Skip Navigation
Kenya

Governance Indices (KE0022)

Overview

At-a-Glance

Action Plan: Kenya Action Plan 2018-2020

Action Plan Cycle: 2018

Status: Active

Institutions

Lead Institution: Nepad/APRM Secretariat, Kenya

Support Institution(s): Other actors involved-government Office of the president, Office of the Deputy President, NAKs Other actors involvedINFONET Africa, Local Development Research Institute (LDRI)

Policy Areas

Capacity Building, E-Government, Private Sector, Sustainable Development Goals

IRM Review

IRM Report: Kenya Design Report 2018-2020

Starred: Pending IRM Review

Early Results: Pending IRM Review

Design i

Verifiable: Yes

Relevant to OGP Values: Access to Information , Technology

Potential Impact:

Implementation i

Completion: Pending IRM Review

Description

Commitment 5: Improve public sector
performance through governance indices
To provide a comparative analysis of five key governance indices for their
veracity and reliability to allow the society to evaluate and possibly redefine
its perception towards performance of public sector and its specific
institutions.
Objective:
To assist the public in making informed choices, understand the impact of their
collective actions on public finances; and perhaps most importantly enable the
public to judge the performance of government and governmental institutions from
a composite analysis of the indices.
Status Quo:
Since the concept of governance is multidimensional, focus of the governance
indices vary substantially from narrow definition of bureaucratic corruption to
broader notion of governance, including a host of dimensions, such as, safety and
security, control of corruption, rule of law, voice and accountability. Existing
indicators do not take a comprehensive view of governance therefore,
unresponsive to its multidimensionality.
The commonly used indicators are; The World Bank’s Worldwide Governance
Indicator (WGI) and Country Policy and Institutional Assessment (CPIA), Overseas
Development Institute (ODI)’s World Governance Assessment (WGA), Mo Ibrahim
Foundation’s Ibrahim’s Index of African Governance (IIAG) and United Nations
Economic Commission for Africa’s (ECA) African Governance Report (AGR).
All these indices are faced with a host of problems in primary sources and survey
questions, perceived biases in the enumeration of respondents that may skew
results based on subjective contexts or ideology. These problems are passed on
to composite indicators too. These biases have an impact on the acceptability of
their results.
Ambition:
Develop a comprehensive framework for tracking and analysing governance
indices to bring out realistic and well-founded arguments to counter the negative
representation such indicators portray regarding the country.
Page 26 of 30
Leading implementing Organization
Nepad/APRM Secretariat, Kenya
Contact Person:
Mr. Daniel Osiemo
Chief Executive Officer
NEPAD/Africa Peer Review Mechanism (Kenya) Secretariat
Email: Daniel.Osiemo@nepadkenya.org
Phone: +254729 260 597
Timeline
September 2018 to May 2020
Open Government Values
Access to information, public accountability, citizen engagement,
New of on-going commitment
New
Other actors involved-government
Office of the president, Office of the Deputy President, NAKs
Other actors involvedINFONET Africa, Local Development Research Institute (LDRI)
Verifiable and measurable milestones to fulfil
the commitment
New or
ongoing
Start date End date
22. Develop a tracker for available governance
indices (APRM, Performance Contracts, SDGs,
Corruption Perception Index, Ease of Doing
Business)
New January
2019
December
2019
23. Develop technology tools and platforms for
available for access and analytics of
governance indices in the country
New April
2019
July
2020
24. Build capacity of public service entities to
improve services based on indices
recommendations.
New September
2019
May
2020
25. Disseminate indices analysis reports, two times
annual to the all stakeholders and public
New June
2019
May
2020

IRM Midterm Status Summary

5. Improve public sector performance through governance indices

Language of the commitment as it appears in the action plan:

“To provide a comparative analysis of five key governance indices for their veracity and reliability to allow the society to evaluate and possibly redefine its perception towards performance of public sector and its specific institutions.”

Objective:

To assist the public in making informed choices, understand the impact of their collective actions on public finances; and perhaps most importantly enable the public to judge the performance of government and governmental institutions from a composite analysis of the indices.

Milestones

  1. Develop a tracker for available governance indices (APRM, Performance Contracts, SDGs, Corruption Perception Index, Ease of Doing Business)
  2. Develop technology tools and platforms for available for access and analytics of governance indices in the country
  3. Build capacity of public service entities to improve services based on indices recommendations.
  4. Disseminate indices analysis reports, two times annual to the all stakeholders and public

Start Date: January 2019

End Date: July 2020

Editorial note: This is a partial version of the commitment text. For the full commitment text see: https://www.opengovpartnership.org/wp-content/uploads/2018/12/KENYA_Action-Plan_2018-2020_0.pdf

Commitment Overview

Verifiability

OGP Value Relevance (as written)

Potential Impact

Completion

Did It Open Government?

