Today, Principal Secretary, Mrs. Mary Kimonye led Heads of Departments within her State Department in the signing of Performance Contracts for the FY 2020/2021.
During the signing ceremony she stressed on the importance of performance contracting as an accountability tool for measuring performance against negotiated targets.
“A performance contract is a commitment by an office holder to enhance their performance through the prudent use and management of resources as well as time so as to offer better services to mwananchi,” She remarked.
Mrs. Kimonye emphasized the need for teamwork to achieve the set-out targets for the State Department. She further asked the HODs to take charge of the implementation of the performance contracts within their departments and to ensure that they are cascaded to all staff.
She was joined in the signing ceremony by the Technical Advisors to the Cabinet Secretary, Mr. Titus Ndambuki, Ms. Catherine Wahome and Dr. Martin Kaumbutho as well as the Principal Administrative Secretary, Mr. Steve Ndele, who leads the Public Service Performance Management and Monitoring Unit.
The Public Service Performance Management and Monitoring Unit is domiciled under the State Department for Public Service and its mandated with developing, implementing and evaluating Performance Contracts in the entire Public Service including Counties.
The Ministry through the Affirmative action funds namely; Uwezo Fund, Youth Enterprise Development Fund, Women Enterprise Fund and The National Government Affirmative Action Fund (NGAAF) last week disbursed cheques worth over Ksh 99 million to various youth, women and Persons with disabilities (PWDs) in Kakamega, Vihiga and Bungoma Counties.
Chief Administrative Secretary Hon. Rachel Shebesh who presided over the issuance of the Cheques called for sensitization and mobilization of the groups at the grass root level in order to increase uptake of affirmative funds in Western Counties.
She noted that the Government has purposely provided affirmative funds with an intention to ensure the vulnerable groups in the society can access affordable loans to open up small enterprises and empower themselves economically.
“We are calling upon all the leaders both from the National and County Government to intensify campaigns and sensitize women, youth and PWDs on the availability of affirmative funds which is now lying in various bank accounts. This money will enable them to open small enterprises and improve their livelihoods,” she reiterated.
Hon. Shebesh held discussions with National and County Government officials led by the respective leaders in the three Counties namely; Vihiga Governor Dr. Wilber Ottichilo, Bungoma Governor H.E Wycliffe Wangamati and Kakamega Deputy Governor H.E Philip Kutima, who welcomed the collaboration between the Ministry of Public Service and Gender and the County Governments including National Youth Service programmes and Affirmative Action fund uptake.
On the other hand, she asked parents to take their parental roles seriously arguing that the increased number of teenage pregnancies reported in the Country is at an alarming rate that needs urgent intervention.
“It is sad to note that we shall be sending back to school many of our girls who are now pregnant. This is not the vision we have for our children as Country,” said the CAS.
She further called for concerted effort to combat Sexual Gender Based Violence (SGBV) arguing that victims are left to suffer in silence when the society remain silent in fighting the vice. “Let us speak up and utilize the available resources including the toll-free number 1195 to ensure GBV victims access justice and get help at the right time,” added Hon. Shebesh
The Chief Administrative Secretary toured the Huduma Centres in the three Counties to assess efficiency of service delivery and the measures put in place to ensure safety of staff and the public during COVID-19 pandemic. She also carried out inspection on the ongoing phase two of 'Kazi Mtaani' Programme being undertaken by local youths and other self-help groups in those Counties.
Hon. Shebesh was accompanied by Chairman NYS Council, Lt. Gen. (Rtd) Njuki Mwaniki, NYS Director-General Matilda Sakwa, County Commissioners, County Women Reps, Women Enterprise Fund CEO, Eng. Charles Mwirigi, Uwezo Fund CEO, Peter Lengapiani and Youth Enterprise Development Fund CEO, Benson Muthendi among other National and County Government officials
The Ministry through the Affirmative action funds namely; Uwezo Fund, Youth Enterprise Development Fund and Women Enterprise Fund on Monday 7th September disbursed cheques worth over Ksh 94 million to various youth, women and Persons with disabilities (PWDs) in Nairobi and Kiambu Counties.
Presiding over the issuance of the Affirmative Fund Cheques in separate events held in Nairobi and Kiambu, Chief Administrative Secretary Hon. Rachel Shebesh challenged the beneficiaries not to fear Government Affirmative Fund loans that has been provided for their economic empowerment.
Hon. Shebesh asked women, youth and PWDs to form groups and register in order to apply for the free interest and affordable loans which will enable them to expand their small enterprises.
“Government Affirmative funds is giving all the women, youth and PWDs who are not economically stable an opportunity to empower themselves and open small businesses in order to improve their livelihoods,” said Hon. Shebesh.
