On Tuesday, information emerged that Kenya was denied access to 152 billion shillings meant for the precautionary facility from the International Monetary Fund (IMF) seven months ago.
According to the information, the alleged suspension of the country’s access to the funds was as a result of non-compliance.
The revelation brought to the surface the contradicting information both the CBK and the Treasury have been giving out to Kenyans concerning the cash.
In one of the local dailies, Jan Mikkelsen, the IMF resident representative in Kenya had indicated that the access to the facility has not been available to the country since mid-June.
Both the National Treasury and the Central Bank of Kenya have been silent about the issue and the public has never been made aware during the seven-month period.
Kenya was meant to access the facility in March 2016 as a way of cushioning the economy against shocks. This included safeguarding the shilling against the US Dollar and other global currency. Which begs the question, has the shilling been safe all along? Is there something that is more than what meets the eye that Kenyans are unaware?
But in a twist of even, the Central Bank of Kenya has sent a statement which it says comes from the International Monetary Fund and which counters the reports in the media. The report which is published on the IMF website seems to go against what had been said by their representative.
“Further to some press reports earlier today, I would like to clarify the status of Kenya’s Fund-supported program,” said the statement.
“The precautionary SBA/SCF arrangement remains in place until end-March 2018. The second and third reviews of the program, due respectively in June and December 2017, could not be completed on schedule as an agreement could not be reached on stronger fiscal policies, and discussions were postponed due to the prolonged election period. Kenya continues to have access to resources since June subject to policy understandings to complete the outstanding reviews,” read the statement.
Who is pulling the shots here?