Not specific enough to be verifiable

Specific enough to be verifiable

Access to Information

Civic Participation

Public Accountability

Technology & Innovation for Transparency & Accountability

None

Minor

Moderate

Transformative

Not Started

Limited

Substantial

Completed

Worsened

Did Not Change

Marginal

Major

Outstanding

1. Overall

X

X

X

X

Assessed at the end of action plan cycle.

Assessed at the end of action plan cycle.

Context and Objectives

This commitment focuses on the development of a County Peer Review Mechanism that will be used to assess public service delivery at the sub-national or county level. The tool will explore citizen’s experiences of all fourteen service delivery areas, their views on the relevance of these services and whether they were discharged adequately and appropriately. [112] This commitment stems from a broader discussion around the relevance of OGP in the African context and its alignment with existing initiatives such as the African Peer Review Mechanism (APRM). The APRM is a basket of governance indicators widely utilized in the region to assess the effectiveness of governance systems and contribute to evidence based decision making. [113] In addition to being a platform for learning and experience sharing, the APRM aims to enhance accountability amongst African states. During Kenya’s second country review it was suggested that the role of county government be better highlighted to reflect the role they play in implementing and monitoring commitments in the National Programme of Action (NPoA).

In May 2013, the Kenyan government hosted an OGP Africa regional meeting that aimed to discuss the relationship between the OGP and African normative frameworks such as the 'African Shared Values Instruments’ and the APRM. This culminated in the establishment of a “Framework For Collaboration between the APRM and OGP” in May 2019, which would entail collaborating on: supporting implementation of APRM recommendations; substantive interaction between APRM national structures and the OGP multi-stakeholder forums; embedding both institutions or approaches; synergising efforts towards the attainment of various goals; and undertaking joint activities in three select countries. [114] This commitment is a manifestation of this collaboration, seeking to address key concerns around poor government performance and lack of an adequate monitoring and evaluation framework on the same.

The CPRM is a multi-agency product whose development and implementation is led by the APRM secretariat in Kenya. Implementation has thus far involved the Panel of eminent persons, all the independent commissions, the Intergovernmental Budgets and Economic Council, the Intergovernmental Relations Technical Committee; the Speakers of the National Assembly and the Senate; Council of Governors (COG), Ethics and Anti-corruption Commission (EACC), Vision 2030, Kenya Institute for Public Policy Research & Analysis and one or two representatives from civil society. [115] The construction of the CPRM made reference to: the Africa Peer Review Mechanism, performance contracts, County Integrated Development Plans, Sustainable Development Goals, Corruption Perception index and Ease of Doing Business Index. [116] The CPRM report and outputs will be widely publicised on the APRM site and launched at national summits, where governors of the reviewed counties would also be peer reviewed based on the findings of the report. It is envisaged that the CPRM will be undertaken three times during the electoral cycle, detailing an initial baseline, mid-term review and end term evaluation of county performance. [117]

The commitment is verifiable with deliverables such as the governance indices tracker, analytical tools and platforms and dissemination of analysis reports, as addressed in milestones 22-23 and 25, easily being tracked and assessed. Additionally, capacity building exercises as outlined in milestone 25 can be evaluated for their effectiveness. This commitment is relevant to the OGP value of technology and innovation for openness and accountability. The tracker could be extremely useful for synthesising large amounts of information and the analytical reports generated would go a long way to contributing to public service improvement. According to one state official the CPRM would foster “the kinds of conversations that we think are going to foster the growth of our democracy but also improve the performance of the counties, of county governments, in terms of serving their people”. [118] This commitment is also relevant to the OGP value of access to information in that analyses reports will be publicly disseminated.

Overall, this commitment could contribute to better decision making by synthesising large amounts of complex layers of data and information that can be readily consumed by policy makers, civil society and the public. The impact of this commitment would however be considered “minor” in addressing these concerns for various reasons. Firstly, while the CPRM holds a lot of promise, its potential is not evident in the design of the commitment which instead focuses on proposing a shift away from the use of existing indices given growing concerns around cited biases and weaknesses. This framing within the NAP appears to not be well understood as confirmed by sentiments shared at a civil society gathering in Nairobi in November 2019. [119] In addition, the design of the commitment is incongruent with what stakeholders feel is the main ambition, which is to customize the APRM in order to cascade the principles of good governance to the counties and improve county performance. [120] Rather, the current NAP focuses the ambition on countering the negative portrayal of the country as framed by existing indices.

