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11th June 2021 Parliamentary Round Up

NATIONAL ASSEMBLY

PAPERS LAID

The following Papers were laid on the Table of the House among others:

  • Legal Notice No. 508 relating to the Public Finance Management Sinking Fund Guidelines 2021 and the explanatory memorandum from the National Treasury and Planning.
  • The Draft Public Finance Management National Roads Toll Fund Regulations, 2021 from the National Treasury and Planning.
  • Sessional Paper No. 1 of 2021 on National Water Policy from the Ministry of Water, Sanitation and Irrigation.
  • Cabinet Memorandum on ratification of the protocols to the African Charter on Human and People’s Rights on the rights of older persons and on the rights of persons with disabilities in Africa from the Ministry of Foreign Affairs
  • Cabinet Memorandum on ratification, acceptance and accession of International Labour Organization and International Maritime Organization Conventions relating to Shipping and Maritime matters from the Ministry of Foreign Affairs.
  • The Special Audit Report of the Audit General on the Utilization of Covid-19 Funds by the National Government Entities for the period 13th of March-31st July 2020.
  • The 3rd quarterly economic and budgetary review report for the financial year 2020/21 for the National Treasury and Planning
  • The Report of the Budget and Appropriation Committee on the budget estimates for the National Government, the Judiciary and Parliament for the Financial Year 2021/22.
  • The County Government Budget Implementation Review Report for the first 9 months of the Financial Year 2020-2021.  
  • Financial Year 2020/2021 Supplementary Estimates II of the National Government which is Volume 1 and 2 of Development Expenditure, recurrent expenditure, the program based budget.

MESSAGES

The County Allocation of Revenue Bill, 2021

The House received a message from the Senate regarding its passage of the County Allocation of Revenue Bill, 2021. The Senate considered and passed the Bill on Thursday 23rd June, 2021 with amendments. The Bill is an annual legislation introduced in accordance with the provisions of Article 218 of the Constitution, with the objectives of equitably allocating the share of national revenue amongst the 47 counties.   Given the urgency of the Bill, the House Committee prioritized the consideration of the Bill in the National Assembly. The Bill was thus scheduled for first reading and thereafter will stand committed to the Budget and Appropriations Committee in furtherance to the Provisions of Standing Order.

PETITIONS

The House was received the following petitions:

  • A Petition on the challenges of doing business in Mombasa following the closure of Mama Ngina Water Front Beach and Jomo Kenyatta Public Beach due to Covid-19.
  • A Petition from Messrs. DG Njau and LR Ngure on behalf of several other ex-Kenya Airforce Officers who were dismissed in 1982.
  • A Petition from Mr. George Mwaniki and 12 others on behalf of law students, practising advocates and members of the East African Law Society in the republics of Rwanda and Burundi.

MOTIONS

Alteration of the Calendar of the House

The House considered the alteration of its Calendar for the Fifth Session, 2021(Regular Sessions) and resolved that during the Second Part of the Session (June 8 to July 8, 2021)- Current week:

  1. the Sittings of the House of Tuesday, 8th June, 2021, Wednesday, 9th June, 2021 and Thursday, 10th June, 2021 shall remain as specified;
  2. the Sittings of the House for the period 15th June up to 8th July, 2021 shall be as follows-
    • Tuesdays (Afternoon) from 2.30 p.m. to 6.30 p.m.;
    • Tuesdays (Evening) from 7.00 p.m. to 9.30 p.m.;
    • Wednesdays (Afternoon) from 2.30 p.m. to 6.30 p.m.;
    • Wednesdays(Evening) from 7.00 p.m. to 9.30 p.m.; and,
    • Thursdays (Afternoon) from 2.30 p.m. to 7.00 p.m.

      3. Suspension of Morning Sittings during the period 15th June up to 8th July 8, 2021, and

 Individual Members’ business shall have precedence over all other business on Thursday Afternoons.

Budget Estimates for the Financial Year 2021/2022

The House was given Notice to adopt the Report of the Budget and Appropriations Committee on the Budget Estimates for the National Government, the Judiciary and Parliament for the Financial Year 2021/2022, laid on the Table of the House on Tuesday, June 8, 2021, and pursuant to the provisions of Article 221 of the Constitution, section 39 of the Public Finance Management Act, 2012 and Standing Order 239-

(a) approves the issuance of a sum of Kshs. 1,945,671,474,883 from the Consolidated Fund to meet the expenditure during the year ending 30th June, 2022 in respect of the Votes contained in the Committee of Supply;

(b) makes the Policy and Financial Resolutions; and

(c) Orders that “The Speaker do now leave the Chair” to facilitate the consideration of the said Budget Estimates with respect to each Vote and Programme in the Committee of Supply.

