Pakistan Institute of Development Economics



A Critical Discussion of I.L.O. Report on Employment in Kenya (Review Article)

The recent I.L.O. Report on Employment in Kenya [1] has drawn considerable informal acclaim from a variety of sources including officials of the Kenya Government and of a number of donor agencies. This acclaim is unquestionably deserved, for the I.L.O. mission and its chiefs, Professors Hans Singer and Richard Jolly, accomplished, in just a few months, the seemingly impossible task of writing a highly readable report analyzing problems in Kenya in terms and at a level of sophistication acceptable not only to the academic community but to donors and to the Government of Kenya as well. The purpose of this paper is to sound a discordant note and, I hope, a timely one. As this paper is being written, the Government of Kenya is in the process of concluding a lengthy and thoughtful analysis of the I.L.O. Report and of formulating a sessional paper on employment which provides not only an official response to the report but outlines the Government of Kenya’s policies toward unemployment as well. Donor agencies, having adopted the report as near gospel on a number of Kenya’s problems, anxiously await the sessional paper and positive action on the part of the Government which may generate some aid business and, not incidentally, contribute to corrective reforms.

David G. Davies

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