The first Legislative Summit took place in May 2016. The inaugural legislative bodies of the devolved system of government are at the last stages of their five-year term. As such, the Senate in collaboration with the County Assemblies Forum has organized the Second Annual Legislative Summit scheduled from 19-24 March 2017, in Mombasa County. The theme of this year’s summit is, ‘preparing for transition – stronger legislative institutions.’
|Opening Session: Women Legislators
- Hon Ekwee Ethuro, Speaker,the Senate
- Mr J.M Nyegenye, Clerk of the Senate
- Sen. Martha Wangari, Vice Chairperson, Kenya Women Senators Association
- Hon Osoi Johnson, Chair of County Assembly Forum
Senator Martha Wangare sponsored a Bill in the Senate which calls for all nominated members of County Assemblies to be sworn in before the constitution of house committees to ensure that women legislators can contribute to decisions made in these committees.
Women to vie for elective positions and leave room for young upcoming leaders to be nominated. Nomination positions are seen as training grounds for young leaders.
Women were asked to actively participate in their political parties affairs.
Women are committed to their roles within assemblies and have high attendance and participate on deliberations on key issues within the County Assemblies.
There is weak inter-governmental relations between the National Assembly and Senate; and the Senate and County Assemblies, that hinder effective legislative processes.
There is lack of capacity, infrastructure and support to legislate effectively.
Discrimination by political parties i.e. no guarantee that some elective positions are reserved for women. Political parties must ensure mechanisms for full implementation of the two thirds gender principle in nomination for elections.
There is need for gender assessment of the legislatures to inform the capacity building needs.
Need to interrogate issues of devolution from a legislative perspective, to leave an exit strategy for the incoming legislators.
|Session II: Extrapolating how to deal with gender dynamics in elections
Plenum 1: Gender dynamics of campaign trail; stereotypes, messages and communication
Moderator: Daisy Amdany, Gender Expert
- Sen. Fatuma Dullo, Nominated Senator
- Hon. Getrude Mbeyu, MCA, Kilifi County Assembly
- Mrs Mercy Jelimo, Women Empowerment Link
Women shying away from taking up spaces in the media which have been provided for them, which compromises their visibility. Thus need training on media engagement
The role of media was also emphasized as being an integral part of reinforcing the voice of women in leadership.
Security and GBV was cited as some of the challenges affecting women in political participation.
|Plenum 2: Gender responsive budgeting and analysis; from theory to practice- key timelines and actions by female legislators
Moderator: Lucy Mathenge-UN Women, Programme Analyst, Leadership and Participation Programme
- Sen. (Dr) Agnes Zani, Nominated senator
- Ms Hellen Muchunu, International republic Institute
There is need for development of a national policy on Gender Responsive Budgeting (GRB) that will inform implementation of GRB at the national and county level
The training of MCAs on GRB was cited as important and that it should be undertaken immediately when they are sworn into office to build their capacity at the beginning of their term.
Need for disaggregated data to inform budget reviews and to assess the impact of public expenditure.
The use of diverse media platforms e.g. SMS to collect data from the citizens to inform the budget planning and allocation.
Budgets are public documents used to empower or oppress and thus should be within access of all citizens as a standard practice for good governance. As such, duty bearers should endeavor to ensure that the budgets are accessible to the public.
Increased awareness of the public on the importance of participation in budget dialogue forums.
Involvement of key stakeholders (e.g. NSAs) in the planning and budgeting process and development of strategic plans for their participation.
QUOTE OF THE DAY
“County governments should collect revenue from their constituents to raise the level of social accountability”.
Prof. Margaret Kamar, aspirant for Senator – Uasin Gishu Coumty
- Hon. Albert Kanchoi, Speaker, Elgeyo Marakwet County Assembly
- Mr. J.M. Nyegenye, Clert of the Senate
- Mr. Kinuthia Wamwangi, former Chair of the defunct Transition Authority
|General Session: Managing the Transition Process
The institutional structure, operation, and rationalization of staff of county assemblies should be developed further. This should be done jointly by the national and county governments. Recurrent expenditure absorbs over 80% of county budgets.
A multi-taskforce to manage the transition from the current to the next legislature should be established especially on administrative aspects of the Senate. The Senate staff to work closely with the administrative staff of county assemblies to prepare for the transition.
The Centre for Parliamentary Studies (CPST) was tasked to prepare an induction programme for the incoming legislature and County Assembly Boards.
|Plenum: Financing for Devolved Functions
Mr. Henry K. Rorich, Cabinet Secretary – National Treasury
Mr. Stephen Masha, Deputy Controller of Budget
Dr. Jane Kiringai, Chair – Commission on Revenue Allocatin
Prof. Karega Mutahi, Chair, Inter-governmental Relations Technical Committee
Clear legal frameworks are required to guide revenue collection in the counties. Currently, over 95% of county budgets is financed by the national government.
It is imperative to have clear policy and legal frameworks for the counties to guide sectoral allocation of resources, based on county priorities.
Operationalize all mechanisms established by law to govern counties. For example, the Internal Audit Committees is yet to be effected within many county governments.
Several challenges were cited within the county budgeting process, including: poor formulation of budgets; weak linkages within the budget planning cycle; limited capacity of county governments in budget reviews, particularly the policy appraisals.
There has been a significant improvement in budget allocation from the national government to the counties since 2013 (from 190billion in FY2013/14 to a projected amount of 300billion in FY2017/18).
|Plenums: Strengthening Inter-governmental Relations and Enhancing Open Governance in Legislatures
Prof. Margaret Kamar, Aspirant for Senator – Uasin Gishu County
Allyce Kureiya – Vice Chair, Intergovernmental Relations Technical Committee
Hon. Ngelu – Speaker, Makueni County Assembly
Mr. James Kihara – Chair, Chartered Institute of Arbitrators
In Kenya, Alternative Dispute Resolution (ADR) is not well established as a conflict management mechanism, leading to an over-reliance on judicial interventions.
The Inter-governmental Relations Act does not include all key stakeholders within devolution, particularly the legislature. A framework is required to include all the key players.
Media reporting to include legislative work within county assemblies and further synthesize information for public consumption.
The role of women leaders in the legislature should be highlighted in media reporting.