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The delegation which comprised of Mr. A.L. Pheto – Commissioner, Mr P.M. Makapan- Head of Commission Secretariat. Ms M Mashaba- Remuneration specialist and Ms. MJ Ramagaga- Deputy Chairperson and head of delegation. The team was especially interested in learning the comparison of the current salary structure with other relevant and appropriate salary structures as well as profile and grading of position within the organizational hierarchy and updating of records.
The delegation was interested in understanding the role of the CoG in the devolution space and how the CoG links with the forty-seven (47) County Governments.
Rosemary Njaramba, Ag. Director legal affairs at COG in her presentation reiterated that “the CoG has cemented its position as a custodian of devolution by ensuring that the interests of County Governments are protected and that the functions of County Governments are respected.” Furthermore, CoG has been vocal on matters of division of revenue between the two levels of government; human resource management; policy and legislation on devolved functions; and functional assignment, among others.
The Kenyan System of Governance framework was heavily borrowed from the South African devolution system thus the benchmarking trip by the independent commissioners is a clear indication that although only five years into Devolution, Kenya is indeed on the right track.
The team of four also visited the Ministry of Public Service, Youth and Gender Affairs, Public Service Commission, Salaries and remuneration commission, Judicial Service Commision, Parliamentary Service Commision, and last but not least The National Treasury.

Wednesday, 18 October 2017 10:35

Joint Workshop for Symbiocity Kenya

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“We are going to engage our youth in meaningful activities”
What can an integrated and participatory urban planning bring in practice? Nakuru and Kakamega County representatives share progress updates at a joint workshop for SymbioCity Kenya.

“It was clear from talking to stakeholders that the key challenge is water shortage,” says Naomi Murang’a, physical planner at Njoro sub-county, Nakuru.
To identify the needs versus the gaps, the Njoro working group undertook a feasibility study to determine priority areas of improvement.  
“Our vision is that at the end of the day the residents of Njoro are going to have adequate amounts of water that is safe for consumption,” explains Naomi, who is the new coordinator for the so called Pilot town of Njoro.

Her colleague at county level, Mr. Bernard Maruhi Maina, Director of Housing, describes the idea to increase water availability in an informal settlement in Njoro:
“The domino effect is that other areas of interest – infrastructure, housing – will be uplifted.”

Bernard highlights the SymbioCity Kenya (SCK) programme’s community engagement as welcome. “We know that the devolved system of government requires that everything that we do must involve community members,” says Bernard adding that basing the project at the lowest level of county has helped reach people whose views are paramount.

Naomi Muranga however flags the lack of continuity among stakeholders as a concern. “Having new members in different fora makes it challenging to bring them onboard on what is happening,” she says.

In Kakamega County’s Pilot town of Butere, consultations found that residents experience youth unemployment and unrest as a significant issue.
Millicent Cherotich, landscape architect for Kakamega county government, describes how their so called quick win project as part of SCK will help mitigate this through a recreational park. The park is envisioned to have sports and sanitation facilities, and engage youth in meaningful activity such as matches or business activities.

joint workshop symbiocityThis also fits well with the Urban Areas and Cities Act of 2011, which stipulates that for an urban area to be a town it must provide services such as recreational facilities, cemeteries, sewerage facilities among others.

“This park is going to be the simplest and serve the larger community in so many aspects, including in social well-being,” says Millicent, who is assistant Pilot coordinator for SCK in Kakamega. “We are going to engage our youth in meaningful activities. We will be able to tap talent and create business opportunities, maybe when there are tournaments we can hire staff, and the place can be used for political rallies and workshops.”

Millicent believes that the SymbioCity process will be an eye-opener to the people of the county at large:
“We intend to replicate the process to the other sub-counties and have other towns plan in a sustainable manner. That will encourage people and investors and spur economic activity within Kakamega.”

Her colleague in Nakuru expresses similar ambitions. Thanking CoG for the project, Bernard Maruhi Maina says on a final note:
“Once we reach a closure we know that we will have the capacity to replicate this. Nakuru has 11 sub-counties, 55 wards, and upcoming centres that are going to benefit. As County Government we have put in place structures in terms of human capacity, making sure we have qualified staff in every sub-county. We look forward to replicating the planning concept in other smaller towns.”

