Monday, 04 April 2022 11:38

HOUSE SPEAKER URGES ENHANCED PUBLIC ENGAGEMENT TO PROMOTE REALIZATION OF SDGS IN KENYA

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National Assembly Speaker Justin Muturi has called for increased participation of the public especially the youth to secure the implementation of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) in Kenya.
Speaking during the People Dialogue Festival 2022 held from 9th to 11th March 2022 at the National Museums of Kenya in Nairobi, Speaker Muturi underscored the importance of actively involving the youth in government programmes and decision-making noting that public engagement is the hallmark of democratic societies. He reiterated the importance of citizens holding the government accountable, further stating how critical it is for marginalized and minority groups, women, the youth and persons with disabilities to also be intentionally accommodated in public participation initiatives.
“This has to be implemented to ensure principles such as the two-thirds gender rule and five percent representation of people living with disabilities, are realized,” he added.
Speaker Muturi noted that the implementation of SDGs in Kenya is well anchored in the country’s long-term development blueprint, the Vision 2030 and more importantly, the 2010 Constitution, which contains a strong Bill of Rights, and national values and principles that are key drivers of the commitment towards Agenda 2030.
The People Dialogue Festival, aimed at promoting meaningful and active engagement of citizens in good governance, accountability and transparency, brought together the Council of Governors (CoG), County Assemblies Forum (CAF), Kenya Private Sector Alliance (KEPSA), Kenya Association of Manufacturers (KAM), the SDGs Kenya forum, Royal Danish Embassy and other development partners, political parties and politicians as well as citizens from all parts of the country. It featured rich conversations and interactive discussions on matters governance, the political party expo and festival performances. The ‘SDG village’, a first of its kind, gave stakeholders in the public and private sector a chance to share their contributions towards achievement of the SDGs in Kenya.
In a panel session on ‘Domesticating SDGs implementation in the context of devolution in Kenya’ organized by the Council of Governors in collaboration with the County Assemblies Forum (CAF) and the Kenya Association of Manufacturers (KAM), Counties were urged to strengthen SDGs coordination mechanisms by establishing SDGs units to fast-track the achievement of SDGs’ targets at the sub-national level and eliminate existing regional disparities.
“While we do commend Counties for mainstreaming SDGs in their County Integrated Development plans (CIDPs), there is need for more targeted interventions and strategies to ease implementation of SDGs,” said Hon. Chege Mwaura, MCA Ngara Wards, Nairobi.
The event resolved that County Governments should put in place measures that guarantee accountability in the use of public resources and that they should adopt peer review mechanisms to facilitate learning and sharing of best practices amongst themselves. County Assemblies were urged to embrace equity in budgetary allocations so that socio-economic development is experienced in all wards across the Counties.
The presence of private sector players in the event confirmed their crucial role in accelerating the implementation of SDGs. Mr. Sylvester Makaka- a senior energy advisor at the KAM, called upon both National and County Governments to create an enabling business environment for private sector actors to thrive and effectively contribute to the implementation of Agenda 2030.
“All state and non- state actors should collaborate and leverage on the combined synergies to address some of the challenges faced in implementation of SDGs, one of them being financing. Partnerships will also go a long way in translating the SDGs targets into action,” he stated.
Ms. Kirsten Brosbol, former MP and Minister for environment in Denmark, highlighted the need to rally the efforts of all stakeholders behind implementation of SDGs for the benefit of all Kenyans, including communities at the grass roots level.
“If development in Kenya is to be sustainable and truly responsive to people’s needs, the people themselves must be involved in the process, have access to information and collectively formulate real solutions to the issues that hinder their development,” she added.
The Council remains committed to supporting County Governments in their quest to achieve equitable sustainable development to enable all Kenyans live a higher quality of life.

 

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