This new beginning is a unique opportunity to use your home-grown solutions to achieve and sustain the goals of your respective counties and ultimately, to attain your national vision. One enduring lesson is the need to consistently take ownership of our problems as well as the solutions in order to move forward. We have learned and continue to learn that sustained frank dialogue between leaders and citizens at all levels, combined with working together, even with limited material means, is the only way to move forward towards our national goals. Our journey of nation-building has shown us that effective decentralisation requires both the autonomy of local governments and the capacity to deliver on their mandate. But support from and coordination with the central government is indispensable.”Africa will succeed when we understand what has held us back, strengthen our capacity to govern effectively and engage directly with the needs of citizens to develop strong nations. We can then unite in forging a strong and globally relevant region and continent.”
The 2010 Kenyan Constitution established 47 county governments; based on the delineation of administrative districts as created under the Provinces and Districts Act of 1992. Kenya practices devolution, a form of decentralization that consists of granting powers from the central government of a sovereign state to government at a sub national level, such as a regional, local, or state level.
RWANDAN President, Paul Kagame, called for constant monitoring, evaluation and accountability of decentralisation if that format of government were to work.Kagame was speaking during the opening of the ongoing Governors' Summit at Great Rift Valley Lodge in Naivasha, Kenya.He said that decentralization is an opportunity to seek homegrown solutions to achieve and sustain goals of the respective counties.“Let us embrace our diversity for the common good,” Kagame said.
He added that devolution required autonomy of local governments and the capacity to deliver on its mandate as well as support from national government which he said is indispensable.The Rwandan head of state answered questions from Governors on how the devolution process had been successful in his country in the wake of it rising from genocide to a successful developing economy as compared to other nations that were relatively stable.“Development and democracy go hand in hand though development is easier to measure and people must be concerned for democracy to take place,” said Kagame.
The involvement of a free media was also mentioned as a pillar for the success of devolution. Kagame said that media was a “work in progress in Rwanda.”Former Chief Executive Officer of the Kenya Wildlife Service, Julius Kipngetich, said each county should have at least a county radio station to engage locals.Kipngetich was among many other dignitaries sourced from the private sector that addressed the governors and answered questions from governors during the plenary sessions.