The joint workshop was held in Nakuru County on October 10-12, 2017, to help accelerate implementation of SCK. Altogether seven Kenyan towns are piloting this urban development initiative which is hosted by the CoG. The programme will shortly launch a new website at

Megline Jeruto, Miss World Kenya will in November 2017 represent Kenya at the 67th Miss World beauty pageant in Sanya, China. The 24-year old model and the current Miss Elgeyo Marakwet County was crowned Miss World Kenya 2017 at a colorful event held at the Mall, Westlands. She emerged first in a competitive battle of beauty and brains also represented by beauties from Kilifi, Kakamega, Kisii, Meru, Isiolo, Kiriyanga, Machakos. The 47 County Governments have been great partners of the Miss World Kenya franchise supporting every event since the advent of Devolution. Talent search has begun at the Sub-county level, to the County level then to the National level. Miss Jeruto comes in to fill the shoes of former Miss World Kenya – Evelyn Njambi who came in fifth at the world competitions in Manila, Phillipines last year and went ahead to be crowned Miss World Africa.
Jeruto expressed her excitement after being crowned, having unsuccessfully contested twice for the crown in the past. “I am so happy, I can’t believe I am representing Kenya, It has been a dream but thank God it has come true,” she said.
This year’s beauty pageantry attracted personalities from all walks of life among them, the Nairobi City County Woman Representative Hon. Esther Passaris. Hon Passaris who was a runners up for the Coveted 1991 Miss World Kenya, made a surprise catwalk on the runway and seemed not to have forgotten her days on the stage, elegance and perfection in the art notwithstanding. Miss Jeruto leaves Nairobi for China on the 19th of October to start a month long competition with the apex on 18th of November, 2017.
The Council of Governors extends its full support and success wishes to one of our own. May Megline Jeruto – Miss Elgeyo Marakwet and Miss World Kenya fully represent her County and Country – Kenya and the grandest stage.

Thursday, 05 October 2017 11:39

World of Health Care Conference

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Council of Governors' CEO on 26th- 29th September attended the World of Health Care (WoHC) Conference at the Fokker Terminal, The Hague organized by the Task Force for Health Care. World of Health Care gives healthcare service providers an opportunity to visit and share knowledge with health stakeholders in the Netherlands. Delegates enjoy the opportunity to meet fellow professionals who share the same passion and face similar challenges in healthcare, compare policies and procedures, structures, solutions and opportunities for partnerships to foster improvement. Topics of discussion in the 2017 WoHC included; the dynamics of importing and exporting Health expertise; Global healthcare trends-technology innovations and partnerships; the patients’ healthcare journey; and World Café value based Healthcare. The WoHC, which is one of the largest congressional festival in the Netherlands creates an environment where International delegates get to network, share knowledge, be inspired and learn about global & local health trends, challenges and opportunities in an interactive manner. The Task Force Health Care has a long history of organising influential and leading conferences with a focus on global health challenges, international trends and export.
The Kenyan delegation was represented by Gordon Odundo, Nairobi Hospital CEO; Nairobi Hospital Chairman; Dr Samwel Mwenda, Christian Health Association of Kenya (CHAK) general secretary; Peter Matolo Sidian Bank Head of SME Banking; Prof Gilbert Kokwaro Strathmore Business School/ National Health Consortium Head of Department HC Management. Also present were delegates from China, Germany, Poland, South Africa, Ukraine, Scotland and the Unites States of America.

