Thursday June 12 2014

Soldiers can provide better service delivery than civilians

By Capt (rtd) Obbo Okoth

The President’s speech during Heroes Day celebrations raised a lot of dust. The area of contention is when he suggested again as he has done before, that the army should take over the supervision of the Naads programme and other areas of the public service.
Many of the leaders, especially the opposition and civil society organisations, think that the army should stay in the barracks. I beg to disagree.

Some have argued that these are technical issues that the army could easily mess up. I appreciate the President’s frustration with the civil service, especially when it comes to service delivery. I wish to provide two examples to illustrate my point. There is what is called Mama kits given free to mothers who come to deliver at most public health facilities.

This facility has been abused in most of the public health centres where some of the items in the kit are removed or the kits are never supplied or are sold. However, in health facilities belonging to the army, Mama Kits are given to mothers in full and for free. The distribution of long lasting insecticide treated nets was successfully done by the army.

These and other examples should point to us the fact that the army can be trusted to provide better services. It has been observed that there is better organisation.

Capt (rtd) Obbo Okoth,