Lack of quorum halted debate on a report by a think tank, advising the Government on how to improve the economy and make Kenya globally competitive.
There were only five MPs in the House as Planning Assistant Minister Peter Kenneth moved the Kenya Economic Report 2009.
Even after the quorum bell was rang, the House could not muster the requisite number of 30, hence business was adjourned prematurely at 5pm – half an hour earlier.
Rangwe MP Martin Ogindo had alerted temporary Deputy Speaker Gitobu Imanyara that it was unfortunate debate on the crucial report was proceeding in a nearly empty House.
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Earlier, Mr Kenneth had said the report, prepared by the Kenya Institute for Public Policy Research and Analysis, detailed the need to increase funding to critical sectors such as health, micro-business enterprises and tourism to enhance growth.
The institute carried the independent assessment of the country’s economic performance by benchmarking against comparative countries and the newly industrialised ones.
The push for additional resources to the health sector, the minister said, was informed by the fact that Kenya’s per capital expenditure of $80 (about Sh6,000) a person per year was below the World Health Organisation’s recommended threshold.
Kenneth, at the same time, said the report recommended reduction of the cost of starting and running businesses.
He also stressed the need to enhance the country’s competitiveness in the global market by exporting manufactured goods.