Financial Statement of the National Government for the Financial Year 2017/2018

The House was given Notice to adopt the Report of the Public Accounts Committee on the Examination of the Report of the Auditor – General on the Financial Statements of the National Government for the Financial Year 2017/2018 (Volumes I & II), laid on the Table of House on Tuesday, March 23, 2021.

BILLS

The following Bills came up for First Reading in the House

  • The Kenya Industrial Research and Development Institute Bill (National Assembly Bill No. 44 Of 2020) by the Leader of the Majority Party) – The Bill seeks to establish the Kenya Industrial Research and Development Institute.
  • The Irrigation (Amendment) Bill (National Assembly Bill No. 12 of 2021) by the Leader of the Majority Party – The principal object of the Bill is to make amendments to the Irrigation Act, 2019.
  • The National Electronic Single Window System Bill (National Assembly Bill No. 15 of 2021) by the Leader of the Majority Party) – The principal object of the Bill is to provide a framework to facilitate trade and commerce using the National Electronic Single Window System.
  • The Coffee Bill (National Assembly Bill No. 17 of 2021) by the Leader of the Majority Party – The principal object of the Bill is to provide for the development, regulation and promotion of the Coffee Industry, to provide for establishment, powers and functions of the Coffee Board of Kenya.
  • The Tax Appeals Tribunal (Amendment) Bill (National Assembly Bill No. 19 of 2021) by the Leader of the Majority Party – The Bill amends the Tax Appeals Tribunal Act, 2013 to address the challenges affecting the performance of the Tax Appeals Tribunal to facilitate the expedition of tax disputes in the country.   
  • The Community Groups Registration Bill (National Assembly Bill No. 20 of 2021) by the Leader of the Majority Party – The Bill is intended to provide a regulatory framework for the mobilization, registration, coordination and regulation of community groups.
  • The National Hospital Insurance Fund (Amendment) Bill (National Assembly Bill No. 21 of 2021) by the Leader of the Majority Party – the Bill amends the National Hospital Insurance Fund Act, 1998 to establish the National Health Scheme and to enhance the mandate and capacity of the National Hospital Insurance Fund to facilitate and deliver the Universal Health Coverage. 
  • The County Allocation of Revenue Bill (Senate Bill No. 30 of 2021) by the Chairperson, Budget and Appropriations Committee – The Bill makes provision for the allocation of revenue raised nationally among the county governments for the financial year 2021/22
  • The National Government Constituencies Development Fund (Amendment) Bill (National Assembly Bill No. 4 of 2021) by the Chairperson, Select Committee On National Government Constituencies Development Fund) – The Bill seeks to amend the National Government Constituencies Development Fund Act, 2015 to provide for the opening and operating of constituency accounts in order to facilitate third party transactions.
  • The Kenya Roads (Amendment) Bill (National Assembly Bill No. 13 of 2021) by the Chairperson, Departmental Committee On Transport, Public Works and Housing –  The principal object of the Bill is to align the Act with the provisions of the Constitution with regard to the auditing functions of the Office of the Auditor-General.
  • The Higher Education Loans Board (Amendment) Bill (National Assembly Bill No. 37 of 2020) by the Hon. John Mwirigi, M.P. – The Bill seeks to amend the Higher Education Loans Board Act in order to provide that a loanee shall commence repayment of his or her loan once he or she secures employment. 
  • The Excise Duty (Amendment) Bill (National Assembly Bill No. 42 of 2020) by the Hon. Jude Njomo, M.P. – The Bill seeks to amend the Excise Duty Act, 2015 to increase taxation of wooden furniture of a kind used in offices Code/Tariff No. 9403.30.00, imported wooden furniture of a kind used in the kitchen H.S Code/Tariff No. 9403.40.00 and wooden furniture of a kind used in bedroom H.S Code/Tariff No. 9403.50.00 30% per unit.   
  • The Kenya Deposit Insurance (Amendment) Bill (National Assembly Bill No. 43 of 2020) by the Hon. Abdul Dawood, M.P. – The Bill seeks to amend Section 28 of the Kenya Deposit Insurance Act, 2012 in order to increase the maximum amount a person with an account with an institution under liquidation is to be paid by the Kenya Deposit Insurance Corporation.
  • The National Construction Authority (Amendment) Bill (National Assembly Bill No. 45 of 2020) by the Hon. David Gikaria, M.P. – The bill seeks to amend the National Construction Authority Act, No. 41 of 2011 to ensure women, youth and persons living with disabilities with start-up who apply to be registered as contractors under category 6, 7, and 8 are exempted from paying the prescribed fees. National Construction Authority
  • The Public Procurement and Asset Disposal (Amendment) (No.3) Bill (National Assembly Bill No. 49 Of 2020) by the Hon. Benjamin Gathiru, M.P. – The Bill seeks to amend the Public Procurement and Asset Disposal Act, 2015 to enhance the amount for tenders where Kenya Citizens are given exclusive preference from the sum of five hundred million shillings to twenty billion shillings.
  • The Pharmacy and Poisons (Amendment) Bill (National Assembly Bill No. 1 of 2021) by the Hon. Alfred Keter, M.P. – The Bill seeks to amend the Pharmacy and Poisons Act to prohibit the sale or dispensing of medicine without a written prescription from a registered health practitioner.  
  • The Computer Misuse and Cybercrimes (Amendment) Bill (National Assembly Bill No. 11 of 2021) by Hon. Aden Duale, M.P.) – The Bill seeks to amend the Computer Misuse and Cybercrimes Act, No. 5 of 2018 to provide for the prohibition against the sharing of pornography through the internet.
  • The Health (Amendment) Bill (National Assembly Bill No. 14 of 2021) by the Hon. Mwambu Mabongah, M.P. – The Bill amends the Health Act, No. 21 of 2017 to provide that the national government and county governments shall, in consultation through the existing inter-governmental relations mechanisms, establish regional cancer centres.

