Governors have resolved to have those charged in court in relation to corruption step aside. This is major boost to the war against graft in Kenya.
However, they said investigative institutions that comprise Office of the Director of Public Prosecutions, Directorate of Criminal Investigations and the Ethics and Anti-Corruption Commission, will have to strictly follow the law in the execution of their mandates.
The governors, who made the resolutions Thursday, also agreed that the Penal Code and the Anti-Corruption and Economic Crimes Act, and related laws, be amended in the next one year to strengthen enforcement of laws and enhance collaboration of all agencies in the war on graft.
A number of past and current governors, alongside other public officers in county governments, are facing corruption charges.
President Kenyatta and Deputy President William Ruto have vowed to step up the war on graft, which has seen the country lose billions of shillings through shady deals over the years.
The resolutions were reached at the end of the 6th Annual Devolution Conference in Kirinyaga County. The conference theme was “Deliver. Transform. Measure. Remaining Accountable”.
The Council of Governors jointly convened the March 4 to 7 meeting at Kirinyaga University with the Ministry of Devolution and Asal (MoDA), the Senate and the County Assemblies Forum.
The talks ended up with 24 resolutions.
Muran’ga Governor Mwangi wa Iria read the joint communiqué, which said in part: “The national government and county governments shall, within one year, develop a policy and legal framework for harmonisation of revenue collection by both levels of government.”
It was agreed that the Kenya National Bureau of Statistics would enhance their collaboration with both levels of government to produce data and statistics, and Parliament, in six months, will speed up consideration and passing of the County Statistics Bill.
“Constitutional commissions and Independent offices shall ensure provisions on prudent financial management procedures are enforced,” Mr Wa Iria also read.
The delegates further resolved that MoDA and the National Government Development Coordination Committee develop a policy and institutional framework to facilitate coordination between both levels of government in order to execute the Big Four Agenda.
Both levels of government will publish and publicise the implementation scorecard of the Big Four Agenda initiatives, each year, including [providing] information on public finance management.
“Since the Big Four Agenda focuses on four devolved functions, the national government shall, in the next budget cycle, allocate resources to facilitate County Governments’ support for the implementation of the Big Four Agenda,” added the communique.
It was also agreed that both levels of government shall, in the next one year, make substantial investment in cottage and agro-processing industries to create employment and wealth generation for women, youth, people living with disabilities, and marginalised groups.
They also resolved that both levels of government shall invest in Information, Communication and Technology (ICT) to strategise, implement and evaluate the Big Four Agenda.
Both levels of government will also in the next six months, put into operation the existing Performance Management Framework.
“Article 203 (3), providing that audited accounts be approved by the National Assembly shall, in not more than one year, be amended to ensure timely approval of audited accounts. For the other constitutional reforms, devolution shall take centre stage,” resolved the meeting.
The forum also resolved that political leaders must ensure that the discourse of constitutional reforms are all inclusive.
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