President Uhuru Kenyatta on Monday issued a directive that is likely to revolutionize devolution for the 47 counties.
Speaking in Bomet County, Uhuru directed the Devolution Ministry to create a policy on the formation and financing of regional blocs.
“To compliment the county driven regional development initiatives, it is important to recognize and accept the important role that these blocs play,” Uhuru stated.
According to the directive, blocs will be structured to support and facilitate development targets through strategic utilization of resources.
The cross county integrated development will also be supported by the Ministry of Devolution and Arid and Semi Arid Lands (ASALs), Ministry of Water and Sanitation, and Ministry of East African Community (EAC).
Uhuru was addressing the Lake Region Economic Bloc (LREB) Investment Conference 2018 at Bomet Stadium.
LREB consists of the 14 counties around Lake Victoria and its environs including Siaya, Homa Bay, Migori, Kakamega, Bungoma, Busia, Vihiga, Trans Nzoia, Kisii, Nyamira, Bomet, Nandi, Kisumu and Kericho.
The objective of the Bloc is to leverage the economic of scale (the Bloc has approximately 14 million People) and shares resources such as Lake Victoria in order to grow the economics of the region and improve the livelihood of the people.
The Lake Region Economic Blueprint, a roadmap to the development of the Region, was launched by President Uhuru in April 2015.
The LREB Economic Blueprint identifies seven pillars as the focus of development in the region including agriculture and tourism (productive pillars); health and education (social pillars); and ICT, Infrastructure and Financial Services (enabling pillars).
There, however, lacks any specific policy or legal instruments, both at national level or county level, to guide and regulate this economic bloc in its operations and activities – a gap that Uhuru’s directive seeks to bridge.
One of the blocs flagship projects, the Lake Region Economic Bloc Investment Bank was set to start operations in October 2018 after the raising of Ksh2.8 billion initial capital by the member counties.
Here is the video courtesy: