- The MP said the public should take a close look at the Privatisation Bill that was passed four months ago.
- Ichung'wah said the bill explains how the government will divest from investments it had made in the past.
Kikuyu Member of Parliament Kimani Ichung'wah has said people who are complaining about the privatisation of the Kenya International Conference Centre are oozing ignorance.
Speaking in Parliament, the MP said the public should take a close look at the Privatisation Bill that was passed four months ago.
"Mr Speaker, I have seen in the media a lot of talk on how government is selling off assets. Ignorantly, people are not looking at the Privatisation Bill," he said.
Ichung'wah said the bill explains how the government will divest from investments it had made in the past.
"On the bill, it is very clear, whether the state will divest through investors, or through outright sales of some assets and so on. There is a lot of propaganda out there," he said.
"90 per cent of tenancy at KICC is parliament which is paying peanuts because it is government to government, but this is a prime location in the Central Business District. KICC owe other government agencies money.”
Further, Ichung'wah suggested if the KICC was to be leased to a chain of hotels that could run the building and convert it into a hotel, the government would collect more money.
"All the negative propaganda that is going around in line with the privatization bill, should stop. The law we passed was very clear. Kenyans will be able to derive value," he said.
KICC has been listed among 10 other state-run entities that will be handed over to private operators in the state privatisation programme.
The 11 parastatals lined up for sale have an asset value of Sh200 billion with KICC currently valued at Sh6.25 billion.
Other corporations to be sold are Kenya Literature Bureau, National Oil Corporation, Kenya Seed Company Limited, Mwea Rice Mills, Western Kenya Rice Mills Limited, Kenya Pipeline Company, New Kenya Cooperative Creameries, Kenya Vehicle Manufacturers Limited, Rivatex East Africa Limited and Numerical Machining Complex.
The government revealed that one of the reasons it was selling the Kenya Literature Bureau and KICC was because the two parastatals needed to be incorporated into limited companies.
On the other hand, National Oil Company is being privatised largely because of poor financial performance.