- It is these reports that would reveal the full economic impact of the coronavirus pandemic.
- Kenyans need to know the institutions or people that are holding up this important activity.
- Under the law, the agency is mandated to collect, analyze, store, and publish economic surveys, among other statistics.
Parliament’s step to investigate the delay in the release of critical data by the Kenya National Bureau of Statistics (KNBS) is welcome.
The National Assembly wants to know the reasons for the delay and the non-publication of official statistics, including the 2021 Annual Economic Survey, the Main Economic Indicators report, the quarterly Gross Domestic Product report, the quarterly employment report and other official statistics.
Assembly Speaker Justin Muturi has directed the National Planning and Finance Committee to submit a response to the House within the next 14 days.
Many investors and government institutions rely on agency data whose dates are well known, if not set in stone, to plan and make important decisions.
The reports also guide international partners in formulating policies and evaluating the impact of various programs. The delay in the release of critical reports by the agency, therefore, is hurting the economy in many ways.
It is these reports that would reveal the full economic impact of the coronavirus pandemic.
Kenyans need to know the institutions or people that are holding up this important activity.
Under the law, the agency is mandated to collect, analyze, store, and publish economic surveys, among other statistics.
Therefore, any attempt to prevent the agency from assuming its role is unconstitutional and must be exposed.
Inconsistency in the disclosure of data could raise doubts about the credibility of the information collected.
Because statistics don’t lie, it is up to the agency to ensure that its work and processes are beyond reproach.
It is important that we have the real picture of the impact of the coronavirus on the economy to inform the recovery measures that will be taken by various agencies and individuals using data from the KNBS to lead.
Kenya must draw on the lessons of developed countries that have been active in supplying real-time data to government agencies, the private sector, and non-profit organizations as they battle the economic fallout from Covid-19.