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Month: June 2018

Makueni, Hivos sign MoU to check corruption in the County

Makueni has signed a Memorandum of Understanding with Hivos international to adopt Open contracting and tame corruption in the county’s procurement processes.

Hivos is a humanitarian organization advocating for social justice through creative solutions to persistent global problems.

The MoU was signed by Makueni Governor Prof  Kivutha Kibwana, who was accompanied by County Secretary Paul Wasanga and Hivos East African regional director Ms Mendi Njonjo at Wote, Makueni,  Monday evening.

The MoU establishes a collaborative framework between the two organizations with a view to developing a viable programme taking a multifaceted approach in improving the quality of procurement processes for transparency and eradication of corruption.

Hivos, as part of the MoU,  will assist the county government in capacity building on the open contracting approaches, principles and the Open Contracting Data Standard (OCDS) for designated officers and departments as well as Makueni Project Management Committees.

Ms Njonjo said this approach will assist Makueni in detecting fraud and corruption risks in public procurement while also entrenching fairer competition and a level playing ground for businesses.

Prof Kibwana hailed the open contracting system of procurement as the solution to the endemic corruption plaguing the country. He said the President and the national government should see it as a necessity to adopt this system as an antidote to corruption.

“There should be no secrecy on the expenditure of public money. Public procurement should be like an open shop where all that you sell is on open display,” said Prof Kibwana.

The governor lamented that some people were starting to feel threatened by the open and transparent governance his administration has adopted but said such people will have no place in Makueni.

“Some people think we’re too open that it is starting to threaten their dealings. It is time we all stood by President Uhuru Kenyatta and in one accord declare that Kenya and corruption cannot live together, one has to give way to the other, and that is corruption giving way to Kenya,” he said.

Prof Kibwana said the open contracting  procurement system will outlive his administration in post 2022 as it would be presented to the assembly for ratification and anyone trying to reverse it would face the wrath of the public.

“As the governor, I will be more unrelenting in overseeing operationalisation of this MoU because it will bear fruits even long after my exit. No one will be able to undo the gains then,” Prof Kibwana said.

Makueni holds first Land Conference to address Land Issues

The National Government will work with the County to expedite the issuance of title deeds in order to address land ownership problems in Makueni County.

Governor Prof Kivutha Kibwana and Chief Administrative Secretary (CAS)  for Lands Gideon Mung’aro said the two levels of government have resolved to work together to deal with the problems affecting thousands of residents in Makueni who own land but have struggled for years to access documentation.

“We have people here who own huge chunks of land. They have owned such land for years but have never acquired land titles,” Prof Kibwana said.

The governor and the CAS were speaking at the ATC Kwa Kathoka in Makueni where they joined hundreds of delegates in the county’s first Annual Land Conference.

He said the county recently launched a programme to support the issuance of 53,000 titles to locals as part of his government’s strategy to iron out the outstanding land problems in the county.

Prof Kibwana said: “The trouble here is that majority of people facing problems with land documentation are also very poor people who cannot afford the prohibitive charges being levied.”

He said landlords in most of Makueni’s urban areas are unable to access financial facilities using land they own as they don’t have official ownership documents.

The governor also decried land grabbing menace by powerful individuals and appealed to the ministry of lands to help reclaim a piece of land grabbed from the Makindu stadium by a senior public officer.

“Someone has grabbed land in Makindu.We have even written to him as county and he goes bragging that we are a small entity and therefore we can do nothing. The government should help us reclaim the grabbed piece of land,” Prof Kibwana pleaded.

Speaking at the event Mr Mung’aro ordered the ministry staff to work with their county colleagues to ensure reclamation of the Makindu stadium land.

“We will send out officers on Monday to look into the grabbing of the stadium. At the moment we don’t tolerate such acts, no one is allowed to use their big offices to execute grabbing of public property,”Mr Mung’aro said.

Mr Mung’aro also warned corrupt land officers that they will be dealt with ruthlessly following complaints that some were demanding bribes before offering services to the public.

“We have had complaints about some of our officers. I want to summon all of them to come to Nairobi on Monday, so that they can share with us what their problems are,” the CAS said.

