State urged to observe 30% affirmative action plan on procurement
Ministries, parastatals and counties have been urged to fully implement President Uhuru Kenyatta’s directive on 30 per cent youth, women and persons with liabilities-specific affirmative action on government procurement that is meant to economically empower the youth
Mount Kenya Youth Caucus, which is a lobby group through its chairman Linford Mutembei said young people have registered companies but are denied opportunities, including the 30 percent exclusively for them because “they don’t know people” in government and can’t raise high bribes.
Mutembei said while some government entities were following the directive for most government organization, the provision only exists in policies, saying some resist it or deliberately refuse to engage the youth especially when it involves lucrative tenders.
“Institutions such as the Kenya Rural Roads Authority (Kura), Kenya National Highway Authority (KeNHA) and Kenya Rural Roads Authority (KeRRA) at the top level have completely refused to comply with the directive, and we would urge the together with all other government ministries, parastatals and departments to do the same because that is one of the ways to promote the young people and empowering them economically,” Mutembei said.
According to Mutembei, while Roads and Transport Cabinet Secretary James Macharia and Public Works Principal Secretary Pual Maringa have been pushing for the implementation of the directive, most infrastructure related parastatals are still shortchanging the youth.
However, he said some units such (KeRRA) officials in the region, notably Muranga and Meru having been engaging the young people in lucrative tenders although it has been a challenge.
The tender and evaluation committees, Mutembei was to blame to the failed implementation of the directive which is meant to deal joblessness among the youth
Besides the 30 percent exclusive tenders, Mutembei said the government entities should also consider awarding the youth tenders under the 70 percent category that are open to all.
Most youth, he said have been applying for those tenders but they hardly win because the tendering processes are normally skewed to their disadvantage.