The Council of Governors joined Kisumu County in celebrating World Tourism Day. In attendance was Festus Omariba, Head of Tourism Committee who was representing the CEO, Council of Governors Mrs. Jacqueline Mogeni.
Speaking during the event, Mr Omariba stated that the Council of Governors recognizes the role County Governments have in county Tourism product development, county tourism planning, county tourism product diversification and the overall destination marketing in liaison with the relevant stakeholders. He noted that the Council of Governors through its Tourism and Wildlife Committee embraces the participation all stakeholder in the sector and reaffirmed its commitment to catalyse growth of the sector and ensure sustainable tourism growth. The United Nations World Tourism Organization celebrates World Tourism Day internationally on the 27th of September every year and this year it was held in Kisumu County by the theme was ‘Sustainable Tourism – A tool for development.’ The purpose of this day is to raise awareness on the role of tourism within the international community and to demonstrate how it affects social, cultural, political and economic values worldwide. Kenya is a member of the UNWTO and it celebrates this event to express its commitment to the development of the tourism sector, and the same is replicated in counties.
The event started with a street procession from the Kisumu County Offices through Lwang’ni beach, Oile park and to the Kisumu National Museum where the event was officially opened by the Deputy Governor of Kisumu County H.E DR. Mathew Owili. During his remarks, he stated that Kisumu County has partnered with other counties to form a regional block, a move meant to boost the economic potential brought through proper investments in infrastructure and that the County Government is spearheading programs and supporting initiatives that help to market the lakeside city as a top tourist destination.
Present also during the event was the Deputy Governor Siaya County; H.E James Okumbe Ouko. Kisumu County hosted the event in collaboration with other stakeholders which included UN- Habitat, The Council of Governors, Tourism Regulatory Authority, Tourism Fund, Kenya Wildlife Services, Kenya Utalii College, Kisumu county Government, National Museums of Kenya Kenya, Maseno University School of Tourism and Hospitality Lake Basin Authority Kenya Maritime Authority, Lake Basin Tourism Association, Kenya Community based Tourism Network (KECOBAT). Other activities of the day included; Town clean up exercise, tree planting, tourist’s attractions sites visits to the Kisumu National Museum, Dunga Beach, Impala Eco- Lodge and entertainment from cultural performances. The Council of Governors reaffirmed its commitment to catalyse the growth of the sector and ensure sustainable tourism growth which can be achieved by identification and designing of appropriate inter-county safari circuits and opening up the county to potential investors in the sector.

County Governments and Kenya Medical Practitioners, Pharmacists and Dentists Union (KMPDU) Collective Bargaining Agreements (CBAs) signed in July, were registered at the Milimani Labour Court on 18th September 2017. Registration of the CBAs ended a protracted dispute between County Governments and National Government on one side and Doctors. The CBAs were registered in different labour courts at Milimani, Nairobi. They were Makueni, Nyandarua, Mandera, Marsabit, Kwale, Isiolo, Trans Nzoia and Uasin Gishu before Lady Justice Ndolo, Tharaka Nithi, Lamu, Wajir, Siaya, Migori, Kisii, Narok, Samburu, before Justice Nduma Nderi, Garissa,Kericho, Nairobi,Kiambu, Muranga,Kirinyaga, Nyeri, Busia, before Justice Wasilwa, Turkana, Embu, Mombasa, Homa Bay, Machakos, Kitui, Bungoma, Elgeyo Marakwet, Baringo before Justice Nzioki, Meru, Taita Taveta, Nakuru, Laikipia, West Pokot, Kajiado,Kakamega, Vihiga, Tana River, Kilifi before Justice Abuodha.
County Governments and KMPDU signed the CBAs on 6th July 2017. The documents seek to improve the doctor’s basic pay and other allowances. KMPDU officials led by the Chairman Dr. Samuel Oroko and the Secretary General Dr. Ouma Oluga signed on behalf of KMPDU. Speaking to the media after the registration, Dr. Ouma Oluga, the Secretary General was glad that the Union finally had their CBAs registered in court considering it’s the first ever registered CBA in the public health sector. “Having had a chance to negotiate with the Government, the union stated that the public sector have no experience in CBA negotiations and were willing to share their expertise to other unions who needed help,” stated Dr. Oluga.
Dr. Oluga stated that the signing of the CBA assured Kenyan of better healthcare services and care givers who were happy and willing to serve Kenyans. “ It is important for every Kenyan to receive good medical services especially at the County level by both parties willing to work together and ensure that the Health sector succeeds. The 47 County Governments are committed to ensure that devolution works in the health sector,” stated Dr. Oluga.

