Devolution: What are the benefits thus far?
21 April 2016, 11:08
Nairobi - After promulgation of the constitution, Kenya switched from a centralized government to a devolved system of governance with enthusiasm and optimism.
Finally, as most people put it, resources would trickle down and development would be equitable and hopefully sustainable.
Three years on and the system has cemented itself and shifted from transition to norm. Progress might have been slow but the train has always kept on moving.
Teething problems like sharing of responsibilities between national and County governments continue to protruded at every corner but through consultation and coordination, nothing has ever hit a dead end.
However, with all the success being witnessed, there has been issues that have greatly affected governance and service delivery within County governments.
Among them is corruption and wastage of public resources. Governors have made unrealistic budgets for events and items that could otherwise have been organized or acquired with more lean budgets.
This has resulted in wastage of resources leading to slowed development. Corruption, nevertheless is being fought tooth and nail by all and sundry.
Various offices tasked with fighting graft have been empowered to enable them set base in the counties and perform their duties from grassroots.
This is one of the huge benefits because now corruption can be fought from the roots to ensue its demise is sudden and quick.
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Even though this has been done, more still needs to be done to achieve a graft free government. Taking stock of the successes and challenges faced is key to ensuring proper monitoring and evaluation.
The devolution conference that is happening in Meru is meant to take a close look at how much has been achieved through devolved governments and what to look forward to in the post transition era.
This is a good initiative of the council of governors and national government but concern by the public is around the expenditures outlined by various governments.
The per diems paid to the attendants and accommodation extended to the same is too much compared to the needs of ‘wananchi’.
All in all, devolution has brought development and leadership to the people.
This nonetheless has come at a cost of which many hope will subside as we head into year four of devolved system of governance.
Benefits realized from the constitution in terms of devolution are immense but the threats towards good governance and development have never been more visible.
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