Day 3 of Budget Public Hearings at KICC Nairobi
The Budget Public Sector Hearing sessions came to an end on Friday 13/1/2023.
The State Department for Economic Planning, Principal Secretary, James Muhati chaired a session on the Public Administration and International Relations Sector before closure.
During the Public hearings in this Sector, PS Muhati said that the sector is one of the Ten Sectors in the Medium-Term Budget Cycle which is divided into Twenty Sub Sectors.
The Public Administration and International Relations Sector provides the National leadership and National Planning as well as coordinate the enforcement of the administrative justice.
The State Department for Public Service Principal Secretary who serves as the Chairman of this Sector, Mr.Amos Gathecha made a detailed presentation on the sector. He outlined the Sector’s objectives, some of which include; promoting and protecting Kenya’s National development, tracking the National Development programmes, making recommendations on equitable sharing of revenue, providing leadership, policy direction, coordination of government for national prosperity, promotion of administration justice and access to information and many others.
He mentioned that among many achievements realized so far is the preparation and dissemination progression of government National Development Plans which include; the Kenya Vision 2030 MTP III and its Sector Plans (2018-2022) and the ‘Big Four Agenda’; and, ensuring of equitable revenue sharing between National and County government.
PS Gathecha pointed out some challenges which constrained the fiscal space in the sector including the effects of COVID-19 that hampered service delivery, inadequate policy and legal frameworks, high exchange foreign rates and increments in rental and leasing costs for premises in Kenya Missions abroad.
The PS also talked of the potential emerging issues that affects fiscal and monetary policies like regional territorial conflicts, prolonged drought attributed to climate change and increase of commodity prices triggered by the effects of COVID -19 pandemic and the unpredicted Russia-Ukraine war.
A discussant from KIPPRA, Mr. Mwate, mentioned that under Public Administration, there is need to improve reporting on milestones achieved progressively for transparency and statistical records and clear understanding of performance. He said that the targeted number of programs and their outputs need to be mentioned giving actual indicators which can guide in monitoring and evaluation.
In regard to International Relations, Mwate stated that there is need to expand Kenya’s diplomatic footprints in West Africa and tap on the ECOWAS Economic Trading Block, expand economic diplomacy to promote trade, tourism and investments, and ensure there is adequate capacity building through trainings for regional, peace and stability.
Some of the concerns raised by the participants touched on whether the government has any plans to expand Huduma Centers which are not yet enough to meet the service demands, employment of youths, effects of government austerity measures, and strategies to curb issues of prevalent corruption and insecurity.
Present during the Sector sessional Hearings were various Principal Secretaries in the Sector, Director of Budget, Margaret Nyakang’o, Economic Planning Secretary, Katherine Muoki among others.