alexa President Uhuru's tough agenda for Kenya - Daily Nation

President Uhuru's tough agenda for Kenya

Tuesday April 16 2013

President Uhuru Kenyatta (centre) exits the Parliament after delivering his keynote speech on his development agenda on April 16, 2013. Photo/BILLY MUTAI

President Uhuru Kenyatta (centre) exits Parliament after delivering his keynote speech on his development agenda on April 16, 2013. Photo/BILLY MUTAI NATION MEDIA GROUP

By NATION REPORTER [email protected]

President Uhuru Kenyatta on Tuesday outlined nine pillars to guide his Government as he spelled out his agenda for Kenya's eleventh Parliament.

Key points in President Kenyatta's speech during the State Address to Parliament included a vow of a tough war against corruption; major restructuring of government to make it lean and responsive "in the 21st Century"; and a commitment to reduce the public wage bill that currently stood too high at Sh458 billion.

"This wage bill at slightly over 12 per cent of our GDP, is well above the internationally accepted standard of 7 per cent and accounts for almost half of the revenue collected by Government," he said in his speech.

"This is unsustainable and poses a serious threat to the funding of important development projects, and has the potential to severely affect the country’s economic prospects," he added.

Mr Kenyatta said that all arms of government must act to reduce the wage bill with focus on reducing the cost of living of Kenyans.

"Our focus both as the executive and the legislature must be on reducing the cost of living and making Kenya much more competitive thereby increasing opportunities while improving the standard of living," he said.

President Kenyatta also noted that Kenya's exports of produce across the globe should be competitive so as to drive economic growth.

"Our exports should compete across the world and drive the growth necessary to create jobs for our youth and lift 10 million of our brothers and sisters out of poverty by 2017," he said.

President Kenyatta also pledged to fight corruption and make the country attractive for investments.

"Corruption makes our country less attractive as an investment destination. It limits access to much needed services, stifles efficiency and eats away at public values," he said.

Mr Kenyatta said Devolution was key to governance and that he would ensure its full implementation.

"Devolution is central to my Government’s vision for Kenya – it is not optional, it is a constitutional duty, one shared by all of us," he said.

"Mechanisms for resolving the minor administrative challenges are already in place because my Government is committed to devolution in full," he added.