The induction workshop for Water Sector Institutions chief executives and managing directors was held today, 16th May 2019 at the Sarova Panafric. This is the second of two national workshops under the ongoing initiative to induct all stakeholders in the water and sanitation sector about the ongoing reforms in the sector. A similar workshop targeting senior MWS officials was held on 14th May 2019 at the same venue.
In his remarks, Water Secretary Eng. Samuel Alima, highlighted the importance of ensuring that all stakeholders in the entire water and sanitation sector familiarise themselves with the Water Act 2016, including those in charge of water and sanitation affairs at the county level. This why the induction and training of trainers’ workshops are being held nationally and eventually throughout the country. In total, the initial target to induct 459 individuals.
Eng. Alima emphasised the importance of making laws and policies that will outlive those who are currently holding key offices and therefore having future generations in mind during planning and implementation of projects on water and sanitation. “It is important that we all think as Kenyans and not as separate institution and also plan for posterity,” he said, urging the leaders to build a culture of working as a sector. He noted that initial amendments to the Water Act 2016 have been made and are ready for submission through the laid-out channels to make the Act as robust as possible.
He recalled the time when the sector was governed under the Water Act 2002, when things were highly centralised. The Water Act 2016 has come to devolve functions, enhance efficiency and facilitate the deployment of more resources. He told the meeting that the National Water Policy has now been developed and has gone to a sub-committee of the Cabinet. Thereafter it will go the Cabinet and subsequently to the National Assembly after which it will becomes a sessional paper.
Eng. Alima’s remarks were followed by those of the Secretary Administration Mr. Joseph Keter “ndc”. He challenged participants to be at the forefront in implementing the progressive provisions of the Constitution of Kenya (2010) as they relate to access to water and sanitation services. He noted: “We need to infuse our work with transformational leadership by reading and putting into action the spirit of the Constitution.” He cautioned the leaders to anticipate and manage the upcoming transfer of assets and liabilities of water sector institutions from national to county governments in order to ensure that this will occur with minimal conflict between county and national governments.