- The National Treasury completed the Financial Year 2022/23 on a strong and positive note.
- Total revenues were mobilised which was a growth of 7.3 percent in the year to June 2023.
When President William Ruto’s administration came into power, he promised to implement his Bottoms-Up Agenda for Economic Transformation upon which he campaigned.
Despite the numerous challenges facing the administration (many of which are global like the price of commodities and fuels), it would be praiseworthy to know that something has been done to make some of these promises a reality.
One year after inauguration, has something noteworthy been done to this effect? Let us find out.
For any of these promises to make sense, the Kenya Revenue Authority needed to raise sufficient resources for President Ruto’s administration to be able to implement his promises.
The National Treasury completed the Financial Year 2022/23 on a strong and positive note.
Total revenues were mobilised which was a growth of 7.3 percent in the year to June 2023.
This was a performance of 93.9 per cent against the target.
During the year, The National Treasury mobilised Sh459.5 billion through net domestic borrowing against a target of Sh483.5 billion.
Having mobilised sufficient resources, the year closed on a strong note.
With this performance by KRA in mind, one would expect the National Treasury to cater for the most critical masses at the bottom of the pyramid to enable them to meaningfully participate in this economy.
As would have been expected under this administration, The National Treasury made some critical payments that reached citizens at the very bottom of our economy.
For the first time in seven years, the government disbursed 100 per cent of Equitable Share to the 47 county governments amounting to Sh399.6 billion by 30th June 2023.
This figure included the equitable share of Sh370.0 billion and the arrears of Sh29.6 billion inherited from the previous regime.
The government also fully disbursed the entire allocation to the National Government Constituency Development Fund (NG-CDF) amounting to Sh47.2 billion by the end of the financial year.
The NG-CDF is administered through the constituencies under the patronage of Members of the National Assembly and targets development activities at the Constituency level, especially in support of education (bursaries and construction of classrooms), construction of health facilities and in other infrastructure like bridges and boreholes.
On social protection, by the end of the Financial Year, the government disbursed 100 per cent of the Cash transfers to the Elderly to cater for their needs which include food, health and upkeep.
The government also funded all arrears for cash transfers to Orphans and Vulnerable Children (OVCs) amounting to Sh16 billion.
Going forward, the President has directed that The National Treasury should disburse resources to this category ahead of the salaries for civil servants.
One of the biggest complaints from those that have retired from public service has been the inordinate period they have to wait to get their pension benefits.
Oftentimes, retirees have to make several visits to government offices and even pay large amounts in bribes to access the little available in their pension funds.
A lot of these delays are occasioned by insufficient funding of pension obligations.
To this end, the Government has cleared the pensions arrears of Sh12.6 billion which were outstanding at the close of the financial year 2022/23.
Hopefully, those who have served our nation will benefit without having to part with their little pension funds.
Another headache for the administration has been pending bills owed to suppliers of government goods and services.
This has mostly affected young people and women, who often borrow to be able to supply tenders under the affirmative action reservations.
To this end, the President has directed all Ministries, Departments and Agencies to prioritise payment of pending bills once they are verified in the 2023/24 Financial Year, before embarking on new expenditures as per the Public Finance Management Act.
In addition, the government-funded subsidy arrears due to Oil Marketing Companies (OMCs) of Sh27.7 billion, effectively bringing to an end the regime for fuel subsidies.
The government will now Use the Petroleum Development Levy for price stabilisation purposes, whose function was distorted by the unsustainable subsidies.
The above interventions were made to revamp economic recovery as envisioned in the Bottom-Up Economic Transformation Agenda (BETA) of the Kenya Kwanza administration.
The multiplier effects of the cash payments are expected to support enhanced economic activity nationwide, but more importantly, at the grass root level.