Opinion: Jubilee Government, are they fiscal responsible for their current running debt?

Kenyatta Ruto 09.08.2016

Today is a day where I have questions and they are big because when you crunch the numbers for the last three fiscal years and estimated debt ratio it’s start to be worrying. It isn’t a sweet and tender way of asking. I know, but the numbers and the citizens will have to repay the amounts of borrowed cash at one point. As the Japanese will not deliver second-hand vehicles to the hospitals forever like they did during either this or last week in Kenya; Kenyan Government shouldn’t base their budget on handouts, but on tax-monies. The budget now is worrying as the levels of budget that are borrowed as it is going directly to portfolios that are day-to-day business instead of giant infrastructure development.

Why do I say that? Because each year you can question the ratio between the debt and the development projects; like in 2013/2014 the debt we’re 330bn, but the development 224bn. That is a 100bn used on day-to-day instead of building roads to Ethiopia or planning the Standard Gauge Railway. Take look!

In the 2013/2014:

At the fiscal year ending the 25th July 2014 the budget debt we’re 330,440,692,719.35. That means there 330bn debt, which we’re 25.8% of the National Revenue. National Government budget spent on development we’re 224,355,607,699.00 or 224bn.

In the 2014/2015:

At the fiscal year ending 24th July of 2015 the budget debt we’re 400,249,353,175.10. That means there 400bn debt, which we’re 25.1% of the National Revenue. National Government spent on development we’re 270,320,838,230.00 or 270bn.

In the 2015/2016:

At the fiscal year ending the 22nd July of 2016 the budget debt we’re 683,479,898,203.50. That means there 683bn debt, which we’re 36.9% of the National Revenue. National Government spent on development we’re 333,170,357,469.90 or 333bn.

So as you see, the FY 2013/2014 isn’t the worst. FY 2014/2015 is the start of loose government spending. The Jubilee all of sudden borrow 400bn and spends 270bn. That is 130bn that is used on day-to-day business, with loaned fiscal funds instead of the ordinary tax-base that the government should be fixated on. So with the last year FY 2015/2016 the Jubilee went all out in the stratosphere and borrowed from any bank or institution possible; as the debt we’re 683bn and the development we’re 333bn. That is 350bn that are used to day-to-day business and not development. The question remain why the sudden giant loan ratio towards the last year before election and why the lack of projects to use the newly granted funds.

The fiscal responsibility seems weak and not there when a government can splash this kind of funds and use this amount of debt on day-to-day instead of big projects and infrastructure projects needed. I am sure DP William Ruto has more friends that can be sub-contractors for some Chinese infused borrowed road projects around Kisumu. But, the ability to sustainable development with the steady rise of debt is worrying. That the IMF and World Bank is saying the debt ratio is still feasible should be worrying. As the IMF and World Bank never had control of the worst years before the Greece defaulted and needed saving grace from the world around it. The worst comes to worst when the Kenyan Government starts to default and reach it’s limit they have to have a mercy on the Jubilee and the counterparts who are paying for loose fiscal behaviour. The worst comes to worst with the giant amount of added fiscal funds might give the economy a edged inflation and bank rates that weakens the Kenyan Shilling as the deficit between reality and what is really used.

You can wonder why the Jubilee wants to hedge up so much loans and government debt. When the FY 2013/2014 and FY 2014/2015 we’re the net domestic borrowing around 300bn, but by FY 2015/2016 it become 500bn. That is a jump of 200bn of Domestic Borrowing. That should also be questioned together with the ratio already in the budget. This doesn’t seem like a healthy fiscal policy. The public should question the use of the borrowed domestic and total ratio of debt. The governance levels and accountability of the funds should be asked from Opposition and also the Auditor General. The Inspectorate of Government the IGG or Ombudsman should hassle the hustling Jubilee who has gained these funds and been responsible for the allocated budget and inquired for the option for loans to development and day-to-day use.

What do you think? Peace.   

Kenyatta with a Statehouse Summit on Transport and infrastructure; not a good look for the Jubilee!

State House Summit 08082016

“I understand that everyone in the rural areas,the MPs, the MCAs,Governors and all aspirants are claiming responsibility for any upcoming infrastructural project.They are fighting about who lobbied for what and who talked with whoever and who met whoever……..it’s not a question of who lobbied for any development be it roads,electricity connection,building of schools and many more….it’s a question of giving service to the forty to forty two million Kenyans who pay taxes.Hii Maneno ingine yote haina maana” – Uhuru Kenyatta

President Kenyatta has today a State House summit on transport and infrastructure projects in Kenya under his leadership and the Jubilee Government. That has soon finished their first term in the presidency. They had pledges upon pledges when they went into government.

