Kirinyaga County Governor Anne Waiguru has been elected as Chairperson of the Council of Governors to serve a second term.
Waiguru was elected for a second term in office through general consensus during a full council meeting held in Nairobi.
At the same time, Wajir Governor Ahmed Abdullahi was also re-elected as the COG Vice-Chairperson while Stephen Sang of Nandi got the Whip position.
Waiguru was first elected as Chair of the council in September 2022.
Following her re-election, Waiguru said that her focus will now be ensuring that all devolved functions and subsequent resources are fully handed over to the county governments.
She promised to focus on increasing revenue allocation to counties, supporting counties to improve own source revenue and successful implementation of Universal Health Coverage (UHC), agricultural value chains development, value addition and trade.
Waiguru thanked the governors for having faith in her leadership and promised to steer the COG to greater heights.
“I want to thank all Governors for having faith in my leadership, allow me also to congratulate the entire executive and the respective technical committee chairs elected today,” added Waiguru.
The Chair said for the last one year, the council has made tremendous achievements the greatest being timely disbursement of equitable share of revenue to the counties notably 2022/2023 being paid by close of financial year.
“With the continued need to deliver effective and efficient services to Kenyans, County Governments are committed to deliver on their mandate in a focused and coordinated manner. We endeavor to continue harnessing potential opportunities for prosperity to ensure citizens access timely and quality services in all the devolved sectors,” Waiguru emphasized.
She said there has also been improved intergovernmental relations between the National and County Governments with consultation and dialogue, some in the public eye and some behind the scenes taking the center stage of all engagements.
“We held a successful first Biennial Devolution Conference in UasinGishu County and we are also working in collaboration with the Intergovernmental Relations Technical Committee to ensure the unbundling of functions is finalized,” she said.
However, Waiguru noted that her first term as chair of the council was not devoid of challenges among them continuous attempts to claw back Devolution through “retrogressive legislation and creation of unconstitutional bodies to undertake devolved functions.”
She cited the recent gazettement of additional Water Works Development Authority, the enactment of Community Groups Bill and the “overnight passage” of the Facility Improvement Funds Act as some of the recent attempts to claw back devolution.
“We call upon the National Government and other Devolution stakeholders to embrace consultation, cooperation and collaboration to enable us serve the people of Kenya effectively,” she said.
On Friday, President William Ruto hailed Waiguru for creating harmonious working relationship between the two levels of government.
“I want to thank Governor Anne Waiguru for providing the leadership that has created better working relationship between the national and county governments,” he said during the United Democratic Alliance (UDA) National Governing Council (NGC) meeting at Bomas on Friday.