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19th February 2021 Parliamentary Round Up

NATIONAL ASSEMBLY

PAPERS LAID

The following papers were laid at the Table of the House among others:

Annex 4B to the Budget Policy Statement for the Financial Year 2021/2022 and the Medium-Term Programmes/Sub-Programmes, Outputs, Performance Indicators and Targets by the Sector from the National Treasury and Planning.

Status of the Public Service Compliance with the Values and Principles in Articles 10 and 232 of the Constitution for the Financial Year 2019/2020 (An Evaluation Report prepared pursuant to Article 234(2)(h) of the Constitution) from the Public Service Commission (Reports submitted in both English and Kiswahili).

Report of the joint meeting between the Constitution Implementation Oversight Committee and the Departmental Committee on Justice and Legal Affairs on consideration of the Referendum Bill (National Assembly Bill No.11 of 2020) and the Referendum (No.2) Bill (National Assembly Bill No.14 of 2020)

Reports of the Committee on Delegated Legislation on its consideration of the following Regulations:

  • The Value Added Tax (Amendment) Regulations, 2020.
  • The Value Added Tax (Electronic Tax Invoice) Regulations, 2020.
  • The Value Added Tax (Digital Marketplace Supply) Regulations, 2020.

The reports of the Auditor General and financial statements on the following donor funded projects for the year ended 30th of June 2020 and the implementing agencies:

  • Integrated program to build resilience to Climate Change and adoptive capacity of vulnerable communities in Kenya – National Environment Management Authority (NEMA).
  • GCF projects preparation facilities devolved climate change governance to strengthen resilience of communities in target counties – NEMA.
  • GCF readiness and preparatory support NEMA capacity strengthening program towards accessing climate finance from Green Climate Fund – NEMA.
  • Data collection and Data development project – Kenya National Bureau of Statistics.

The Report of the Mediation committee on the Early Childhood Bill Sen. Bill No. 26 of 2018.·         Report of the Departmental Committee on Trade Industry and Cooperatives on the consideration of the Economic Partnership Agreement (EPA) between the Republic of

Kenya a member of East Africa Community of the one part and the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland of the other part. 

BILLS

The Referendum (No.2) Bill (National Assembly Bill No. 14 Of 2020)

By the Chairperson, Departmental Committee on Justice and Legal Affairs 

The Bill was coming up for a Second Reading.

The principal object of the Bill is to consolidate the law relating to conduct of referenda, to provide for a transparent and fair process in order to obtain a clear expression of the will of people, by establishing the procedures for the conduct of referenda, providing for the referendum committees and establishing a level playing field for the opposers and supporters of a referendum  question, by providing for equal public funding and by limiting expenditure in a reasonable manner for the public good, to afford the people an opportunity to make decisions based on information from both points of view.   

The Constitution of Kenya (Amendment) Bill (National Assembly Bill No. 19 of 2019)

By the Hon. Florence Mutua, M.P. 

The Bill was coming up for a Second Reading. 

The Bill seeks to amend Article 90 of the Constitution in order to align it with the proposed amendment to Section 35 of the Elections Act which seeks to change the timing for submission of party lists by political parties for persons elected under Article 90 of the Constitution from at least forty-five days from the date of general election to within twenty-one days after the date of general election. 

The Kenya National Library Service Bill (National Assembly Bill No. 5 of 2019)

By the Leader of the Majority Party. 

The Bill was coming up for a Second Reading. 

The Bill seeks to give effect to the Constitution in order to promote all forms of national and cultural expression through literature, the arts, traditional celebrations, science, communication, information, mass media, publications, libraries and other cultural heritage. 

The Crops Amendment Bill (National Assembly Bill No. 25 of 2019)

By the Hon. Tandaza Kassim Sawa, M.P.

The Bill was coming up for a Second Reading.

The main aim of the Bill is to include Achiote to the Schedule of the Crops Act, 2013.  

MOTIONS

Value Added Tax (Amendment) Regulations, 2020

The House was given Notice to adopt the Report of the Committee on Delegated Legislation on its consideration of the Value Added Tax (Amendment) Regulations, 2020, laid on the Table of the House on Tuesday, 16th February 2021, and consequently approve the Regulations published as Legal Notice No.188 of 2020.

Value Added Tax (Electronic Tax Invoice) Regulations, 2020

The House was given Notice to adopt the Report of the Committee on Delegated Legislation on its consideration of the Value Added Tax (Electronic Tax Invoice) Regulations, 2020, laid on the Table of the House on Tuesday, 16th February 2021, and consequently approve the Regulations published as Legal Notice No. 190 of 2020. 

Value Added Tax (Digital Marketplace Supply) Regulations, 2020

The House was given Notice to adopt the Report of the Committee on Delegated Legislation on its consideration of the Value Added Tax (Digital Marketplace Supply) Regulations, 2020, laid on the Table of the House on Tuesday, 16th February 2021, and consequently approve the Regulations published as Legal Notice No. 189 of 2020.

