The United States has pledged more funds to support devolution in Kenya.
Speaking when he met Senate Speaker Ken Lusaka and leader of Majority Kipchumba Murkomen at Parliament buildings on Thursday, Ambassador Robert Godec said US is focused on strengthening devolved units in the country in order to achieve development.
“The US government is a strong supporter of devolution, which is a critical aspect of Kenya’s future. We have programmes already in place to strengthen devolution and we will continue to partnering with institutions that want devolution to work."
“Through Ahadi and other programmes, we have supported devolution. Progressively, there will be an improvement of the funds we spend on the initiatives we have in the country as we get additional resources to Kenya,” said Godec.
Speaker Lusaka assured Godec that the Senate will work with Governors to ensure Kenyans get value for the money disbursed to the counties.
“The Senate is working closely with the Council of Governors and county assemblies so that the people get services and good value for their money. We have now formed House committees that will drive towards achieving this,” Mr Lusaka said.
“Promotion of good governance and eradication of corruption in the counties can be achieved if the county assemblies are strengthened. They are the first call for accountability,” he said.
Lusaka also thanked the US government for the assistance it has continued to offer to the senate. “We appreciate the past assistance that the US has accorded to the Senate and other institutions in boosting devolution. But we still call for more support to deepen devolution even further and make it work,” he said when the envoy paid him a courtesy call at his office.
“There is also an urgent need to build the capacity of county assemblies as they are the first port of call in devolution. MCAs in the past five years lacked capacity to do oversight. Donor support in this area will be very key,” said Lusaka.