Kenyan job seekers are the happiest lot after the National Assembly supported the Employment Amendment Bill with no objection, as the debate concluded.

This comes after the nominated MP representing the youth, Gideon Keter issued a statement to make the announcement.

An amendment has been made whereby employers shall no longer ask job seekers such documents as KRA, DCI, HELB, CRB and EACC clearance certificates until that point an offer of employment is on the table.

“However, now a cure has come through this amendment whereby an employer shall no longer perceive job seekers as a criminal before they apply for a job. The solution to all these bottlenecks is that an employer will no longer ask job seekers for such documents as KRA. DCI. HELB. CRB and EACC clearance certificates until or unless an offer of employment is guaranteed,” read the statement in part.

A research carried out by the Parliamentary Budget Office found out that job seekers generate a total of Sh750 million annually in clearance certificates for jobs that they are never guaranteed to have.

This strains the job seekers as some of them do not have any amount to spare for the procurement of the clearance certificates.

Keter urged Kenya to borrow a leaf from other countries such as the UK and some states in the United States of America where job seekers are first offered employment before a series of background checks are conducted. 

“In the United Kingdom, it’s only when you become successful at an interview and are offered a job that your employer will be required to carry out a series of employment checks depending on the type of job you are going to undertake, read the statement.

The MP noted that in some of those jurisdictions; the employer is required to cover the expenses for criminal background checks.

“In Louisiana, employers are required to cover expenses for criminal background checks and other searches or checks made on applicants or existing employees,” Keter said.

The MP also said the government should ease the financial burden of job seekers and make job-seeking bearable. He reiterated that before clearance documents are required of job seekers, they should be given job offers first.

“In Conclusion, first give the graduates jobs then ask for clearance documents. Young people should not be punished for looking for a job, let them earn money first to afford paying for these documentation. Nobody should be denied a job because someone suspects them of being a criminal. As a government, let us not make job-seeking an unbearable task by adding an extra financial burden on individuals who are already penniless,” he concluded.

Job seeking in Kenya has been a pain in the neck of job seekers, especially those that do not have any source of income. Job seekers have to part with at least Sh4,750 before their applications are considered and the following is the breakdown;

  • Certificate Of Good Conduct – Sh1,050-payment for not being a criminal
  • Higher Education Loans Board (HELB) Clearance – Sh1,000- payment for not having outstanding arrears
  • E.A.C.C Clearance – Sh500-Payment For: Not Being Corrupt
  • Credit Reference Bureau Clearance (CRB) – Sh2,200-payment for not having debts or loans with financial institutions