Nominated Member of Parliament (MP) John Mbadi has called for a reduction on public expenditure to tackle the country’s ballooning public debt.
Mbadi who also chairs the Public Accounts Committee in the National Assembly said the executive must be put to account on public expenditure to ensure that only projects which must be carried out are funded.
This, he said, was the only way of ensuring that government spending is scaled down to help clear debt which is in arrears.
“We need to avoid populist expenses or populism in terms of public expenditure by thinking that we can implement all the projects we want. No one even in their private life gets everything they want,” he said.
As the government moves to update its books, Mbadi said the committee will interrogate the expenditures to ensure prudent use of public funds.
Speaking in Kisumu during the induction of National Assembly Liaison Committee members, Mbadi said the debt crisis was as a result of poor financial management where the government borrowed expensive loans which were not prudently utilized.
“Borrowing is not bad. It is how we use the funds that has compromised our ability to repay,” he said.
Mbadi noted that if the government was borrowing and putting the funds into productive use, then the country would not have been in debt.
The shift from concessionary loans to commercial loans in 2013, he added, was to blame for the current huge debt because the government borrowed at very high interest rates.
By Chris Mahandara