He announced that the national government will in the next three months issue an additional 67,000 land title deeds to residents of Makueni County who have for long lived as squatters in their own land.

Ngai Ndethya, Ngiluni, Mbetwani, Kiboko A, B and C are among some of the settlement areas with major outstanding land problems that have hindered issuance of titles for years.

Makueni County Land ECM Joshua Wambua whose department hosted the event said several land clinics were held across the county culminating into the land conference.

“We have held quite a number of clinics.We do believe that the conference we have had today will in a way resolve some of the problems we have faced  even if not all,”Mr Wambua said.

Several land sector reform experts led by the Chief Executive Officer of the Kenya Land Alliance Odenda Lumumba were among speakers at the event.

Makueni residents in Mombasa officially launch Diaspora Group

Makueni residents living in the coast region on Thursday unveiled a Makueni Diaspora-Mombasa chapter with a view to take a united and active role in development of the county. 

The outfit has on its inauguration donated 83 pieces of iron sheets to support victims of floods in rebuilding their houses in the occasion graced by governor Prof Kivutha Kibwana.

The community has also contributed Sh 3.3 million to purchase shares in Ene Microfinance with a target of Sh 5 Million before the bank opens its doors. 

The objectives of the community, according to its chairman Richard Kinovi include:

Uniting all Makueni residents living in the Coastal region to support economic growth of the members and mobilise resources to invest in their mother county.

Market the county products in Mombasa to spearhead the economic development of the county.

Partnering with other diaspora chapters such as the London based-UK chapter to mobilise resources and exploit potential economic opportunities for members and the county.

“We are very great full for the support we are getting from our people in the diaspora.As a government we are ready and very much willing to work with you,”the governor said.

Prof  Kibwana has lauded the Mombasa chapter for demonstrating what a model diaspora community should do to institutionalize its operations and set itself for greater socio-economic and political influence of its mother County. 

He said in the near future, diaspora chapters will be opened in Nairobi,  London and other cities with the hope that the diaspora community will create links with each other and sustain a vibrant discourse on the development of their mother county.

County allocates Ksh. 1 million to promote silkworm rearing

The government has allocated Sh 1 million to promote sericulture across the country.

Agriculture Chief Officer  Mary Muteti said the move is part of county government’s strategy to support poverty reduction programs.

Ms Muteti who was addressing participants at a silkworm farming forum said the promotion of sericulture will aid income generation among the locals.

She said the government is also looking into ways of increasing value addition and marketing of silk finished products.

Over 20 groups participated in the event organised in partnership with Tosheka company.

Deputy governor Adelina Mwau  who attended the event said silkworm rearing is a major economic enhancing activity with huge benefits to the households of the participating farmers.

She said the direct selling of  silkworm products will help create employment opportunities for the locals.

“It is a viable and profitable venture especially to the women and the youth,” Mwau said.

April floods relief support calls begin to yield fruits

Appeals by the County Government for relief support for the victims of floods is yielding fruits with various organisations responding to aid  the kitty.

On Tuesday UNICEF in conjunction with ,Red Cross and the National Government donated 673 water jericans,24 boxes of water purifiers, 4,000 pieces of bar soaps and 4,000 ten litre plastic buckets  to be distributed to the victims of the April floods that caused devastating destructions in the county.

Deputy Governor Adelina Mwau who received the consignment appreciated the donors, adding that, the county emergency team will ensure the items reach the flood victims in Makueni.

‘’We are very much humbled to have so many people wanting to partner with us and we urge others to support the county in other activities that we are running,”Mwau said.

The deputy county commissioner Dr. Mbugua reiterated the same, adding that such gesture was meant to alleviate those who suffered during the just concluded rains in Makueni.

Water and irrigation County Executive Committee Member Mr. Bob Kisyula promised that the items will be distributed equitably to the affected.

Kibwana, Lusaka tell youth to claim their space in the country’s development

Makueni governor Prof Kivutha Kibwana and Senate speaker Kenneth Lusaka have challenged the youth in the country to claim their space in the country’s development agenda and leadership.