The Council of Governors (COG) took part in the Legal Awareness week to educate the public on devolved functions and its mandate.
Through its 18 technical Committees, the Council of Governors’ aim was to educate the public on what the public should expect from their respective County Governments and the extent to which County Governments can function on the devolved functions especially the shared functions.
Speaking to the Council of Governors staff at the COG stand, the Chief Guest, Chair of the National Legal Aid Service, Ms. Nalima Malik, could not hide her excitement on what the Council of Governors and the County Governments are doing at their level. “The Council of Governors and the County Governments in General are doing a great job,” she commented. Members of the public visited the stand in large numbers to get information on different devolved functions such as Health, Agriculture, Education, Natural Resource Management, and what they could fully hold their County Governments responsible for. The public so far is well pleased with what County Governments are doing to ensure the dream of devolution is a reality in Kenya. The president of the Law Society of Kenya, Isaac E.N Okere also expressed his appreciation of the work being done by the Council of Governors.
The Law Society of Kenya has organised and held the Legal Awareness week annually for decades in Kenya. This year the Legal awareness was held on the week of 25th to 29th September under the theme: “Safeguarding Human Rights and Fundamental Freedoms through Improved Law Enforcement.” The event has always and was open to public who received legal advice from the different organisations, law firms and lawyers present. The legal advice was mostly on Land cases, Human Rights Violation, Family Law, and Employment among other legal issues. During the Legal Awareness Week, organizations involved in legal work are given the chance to showcase their services with a view to promoting a better understanding by the public of their role. Members of the Law Society of Kenya offer pro bono services to the public, while organisations educate the public on their mandate.

The Council of Governors held its initial meeting with the Joint Agriculture Secretariat (JAS) staff. This was the first meeting which also served as part of the induction for the new employees. The new staff are: Simon Mwombe – Agriculture value chain expert, John Wanyoike – Livestock value chain expert and Mrs. Elizabeth Mwangangi – JAS deputy Coordinator.

Chaired by the Secretary to the County Executive Committee Members for Agriculture Caucus Mrs. Agatha Thuo who is also the CEC in charge of Agriculture in Nyandarua County, the committee took each staff through their terms of reference, what is expected of them and above all the reporting structure. The staff were also taken through the Agriculture projects that are currently ongoing in the Counties.

“Agriculture is the first devolved function to steer good intergovernmental working relations” said Hon. Agatha Thuo.
The Joint Agriculture Secretariat (JAS) is charged with the responsibility of coordinating the implementation of the decisions made by Joint Agriculture Sector Consultation and Cooperation Mechanism (JASCCM). JASCCM was established by the second Agriculture Intergovernmental Forum (IGF) in Mombasa on 21st November 2016. The overall rationale for establishing the JASCCM was nested in the commitment of the national and county governments to jointly pursue effective development of the Agricultural sector.

The primary objective of JASCCM is to guide the implementation of sector proprieties as defined in the 2016 Agricultural Policy and on a broader scope the regional and international commitments entered in Kenya such as the CAADP Declarations (Maputo 2003, Malabo 2014).
More specifically, JASCCM purpose to ensure that agriculture contributes to equitable national economic growth and increased food security through effective implementation of the four pillars of the Agriculture policy.

Among the activities carried out by JAS are and not limited to; follow up with decisions of the Intergovernmental Forum, JASCCM and Joint Agriculture Sectoral Working Groups; to provide secretariat support to the Intergovernmental Forum, the Joint Agriculture Sector Steering Committee.
Within its overall mandate, JAS is further charged with the responsibility of facilitating awareness raising and capacity building among national and county stakeholders across the sector pertaining to application of genuine intergovernmental governance and partnership principles. This includes facilitating of day-to-day technical linkages between national and county agencies and actors.

The new staff are seconded by the Council of Governors to the Joint Agriculture Committee.

Given that Sports is a concurrent function for both National and County which is shared by both levels of government, Officials representing the Ministry of Education, Athletics Kenya and the Council of Governors (CoG) on Monday, 23rd August 2017 met to spearhead the development of a proposal to nurture talent in the areas of sports. More specifically, athletics, which includes field and track events, mountain running, marathon and cross country. This follows an invitation by the Head of State H.E. Uhuru Kenyatta to the Committee Chairperson H.E. Prof. Paul Chepkwony, Governor – Kericho County, for the Council of Governors, Athletics Kenya led by its President – Lt. Gen. (Rtd.) Jackson Tuwei and the Ministry of Education Cabinet Secretary – Dr. Fred Matiang’i, to spearhead the process of coming up with a blue print to develop sporting talent nationally. The proposed framework needs to take into consideration a phased talent development program with a focus on athletics in the interim period. The proposal needs to enhance strong linkage with learning institutions within the current educational curriculum reforms in Kenya. This is expected to take a cross sectional thinking to talent identification, nurturing and development that takes into consideration cognitive, affective and psychomotor if the children and youth.
In addition, already a number of other institutions have been identified to join the team, they include: the Presidential Delivery Unit (PDU), Ministry of Sports, Culture and Arts, Kenya Institute of Curriculum Development (KICD), the National Treasury and Universities. It was agreed that the kind of support needed to nurture talent for athletics will include: acquiring/construction of facilities and infrastructure, equipment, technical assistance and linkages/partnership.
This program is expected to commence at the Ward level (Primary, Secondary and tertiary institutions), County, Regional up to National levels. The proposed clustering of the country will be based on the twelve regions of Athletics Kenya. Hence need to strengthen the linkages with schools and County Governments for nurturing of talent right from Ward to National level. In conclusion, the joint technical team has 7 days to produce an interim report which will be for review which is still within the 14 days to finalize on the report to be handed to the Head of State H.E. Uhuru Kenyatta. This is expected to go a long way in developing talents as a critical sector including sports tourism to support empowerment of the Kenyan children and youth.

