By Wilkister Alao
ICT Cabinet Secretary Joe Mucheru risks being sanctioned by Parliament after failing to explain why a House Resolution on Telkom Kenya had not been implemented.
Mr Mucheru is said to have informed the Members of Parliament that his ministry did not have anything to say about telco.
The house had asked the government to reconsider the Privatization of Telkom Kenya Limited, Recapitalization and Restructuring agreement, which has not been effected five years down the line.
The Cabinet Secretary angered the committee on Tuesday, 18 June, when he said that Telkom Kenya is privately owned, its major shareholder is Jamuhuri Holdings, and that the government, through the treasury, holds only 40 percent of shares through the Investments Secretary.
“A company ceases to be a State corporation when it has less shareholding. The Investment Secretary or the CS Treasury is competent to provide the information that you need. I am not able to give you information relating to the board of a privately owned company,’ said Mr Mucheru.
Committee members Simba Arati, Nixon Korir, and Owen Baiya were of the opinion that the CS was misleading the MPs as President Uhuru Kenyatta had in 2018 issued an executive order placing Telkom Kenya under the Ministry of ICT.
But Mucheru also said that he didn’t know the owners of Jamuhuri Holdings when the MPs asked him to disclose the real people behind the majority shareholder.
He said, “That can only be given to you by the National Treasury since they are responsible for government shareholding in Telkom.”
The committee asked Mr Mucheru to provide the information needed within the next 14 days in a written submission, or risk facing sanctions.
Mr Mucheru had been summoned by the committee to explain why his ministry had failed to implement a 2014 recommendation of the Public Investments Committee (PIC) on recapitalization and restructuring of Telkom Kenya.