The Petroleum Development Levy Order, 2020

The House was given Notice to extend the period for consideration of the Petroleum Development Levy Order, 2020, Legal Notice No.124 of 2020, submitted to the House on 5th August 2020 by a further period of 21 days from 16th February 2021.   

The Early Childhood Bill (Senate Bill No. 26 of 2018)

The House given Notice to adopt the Report of the Mediation Committee on the Early Childhood Bill, Senate Bill No. 26 of 2018 laid on the Table of the House on Thursday, 18th February 2021 and approve the Mediated Version of the Bill. 

Economic Partnership Agreement (EPA)

The House was given Notice to adopt and approve the Report of the Departmental Committee on Trade Industry and Cooperatives on its consideration of Economic Partnership Agreement between the Republic of Kenya a member of East Africa Community of the one part and the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland of the other part. 

Sessional Paper on Kenya Wildlife Service Policy

The House adopted the Report of the Departmental Committee on Environment and Natural Resources on Sessional Paper No.1 of 2020 on the Kenya Wildlife Service Policy, laid on the Table of the House on Thursday, 3rd December 2020, and consequently approved Sessional Paper No.01 of 2020.

The goal of the policy,is to create an enabling environment for the conservation, sustainable management of wildlife for the current and future generations.  It aims at averting the fragmentation of natural habitats and sustaining the ecological processes underpinning the diversity of ecosystems.  

Inspection Visits to KRA

The House was given Notice to adopt and approve the Report of the Departmental Committee on Finance and National Planning on Inspection visits to the KRA offices to ascertain the impact of Revenue enhancement initiatives on revenue collection, laid on the table of the House on November 26, 2020. 

STATEMENTS

The following Statements were raised on the floor of the House among others:

·         A Question was asked to the Cabinet Secretary for Transport, Infrastructure, Housing, Urban Development and Public Works on the proposed Construction of an Airstrip in Nakuru Town. The Question was referred to the Departmental Committee on Transport, Public Works and Housing.

·         Hon. Sossion, Wilson requested a statement from the Chairperson of the Departmental Committee on Labor and Social Welfare regarding Gazetting the Agency Fee with respect to collective bargaining agreements negotiated and concluded by 40 Trade Unions in the country during the period 2017-2021 Collective Bargaining Period.

BUSINESS FOR NEXT WEEK

The House Business Committee has approved the following Tentative Business for Next Week. 

Bills

  • The Refugees Bill (National Assembly Bill No. 62 of 2019)
  • The Health (Amendment) Bill (National Assembly Bill No. 64 of 2019)
  • The Care and Protection of Older Members of Society Bill (Senate Bill No. 17 of 2018)
  • The Kenya National Library Service Bill (National Assembly Bill No. 5 Of 2020)e)  The County Governments (Amendment) Bill (Senate Bill No. 13 Of 2018)
  • The Kenya National Blood Transfusion Service Bill (National Assembly Bill No. 6 Of 2020).
  • The National Cohesion and Peace Building Bill (Senate Bill No. 35 Of 2018).

Motion

  • Approval of The Public Finance Management (Parliamentary Car Loan) (Members) Scheme Fund (Amendment) Regulations, 2020.
  • Approval of The Public Finance Management (Parliamentary Mortgage (Members) Scheme Fund) (Amendment) Regulations, 2020.
  • Approval of The Public Finance Management (Parliamentary Car Loan) (Staff) Scheme Fund (Amendment) Regulations, 2020.
  • Approval of The Public Finance Management (Parliamentary Mortgage (Staff) Scheme Fund) (Amendment) Regulations, 2020 (The Chairperson, Committee On Delegated Legislation)

SENATE

PAPERS LAID

The following papers were laid at the Table of the House among others:

  • The Budget Policy Statement, 2021
  • The Medium-Term Debt Management Strategy, 2021
  • The Draft Division of Revenue Bill, 2021
  • The Draft County Allocation of Revenue Bill, 2021
  • The Proposed Senate Calendar Regular Session for the Fifth Session, February to December 2021. 

COMMUNICATION FROM THE CHAIR 

Consideration of The Budget Policy Statement, 2021The House was notified by the Speaker that the Senate Majority Leader has tabled the Budget Policy Statement (BPS) for the Financial Year 2021/2022. Section 25 of the Public Finance Management Act and Standing Order No.180 of the Senate, require the National Treasury to prepare and submit the BPS to Parliament by the 15th February each year.

The Cabinet Secretary for the National Treasury and Planning submitted the following documents for consideration and approval by Parliament-

  • The Budget Policy Statement, 2021;
  • The Medium Term Debt Management Strategy, 2021;
  • The Draft Division of Revenue Bill, 2021; and,
  • The Draft County Allocation of Revenue Bill, 2021. 

