SMEs Conference and Expo, Nairobi. PHOTO | NMG
SMEs Conference and Expo, Nairobi. PHOTO | NMG

Treasury Cabinet Secretary Ukur Yattani says plans underway to merge government bodies over skyrocketed wage bill. Parastatals, Commissions and some other government agencies to join in order to save government expenditure.

Speaking at SMEs Conference and Expo, the CS said that the government plans to merge parastatals in a ratio that will see up to 10 collapsed into 1 in far-reaching proposals to cut extra fat and save taxpayers billions of shillings. That Means 100 agencies will be reduced to 10 agencies.

Speaking at the SMEs Conference and Expo when he revealed a raft of measures aimed at supporting small businesses, Treasury CS Ukur Yattani said Kenya has close to 400 State agencies, half of them being regulatory bodies. He that by June  2021, the number will be reduced to 50 agencies.

“There are a number of parastatals doing regulatory work, some play duplicating roles. We are now trying to look for ways to harmonise all laws so that some of the parastatals will either come under one or be reduced. We are targeting to merge at the ratio of 10 to 1. We will look for the related agencies that can comfortably be put under one, ” he said.

Others who included Dr Fred Matiang’i (Interior), Ms Sicily Kariuki (outgoing Health), Mr Joe Mucheru (ICT), Ms Betty Maina (Industrialisation), Mr Peter Munya (Agriculture). Simon Chelugui (Labour), Monica Juma (Defence).

Other senior government officials in attendance included Ms Esther Koimett (PS broadcasting), Mr Nzioka Waita (Chief Of Staff, Office of The President), Mr Charles Hinga (PS, Housing) Julius Korir (ICT) and Francis Owino (Industrialisation).

Treasury CS said the government must tax its citizens proportionately, and that SMEs should be the last segment to be taxed.

“If they must be taxed, it should be comfortable, affordable and within their reach. Because our role is to make sure that the private sector grows, and the SME grows,” Mr Yattani said.

The CS said SMEs and the private sector by extension are the engines of growth and development. “The role of government is to provide the necessary environment for businesses to thrive,” he said.

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