Cabinet agrees to eliminate overlapping ministry roles

The Cabinet on Tuesday approved two crucial Bills and scrapped all construction-related charges levied by government ministries and counties in a bid to boost the sector and foster investment.

In a meeting chaired by President Uhuru Kenyatta at State House, the Cabinet agreed that multiple charges levied by various ministries, departments, agencies and county governments for the construction industry had contributed to the increase of costs in the sector and led to undue delays in obtaining requisite approvals.

The cabinet said that the move would encourage investors, increase investor confidence and improve the cost of doing business.

After deliberations, the President, Deputy President William Ruto, Attorney General Githu Muigai and Cabinet Secretaries agreed to eliminate duplication of roles with a view to ensuring that government ministries and departments performed their core mandates effectively.

Overlapping services will now be performed by the ministry, department or agency best suited to offer the requisite service.

They decided that all affected legislation and regulations would be amended to bring into effect the scrapped levies.

The Cabinet also decided on the creation of a one-stop shop approach, such as that delivered within Huduma Centres, for licensing and registration of contractors by the National Construction Authority.

It also approved the Moveable Property Security Rights Bill, 2016, which will provide for the creation of an electronic registry.

The registry will be required to enhance confidence of the lending institutions and create an enabling environment to loan against moveable assets as collateral.

Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises, (MSMEs) will be the greatest beneficiaries of the reforms that will now go to parliament for debate.

The Bill will allow lending to a group that has previously struggled to access credit and the economy to benefit from the immense potential that MSMEs have in economic growth.

The Cabinet also approved the National Coroners Service Bill 2016 which seeks to provide a legal framework for investigating, reporting and documenting unnatural deaths in the country. The Attorney General is now expected to table it in parliament for debate.

The Bill provides for the establishment of the National Coroner’s service office. A coroner performs a public service by making enquiries into the sudden death and unexplained deaths independently of the medical profession, the State or parties who might have an interest in the outcome of an investigation into a death.

This Bill will be instrumental in the investigations into deaths in law enforcement custody and in sudden or unnatural death scenarios.

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