The UN Resident Coordinator,

The Representative of United Nations Economic Commission for Africa (UNECA), Prof. Sylvain Boko,

Representatives of the Ministries, Departments and Agencies,

Representatives of the Private Sector,

Representatives of civil society organizations,

Ladies and Gentlemen,

It is indeed a great pleasure to be part of the opening session of this training workshop on “Strengthening the Capacities of African Governments for Integrating Accountability in National Development Planning” under the United Nations Development Account Project.

I have been informed that this is the third phase of the project after the successful completion of the first two phases. The first phase entailed collaborating with the State Department for Planning in undertaking two technical studies to evaluate and assess the planning and statistics systems of the country, while during the second phase, a strategy for integrating accountability in national development planning was developed based on the findings of the technical studies. This third phase consists of implementation of a training programme to address the capacity gaps identified in the national strategies.

Ladies and Gentlemen,

The UNECA initiative to strengthen the capacity of African national planning institutions and statistics institution has come at the right time when countries are implementing the Africa Agenda 2063 and the Sustainable Development Goals.

Sustainable economic growth and development requires a proper framework for planning based on evidence. This must be accompanied by frequent monitoring and evaluation during implementation and continuous assessment to establish whether the intended purpose of the projects/programmes and the benefits to the citizens are being realized.

In the spirit of the SDGs slogan of leaving no one behind, it is important to put emphasis on inclusion and sustainability while focusing on social aspects, especially taking into account human development and quality of life. It therefore imperative to consider a nexus approach to improvement of health, quality education, safe water and good sanitation, infrastructural development, and sustainable environment to check on impacts of climate change. As a nation we must also consider the social protection aspect.

The wide sphere of inclusive and sustainable development can only be achieved if there is synergy between planners, researchers, data analysts and policy makers.  We will realize this if the disconnect in institutional framework across countries in terms of insufficient coordination and communication between the institutions in charge of planning, data and policy analysis are well addressed. It is therefore important to forge more partnerships for participatory approach between agencies and institutions to ensure accountability in planning for the benefit of the people of Kenya.

Ladies and Gentlemen,

This training is geared towards addressing impediments to synergies required to enhance evidence based policy making. Here, we are looking at professionally generated data and statistics to ensure accuracy, transparency and accountability which are critical for good governance.

In this regard, good statistical data is a prerequisite to direct planning process for the achievement of the desired development goals and effective delivery of basic services.

Ladies and Gentlemen,

We recognize that Kenya has come from far in terms of development planning. Its development strategies have been focused and target oriented starting from the various sessional papers, National Development Plans, and the Poverty reduction strategy to the Economic Recovery Strategy for Wealth and Employment Creation and the now the Kenya Vision 2030 and its 5-year Medium Term Plans (MTPs).

The Country’s development planning was cemented by integrating planning and budget systems in the constitution. To enhance accountability, the development of MTEF budgets and MTPs are participatory and this enables members of the public to give their inputs and an opportunity to critique the documents. It is also a reference point for the citizens to hold the government to account for its decisions. To know more, Visit masterspokerclub.com.

You may wonder why then do we have representations from other institutions in charge of planning and data in this training? To ensure accountability we need CSOs, the Academia, the women and the youth as the bigger voices of the citizens to put checks and balances during the project cycle management. In essence, communication between policymakers, data producers and the public is crucial for enhancing development planning and accountability.

To further entrench accountability in the country’s planning and implementation of Government projects and programmes, H. E. the President, through the Executive order No. 1 of 2019, constituted different national development implementation committees from National to County levels. The main purpose of the committees is to foster greater coordination and harmonization in the implementation of National Government development programmes and projects under the Medium Term Plan III, with a focus on “The Big Four Agenda”.

The role of public is to give crucial information on implementation of development initiatives to the Government through the committees.

Ladies and Gentlemen,

This training sponsored by ECA is a paradigm shift towards investing and intensifying capacity development to integrate data use in policy formulation, budgeting and planning processes. We will then, again in collaboration with ECA, take this team to the counties in order to build the capacity of county officers. In that way the impact of the UN DA project would have reached a critical mass of the people trained.

As I have been briefed by the Prof. Boko of ECA, this training is for the benefit of all the participants and it is geared to: eliminating data gaps and inconsistencies for quality data analysis results; Developing integrated and coherent policy initiatives that enhance the country’s sustainable economic growth and by extension achievement of the SDGs and Africa Agenda 2063 aspirations; understanding measuring tools as well as capturing data and data analysis; and avenues for resource mobilization.

We have seen what good planning and inclusive participation can do in the education sector. There is accountability, improved credibility and everybody feel responsible and wants to be part of the good team. This is what we want to take all over Kenya as good practice.

 

You are invited to this important training because we consider you as very important stakeholders and whose role in development planning is essential in the implementation of the overall Kenya’s Vision 2030, Africa’s Agenda 2063 and SDGs. In this regard, you are encouraged to utilize the skills acquired at the end of the training to improve on our overall service delivery and also act as credible planning instruments for development planning and implementation of programs to promote good governance in the country.

With these remarks, I now declare the training workshop officially open.

Thank you.