The Kenya Defence Forces peacekeeping mission in DR Congo will cost taxpayers up to Ksh7.2 Billion per year.
This was revealed by Defence Cabinet Secretary Aden Duale when he appeared before the National Assembly’s Committee on Defence and Foreign Relations on Monday.
The Committee chaired by Belgut MP Nelson Koech raised concerns over the cost of the peacekeeping mission saying sending 904 troops to DRC was not a priority given the state of the economy.
However, Deputy Chief of Defence Forces Francis Ogolla said the Sh7.2 billion is a provisional figure and that funding for the military program is done from multilateral organisations supporting the peace efforts at the East African Community (EAC) level and the African Union’s Peace and Security Council.
“We are sending troops to the Democratic Republic of Congo for a period of 6 months but in military we plan things for a period of time and thus we have planned for a one year period which will cost us 7.2 billion shillings,” said Ogolla.
Kenya has already deployed 250 troops to DRC under the United Nations Mission in the Democratic Republic of Congo (MUNUSCO) which has been in the nation for one year.
The Deputy Chief of Defence Forces further quoted President William Ruto’s speech when addressing the United Nations General Assembly.
“These are not responsibilities we can run away from. Peace in DRC equals peace in Kenya,” Ogolla said.
The Lieutenant general said the mission is expected to last six months if everything goes as planned but KDF has planned for a possible extended period.
“If the worst-case scenario comes and we are there for one year, it will cost us approximately Sh7.2 billion. If we stay for more than one year, the recurrent expenditure depending on the nature and ton of operation, it will be between Sh5.5billion and 6 billion,” said Lt Gen Ogolla.
The committee is expected to table the report on the floor of the House on Wednesday, November 9.