Friday, July 12, 2024

Kenya: We Must Live Within Our Means, President Ruto to Doctors


President William Ruto has told doctors to understand that there is a limit to what the government can spend on their salaries and allowances.

Saying the government values the work doctors and interns play in the health sector, the President pointed out that the country cannot continue to live beyond its means.

“The resources we have are only sufficient to pay KSh70,000 for intern doctors. This is not a salary; it is a stipend for only one year. Afterwards, they will be employed,” he said.

The President explained that the government has the funds needed to absorb all the 1,500 doctor interns at KSh70,000 a month.

He made remarks on Sunday during church service at Africa Inland Church (AIC) Fellowship Eldoret, Uasin Gishu county. He was accompanied by First Lady Rachel Ruto.

President Ruto said the government is working towards reducing the country’s wage bill, which currently stands at 47 per cent, to the legal requirement of 35 per cent.

“We are spending KSh1.1 trillion of the KSh2.2 trillion revenue we collect every year to pay salaries and allowances. This is way above what we should be spending on salaries,” he said.

“As a nation, we must agree that we must live within our means. We cannot continue to spend the money we do not have,” he added.

The President announced that Kenya will host a conference to address the nation’s wage bill between April 15 and 17.

President Ruto said reducing the wage bill frees resources for the government to expand opportunities for the youth and adequately fund programmes such as healthcare and education.

He also said the government will reduce its budget from KSh4.2 trillion to KSh3.7 trillion.

The President said Kenyans must honestly discuss the issues affecting the country, promising to lead from the front.

He said the conversation he started on the benefits of subsidising production, and not production as was the case before, has borne fruit.

He said the country now has adequate food, leading to lower prices.

As a result of the government’s prudent decisions, the Kenya shilling has strengthened against the dollar, leading to lower fuel and electricity prices.

“I will continue the path of making the right decisions for the country because you can never be wrong if you make the right decisions even though they may not be popular or easy,” he said.

He also asked farmers to take advantage of the rainy season to grow food and help the country meet its food security goals.

“We intend to grow more food and reduce imports,” he said.

Distributed by APO Group on behalf of President of the Republic of Kenya.

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