The Livestock Bill (National Assembly Bill No. 16 Of 2021)

By the Leader of the Majority Party

The Bill was coming up for First Reading but was however suspended to allow for further consideration. It seeks to provide for the development and regulation of livestock and livestock product, research and capacity building in the livestock sector and the establishment of livestock agencies.  

STATEMENT

The following Statements came up on the Floor of the House among others:

Mtito Andei and Voi Stations

The Member for Mwatate (Hon. Andrew Mwadime, MP) asked the Cabinet Secretary for Transport, Infrastructure, Housing, Urban Development and Public Works the following questions: –

  1. Whether the CS could consider having a policy in place which will ensure that the Express Passenger Train which serves the Nairobi and Mombasa route on the Standard Gauge Railway (SGR) makes regular stops at the Mtito Andei and Voi Stations to enable the passengers, who normally include tourists, to disembark and visit surrounding tourist areas hence supporting the economic activities around Mtito Andei, Voi and the surrounding region? 
  2. Whether there are plans to refurbish the two stations considering their importance to the rail transport network and improving the economy of the region?

The question will be replied before the Departmental Committee on Transport, Public Works and Housing.

Kenya National Addressing System

The Member for Kajiado North (Hon. Joseph Manje, MP) asked the Cabinet Secretary for ICT, Innovation and Youth Affairs: –

  1. Could the Cabinet Secretary provide an update on the status of implementation of the Kenya National Addressing System under the Communications Authority which involves physical and electronic naming and numbering of buildings and streets?
  2. What urgent measures is the Ministry taking to ensure that institutionalization of the National Addressing System is expedited?

The question will be replied before the Departmental Committee on Communication, Information and Innovation.

Covid-19 Testing

The Member for Laikipia County (Hon. Catherine Waruguru, MP) asked the Cabinet Secretary for Health:

  1. What measures has the Ministry put in place to ensure there is enhanced access to affordable, effective and timely testing for COVID-19 in the country noting that testing is one of the most effective ways of reducing the rate of infection?
  2. Could the Cabinet Secretary confirm whether the Ministry has considered cheaper and more effective alternative modes of testing for the virus given that the testing mode currently in use requires laboratories, reagents and experts, and is also costly?
  3. What plans has the Ministry put in place to ensure the immediate adoption of rapid testing for COVID -19 in the country appreciating the fact that the World Health Organisation (WHO) recommends that countries use the Rapid Antigen Test to increase efficiency in testing and reduce infections?

The question will be replied to before the Departmental Committee on Health.

