Another terror attack on the city. In London.
A Press Statement JUNE 8TH. 2017.
Cost of Basic Commodities
For the last 3 years East Africa, Southern Africa and the Horn of Africa have been experiencing the worst drought in the last 20 years, both in intensity and duration. As a result, the region is experiencing a shortage of key agricultural supplies pushing up the cost of basic food commodities.
In KENYA’S case, the worst affected commodity is maize due to the fact that it is a staple food.
It is against this background that the government has progressively put in place several measures to protect the vulnerable sections of our communities. We have also ensured that the public is kept informed of what the government is doing to avoid a situation where citizens are overrun by unnecessary anxiety and despondency.
It is therefore unfortunate that yesterday, Hon. Raila Odinga who is campaigning to be President made objectionable allegations about the government effort in this matter.
The same allegations have been widely circulated in the media.
Hon Odinga is quoted as saying that the government of Kenya has frustrated the importation of cheap maize from Ethiopia. He went on to ask H.E. the President to travel to Ethiopia and negotiate for such importation.
I wish to inform the public that as early as February 2017, H.E. the President Uhuru Kenyatta sent a delegation to Ethiopia to negotiate for maize imports from this friendly country. As a result, the Ethiopian
government has so far allowed the importation of 13000 metric tons of maize into Kenya.
During negotiations with the mailers who had expressed interest to import maize, it became clear that a 90 kilograms bag of maize from Ethiopia would retail at between 4400 and 5000 shillings given the obtaining dependent variables. The notion that this maize will be cheap is therefore grossly misguided.
Finally and of critical public interest, information to the public is that the current approval for importation of maize is completely open and all government departments have been advised accordingly.
Once again the insinuation that anybody is frustrating certain importers is seriously misguided. The government has no preference whatever for maize from any destination or by any importer.
The only condition is that the maize will pass a stringent test of fitness for human consumption and that with a subsidy of 1000 shillings per bag it will be able to reach mwananchi at a price of 90 shillings per 2 kilogram bag. Once you are able to meet this condition, all relevant government departments have been directed to facilitate you on priority basis.
We hesitate to note that Hon. Raila Odinga himself is a suave businessman and he can exploit this opportunity.
From the onset, it’s apparent that the national government has no intention whatsoever to micro manage County Government as this is a devolved function. We however note that whatever technicalities there is in the current dispute, nothing either in the nursing profession or in the tenets of civilized society justifies the loss of human life in peacetime.
The message to nurses is therefore that whatever it is that you arguing about, don’t fall to the gimmicks of political tricksters who would deem it worthwhile to cause suffering or even sacrifice human life for temporary causes.
PRESS STATEMENT BY THE HON. CABINET SECRETARY, MINISTRY OF
AGRICULTURE, LIVESTOCK AND FISHERIES ON THE FOOD SITUATION IN
Our attention has been drawn…….. to a press conference addressed this afternoon 7-6-17
by the former prime minister and NASA presidential candidate with allegations that the
hunger situation is a deliberate creation of the state.
It is a known fact that the hunger situation is a regional matter not confined
to Kenya. As at now, Kenya is at a better position in terms of the prices that
are being offered for Unga.
From the time government got early warnings on drought, it took the
By August 2016, interventions were already ongoing through the
Ministry of Devolution, way before the much-acclaimed Hon.
RailaOdinga’s alternative assertions.
In November 2016, after reviewing the situation, the government upscaled
the intervention programme by putting in place a four-phased
National drought mitigation programme – running between November,
2016 to October 2017. This saw provision of relief food to over 3
million Kenyans in the 23 ASAL Counties.
Besides the Government
1. Water tracking
2. Livestock off-take
3. Feed supplements and diseases control
4. Extended and up-scaled cash transfers to the most vulnerable in
By February 2017, after a further review of the situation through our
monthly food security assessments, H.E. the president declared the
drought a national disaster.
In April 2017, theGovernment removed VAT on maize flour and bread
as an incentive to lower the prices for the benefit of consumers.
Further, after another review of the situation, the Government waived
duty on the importation of maize.
Contrary to the assertions that this was a preserve of a few importers, this opportunity is open to everyone as long as they meet the quality standards.
So far, the process has been successful and we have stocks from all over including Ethiopia. In addition, all the other agencies of Government have been sensitized to facilitate the process.
