Deputy President William Ruto has said devolution has transformed lives of millions of Kenyans since its adoption despite some teething problems.
Mr Ruto said contrary to claims by some leaders that devolution has not done enough in terms of development; projects that have been carried out by both county and national governments have greatly changed the lives of Kenyans across the country.
Speaking during the launch and implementation of the Big Four Agenda in Nandi County held in Kapsabet town, on Monday, the Deputy President said it was unfair for some people to spend most of their energies on negativity.
Mr Ruto said the national and county governments have done tremendous work in transforming the lives of Kenyans across the country.
“There is tremendous work going on across the country especially in the provision of water, connection of electricity, construction of roads, improvement of health, education among other development activities,” said Mr Ruto.
“Those criticizing us are okay to do so but they should know that some development work is going on at the counties,” added Mr Ruto.
Present were Senate Majority Leader Kipchumba Murkomen, Cabinet Secretary Farida Karoney (Lands), Governors Stephen Sang (Nandi), Moses Lenolkulal (Samburu), Jackson Mandago (Uasin-Gishu) and Alex Tolgos (Elgeyo Marakwet).
Others were MPs Alex Kosgei (Emgwen), Wilson Kogo (Chesumei), Caleb Kositany (Soy), Gideon Kosgei (Chepalungu), Vincent Tuwei (Mosop), Isaac Mwaura (nominated), Cornelly Serem (Aldai), Aaron Cheruiyot (Kericho), Fatuma Dulo (Isiolo), Irungu Kangata (Muranga), Susan Kihika (Nakuru), Amos Wako (Busia), Mutula Kilonzo (Makueni), and Julius Melly (Tinderet).
Chief Administrative Secretaries Andrew Tuimur (Agriculture) and Rachel Shebesh (Public Service). Principal Secretaries Fred Segor (Irrigation), Peter Tum (Health) and Charles Sunkuli (Devolution) were also present.
Ms Karoney said her ministry has embarked on a physical development plan and land adjudication exercise in the counties to facilitate issuance of title deeds, urging farmers to use their titles to access loans from banks for their development projects.
Mr Murkomen said Senate would protect counties from external interference while genuinely implementing their development projects.
“As Senate we will do everything possible to ensure resources allocated to counties were well utilized while on the other hand protecting those which do their work well from external interference,” said Mr Murkomen.
Governor Mandago said counties supported the move to increase taxes but warned that slashing of counties funds up to a tune of Sh 9.4 billion would interfere with the implementation of their development projects.
Governor Sang on his part said county governments were committed to ensuring successful implementation of the Government’s Big Four agenda- manufacturing, healthcare, food security and affordable housing.
He said the Lakes Region Economic Bloc that Nandi County was part of will go a long way in providing markets for its agricultural produce.
Senator Mutula said corruption is the stumbling block to the implementation of the Big Four agenda.
He said it was wrong for MPs to slash counties budget by Sh 9.4 billion, saying the move would interfere with the development programmes of the counties.
Senators Kangata and Mwaura said MPs should always support their political parties while implementing their development agenda for the country.
Earlier, the Deputy President addressed students of Kapsabet Girls High School, Kapsabet Boys High School before making an extensive tour of Kapsabet Referral Hospital.
While in Kapsabet Girls, Mr Ruto said the Government was committed to education of all Kenyans irrespective of their family backgrounds.
“The only way to equalize the fortunes of every child is to equip them with knowledge and skills that can transform their lives in the future,” said Mr Ruto.