Naivasha, 19 January 2014

President Kagame arrived today in Kenya to address the first Governors’ Summit hosted by the Nation Media Group. Nearly 10 months after the General Election at which they were placed in charge of the newly-created counties, the summit is an opportunity for Kenyan governors to examine how much progress they have made.

“This new beginning is a unique opportunity to use your home-grown solutions to achieve and sustain the goals of your respective counties and ultimately, to attain your national vision. One enduring lesson is the need to consistently take ownership of our problems as well as the solutions in order to move forward. We have learned and continue to learn that sustained frank dialogue between leaders and citizens at all levels, combined with working together, even with limited material means, is the only way to move forward towards our national goals. Our journey of nation-building has shown us that effective decentralisation requires both the autonomy of local governments and the capacity to deliver on their mandate. But support from and coordination with the central government is indispensable.”

Other speakers included H.E. Isaac Ruto, Governor of Bomet and Chair of the Governors’ Council, Philip Kinisu , Chairman – Governance Board, PwC Africa, Linus Gitahi, Group CEO, Nation Media Group and Prof. Olive Mugenda, Vice Chancellor, Kenyatta University.

“Africa will succeed when we understand what has held us back, strengthen our capacity to govern effectively and engage directly with the needs of citizens to develop strong nations. We can then unite in forging a strong and globally relevant region and continent.”

The 2010 Kenyan Constitution established 47 county governments; based on the delineation of administrative districts as created under the Provinces and Districts Act of 1992.

Kenya practices devolution, a form of decentralization that consists of granting powers from the central government of a sovereign state to government at a sub national level, such as a regional, local, or state level.