President Uhuru Kenyatta warns firms of frequent litigation

President Uhuru Kenyatta has warned companies which are fond of filing several litigations, saying the move was delaying government programs.

Kenyatta said his government will no longer entertain companies using the courts to hold back the country, warning that such firms will be blacklisted.

“We must move away from a vendor-driven society.

“Kenyans are interested in affordable and efficient services,” Kenyatta said in Nairobi when he received a World Development Report – Digital Dividends Report 2016, a World Bank flagship project.

He said many more government programmes including e-procurement, extension of the police command and control center outside Nairobi and Mombasa and privatization of terminal two at the port of Mombasa have been slowed down by vendors battling in courts for the control.

The Kenyan leader pointed out that the many law suits between service providers themselves and regulators were not in the best interest of the country but only served the companies interests.

“Unnecessary completion by vendors has to stop if the country is to move forward and achieve its development targets,” he said.

The president cited the digital migration in the country, whose implementation dragged for long because of vested interests, as an example of private sector interference that was undermining service delivery.

The President told interested suppliers that they will not be allowed to delay the roll out the digital learning project.

In addition, though the number of internet users worldwide has more than tripled since 2005, four billion people still lack access to the internet.

“Digital technologies can promote inclusion, efficiency, and innovation.

“More than forty percent of adults in East Africa pay their utility bills using a mobile phone,” it says.

Kenyatta said the delay in digital migration, occasioned by traditional media houses to protect their monopolistic interests, only delayed benefits of digital technologies for Kenyans.

“Vendors fighting one another or with the regulators only tend to protect business monopolies but have no interest of the country at heart.

“It is clear that the digital migration has paid dividends by opening up space for more radio and TV stations,” he said.

President Kenyatta told technical training institutions in the country to open up training opportunities that will enable young people to become ICT experts.

“One does not have to go to university to be an expert in ICT.

“Technical training institutions tailor their courses to ensure that world class ICT course are offered for the youth at that level,” Kenyatta said.

He, however, said as Kenya embraces the ICT agenda, care must be taken to ensure criminals do not take advantage of improved technology to perpetuate criminal activities.