UNDP Supports the Legislative Agenda of County Governments
County Governments will now be able to develop their own legislation following the unveiling of over fifty County Model Laws; that will act as reference guides for adaptation and customization, to suit the specific realities and unique needs of each county in the exercise of its legislative powers.
The model laws will aid county legal officers as they embark on drafting county legislation,” remarked Devolution Cabinet Secretary, Hon. Mwangi Kiunjuri at the formal launch of the County Model Laws.
The Model Legislation takes into account the changed realities of the new constitutional dispensation, including need for meaningful public participation, expanded democratic space and accelerated reforms across all sectors. The Legislation is heavily premised on policy, including: County Rating Transition; Early Childhood Education; Economic Development Corporation, Citizen Participation, County Health Services and Disaster Management.
“The laws are generically but professionally designed as a measure to guarantee that all county legislation is: development conscious; realigned towards best standards, and are in conformity with the Constitution,” noted the chairperson of the Kenya Law Reform Commission Mr. Mbage Ng’ang’a, whose institution initiated the Model Laws in 2014.
UNDP Kenya, through the support of its development partners - including USAID, UK, Norway and Sweden has been part of the development of these laws over the past two years. First, by supporting the actual drafting of the model laws through the Ministry of Devolution and Planning and the Council of Governors and, secondly, through capacity building for county personnel on actual legislation drafting.
UNDP in collaboration with national and county governments has also supported training of county attorneys and other county senior staff in legislation and policies drafting, an undertaking which will progressively and ultimately make counties self-sufficient in the legislative agenda.
“The issue of enhanced legislative capacity is an important one, and we are encouraged by the actions of Senate, county governments and stakeholders in advancing a Bill aiming to address this on the longer term, including based on lessons learnt over the past three years,” said UNDP’s Deputy Country Director (Operations) Ms. Catherine Masaka.
Other partners in the process of development of the laws include the Office of the Attorney General and Department of Justice, the County Assemblies Forum, the Council of Governors, and the International Development Law Organization.