The two spoke at the Kenya School of Government in an address to representatives of the youth from across the 47 counties during an inaugural Youth and Devolution symposium.

Prof Kibwana told the youth not to allow the country lose direction while watching from the periphery as they stood to lose the most.

“You must not allow your country to lose direction under your watch as you will be around much longer and will lose most. You have to be a people fired up to achieve a mission in nurturing the future,” Prof Kibwana told the symposium.

He said the youth should use their numerical strength to push for their agenda and shun the culture of tribalism, handouts and protests as the only way to be heard.

“Young people make almost 70 percent of the Kenyan population. With these numbers, they can work for change that favour them, either through the electoral process or through pushing for adequate budgetary allocation for their agenda in public participation forums,” he said.

Prof Kibwana said young people cannot decry lack of experience as those who started off the country after independence were under 30s without prior experience.

Mr Lusaka challenged the youth to be in the forefront in addressing tribal balkanisation and hail true Kenyan patriotism if they are to succeed in advancing their agenda and driving a positive change in the country’s leadership.

The governor and the speaker insisted on morality, ethical and spiritual values for the young people to steer a positive change capable of safeguarding the interests of the future generations.

Kibwana backs Uhuru’s stand on graft

Makueni County Governor Prof Kivutha Kibwana yesterday said he is supporting President Uhuru Kenyatta’s recently launched war on corruption saying if life audits are properly done then high level corruption can be stemed.

Makueni leaders declare support for Kenyatta’s anti-graft war.

Makueni leaders have in one accord declared their unwavering support to President Uhuru Kenyatta’s war against graft.

The leaders who spoke at Wote Catholic Church hall during the second annual county prayer breakfast Tuesday said the country is bleeding from the heavy burden of corruption that has permeated virtually every sector of governance.

“I want to declare my 100 percent support to the president in this war against corruption. It is not an easy task but it is achievable,” said Governor Kivutha Kibwana, the keynote speaker of the event.

Prof Kibwana said the lifestyle audit for all the civil servants recommended by president Kenyatta is a welcome move with a potential to yield results if well conducted.

A lifestyle audit is one of the best forms of fighting this war. Every civil servant should be subjected to this audit and the results published. Any undeserved or illegally acquired assets and wealth should be recovered by the state,” he said.

Kibwezi MP Jessica Mbalu who serves as the vice chair of the parliamentary Public Accounts Committee (PAC) said her committee is working round the clock to unravel major corruption scandals that will save the country millions of shillings.

“The Public Accounts Committee will not rest until those involved in dubious dealings meant to fleece Kenyans are brought to book. We have the capacity and commitment to bring to light all those perpetrating corruption,” said the Kibwezi MP.

Kilome MP Thaddeus Nzambia challenged his colleagues in the national assembly and the executive to embrace public participation in development saying it is one way to curb graft as the public is involved every step of the way.

He said he had copied the Makueni County model of public participation in the implementation of Kilome’s development agenda.

Other speakers who supported this clarion call at the event include Deputy governor Adelina Mwau, Kaiti MP Joshua Kimilu, Makueni MP Daniel Maanzo and Makueni assembly speaker Douglas Mbilu.

Kibwana, Polish diplomat say growing Makueni ASK show good for Agricultural promotion

Makueni Governor Prof Kivutha Kibwana on Friday officially opened the second edition of the county’s agricultural show at Makindu saying that it provides a nearer and convenient venue for exhibition by farmers in Makueni.

Prof Kibwana who was accompanied by Polish ambassador to Kenya  Jacek Bazanski who had earlier  paid a courtesy call to his office toured several exhibition stands where Makueni farmers showcased agricultural products and technological innovations.

” As you are aware Makueni has been served by the Machakos show previously. Our farmers therefore will have a nearer and convenient venue for exhibition, ” Prof Kibwana said.

He further noted that his government has initiated and subsidized several farm inputs including the artificial insemination services in order to support agricultural production which has been a challenge to farmers.

He said: ” We are aware that the cost of production by farmers is a challenge to many. To this end, my government has subsidized several farm inputs..Among them, AI services with farmers now paying sh 300 per insemination down from the  initial Sh 1,300.”

