Collaborative engagement between CSOs and County Government for WRM/WASH Integration – A case of Laikipia County

KWAHO, through the watershed program largely contributed to the development of the Laikipia County 2nd Generation CIDP (a 5 year implementation plan) through ensuring that all people, particularly young, marginalized and vulnerable groups, get a platform to express their views on decisions directly affecting their lives. This fundamental right can only be honored if Government-citizen connections are further strengthened, which has been streamlined through a series of trainings and capacity strengthening sessions at both right holder and duty bearer level on an assertion that participation is not an end in itself but a procedural right, it represents the means through which citizens may take part in and influence processes, decisions and activities.

 

In an intensive and all-inclusive process, Kenya Water for Health Organization (KWAHO), through watershed program partners procedurally integrated Water Resources Management (WRM) and WASH in Laikipia County 2nd Generation county integrated development plan (CIDP), an elaborate sequence. With the view of bringing on board Citizen voice and Participation in the process, KWAHO undertook: consultative meetings with county officials from the respective departments of Planning, Water, Sanitation and Environment; strengthening the capacities of relevant stakeholders; mobilizing citizens and ensuring citizen perspectives included in the planning through representation in open public forum, presentation of written submissions by citizen groups in Laikipia and strategically creating a link between the water and related departments including national government agencies for cross agency dialogue.

The County in collaboration with KWAHO orchestrated the Formation of a technical working group that was all inclusive (Comprising of WRA, County Government relevant departments and CSOs), whose preliminary input led to the development of a roadmap for the realization of the CIDP. The process involved:

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The process has since been finalized awaiting approval by the Laikipia County assembly. Next steps include orientation sessions with MCAs by the County government for an in depth understanding of the county priorities and ease of uptake by the elected leaders.

The program played an integral role in unpacking the concepts of participation and inclusive decision making, concepts that have been considered a part of emancipatory discourse and practices for the last decade. In keeping our promise to reach the last mile, Watershed foresees an improved sector with mutual appreciation of the roles played by the different stakeholders strengthened through collaborative culture and practice.

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