The BPS sets out the broad strategic priorities and policy goals that will guide the national Government and county governments in preparing their budgets before the following financial year and over the medium term. It contains, among other things-

  • An assessment of the current state of the economy and the financial outlook over the medium term, including the macro-economic forecasts;
  • The financial outlook with respect to Government revenues, expenditures and borrowing for the next financial year and over the medium term;
  • The proposed expenditure limits for the national Government, including those of Parliament and the Judiciary and indicative transfers to county governments;
  • The fiscal responsibility principles and financial objectives over the medium term, including limits on total annual debts and the proposed division of revenue, including proposed conditional grants, if any. 

The Speaker of the House thus advised the Senators that if they have any proposal regarding the Division of Revenue Bill and the County Allocation of Revenue Bill, including funds for conditional allocations to the counties, should be canvassed and forwarded to the National Treasury for possible factoring in the Budget Policy Statement (BPS). Failure to which, it will be difficult for changes to be accommodated later on.

Section 25(7) of the Public Finance Management (PFM) Act provides as follows- “Parliament shall, not later than fourteen days after the Budget Policy Statement is submitted to Parliament, table and discuss a report containing its recommendations and pass a resolution to adopt it with or without amendments.” In line with the Standing Orders, the Standing Committee on Finance and Budget is expected to deliberate upon and table a report containing its recommendations on the Budget Policy Statement within twelve days, for this case, being not later than 25th February, 2021. In addition, the Committee shall consult the Cabinet Secretary for the Ministry of Finance, the Commission on Revenue Allocation (CRA), County Assemblies Forum, among other stakeholders.

Based on the importance of the BPS and the timelines, the Speaker directed that the BPS be considered by all Standing Committees each concentrating on its respective mandate. The

Standing Committees will then forward their recommendations to the Standing Committee on Finance and Budget for consolidation not later than Friday, 19th February, 2021. The Standing Committee on Finance is expected to expedite the process and table its report on or before 25th February, 2021 to enable the Senate debate and approve the BPS by 2nd March, 2021.

BILLS 

The Cooperative Societies (Amendment) Bill (Senate Bills No. 11 Of 2020)

By Sen. (Dr.) Agnes Zani, MP 

The Bill was coming up for a Second Reading.

The principal object of this Bill is to amend the Co-operative Societies Act, No. 12 of 1997 so as to align it to the Constitution of Kenya, 2010 by setting out the functions of the National Government and the county governments in relation to governance of co-operative societies. This Bill also seeks to provide that governance of primary co-operative societies be overseen by county governments while the National Government shall be responsible for national policy and be responsible for the apex society and co-operative unions.

MOTIONS

The Senate Calendar for The 2021 Session

The House approved the Senate Calendar (Regular Sessions) for the Fifth Session (February to December, 2021), laid on the Table of the House on Tuesday, 16th February, 202. The Calendar was approved as follows:

  • The Senate shall sit on Tuesdays, Wednesdays and Thursdays in the afternoon from 2.30 p.m. to 6.30 p.m.
  • Special Sittings shall be notified through Kenya Gazette notice pursuant to standing order 31 of the Senate Standing Orders.
  • Annual suspension of Committee Sittings – 13th December 2021 to 28th January, 2022. 

The Early Childhood Bill (Senate Bill No. 26 of 2018)

The House given Notice to adopt the Report of the Mediation Committee on the Early Childhood Bill, Senate Bill No. 26 of 2018 laid on the Table of the House on Wednesday, 17th February 2021 and approve the Mediated Version of the Bill.

Allocation of Budget on Early Childhood Development Education (ECDE)

The House was notified of a motion on the allocation by Counties of at least 10% of their Budget on Early Childhood Development Education towards vulnerable groups in the counties and development of a policy to incorporate the needs of children who are less than three years of age. 

STATEMENTS

The following Statements were raised on the floor of the House among others:

  • The Senator for Kitui County, (Sen. Enock Wambua, MP) sought a Statement from the Standing Committee on Labour and Social Welfare regarding payment of a one-off honorarium and monthly pension to former Councillors under the defunct Local Authorities.
  • The Senator for Makueni County, (Sen. Mutula Kilonzo, MP) sought a Statement from the Standing Committee on Roads and Transportation on the refusal by the Kenya Government to approve the application by Emirates Airline to increase passenger flights on the Dubai – Nairobi route despite a bilateral agreement between the governments of the two countries that supports the applications.
  • The Senator for Kakamega County, (Sen. Cleophas Malalah, MP) sought a statement from the Standing Committee on Tourism, Trade and Industrialization concerning alleged multiple tax payment by lorries and trucks transporting building materials across counties in Kenya.
  • The Nominated Senator, (Sen. (Dr) Isaac Mwaura, MP) sought a statement from the Standing Committee on Labour and Social Welfare regarding the implementation of the guidelines of the Ministry of Public Service, Youth and Gender Affairs on retirement age of public servants with disabilities.
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