Khalwale: "It's not disrespect for President Ruto, but we'll not accept selling of Nzoia, Mumias companies"
- On March 21 this year, the Cabinet approved the Privatisation Bill, 2023. During the approval, it was agreed that the original process of seeking the Members of Parliament (MPs) approval first before selling a parastatal was "bureaucratic".
Kakamega Senator Boni Khalwale has faulted President William Ruto's government over plans to privatise ailing parastatals.
Speaking on Saturday, April 1 in Kakamega, Senator Khalwale specifically took issues with the government's plan to sell Nzoia Sugar Company and Mumias Sugar Company to private investors.
According to Khalwale, who is the Senate Majority Whip, selling the two sugar millers will be akin the only companies the people of Western Kenya boast of.
"Last week mmesema kwamba kampuni za serikali zitakuwa privatised. Ndani ya hizo kampuni kuna kampuni zetu za sukari za Nzoia na Mumias. I beg you...Mimi kama kiongozi kutoka jamii yetu ya waluhya, babu zetu walipeana 12,500 acres to Mumias Sugar Company, wakapeana 24,500 acres to Nzoia Sugar Company. If you privatise, somebody will go away with ancestral land," Khalwale said during the function - a thanksgiving ceremony organised by 40 churches in Kakamega.
Khalwale added: "Sisi hatuwezi kuunga mkono maneno ya privatising Mumias na Nzoia Sugar companies. No! We cannot! And this is not out of disrespect for the President or the government. That is the little we [Western region] have."
Cabinet approves Bill
On March 21 this year, the Cabinet approved the Privatisation Bill, 2023. During the approval, it was agreed that the original process of seeking the Members of Parliament (MPs) approval first before selling a parastatal was "bureaucratic".
And while the Azimio La Umoja One Kenya Coalition has also faulted Kenya Kwanza administration over the move, Cabinet argues that the parastatals being earmarked are non-strategic and non-performing, and that selling them will help in improving the infrastructure and the delivery of excellent services.
"The privatisation will also tame the demand for government resources and generate more funds to drive the Government’s development agenda,” said a State House statement.
The issue is likely to put the Executive on a collision course with MPs, considering a section of them had rejected the proposal in the Bill.
1 day ago
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