NO AD-HOC TEAM

Muturi turns down Kuria's motion for public debt inquiry

Speaker says ad hoc committee is only formed when issue cannot be addressed by existing teams

In Summary

• Kuria's motion wanted formation of a select committee whose mandate would have been to investigate the borrowing trends of the government in the past 20 years. 

• MPs criticise Kuria for 'seeking popularity through motion'. 

Gatundu South MP Moses Kuria.
PUBLIC DEBT COMMITTEE: Gatundu South MP Moses Kuria.
Image: FILE

National Assembly Speaker Justin Muturi has rejected a motion by Gatundu South MP Moses Kuria to form an ad-hoc committee to inquire into the country’s debt.

Muturi said the matters intended to be addressed by the proposed committee fell under the mandate of the Departmental Committee on Finance and National Planning.

He said the Treasury has submitted statutory reports and statistics on the status of loans contracted or guaranteed by the government, the National Debt Management Strategies and related reports. 

 

“These matters are still pending before the committee on Finance and National Planning and the Budget and Appropriations committee. The MP is a member of the latter committee,” he said.

The speaker said that a select committee can only be set up to inquire into any matter if it cannot be adequately addressed by the existing committees.

He added that the matters could also be cross-cutting, making it impossible to be considered by a specific committee or are beyond the mandates of the existing committees. 

“It is, therefore, imperative that members utilise the existing opportunities in committees to address matters affecting the society,” he added.

Muturi directed the Finance committee to consider the matters contained in the motion by Kuria.

“The committee should also consider the various debt-related reports I have enumerated, and report back to the House," he said. 

Kuria's motion wanted the House to establish a Select Committee on the Public Debt Situation in Kenya whose mandate would have been to investigate the borrowing trends of the government in the past 20 years. 

 

It was also to investigate and inquire into the processes, terms and status of the government’s past and current domestic and external debt. 

Further, it was to study and inquire into past and current revenue collection, taxation measures and public expenditure.

Kuria also wanted the committee to inquire into the effects of the public debt to the economy, to the current and future generations and to report.

The team would report to the House and make recommendations on possible alternatives, mitigation measures; and any other related proposals, within 90 days.

 

He had proposed 15 names for the membership of the select committee with him as the chairperson.

The MP received a bashing for purportedly trying to seek popularity with the motion.

Ndaragua MP Jeremiah Kioni thanked the speaker for turning down Kuria’s request saying it would have been waste of time.

“Kuria is just seeking popularity. Don’t come here with things that people talk about in the bar,” he said.

Kisumu West's Olago Aluoch asked why Kuria came up with the motion yet he is always criticising the House.

“I feel bad when I see a colleague talk badly about us out there and then he comes here with a motion that he wants us to support,” he explained.

Edited by R.Wamochie