Sweden to help develop country’s urban centres
THE Ministry of Local Government and the Swedish government have formulated a new national development policy. Swedish ambassador to Kenya, Anne Dismor, said Sweden hopes the new policy will be approved by Cabinet and enacted by parliament soon. “Its in my view that this policy will help address challenges in security, informal settlements and infrastructure,” she said.
The Envoy was speaking during the launch of the Kakamega Rural Urban Forum at Masinde Muliro Gardens in Kakamega yesterday. “The Swedish government is committed to support Kenya in the implementation of the new constitution," Dismor said. She said Sweden is supporting the establishment of Rural Urban Forums through the Civil Society Urban Development Programme.
Dismor said citizens must be encouraged to participate in the development of the new urban governance structures. Dismor said Sweden, like other international partners wants to be part of the development in order to help reduce poverty, economic development at the national and local levels, reduce inequality, promote participation of citizens and emphasise on women's participation.
She praised the new constitution and said it has entrenched far-reaching human rights which Kenyans should be extremely proud of. The new laws that will guide the devolved system of government will encourage and support Kenya towards the process of devolution and beyond. Kenya has one of the highest growing urbanisation rate and it is estimated that by the end of 2030 half of the population will be living in urban ares.
She said Kenyans cannot be able to enjoy the human rights enshrined in the new constitution when they unable to access basic services. She added that Sweden will help Kenya to strengthen 15 of her biggest municipalities. “It is our hope that our continued co-operation will contribute to reforms that will improve the living condition of residents,” she said. Present were Kakamega mayor Matias Sichere and acting DC Hilary Mibeyi.