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Nandi, Kenya

Public Participation and Civic Engagement (KENDC0001)

Overview

At-a-Glance

Action Plan: Action plan – Nandi, Kenya, 2021 – 2022

Inception Report: Not available

Commitment Start: Aug 2021
Commitment End: Jun 2022

Institutions involved:

  • Public Participation Unit
  • Economic Planning
  • National Taxpayers Association
  • Open Governance institute
  • ICT & e-Government
  • Directorate of Performance Contracting
  • Directorate of Economic Planning
  • Legal Office

Primary Policy Area: Civic Space, Inclusion

Primary Sector: Cross-sectoral, Public Services (general)

OGP Value:

  • Civic Participation
  • Access to information
  • Technology and Innovation for Transparency and Accountability

Description

Commitment ID

KENDC0001

Commitment Title

Public Participation and Civic Engagement

Problem

Social and economic needs of special interest groups are left unaddressed by the county’s budgets and related economic policies because the county’s participatory approach is inaccessible to the majority of the county’s residents while input collected from the few participating citizens is rarely used to inform budget decisions. COVID-19 pandemic has exacerbated the challenge due to the limited social interaction and the accompanying harsh economic conditions that curtail the economic ability of citizens to perform civic duties. Special interest groups of youth, women and persons with disability (YWPDs) face greater challenges owing to their special and unique needs that limit their ability to participate and influence the county’s budget and policy priorities to meet their needs. Although this segment constitutes the majority of the county’s population (65%), they each constitute a small percentage of participating citizens  i.e. Youth 28%, Women 22% and PWDs 0.5%.

Status quo

Currently, the county implements a consultative participatory model which consists offline open forums at sub-county and ward level to receive public views and input of its citizens on the county’s budget and economic policy priorities at the formulation stage. The participatory structure provides minimal participatory opportunities at implementation and evaluation stages of the budget.  Because participatory spaces provided at sub-county and ward level are centralized, travels over long distances to the public participation venues and hours wasted on the road create barriers and limitations to participation of citizens, especially women and PWDs. Additionally, existing online opportunities such as the Toll-Free Call Centre are limited and inadequately structured to create online/digital participatory opportunities for budgets and policies. Overall, the representation of citizens in the formulation of budgets and policies is low while the participatory approach does not bind public officials to use input collected from the public to inform the budget and policy priorities of the county, thus, translating to inequalities and further marginalization.

Action

We will also review the County’s Participation and Civic Education Act 2020 to align with the long-term open government vision, formulate policies and guidelines to provide clearer methodology of decentralization and expansion of the participatory structure and provide a feedback mechanism on the use of public input. We will complement the participatory structure with the following strategic interventions:

  1. Creation of digital/online platforms to create safe and secure participatory opportunities to citizens who otherwise would not attend an in-person forums to remotely submit input and views to the budget and economic policy, especially young people.
  2. Integrate civic education to strengthen citizens’ ability to influence the county’s’ decisions from a point of knowledge. We will also partner with non-state actors to implement civic education activities and foster access to necessary budget and policy data and information in timely and in simplified versions that are easy to understand.
  3. Establish Ward Open Days to create permanent forums for proactive engagement with civil society and citizens. Through these open days, the county stakeholders will identify, discuss and recommend interventions that will strengthen the county’s open government initiatives.
  4. Issuance of timely feedback on the use of public participation input to explain which input was used and justifications for input not used.  

 

How will the commitment contribute to solving the public problem described above?

By improving representation of citizens, especially special interest groups and mandating the use of input received from the public as well as feedback for the use of this input, the reform will have created meaningful spaces for quality deliberation and negotiation among citizens and with government officials on how best to spend the county’s annual budget. Fruitful deliberations and negotiations between citizens and governments that produce satisfying output also means a greater number of citizens attending and actively participating in the budget formulation. The use of purposefully selected delegates to represent various segments of the county’s population including youth, women and persons with disabilities will strengthen the voices of marginalized groups in the county’s budget and policy priority setting process. Additionally, the formulation of policies and guidelines to institutionalize participatory budgeting and related procedures and systems will foster transparency and accountability of public officials throughout the budget and policy cycle over the long-term.

What long-term goal as identified in your Open Government Strategy does this commitment relate to?

Goal 1, 3 and 4 of the Open Government Vision

Primary Policy Area

Civic Space, Inclusion

Primary Sector

Cross-sectoral, Public Services (general)

What OGP value is this commitment relevant to?

Civic Participation It proposes to introduce new ways to allow the citizens to engage with the Government, both offline and Online
Access to information It proposes to introduce new ways in which the citizen can access information
Technology and Innovation for Transparency and Accountability It proposes to use latest technologies and innovations to enhance public participation and civic engagement e.g. to expand Call Centre and platforms for access to information like the current portal http://www.opengov.nandicounty.go.ke that is under development both for sensitization and access to information

Milestones

7 Milestones
1

Formulate policy guidelines to implement Nandi County Public Participation and Civic Education Act 2020

Start Date08/2021
End Date06/2022
  • Not started
  • In progress
  • Stuck
  • Finished
  • Incomplete
2

Design and integrate interactive digital platforms to the participatory structure

Start Date09/2021
End Date05/2022
  • Not started
  • In progress
  • Stuck
  • Finished
  • Incomplete
3

Timely publish all budget and economic policy documents and avail simplified versions online

Start Date08/2021
End Date06/2022
  • Not started
  • In progress
  • Stuck
  • Finished
  • Incomplete
4

Implement Open Days to create formal forums for engagements with CSOs and other stakeholders on social audits of public projects.

Start Date10/2021
End Date06/2022
  • Not started
  • In progress
  • Stuck
  • Finished
  • Incomplete
5

Disclose records of Call Centre including response-rates and action taken

Start Date08/2021
End Date06/2022
  • Not started
  • In progress
  • Stuck
  • Finished
  • Incomplete
6

Carry out continuous civic education to improve the capacity of citizens to participate.

Start Date08/2022
End Date06/2022
  • Not started
  • In progress
  • Stuck
  • Finished
  • Incomplete
7

Incorporate OPG commitment milestones to staff contracts

Start Date10/2021
End Date06/2022
  • Not started
  • In progress
  • Stuck
  • Finished
  • Incomplete


Commitments

Open Government Partnership