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Nepotism, corruption, lack of transperancy derail efficient services in the conties

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Kenya Devolution Working Group has unveiled a survey revealing nepotism, corruption, and lack of transparency. This is entrenched within the county’s structure, obstructing the delivery of essential services to citizens. With ‘Devolution at 10’, the survey delved into the progress and mandate of devolution since its inception in 2013, painting a grim picture of mismanagement and malfeasance.

According to a survey conducted by a group of civil societies under the Kenya Devolution Working Group dubbed ‘Devolution at 10’, on the progress and mandate of devolution since its inception in 2013.

The survey established that nepotism, cronyism, favoritism, and tribalism threaten the concept of devolution which was meant to share resources and power nearer to the people.

With the 47 counties getting an approval rating of 41 percent, the low index rating was largely attributed to widespread corruption more than a decade since its inception.

“Many services that citizens expected from counties are ranking very low, implying that the level of satisfaction is negative,” Evans Kibet, National Convener of Kenya Devolution Forum said.

The survey also cites a lack of transparency and accountability across most county governments as a stumbling block to service delivery.

“Citizens expected that devolution would change their lives, but instead they have encountered massive corruption which has slowed service delivery to the extent that critical services such as health and agriculture are affected,” Kibet added.

The survey further highlighted how human resource challenges have jeopardized service efficiency and timely delivery.

“There is massive tribalism in some counties which gives room for massive corruption,” noted Kibet.

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Silvia Vundi, Director, of the Intergovernmental Relation Division, State Department of Devolution, added: “As a national government, we appreciate that it’s a challenge we need to overcome. We want the investigating agencies to bring to book culprits involved in corruption so that we eliminate this cancer.”

Other challenges that have affected the operationalization of devolution include weak legal frameworks, delayed disbursement of equitable share of revenue collected nationally to county governments, ineffective cooperation and consultation between the two levels of government, and limited citizens’ decision-making engagement in formulating regulations.

“Above all, it is upon every citizen to understand that they do not need to give a bribe to obtain services,” Dr Vundi stated.

The launch of the survey report which was conducted by 61 civil society organizations in 47 counties came a day after a similar one by EACC revealed massive bribery in both national and county governments.

 

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