Makueni Deputy governor Adelina Mwau challenged farmers to implement what they had learnt from the show terming it as a very educative event.


” I celebrate the exhibitors and organisers of this show. Let’s implement what we have learnt here, ” the DG said.

Makueni Senator Mutula Kilonzo Junior who was present during the official opening of the trade fair challenged exhibitors and farmers from Makueni to take advantage of the upcoming Machakos agricultural show and showcase innovations and products from Makueni.

” Different constituencies in our county produce different agricultural products. Let’s take advantage of the upcoming Machakos show and display our products there, ” Mutula stated.

The trade fair was also attended by the County Assembly speaker, Douglas Mbilu, Several county executive committee members and other government officials, members of  the county assembly and officials from Agricultural Show of Kenya.

Poland ready to work with counties to support development: Diplomat

Polish ambassador to Kenya Jacek Bażański has said his country is ready to partner with county governments to support specific programs tailored to benefit the people economically.

Mr Bażański who was hosted in Makueni County on Friday by Governor Prof Kivutha Kibwana said his country is ready to partner with the county to support various development projects directly and when necessary.

“We want a concrete relationship with your county in various sectors including the  housing sector among others,”Mr Bażański said in Wote Town when he called on the governor.

The diplomat said that Poland is a major producer of fruits and therefore could work well with Makueni County to develop the local fruit farming industry.

Said the ambassador:”Poland is a major fruits producer .We have lots of apples but unfortunately we don’t do mangoes.”

Prof Kibwana said that his county is willing to cooperate with Poland in any partnership deal that would support pro-people projects.

He said the county was particularly interested in deals that can support youth empowerment.

“We are in the process of establishing our own version of a youth service to be known as Makueni County Youth Service  which will be run by young people themselves so as to create  a hub for opportunities for young people in the county,”Prof Kibwana said.

He regretted that though the NYS idea was noble it has been derailed by corrupt networks taking advantage of an institution that could be used to make good use of extra energy in the country’s young people.

The governor said the Makueni Concept of a youth service will be an improvement of the National Youth Service currently dogged with corruption.

He said the service will be used to seek opportunities for over 350,000 young people in the county that will include business deals among others.

Nominated MP Silvia Kasanga welcomed Polond’s interest in working with counties directly saying that the peripheral governments that have displayed high levels of intergrity and transparency in management of public resources like Makueni,  deserve direct  donor attention.

Makueni MP Daniel Maanzo who was also present at the event said he will support initiatives by the Polish government to provide  support to the county.

“This is a good relationship and we will support any form of cooperation meant to spur economic development in our county,”Mr Maanzo said.

Hope for cotton farmers as Kibwana moves to revive cash crop

Makueni Governor Prof Kivutha Kibwana has launched campaigns for the revival of cotton farming in the county.

Talks are in top gear to initiate the revival of cotton farming with mobilization targeting previous cotton sectors in the area already launched.

Addressing delegates at the Business to Business Forum held at the Kusyombunguo hotel in Wote Town on Thursday Prof Kibwana said efforts are being made to revive the cash crop killed by mismanagement of the industry during the Kanu regime.

 He said the Department of Agriculture has been mobilizing farmers to sensitize them about ongoing efforts to restart the cash crop farming in the area.

“We want to revive the cotton sector, here in Makueni it used to thrive in the past and we must find a way of getting it back,”Prof Kibwana said.

He said that a number of stakeholders in the sector have been contacted and that they have already expressed interest in working with the county government to support the cotton farming revival.

Said Prof Kibwana: “We had a meeting yesterday with farmers. We have begun sensitizing our farmers to go back to cotton farming.”

The governor called on local parents to allocate land to their young children interested in cash crop farming.

Agriculture ECM Lawrence Nzunga said the department was keen on supporting the revival of cotton farming in Makueni saying it was an activity with great potential for the local residents.

“We are talking to people about it. We are happy that many are getting interested and experts are already here to provide professional guidance as we plan the revival,” said Mr Nzunga.

Delegates from various counties participated in the forum organized by Kenya Crops and Dairy Market Systems Activity and sponsored by FeediFuture and USAID.