Secondly, the dissemination of measures and indices focusing on service delivery and local government performance are often premised on the notion that information asymmetries contribute to erratic voter behaviour. Therefore, providing citizens with the right information should result in informed and better decision making during the electoral period. However, extraneous factors also play a significant role in shaping whether performance information is utilized and whether elected officials actually respond to citizen feedback. [121] [122] [123] According to Grandvoinnet, Aslam and Raha (2015), “within the state, elected and nonelected officials respond to different sets of incentives and might have divergent attitudes toward fostering or responding to social accountability.” [124] This has significant implications for the achievement of this goal. While access to information on government performance is useful, the commitment is likely to only improve civic participation if other factors are taken into account such as: the quality of the tracking or survey tools; the quality of information in the analysis reports; the communication strategy accompanying dissemination; and the accountability infrastructure that is built into the deployment of the CPRM.

Despite the public’s powers of evaluation being foregrounded in the objective, we see very little interface between the production of these analyses and initiatives towards enabling the public to make the necessary judgments. There is also no reference made to the specific decision-making processes, feedback or redress mechanisms that the public can engage with as a direct result of the milestones being fulfilled. The commitment is framed in a manner that emphasises production and dissemination and not necessarily the public holding court over findings once reports are shared. It is also noted that the consequences for falling short of performance targets, save for a marred reputation [125], are not clear, assuming that even this would be a sufficient deterrent in the Kenyan context. Little has also been said as to how the indices developed will gain prominence or legitimacy amongst the various constituencies being targeted for dissemination in order to affect electoral and political accountability. Lastly, the data collection exercise that is to be undertaken and which should inform the implementation of milestones 21, 22, 24 has been significantly delayed due to resource and funding limitations. [126] Part of the fundraising strategy is to see county governments integrate the CPRM into their public participation budgets. However, given the strained intergovernmental relations heightened by the introduction of the Division of Revenue Bill (2019),[127] [128] negotiating such a settlement will undoubtedly be challenging. [129]

Next steps

Governance indices can be useful. However, their utility is contingent on myriad other factors that should also be reflected on. The IRM Researcher recommends that the following be taken into consideration:

  • The resourcing for and sustainability of the CPRM should be clearly established. [130]
  • Public awareness and capacity building efforts for the utilization of results should be made a priority and incorporated into the wider work plan.
  • The development of any tools should be considered a good opportunity to engage in co-creation with wider civil society and the public at large.
  • In order to better reflect the access to information OGP value, the analysis report should also be accompanied by supporting documentation. For instance, performance contracts and other reports with sufficiently disaggregated data should be published alongside the report.
  • A discussion on how the tracker will interface other government systems such as the Electronic Document & Records Management System, that was suggested in NAP II or the End-to-End initiative, which was to be an integrated service delivery portal.
  • The commitment could be reinforced by outlining and discussing how such analyses could lead to a wider public reflection on collective action and their impact on public finance.
  • Future iterations could track how the indices map on the quality of leadership over time.

[112] Interview 1, Interview with IRM Researcher, 1st September 2019.
[113] Gisselquist, R.M (2014) Developing and evaluating governance indexes: 10 questions. , Policy Studies Vol, 35:5.
[114] APRM (2019) Framework of collaboration between The African Peer Review Mechanisms and Open government Partnership. Available at: https://www.opengovpartnership.org/wp-content/uploads/2019/05/MOU_AfricanPeerReviewMechanism_May2019.pdf
[115] Interview 1, Interview with IRM Researcher, 1st September 2019.
[116] Interview 1, Interview with IRM Researcher, 1st September 2019.
[117] Interview 1, Interview with IRM Researcher, 1st September 2019.
[118] Interview 1, Interview with IRM Researcher, 1st September 2019.
[119] Civil society participant (2019) Civil Society Open Government Partnership Meeting, 14th November 2019, Nairobi
[120] Interview 1, Interview with IRM Researcher, 1st September 2019
[121] De Kadt, D., Lieberman, E.S. (2015) Do citizens reward good service? Voter responses to basic service provision in southern Africa. Working Paper No. 161. Available at: http://afrobarometer.org/sites/default/files/publications/Working%20papers/afropaperno161_do_voters_reward_good_services_in_southern_africa.pdf
[122] Politicians’ perspectives on voice and accountability: Evidence from a survey of South African local councillors. Evan S. Lieberman, Philip Martin and Nina McMurryhttps://opendocs.ids.ac.uk/opendocs/bitstream/item/14442/RReport_Politicians%20_VoiceAccountability_SA_3.0.pdf
[123] Graham, P., Gilbert, S., Alexander, K. (2010) The Development and Use of Governance Indicators in Africa A Comparative Study. IDASA , EU, UNDP . Available at: https://www.undp.org/content/dam/undp/library/Democratic%20Governance/indicators_in_africa_idasa_2011.pdf
[124] Grandvoinnet, H., Aslam, G. Raha, S. (2015) Opening the Black Box: The Contextual Drivers of Social Accountability, Washington DC: World Bank Group
[125] Interview 1, Interview with IRM Researcher, 1st September 2019
[126] Interview 1, Interview with IRM Researcher, 1st September 2019
[127] Citizen Digital (2019) Stalemate over? Senate throws in the towel, agrees on Ksh.316B for counties, September 5, 2019 14:22 (EAT). Available at: https://citizentv.co.ke/news/stalemate-over-senate-throws-in-the-towel-agrees-on-ksh-316b-for-counties-275453/
[128] Omulo, C (2019) Counties warn of shutdown in revenue row. August 29, 2019. Available at: https://www.businessdailyafrica.com/economy/Counties-warn-of-shutdown-in-revenue-row/3946234-5253718-150lum4/index.html
[129] Interview 1, Interview with IRM Researcher, 1st September 2019
[130] Interview 1, Interview with IRM Researcher, 1st September 2019.