They wanted to build a giant and fantastic electric quick railway. The Standard Gauge Railway and also develop the Lamu Port through the LAPSSET project with fellow neighbors. The Pipeline of crude-oil from the Northern Kenya in Kerio Valley in the Lokichar Basin to the upgraded Lamu Port; where the Jubilee Government also wanted the Lake Albert crude oil from Uganda to go to. Something that fell through as the licensed companies in Uganda though it was too costly to build through Kenya compared to Tanzania. So the Kenyan Government has to do it on they’re own. As the LAPSSET it is waiting for private enterprise to engage and use their monies on the planned infrastructure.

KAA Changes

The other issues are stadiums not built in regions where it was promised the fields of glory never came. It was easy to promise the district towns a sports facility, but none of them came to fruition. The others developments we’re that from Kenya had 30 Air-strips before Jubilee and by now they have 50 of those. Still, the discussion on the failed development project and upgrade of Jomo Kenyatta International Airport (JKIA) have not been an issue as the embarrassing project it is for the ruling regime and their PR team.

“There is corruption at the port. Find out who among the people in this room are thieves” – Uhuru Kenyatta.

There are always some issues and even after years in power and set change with rule of law. The Jubilee government tends with the same fractured system, the corrupt Mombasa port where the monies that makes all import more expensive and still they haven’t instilled checks and balances to Ports and therefore the extra taxation of the imports happen on a daily basis. As the corrupt mind and bodies continues to thrive with the speaking up against it, but not dealing with it in Parliament or by sanctions of law.

The Jubilee government has dozens of plans and pledges, as much as they have foreign loans to build the projects from the World Bank, International Monetary Fund and the Chinese. The extent of debt collected by the recent new loans has come to 49% of GDP. In April 2016 the Jubilee Government had collected $1.35 billion in debt, while fixing a massive deficit in the Kenyan budget. Still, this is worrying as the debt and interest has to be repaid to the International lenders and development banks which the tab is taken from.

Kenyan President Uhuru Kenyatta (L ) and his Chinese counterpart Xi Jinping (R) stand together during a signing ceremony at the Great Hall of the People in Beijing, China 19 August 2013.
Kenyan President Uhuru Kenyatta (L ) and his Chinese counterpart Xi Jinping (R) stand together during a signing ceremony at the Great Hall of the People in Beijing, China 19 August 2013.

This was not discussed at the Summit and where is the money for the development projects coming from as they shouldn’t just surface out of thin air. Just like the roads and rails need wages, plans, dialogue and trade to get built. As the landowners need to be compensated together with the companies building the roads need paid for service rendered. Therefore the business of infrastructure is expensive as the giant projects cost a fortune because they are supposed to stay for long and be kept for decades on.

The same with all the roads not taken care of as the feeder roads of the Northern Kenya, which is left in mud and dust; the focus on three Nairobi by-passes to fix the congestion of the capital. Not thinking of other towns who could need extra bypasses like Eldoret or other where the Jubilee doesn’t deliver the needed infrastructure, except if it is fitting with the border-passes and agreement with nation on the other side who needs roads of exporting through Kenya there. Therefore the Summit is more a PR Show, than proving real progress as the corrupt, the debt and all the other problems are destroying the champion sound and roar from the Jubilee Government under President Kenyatta. Peace.

IGAD signs LAPSSET corridor development MoU (19.05.2016)

LAPSSET-600x300

The IGAD Executive Secretary Amb (Eng.) Mahboub Maalim on 13th May 2016 in Nairobi signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with Kenya’s LAPSSET Corridor Development Authority (LCDA) Director General Mr. Silvester Kasuku.

The MoU details cooperation by the two authorities towards development of the Lamu Port South Sudan Ethiopia Transport Corridor (LAPSSET). The overall goal of the LAPSSET Corridor Program is to interconnect the Republics of Kenya, Ethiopia and South Sudan among others. Once implemented the Program will link the landlocked regions of South Sudan and Ethiopia to Lamu Port in Kenya promoting regional integration in the Horn of Africa, and providing trade opportunities. The LAPSSET Corridor is also part of Africa’s Presidential Infrastructure Champion Initiative (PICI).

According to the signed MoU, IGAD and LCDA will work together in mobilising funds towards detailed engineering design studies of the LAPSSET Railway component of the Corridor (Lamu-Isiolo-Moyale-Addis Ababa/Isiolo-Nadapal-Juba, approx. 2,900 km). The design studies of the standard gauge railway will be spearheaded by IGAD Secretariat.

The Battle for the Oil the Coast; the Continuation of the diplomatic squabble between Kenya and Tanzania!

Oil-pipeline

The tides are turning and the continuation of the matter on who gets the crude-oil pipeline through their countries from Hoima down the coast. The Ugandan delegates to Tanzania were treated as royalties as the delegation could bring tax-money and development for the Tanzanian government. While the Kenyan could take that away and they could see either their advantage or disadvantage towards the Port system of Tanga. That might be why CS Keter lost his passport and travel papers on Wednesday in Port of Tanga.

