrocket the country economic growth but improve public participation.”