Accountability for Water Programme Launched in Kenya!

Ideas become powerful not simply because they are conceived by academicians and then filtered into society by intellectuals; but because political entrepreneurs, individuals, or institutions discover ways to implement these ideas into society … and ultimately change the settings that drive human behaviour

-Engineer Kyengo,

We are launched in Kenya!

On 1st December 2020, we officially launched the Accountability of Water programme in Kenya. The event was a resounding success with a great turnout. Thirty people joined physically, over 100 people watched live on Facebook and 6 people joined via zoom.

This launch marked a significant moment as we unveiled a programme that is potentially the key to strengthening accountability mechanisms, improving water governance, and ultimately mitigating the water crisis in Kenya.

Currently, Kenya is deemed as a water scarce country with only 10% of its resources developed. There is a sanitation crisis with over 12 million Kenyans defecating in the open. These weighty issues are attributable to absent or weak accountability mechanisms.

In Kenya, the programme is anchored to WASREB, the national water regulatory body. The Kenyan arrangement of the program also includes a national advisory group (NAG) whose members are KEWASNET CEO, the National Research coordinator, PASGR, the Principal Investigator, representatives from APHRC, WSUP, WSTF, KWAHO, JKUAT and WASREB.

At the event, there were speeches, presentations, discussions, a plenary session, stakeholder mapping session and the launching activity. Dr. Beatrice Muganda, acting director of PASGR, gave a speech on the importance of research into Accountability for water and its design to unravel the weighty issues in the water sector.

Eden Mati- WSUP Country Programme Manager, in her speech on behalf of the NAG members expressed, “we hope to see empowerment of citizens to hold their service providers accountable for their access to water and sanitation”.

Mr. Malesi Shivaji, the CEO of KEWASNET and Dr. Martin Atela, the Research and Policy Lead- PASGR made presentations on the programme and its structure.

The discussion on the current accountability frameworks, gaps and lessons from practice was done by Vincent Ouma- KEWASNET and Benjamin Murkomen- MOH.

A speech by the Guest of Honour, Engineer Gakubia- CEO WASREB highlighted that “sustainability cannot be achieved without accountability. We need to see that we are responsive to the user needs and that these programs are anchored to the duty bearers or institutions that are responsible”.

The Chief Guest, Engineer Kyengo- Ag. Director Sanitation Management & Head of Development Cooperation in his speech acknowledged that the Accountability for Water programme speaks to key elements of water governance hence its crown as being befitting in moving the sector forward. He also urged the programme to develop SMART recommendations to inform policy and practice. He ended his speech with the quote at the top of this blog, before officially declaring the programme launched!

Some Members of the National Advisory Group
L- R: Sareen Malik (ANEW), Eng. Kimanthi Kyengo (MWSI), Eng Gakubia (WASREB), Dr. Beatrice Muganda (PASGR), Malesi Shivaji (KEWASNET)


This blogpost was originally published by the Accountability for Water Programme

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