- 1.0 INTRODUCTION
The Institute for Social Accountability (TISA) in partnership with World Vision Kenya and Centre for Peace and Democracy (CEPAD), with support from the European Union [EU] is executing a project entitled, “Improving Governance of Decentralized Funds in Kenya”.
The project commenced on August 2010 and will run up to July 2012.This project is aimed at strengthening the management of decentralized funds in Kenya by enhancing local accountability and mainstreaming effective oversight by the citizens. In doing this, the project will empower citizens with requisite skills and capacities to enable them organize and effectively demand for participation in management of the funds in particular and local development in general.
TISA’s implements the project activities under Result 3.
Result 3: Strengthened working relations between NSA and public institutions managing decentralized funds at national and local level.
- 2.0 IMPLEMENTED ACTIVITIES:
Activity 1: Consultative meetings with reform minded MP’s, especially Kenya Women Parliamentarians (KEWOPA)
Since the inception of this project, TISA has held two (2) consultative meetings with Members of parliament:
- A. 1ST Consultative Meeting With Members of Parliament(MPs)
The first meeting was held on Friday 18th February 2011 at the Serena Hotel Nairobi. The forum brought together 18 participants including four (4) Members of Parliament (MPs), representatives of the civil society and the media.
Among the key issues discussed included:
- Introducing the program, “Improving governance of decentralized funds in Kenya” at the National level.
- Citizen participation imperatives, opportunities and challenges in decentralized funds; and at the county government level as per the Constitution of Kenya 2010.
- Explored mechanisms of enhancing transparency and accountability in the management and utilization of decentralized funds in Kenya.
- Established dialogue and collaboration between NSAs and Parliament in monitoring the management and utilization of decentralized funds in Kenya.
The second Consultative meeting was held between 9th-12th June 2011 at Travellers Beach Hotel, Mombasa. This Forum on decentralization brought together 20 Members of Parliament, 6 parliamentary committee clerks, 4 representatives of government ministries and institutions and 15 representatives from the civil society. This forum was geared towards a strengthened relationship between Non-State Actors (NSA) and Public Institutions. The Constituency Funds Committee (CFC) spearheaded this dialogue on behalf of the Kenya National Assembly (Parliament). The NSAs in this engagement included: The Institute for Social Accountability (TISA), World Vision Kenya, Centre for Peace and Democracy (CEPAD), Transparency International Kenya, International Commission of Jurists-Kenya and Peace Pen Communications.
The Forum participants agreed to work jointly (CSOs-KNA) towards the following issues: Transition Bill; Access to Information; Citizen Awareness; Vision 2030(Review/re-alignment); Leadership and Integrity Bill; CSO Accountability and responsibility (CSO Coordination Bill); Media Council-teeth-Establish status of Media Council Law and; A Citizen Participation Framework.
Further discussions and deliberations on content and implementation of the aforementioned issues will be convened after consultations with national Assembly and the civil society
Activity 2: Development and production of training manuals for use in Economic governance and social accountability
Under this activity TISA has developed two (2) training manuals on training areas that includes decentralized funds, social accountability, advocacy, procurement process, decentralized funds legal frameworks and operations, and the constitution of Kenya 2010 among others. The manuals are currently in use in training of social auditors; and the good governance and social accountability training of local decentralized officials. One of the manuals include; A handbook on CDF Project Management Committee Standards of Practice and Accountability ©TISA 2011
Activity 3: Undertake good governance and social accountability training to local decentralized funds officials
This project recognizes that there are quite a good number of people holding key offices responsible for managing decentralized funds yet they do not understand the funds objectives and management criteria including legal provisions. In addition to this, most of them lack skills on projects management yet they are expected to manage huge development resources. Those targeted for this training will include CDF committees, councillors, CBF committees, council staff, and the relevant Government officials at the district level such as District Development Officers among many others.
The project seeks to achieve the following results in the governance of decentralized funds;
Improve service delivery; Enhance public participation; Promote transparency and accountability; Lay foundation for social audits; Improve consultation; Improve project completion rates; Improve leadership and integrity.
Good governance and social accountability training to decentralized funds officials is being implemented in eight target constituencies namely; Tinderet, Dagoretti, Mogotio, Narok South, Kisumu Rural, Alego Usonga, Mumias and Kitui West.
Since the inception of this project, a total of 52 decentralized funds officials have been trained, that is, 15 officials in Tinderet, 18 in Alego Usonga and 19 in Kisumu rural constituencies
Activity 4: Undertake research to document demand side successes.
The purpose of the research is to examine the constitutional roles of the Member of Parliament (MP) and how the s/he can engage more effectively in local development planning and oversight. It will address common barriers MPs face and make policy as well as operational recommendations. It will also document the best practice lessons from the 5-6 constituencies.
A total of two (2) Policy papers have been developed as precursors to this research. They include: – Policy proposals on citizen participation in devolved governance in Kenya ©TISA 2011; and the Policy Paper on Accountability in Kenya ©TISA 2011.
A research concept brief has also been developed to guide the research process. An Expression of Interest for Researchers has been drafted awaiting approval before final dissemination and circulation.