In Summary
  • Gatundu South MP Moses Kuria regretted that a huge chunk of the budget goes to recurrent expenditure.
  • Route to Food Initiative faulted the budget for “not being reflective of the political prominence and commitment that food security has been given under the Big 4 Agenda.”
  • Jane Mokeira, lauded the move on boda boda saying it will restore sanity in the sector.

Kenyans had mixed views on the Sh3.02 trillion Budget presented in Parliament Thursday by Treasury Cabinet Secretary Henry Rotich.

Gatundu South MP Moses Kuria regretted that a huge chunk of the budget goes to recurrent expenditure.

“In a budget of Sh3 trillion, half of it goes to people who are employed by government (recurrent expenditure), salary, mandazi, travel and flowers,” Mr Kuria said.

He added: “In a country of 50 million people, civil servants are not more than one million. We have to ask ourselves, for how long are 49 million people going to carry the burden of one million?”

Saudi Arabian Monetary Authority advisor Mohamed Wehliye said the projected numbers are always rosy.

“Ignore them. Look at the actuals. Treasury, in every budget, will tell Kenyans that the budget deficit is 5-6 percent and projected numbers will even go down further. But look at the actuals. Almost hitting double digits. Disastrous!” Mr Wehliye said.

FOOD

Route to Food Initiative faulted the budget for “not being reflective of the political prominence and commitment that food security has been given under the Big 4 Agenda.”

Government spending on agriculture and food security, according to the alliance, remains inadequate, poorly targeted and incapable of leading to the realisation of the right to food for majority of Kenyans as per the Constitution.

“Kenya continues to fall short on its commitment made in the Maputo Declaration of spending 10 percent of its budget on agriculture. Moreover, budgetary allocations that would support the constitutional obligation to progressively realise the right to food are not evident,” said Layla Liebetrau, Route to Food Initiative’s project lead.

This year’s budget allocation for agriculture is 2.53 percent of total voted expenditure, which is down from 3.5 percent in 2016/17.

Agriculture and food security has been allocated Sh72.3 billion of the Sh3 trillion budget, which is touted as the biggest that the country has had since Independence.

BODA BODA

In Kisii, boda boda operator Godfrey Omwenga, said the requirement for insurance cover for the riders and their passengers is punitive to the industry.

“We in the boda boda sector are likely to suffer immensely in addition to the tribulations we have been subjected to recently by our security forces in their bid to ensure we comply with traffic regulations,” said Mr Omwenga.

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