The only ones earning on this diplomatic matter is Ugandan, but the East African Community is creating a hostile environment between countries over a pipeline and the gaining the monies involved in the deal, the rates and construction of the pipeline.

Keter Citizen TV

What was said the day after the Passport and Travel Papers of CS Keter taken at Tanga Port:

“According to a source in the Presidency, Foreign Affairs Cabinet Secretary Amina Mohamed has tasked Kenya’s envoy to Tanzania Ali Chirau Mwakwere with getting to the bottom of the matter. “We want them to tell us what wrong they did as per the East African Protocol.” (…)“The two leaders agreed to meet after two weeks in Kampala to allow their technical officials to harmonise their presentations, focusing on: ensuring a least-cost option for a regional integrated pipeline, address constructability issues along all routes – existing and planned infrastructure, terrain and elevations. Assessing and confirming the current proven reserves which will have an impact on the size of the pipeline,” Keter and his Ugandan counterpart Irene Muloni jointly stated on March 21 following the State House meeting” (…)”It is in the process of assessing the, “viability of the Lamu, Mombasa and Tanga ports,” that Keter and the rest of his delegation encountered hostility”.

Manoah Esipisu

What is said today on the matter:

“State House Spokesman Manoah Esipisu told reporters in Nairobi that Tanzania was isolated deliberately because it had nothing to do with the issues on the agenda. “Monday meeting was bilateral. As you know we had also invited oil companies but they did not participate in the bilateral meeting,” he told journalists” (…)”Diplomatic sources said Kenya was planning to protest the apparent violation of the East African Community laws on free movement of people, even though Tanzania has argued it had no prior information the officials would be travelling to Tanga” (…)”As Mr Keter and his group were being barred from the Port, the Ugandan delegation led by Irene Muloni, the Energy Minister, were being shown a presentation on the advantages of routing the pipeline through Tanzania” (Mutambo, 2016).

tanga port

More on the matter today:

“A senior State House official who did not want to be named because the matter was being handled at the Foreign Affairs ministry said the incident was “unfortunate” and that Kenya would protest to the Tanzanian government through its high commissioner in Dar es salaam. “I can confirm to you that the matter will be handled through our Foreign Affairs ministry. The incident was embarrassing,” the official said. He said the Tanzanian government was aware of the planned trip, which was part of an assessment of the three ports of Lamu, Mombasa and Tanga to check the suitability of the ports for Ugandan petroleum” (Kajilwa & Ng’etich, 2016),

It is hard to know what this can lead to, at least the Tanzanian diplomatic sources saying it was embarrassing to them, and to get knowledge of the Port Police actions in the Port of Tanga. When the Tanzanian Government person inside their State House says so, then their suddenly was not maliciously intent towards the Kenyan officials and diplomatic team on their soil. Though it will put a strain to the matter, as the actions speaks louder than words and to what extent certain people goes towards the advisories.

The Kenyan are right to ask for a sincere apology and reasoning for the hold-up, the passport and travel documents from the CS Keter and his team, while letting Ugandan Energy Minister Muloni walk around like proud-cock at the Port of Tanga.

This here is proof of the matter and how the governments are handling the matter and approaching each other. The Tanzanian Government should issue an sincere apology and the Kenyan should comply in a peaceful manner, as that is what they have asked for. Since this a big deal for both countries, as I have described again, and would be a long-term economic development project that would benefit more sectors than just the oil. Therefore we can see the growing rift for getting through their country and down to their port. I hope that Tanzanian government have sense and the same from the CS Keter as he was the victim, and have already gotten leverage, but that does not mean it gives a free-pass to the minister of Kenya. This will be something that will continue, into the final agreement between Uganda and the picked destination and the contracts between the Oil-Companies who will be drilling the oil in Lake Albert and the Albertine Region. Peace.

Reference:

Burrows, Olive – ‘Kenya: Govt Protests to Tanzania Over Keter Passport Fiasco’ (24.03.2016) link: http://allafrica.com/stories/201603250043.html

Kajilwa, Graham & Ng’etich, Jacob – ‘Kenya protests to Tanzania over confiscation of Charles Keter’s passport’ (25.03.2016) link:http://www.standardmedia.co.ke/article/2000196026/kenya-protests-mistreatment-by-tanzania

Mutambo, Aggrey – ‘State explains why Tanzania was excluded from oil pipeline talks’ (25.03.2016) link: http://www.nation.co.ke/news/State-explains-why-Tanzania-was-excluded-from-oil-pipeline-talks/-/1056/3132806/-/52cqfg/-/index.html

Statement by the Heads of State of Kenya, Uganda, Ethiopia and South Sudan on the Lamu Port Southern Sudan-Ethiopia Transport (LAPSSET) Corridor Project

EA State