Let’s share natural riches equitably

Deputy President William Ruto has called for transparency and accountability in sharing the country’s natural riches.

The Deputy President said the vast mineral wealth found in Kenya belongs to the people who must stand to benefit from its exploitation.

“Communities where minerals are found have an inherent right to get their share of proceeds,” Mr Ruto said during the Kenya Mining Forum in Nairobi Tuesday.

Mr Ruto said the Mining Act has established a formula on sharing, with 10 percent of the proceeds going to host communities.

Deputy President William Ruto at an exhibition stand during the Kenya Mining Forum in Nairobi

“We have established a royalty-sharing scheme in the ration 70:20:10 between the national government, county government and the communities in which these minerals are found,” he said.

The Deputy President said it was important to hold more conversations on increased growth, transformation and more investment in the mining sector. He reiterated that it was possible to equitably share these riches while ensuring enough was left for posterity.

“We must multiply them for the Kenyan people and share them equitably. We could share these riches among ourselves and leave nothing for our children. Would we have done right? I say, No!”

Mr Ruto drew on the examples of Norway and Ghana that have invested in oil and petroleum to the benefit of future generations.

The Deputy President said the at least one percent of revenues generated from the activities of miming firms will be spent in the host community.

“That portion is separate from the share specified under the Mining Act and offers the communities and the firms the flexibility they will need to meet their particular needs,” he said.