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kwale government

1023

If we have a look into the official documents of the “ Office of the Controller of Budget „ – we can clearly see that our Kwale County Government has received from July 2013 till end of March 2014 a total of about 960.000.000 Schilling for Development Projects.

Think about this number for a minute: 960 mio Schilling = about 11 mio US Dollar – Really a significant amount of money to change our county to the better.

But – if you look what our Government has spent – the frustration comes immediately. Only about 160 Mio of the available funds have been utilized. The remaining 800 Mio are sitting on the treasurer bank account waiting to be spent.

When our Governor Mr. Mvurya and his team started last year to change Kwale to the better, they had come up with a development budget of 1.500 Mio – which was agreed on.

Kwale County Budget

We have talked to many citizens of Kwale county and we got a strong message of frustration about their actual situation of life. Honestly NOBODY ( we talked to )has experienced a change – a positive change !!!

There is a very obvious question:

Why is our County Government NOT able to implement their COUNTY INTEGRATED DEVELOPMENT PLAN ?

Our Answer – They don’t have a Plan !!!

Since months we are claiming that our County Government is not publishing the KWALE COUNTY INTEGRATED DEVELOPMENT PLAN. By constitution it should be a rolling 4 years plan that must be the basis of agreed projects. What we all got are just verbal statements and little fragments of initiatives.

Many times we got the info this plan exists but we never got it. So either the Government is afraid to make it public to avoid discussions about it – or – it simply doesn’t exist.But without a clear development strategy by department filled with clear activities and projects nobody could succeed.

But it´s even worse

In these days we have heard about rumors that counties have to return unused development funds to the national government. Immediately all county governors were shouting FOUL and came up with the story of a hidden agenda to kill the Kenyan Devolution Process. Our Governor Mr. Mvurya told us:

“ There is a plot by some people in the country to confuse Kenyans by diverting the attention to counties and forget about billions of cash remaining with the national government without being monitored. The controller of budget office is being used by some people who want to kill devolution by first demoralizing citizens who vehemently voted for the new constitution in 2010 “

Well, well, well – a nice try Mr. Governor.

In fact budget processes around the government-world are more or less the same.

First you submit a budget with projects and plans
Second you get approval
Thirdly you start implementing it

And last but not least … all approved funds ( within one budget year ) that have NOT been spend or NOT committed in real projects – will not been send to the counties or worst-case have to be reversed.  Here is the problem. Our County Government has not spent enough and has not started / committed available funds into real development projects. It’s a Kwale County Government problem – nothing else.

Dear Mr. Governor,

as we have already started in your second year of being our leader, let us tell you: We know it´s difficult – We know you are lacking professional people around you – We know you can not be an expert in all areas – We know even central Government is not straight forward – this all we know.

We are sitting in the same boat. Stop acting like an actor. Let us know your problems and will help. Show us your plans and we will plan with you. We have enough potential in our County – only – you must have the courage to ask for it.

 

 

903

There were big hopes in our Kwale County last year, when the new County Governor Salim Mvurya was elected. First time ever the election run under the new constitution, which devoluted a lot of functions and responsibilities into the county governments. In easy words each county gets it´s own “ little “ government.

The fathers of the new Kenyan Constitution empowered the counties in the big believe that local governments could respond much stronger to local needs than the central administration from Nairobi could do. They believed that a strong county discussion process would start – from Kwale County Government to its citizens and from Kwale citizens to Kwale Government.

Our elected governor – Mr. Salim Mvurya – worked before for years with PLAN INTERNATIONAL a worldwide operating NGO, where he was the dead of the Coast operations. He definitely must has learned how important a communication process is for the success of a company. We have hoped that he could have the capacity to transfer his knowledge to his new “ job “ – as our governor.

Unfortunately – till today – the communication strategy of his government is not really existent – it’s a disaster !!!!

Kwale WebsiteOur government has no existing county website at the moment – as you can see at http://kwale.go.ke

It looks like it went offline a few weeks ago.

The one that was existing before was a skeleton website with absolutely no important information’s in it and has never been updated.