Other essential food commodities;
By virtue of the Government’s intervention and being a responsible Government;
The price of maize flour will continue retailing at Kshs. 90 until the situation normalizes. Interventions and supplies are being up-scaled and this is set to reach every corner of the Country including posho mills.
From last week, milk started retailing at Kshs. 50 per half litre packet.
Sugar prices have been addressed and by next Monday, the price of 1 kg of sugar will start retailing at Kshs. 120.
In conclusion, the Government is on top of the situation and is being handled in the most professional, proficient and transparent manner.As a Government, we refuse to be derailed by sideshows for political expediency. It would therefore be very unfortunate for anybody of whatever status in society to use the food situation due to natural causes, for political millage.
HON. WILLY BETT
CABINET SECRETARY, MINISTRY OF AGRICULTURE, LIVESTOCK AND FISHERIES.
THE CIVIL SOCIETY WISHES TO LAUD THE COURTS FOR ITS STEADFAST RULINGS ON A PETITION (2015) AND CONTEMPT OF COURT CASE……….
Civil Society Lauds Ruling on Commencement of the Public Benefit Organizations Act
The Civil Society (CSRG) wishes to laud the court for its steadfast rulings on Petition No. 351 of 2015 and the subsequent Contempt of Court that arose after the government failed to obey the court directive to commence the Public Benefit Organizations Act.
This verdict is a triumph against impunity and the creeping culture of disregard for the rule of law as prescribed in Article 10 of the Constitution. It is the biggest blow to Executive fiat and its attendant impunity that seems to thrive on harassment and intimidation of independent and critical voices in the society.
In December 2016, Kenyans for Peace with Truth and Justice (KPTJ), in collaboration with the Public Benefit Organizations Litigation Team, and Trusted Society of Human Rights Alliance filed contempt of court proceedings against the Cabinet Secretary, Ministry of Devolution and Planning, and the Attorney General for failing to commence the Public Benefit Organizations Act as directed by the High Court.
Despite the High Court ruling for its immediate commencement on October 31, 2016, the Government failed to act on the court order and instead transferred the NGO Coordination docket from the Ministry of Devolution and Planning to that of Interior and Coordination of National Government in what seems to have been a deliberate attempt to defeat justice and evade the responsibility to gazette a commencement date of the new NGO law.
It should be recalled that commencement of the PBO Act is long overdue, having been passed by the 10th Parliament in 2012 and assented to by retired President Mwai Kibaki more than four (4) years ago on January 14, 2013.
All these have been happening under the Jubilee administration that has spent the better part of its nearly five years in power discrediting and delegitimizing NGOs and the Civil Society in general through the NGO Coordination Board Executive Director Fazul Mahamed instead of facilitating the work of the sector that compliments efforts of both national and county governments in service delivery and promotion of accountable exercise of power in the management of public affairs.
The Public Benefit Organization (PBO) Act 2013 is the law seeking to provide a more enabling environment for NGOs, yet as of today, the government seems to prefer operating under the outdated and draconian NGO Coordination Act of 1990 because of its broad, vague and arbitrary provisions that leave room for caprice and abuses.
Recent actions against Kalonzo Musyoka Foundation, the Kenya Human Rights Commission and Evans Kidero Foundation all of which have had to go to court to ward off threats of deregistration by the Board without any regards to the rule of law should be seen in this context.
It is extremely worrisome that the Executive arm of the government has taken impunity to such high levels as to fail to obey directives of the High Court. And this is not the first time that this is happening. Not too long ago, the National Transport and Safety Authority (NTSA) disregarded a court directive to stop using its controversial breathalyzer until a case that has been filed against its use is heard and determined.
Indeed, the Jubilee government’s penchant for oppressive tactics against the civil society and contempt for the judiciary is unprecedented. This is unfortunate and a recipe for lawlessness and anarchy, more so when it is being perpetrated by the Executive arm of the government charged with enforcing law and order.
It is our hope that this court decision will put an end to all forms of harassment and smear campaigns against the civil society and herald a new era characterized by the requisite political will and respect for judicial pronouncements that creates a favourable environment for civil society to work in and be able to continue promoting human rights, good governance and social justice for the poor without hindrances and distractions by the NGO Coordination Board.
Signed issued on 14th Day of May 2017
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