Commitments

  1. Create public beneficial ownership register

    KE0024, 2020, Access to Information

  2. Implement e-government system adopting Open Contracting Data Standard

    KE0025, 2020, Access to Information

  3. Publish open data to spur innovation in public service delivery and development

    KE0026, 2020, Access to Information

  4. Increase efforts to promote public participation in the legislative process

    KE0027, 2020, Civic Space

  5. Apply County Peer Review Mechanism to improve public service delivery

    KE0028, 2020, E-Government

  6. Implement Access to Information Act

    KE0029, 2020, Access to Information

  7. Implement legislation to increase access to justice

    KE0030, 2020, Access to Justice

  8. Build institutional support of OGP

    KE0031, 2020, Capacity Building

  9. Beneficial Ownership

    KE0018, 2018, Access to Information

  10. Open Contracting

    KE0019, 2018, Access to Information

  11. Open Geo-Spatial Data for Development

    KE0020, 2018, Access to Information

  12. Public Participation

    KE0021, 2018, Capacity Building

  13. Governance Indices

    KE0022, 2018, Capacity Building

  14. Open Government Resiliency

    KE0023, 2018, Capacity Building

  15. More Transparent and Participatory Development of Climate Polices at the National and Subnational Level

    KE0010, 2016, Access to Information

  16. Enhancing Preventive and Punitive Mechanisms in the Fight Against Corruption and Unethical Practices

    KE0011, 2016, Anti-Corruption

  17. Enhance Transparency in the Legislative Process

    KE0012, 2016, E-Government

  18. Publish Oil and Gas Contracts

    KE0013, 2016, Anti-Corruption

  19. Starred commitment Ensure Greater Transparency Around Bids and Contracts

    KE0014, 2016, Anti-Corruption

  20. Create Transparent Public Procurement Process, Public Oversight of Expenditure and Ensure Value-For-Money Towards Citizen Priorities

    KE0015, 2016, Access to Information

  21. Improving Access to Government Budget Information and Creating Wider and More Inclusive Structures for Public Participation

    KE0016, 2016, E-Government

  22. Starred commitment Enhance Right to Information

    KE0017, 2016, Access to Information

  23. Starred commitment Improving Transparency in Electoral Processes: 1.A. Definition of Electoral Boundaries and Name.

    KE0001, 2012, Media & Telecommunications

  24. Improving Transparency in Electoral Processes: 2.B. Voting Information Online

    KE0002, 2012, Access to Information

  25. Promoting Public Participation: 1.B. End-To-End Service Delivery Portal

    KE0003, 2012, E-Government

  26. Promoting Public Participation: 1.D. Public Complaints Portal

    KE0004, 2012, E-Government

  27. Promoting Public Participation: 2.C. Kenya Action Plan Online

    KE0005, 2012, Public Participation

  28. Promoting Public Participation: 1.C. Open Data Portal

    KE0006, 2012, Access to Information

  29. Starred commitment Improving Transparency in the Judiciary: 2.A. Public Vetting of Judges and Case Allocation System

    KE0007, 2012, E-Government

  30. Open Budgets: 3.a. Improve Kenya's OBI Index

    KE0008, 2012, Fiscal Openness

  31. Open Budgets: 3.B. Increase Public Participation in Budgetary Processes

    KE0009, 2012, Access to Information

Open Government Partnership