President Uhuru Kenyatta on Friday assured that the government is determined to recover all the money looted from the National Youth Service and the culprits made to pay the price.
He said the government can no longer tolerate or sit back helplessly watching greedy individuals loot and divert to personal use millions of tax-payers’ money meant to benefit thousands of Kenyan youth.
“We shall ensure that all those who have looted resources meant for the youth pay the price and the money recovered,’’ said the Head of State.
He added: “We cannot and will not allow this to continue.”
President Kenyatta was speaking at the NYS training college in Gilgil, Nakuru County, where he presided over the passing out parade of over 16,400 recruits, the biggest ever contingent in a single intake.
President Kenyatta called for prudent and diligent utilisation of resources allocated to the paramilitary training institution whose recruits provide auxiliary services to the police to provide security and protection services in addition to undertaking other national development duties.
Before President Kenyatta spoke, the new NYS Director General Ms Matilda Sakwa gave a firm commitment to contain graft at the institution which has in recent years lost huge sums of money, estimated at billions, to looters entrusted with its management.
President Kenyatta said the NYS will play a major role towards the success of the Big 4 development agenda especially in the pillars of manufacturing and food security.
“The NYS will certainly play a significant role in the success of the Big 4, not least in contributing to the two key pillars, manufacturing and food security,” said the Head of State.
Consequently, President Kenyatta directed those charged with the management of the 54 year old organization to hasten its commercialization so that it is strategically repositioned and prepared to be at the core of the implementation of the Big 4 pillars of development.
By commercialising the NYS, said President Kenyatta, it will enable the organization to train market ready graduates with required skills and capacity to create thousands of jobs for the youth.
President Kenyatta said the confidence in the NYS to support the Big 4 agenda is based on knowledge that the organization has the most critical factor in production- energetic, intelligent, young men and women, ready to work.
“To meet the demands of the Big 4 Agenda, skilled men and women, especially in the technical competencies — are absolutely vital,” said President Kenyatta.
The President said the NYS Bill 2018, currently before the National Assembly, will introduce a raft of measures aimed at creating stronger structures for oversight. He asked parliament to fast track the approval of the Bill and hand it to him for assent.
He said the new measures included in the Bill will reposition the NYS to execute its mandate with more vigour and a high sense of integrity.
The President acknowledged the various commercial undertakings and initiatives by the NYS including garment production.
He said besides producing uniforms for the Kenya Defence Forces, the NYS will now also produce the new uniforms for the police.
“I am also reliably informed that other institutions such as County Governments are engaging the Service in garment production,” said the President
The Head of State acknowledged that the NYS has rolled out a programme to produce cotton on some of its land where they have piloted production of the crop on a 300-acre farm.
The President said the 50,000 NYS graduates trained over the years had contributed immensely to nation building in various ways covering disaster and humanitarian relief responses, security and other public duties.
While congratulating the fresh recruits, President Kenyatta re-assured them that the government does not champion the cause of the youth through NYS as a favor but rather as a necessary and undeniable responsibility.
Prof Kobia and NYS college commandant Isaac Ndirangu also addressed the function that was also attended by Nakuru Governor Lee Kinyanjui.