Thursday, 14 September 2017 21:06

Governors hold first consultative meeting

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The Council of Governors held its first consultative meeting to discuss nurses strike and transitional challenges arising from the General Elections on August 8, 2017.The meeting, which was held at Council of Governors Delta Corner office on August 31, 2017 was also attended by Ministry of Health Cabinet Secretary Dr. Cleopa Mailu, Public Service Commission Chairperson Prof. Margaret Kobia,Salaries and Remuneration Commission Chief Executive Ms Anne Gitau and Chairpersons of the County Public Service Boards;and representatives of the Ministry of Devolution and Planning. During the meeting the Governors noted that they have made various efforts to resolve the current stalemate on the nurses’ strike. Despite the efforts, the nurses have acted in bad faith by going on strike while the negotiations on their CBA were taking place. As a result, the Governors gave the nurses a notice of seven days to resume work or be sacked when the period expires. Thereafter, the Governors resolved  As a result, interested candidates will make applications to the specific Counties where they would like to work in. The meeting also resolved that health services will remain a County function despite the industrial actions. The meeting also addressed the lay-offs in the Counties. The meeting noted that there have been emerging human resource issues that the new Governors find themselves in.

For instance, where State Officers and/or public officers, whose term is defined in law received contracts that were beyond their defined term. To illustrate these, there are cases where County Secretaries were put on permanent and pensionable terms; where public officers who initially were recruited on contractual basis, but just before the elections, they were quickly placed on permanent and pensionable terms; where new Governors are face a bloated workforce. The meeting noted that the Governors were not acting in malice and agreed that due process of the law will be followed in discharging CECs and Chief officers.

The Council comprises of both new and re-elected governors held the meeting to address the Nurses strike, Transitional Challenges across the 47 County Governments and the Governors and Deputy Governors Induction meeting. Present in the meeting were the Excellency Governors, Ministry of Health Cabinet Secretary Dr. Cleopha Mailu; Public Service Commission Chairperson Prof Margaret Kobia; Salaries and Remuneration Commission Chief Executive Officer Ms. Anne Gitau; Chairpersons of the County Public Service Boards; and representatives of the Ministry of Devolution of Planning and representatives from the Council of Governors secretariat.
The first agenda being the nurses’ strike, the Council of Governors stated that they have been making various efforts to solve the current stalemate, which has resulted to the nurses being on strike for close to 3 months. H.E Josphat Nanok addressing the media stated that the striking nurses should resume duty by 8th September 2017 and that those who will not have returned to work by the above stipulated date will stand sacked. This is to ensure that health services can return to normal. The second agenda was on the Human Resource in the Counties. Despite the various lay offs that have been ongoing in the counties, the Council agreed that the due process of the law should be followed in discharging both the CECs and Chief officers. Last on the agenda was on the Induction meeting for the Governors and Deputy Governors. The Induction meeting for the new and re-elected Governors and Deputy Governors is to be held with the objective of providing basic information on County Government structures and processes and on the gains made so far in devolution; and enhance County officials’ understanding and appreciation of devolution as a system of governance that focuses on, among others, self-governance and participation of the people in decision making, social and economic development, protection of the rights of minorities and marginalized groups, accessibility of services, and public accountability. The new dates of the meeting shall be communicated once finalized. All the 47 Governors are ready to deliver on their promises to the ‘wananchi’ and ensure that devolution is achieved across the country.

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