President Uhuru Kenyatta today hosted the 8th National and County Governments Coordination Summit during which the implementation progress of Big 4 Agenda aligned programmes was discussed.
The President, who was joined by Deputy President William Ruto and Cabinet Secretaries, chaired the Summit at State House, Nairobi, where the leaders spoke about disaster preparedness, corruption and pending bills.
The President who expressed satisfaction with the ongoing roll out of Big 4 Agenda programmes on universal health coverage, affordable housing, manufacturing and food security thanked county governments for their partnership.
The two levels of government collaborate in the implementation of the Big 4 Agenda through the ‘Framework for the Implementation of the Big Four Plan between the National and County Governments’.
On disaster preparedness, the Head of State lauded counties for their leading role in response to floods, land and mudslides that affected the country late last year.
He pointed out that the ‘Disaster Risk Management and Digital Platform for Relief Assistance’ framework being developed will help streamline disaster response in the country.
“There is no doubt that these initiatives will not only in future minimize suffering of our people during floods and other disasters, but also provide resource-savings for other social programmes and projects,” the President said.
President Kenyatta noted that Kenya has made tremendous progress since the inception of the devolved system of government which coincided with the first term of the Jubilee administration.
He said despite the remarkable progress achieved, there are challenges that have to be dealt with in order for devolution to work at its optimum.
The President cited pending bills and corruption as some of the challenges preventing Kenyans from enjoying the maximum benefits of devolution.
He termed pending bills as a wrong against traders who he said are incurring losses.
“There are still unpaid bills in accounts offices although the respective goods and services have been delivered some for over a year.
“I believe we must all commit to clearing these bills because by not honouring our obligations we not only compromise the performance of the economy but we are also harming the people who borrowed money to provide the service,” the President said.
Besides the four subject areas, the summit discussed several reports by the Intergovernmental Relations Technical Committee and those of the Intergovernmental Budget and Economic Council.
Also discussed was a report by the Salaries and Remuneration Commission on the management of the ballooning public wage bill.
The summit meets annually and is established as a consultation platform for the national and county governments.
The governors were led at the State House meeting by Governor Wycliffe Oparanya of Kakamega County who is also the Chairperson of the Council of Governors.