Elections will not affect economy, CS tells traders

POLITICS |
CSs Fred Matiang'i (Interior), Joe Mucheru (ICT), Betty Maina (Industrialisation) and Kepsa CEO Carole Kariuki after a roundtable meeting on economy and election preparedness yesterday. [Wilberforce Okwiri, Standard]

The government has assured investors that it is committed to delivering peaceful and credible elections during the August polls.

Interior Cabinet Secretary Dr Fred Matiang’i said the government is supporting the Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission (IEBC) by providing security and adequate resources needed to conduct free and fair elections.

“The private sector should continue making more orders and expand their business ventures since we shall have peaceful elections. There is no evidence of violence before, during and after the polls and as a government we are committed at protecting your business empires,” said Matiang’i. 

The CS said that unlike 2017 when ugly incidences were rampant, this year’s election promises to be a peaceful one.

“The number of incidents that were witnessed during the 2017 General Election is less the number of incidents we are witnessing in the 2022 polls. In fact, it’s less than a quarter of what we saw in 2017. This shows our democracy has matured and the elections will not affect our economy in any way,” observed Dr Matiang’i.

The CS spoke yesterday in Nairobi after holding the National Development Implementation Communication Cabinet Committee (NDICC) roundtable meeting with Kenya Private Sector Alliance (Kepsa) on the economy and election preparedness.

He reiterated that the government is committed to working with the private sector in tackling all the challenges that will come with the forthcoming elections.

“We are confident that the economy will not be affected by the polls and no investor should move out of the country for fear incurring huge losses occasioned by inflation and violence. We are receiving many delegations of foreigners who want to invest in Kenya and we encourage them to continue coming; we shall give them a conducive environment of doing business,” he said.

He was accompanied by his counterparts James Macharia (Transport), Betty Maina (Trade) and Joe Mucheru (ICT, Innovation and Youth Affairs).

“Election is a one-day event that will come and go but there’s life after the polls. Politicians must conduct peaceful campaigns devoid of violence and incitement; failure to which the law shall deal with them,” said Matiang’i.

Ms Maina asked the private sector to also engage the leaders seeking elective seats so that they can respect national institutions like the Judiciary that deal with election grievances as opposed to resorting to unlawful means that will jeopardise the security of the country.

“When we work together we shall have solutions to our problems like the way we addressed the fuel crisis and the huge prices that had been imposed on fertilizer products,” said Maina.

Carole Kariuki, Kepsa’s CEO said no businesses are being moved as a result of the forthcoming elections, assuring that the investors are not worried about the polls.

“If you are farmer, go and plant your crops, if you are an investor, make more investment as the country will be peaceful. But IEBC must also ensure they diligently do their work so that all candidates will have faith in them,” she said.

She said they will engage all the presidential candidates immediately they have been cleared by the IEBC so that they can commit themselves to maintain peace and tranquility as well as rallying their supporters to desist from causing mayhem in case they lose.

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