Typing error saw Sh8.6bn entry for non-existent loan

The National Treasury

The National Treasury building in Nairobi.

Photo credit: File | Nation Media Group

What you need to know:

  • The entry came despite Kenya having cleared direct loans owed to its former colonial master, the United Kingdom, in June 2020 after wiring Sh35.3 million to London and has not tapped any new debt from Britain.

A typing error by the National Treasury has inflated the size of bilateral debt after Sh8.6 billion was included as part of repayment for a non-existent loan to the United Kingdom.

The first Quarterly Economic and Budgetary Review indicated the Treasury paid Sh8.6 billion interest to the UK, putting total bilateral debt service at Sh41 billion.

The entry came despite Kenya having cleared direct loans owed to its former colonial master, the United Kingdom, in June 2020 after wiring Sh35.3 million to London and has not tapped any new debt from Britain.

Officials said this was a typing error and the figure was supposed to be under Eurobond interest payments for the 10 and 30-year bonds borrowed in 2018, raising questions on the accuracy of data from the Treasury.

This rekindled the infamous typing error that could have added an extra Sh9.2 billion to a supplementary budget presented to Parliament in 2009 by Uhuru Kenyatta when he served as the Finance minister.

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