National Sports Fund Board

The Member for Luanda (Hon. Christopher Omulele, CBS, MP) asked the Cabinet Secretary for Sports, Culture and Heritage: –

  1. Could the Cabinet Secretary provide the status of the account of the funds collected under the Sports Fund established under the Sports Act, 2013?
  2. Could the Cabinet Secretary also give an account of the funds that the National Sports Fund Board has spent, and in particular in the establishment and construction of new Sports Stadia and Sports Academies?
  3. Could the Cabinet Secretary explain whether the Chief Executive Officer of the National Sports Fund Board is qualified, duly gazetted and authorized to execute the mandate of the Board as stipulated in the Sports Act, 2013?

The question will be replied before the Departmental Committee on Sports, Culture and Tourism

Services to Tharaka Nithi

The Member for Tharaka Nithi County (Hon Beatrice Nyaga, MP) asked the Cabinet Secretary for Interior and Coordination of National Government: –

  1. What urgent and long-term steps is the Ministry taking to ensure that mandatory government services provided by authorities such as the National Transport and Safety Authority (NTSA), the Kenya Revenue Authority (KRA) and the National Council for Persons Living with Disabilities (PWD) assessment offices are brought closer and within reach of residents of Tharaka Nithi County who have to travel forlong distances to seek the said services as they are not available in the County?
  2. Could the Cabinet Secretary give an undertaking that such services, alongside other government services, will be made within Tharaka Nithi County?

The question will be replied before the Departmental Committee on Administration and National Security

Inspection Services by NTSA

The Member for North Imenti (Hon. Abdul Dawood, MP) asked the Cabinet Secretary for Transport, Infrastructure, Housing, Urban Development& Public Works: –

  1. Could the Cabinet Secretary explain the criteria intended to be applied by the National Transport Safety Authority (NTSA) to conduct vehicle inspection exercises in the country following the recent Circular which affected Section 16 (2) of the Traffic Act requiring all vehicles above 4 years to be inspected?
  2. Could the Cabinet provide the total number of vehicles expected to undergo inspection in the Country and stipulate the measures the Ministry has put in place to ensure order during the inspection exercise?
  3. Could the Cabinet Secretary also explain how owners of motor vehicles will access the inspection units and provide details of the approved inspection units, their working hours, booking criterion, the number of vehicles to be inspected per day, and charges, if any?

The question will be replied before the Departmental Committee on Administration and National Security.

Standard of Used Motor Vehicle Parts

The Nominated Member (Hon. Gideon Keter, MP) asked the Cabinet Secretary for Industry, Trade and Cooperatives: –

  1. Could the Cabinet Secretary explain the measures that have been taken by the Kenya Bureau of Standards (KEBS) to ensure that used motor vehicle parts such as vehicle air bags, steering assemblies, braking systems and other parts imported into the country for re-use as spare parts are of sound quality and approved standards?
  2. Could the Cabinet Secretary explain why KEBS is allowing high-end vehicles such as Toyota Land-Cruiser V8 Models imported from the United Arab Emirates (UAE) to be inspected locally whereas there is a KEBS-appointed inspection agent for motor vehicles in Dubai?
  3. What steps is the Cabinet Secretary taking to ensure that the Market Surveillance Division (MSD) at KEBS has the capability of carrying out its mandate of vetting and approving products to ensure that they meet the set Kenyan standards and specifications?
  4. Could the Cabinet Secretary provide details of the local or locally owned inspection agents that have been contracted by KEBS under the Pre-export Verification of Conformity (PVoC) programme which have been in operation since September 2005 and explain how they are regulated?

The question will be replied before the Departmental Committee on Trade, Industry and Cooperatives

Business of the House Next week

The House Business Committee has approved the following tentative business to appear in the Order Paper for the coming week.

  1. Bills
  2. The Perpetuities and Accumulations (Amendment) Bill (National Assembly Bill No. 24 of 2021) – (First Reading)
  3. The Certified Managers Bill (National Assembly Bill No. 26 of 2021) – (First Reading)
  4. The Waqf Bill (National Assembly Bill No. 73 of 2019) – (Second Reading)
  5. Motions to be considered:
    • Consideration of the Budget Estimates for the Financial Year 2021/2022;
    • Report of The Auditor – General On the Financial Statements of the National Government for the Financial Year 2017/2018;
    • Inspection Visits to Ascertain the Impact of Revenue Enhancement Initiatives on Revenue Collection.
    • Committee of Supply (1st Allotted Day) Estimates of Recurrent and Development Expenditure for the year ending 30th June, 2022.
SENATE

The House is currently in recess and will resume on 6th July, 2021. 

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