 

Our government has an official Facebook Page – sounds good ?Kwale Facebook Page

Well – have a look at it and make up your mind at https://www.facebook.com/pages/Kwale-County-BriefingsUpdates/619996524681174?ref=ts&fref=ts

 


So – how does the governor communicate with his citizens who have elected him ?

He personally does not !!!!

Either his personal assistant or his newly appointed Principal Information Officer are posting some “ information’s “ and pictures into Kwale Facebook groups. If you are not member
of Facebook or not member of these groups – you will not see any information’s.

Please Mr. Governor – Please Mr. Mvurya – stop this unprofessional communication strategy. Don’t make us feel or believe you are doing it to hide information’s from us. We want a digital platform where we can see your plans, your budgets, your achievments.

The times of bushdrums and management by information-hiding are over.

999

The county government of Kwale plans to plant one million trees

This would be one of its efforts to conserve environment, says the County Executive in charge of land, environment and natural resources Ali Mafimbo.

“Out of this target, fifty thousand trees have already been planted,” said the minister adding that his ministry has projected to increase the forest cover by 10 per cent. The minister was addressing stakeholders during the official launch of Kwale County Natural Resources (KCNRN) strategic plan at Kwale Cultural Centre in Kwale town.

Mr Mafimbo who was holding brief for the deputy governor, Fatma Achani, informed participants that his ministry was developing a policy that would regulate charcoal burning. While acknowledging that majority of the residents of Kwale were low income earners who depended on charcoal as a source of energy, he said the activity could seriously degrade the environment if sound policy was not put in place.

The Chairperson of Kwale County Natural Resources Network, Ms Mwanahawa Salim presents the organization's strategic plan for 2014-2018 to CEC for Lands, Environment and Natural Resources Mr. Ali Mafimbo

The Chairperson of Kwale County Natural Resources Network, Ms Mwanahawa Salim presents the organization’s strategic plan for 2014-2018 to CEC for Lands, Environment and Natural Resources Mr. Ali Mafimbo

The minister revealed that the county government had set aside a budget to use in purchasing land from residents who were willing to sell their land at competitive rates. He noted that the county government did not have adequate land for expansion and so would resort to buying land from members of the community. He said three companies including East African Exploration Company and Rift Energy were already exploring for oil and gas in Kwale County.

Despite being endowed with enormous natural wealth, Kwale County is rated among the poorest counties in Kenya. The level of poverty and unemployment has skyrocketed with the official national poverty index putting the local poverty level at more than 70%. Not even the proposed mining bill of 2014 seems to have taken into account the wishes of Kwale people as the bill is structured in a way that has got very little, if any, to do with the county governments.

The minister lauded the leadership of KCNRN for its effort to sensitize the community on the need to participate in the natural resources ownership and management.

“ You cannot separate Kwale people from natural resources „

“You cannot separate Kwale people from natural resources,” said the minister adding that his ministry had already given its views on the proposed draft mining bill yet to be tabled in parliament for debate.

“What we have in Kwale is wealth in the midst of poverty,” said Mafimbo. In a recent forum organized by Human Rights Agenda (HURIA) at Hillpark Hotel in Tiwi, participants criticized the bill which they claimed gave the cabinet secretary for mining excess powers while completely ignoring the county governments. The forum was also attended by Mr. Mafimbo and the chairperson of mining committee in the county assembly Mr. Meruphe Ndoro,

In an effort to improve the bill, participants recommended among other things to establish a County Dispute Resolution Board to comprise small scale miners, chief geologist, Chairperson of the mining committee in the county assembly, two members of the county assembly (MCAs) coming from the mining zone and one representative from the national government. The board, they proposed, should be chaired by the County Executive Committee member in charge of mining. The bill as it is currently, gives dispute resolution responsibility to the cabinet secretary for mining.

Today’s forum was also addressed by the county executive for community development Mr. Patrick Mtsami and the chief officer for lands, environment and natural resources Dr. Mohamed Pakia. Others were the former permanent secretary for forestry and wildlife Mr. Mwarapayo Mwachai, the Matuga Sub-county deputy county commissioner, Msambweni Sub-county administrator Mr. Hamisi Mwandaro and a host of representatives from organizations, government and private sector.