She urged the beneficiaries to borrow more loans after repaying what they have already been issued with in order to continue growing their businesses.
In Nairobi County, the CAS paid a courtesy call to Nairobi Regional Commissioner Mr James Kianda accompanied by her Ministry of Health counterpart Dr. Mercy Mwangangi where they deliberated on the Government projects within Nairobi Region and how to ensure effective service delivery to Wananchi.
In Kiambu County, Hon. Shebesh paid a courtesy call to Kiambu County Commissioner Mr. Wilson Wanyanga accompanied by Kiambu County Women Representative Hon. Gathoni Wamuchomba and Affirmative Funds Board Chairpersons where they discussed on the disbursement of affirmative funds to beneficiary groups in the County.
Cabinet Secretary, Prof. Margaret Kobia yesterday chaired a virtual meeting of Commonwealth Ministers for Gender and Women's Affairs on the impact of COVID-19.
The meeting that was also attended by Commonwealth Secretary-General, The Rt. Hon. Patricia Scotland provided a platform for the Ministers to share their country's experiences with COVID-19, and in particular, its impact on women, and how they are rebuilding in ways that take into account a gender-sensitive response. Further, it also focused on addressing the structural and systematic changes needed to tackle gender inequality as well as building back a better forward amid and post the pandemic.
Prof. Kobia started off the meeting by acknowledging that the COVID-19 pandemic is not just a health issue but a profound shock to our societies and economies with women at the heart of care and response efforts. "In Kenya, women are playing a key role in responding to the pandemic as decision-makers, caregivers, frontline healthcare workers, community leaders and mobilisers, often at great risk to their health," she said.
Chief Administrative Secretary, Hon. Rachel Shebesh presented the Kenyan Paper where she highlighted the impact of the pandemic on women and girls and the measures that the Government had undertaken to minimise suffering.
Like many other countries, Kenya has witnessed a rise in Gender-Based Violence cases as a result of COVID–19 pandemic. Hon. Shebesh noted that it is through the leadership of women in Kenya at various levels, state and non- state actors that Gender-Based Violence is an integral component of the COVID- 19 response. "We have strengthened the medical-legal response to GBV, enhanced and publicised the national toll-free helpline 1195 and rolled out a public awareness campaign on prevention and response to GBV," she said.
Within the COVID 19 pandemic response, the Chief Administrative Secretary also highlighted that the Government had created employment for women and young people through local manufacturing of face masks especially those residing in informal settlements.
In her keynote address, The Rt. Hon. Patricia Scotland noted that despite all the focus, effort and resource being expended to defeat the virus there is little attention on the diverse and devastating impact that the crisis is having upon women and girls. "Our purpose in convening this meeting is to start to address the distinctive and very particular impacts the COVID-19 pandemic is having on women and girls," she said.
The virtual meeting ended with a clarion call from the Chair and Secretary-General, Prof. Margaret Kobia and The Rt. Hon. Patricia Scotland respectively, for members to focus on setting up Ministerial Action Groups which was a key commitment made when the meeting was convened in Kenya last year.
An elderly woman from Garissa County on Wednesday 2nd September quit Female Genital Mutilation practice by handing over her tools of trade to the Chief Administrative Secretary Hon. Rachel Shebesh during a dialogue meeting held at the Government Guest House in Garissa town.
While handing over the tools, Ms. Galina Gurre from Yumata location vowed to be an Anti FGM champion and committed to work closely with Government agencies in sensitizing other cutters to realize the harmful effects that are caused by the cut.
While receiving the tools, Hon. Shebesh thanked the elderly woman for leading the way and being a good example to others who are still practising. She appealed to women from Garissa County and other Counties that practice FGM to down their tools and adhere to the law.
The Chief Administrative Secretary committed KES. 100,000 from Uwezo Fund as start up capital to assist Ms. Gurre to explore an alternative means of earning a livelihood.
Hon. Shebesh issued a stern warning to Chiefs and Assistant Chiefs who will fail to deliver on the Presidential directive to end FGM by 2022 telling them that their days are numbered and that the law would catch up with them.
“This is a Presidential directive and it must be implemented. If you find it difficult, then let's find someone who will replace you,” she said.
Ijara Constituency MP Hon. Sofia Abdi called on cultural and religious leaders to work with the Government to ensure that the harmful vice is eradicated.
Garissa County Commissioner, Mr. Mwangi Meru assured the Chief Administrative Secretary that he will do everything within his capacity to ensure that no stone is left unturned in ensuring FGM becomes a thing of the past.
The Chief Administrative Secretary was accompanied by Anti-FGM Board Chairperson, Mrs. Agnes Pareiyo, UNFPA Representative, Mr. Ademola Olajide among other National and County Government Officials.
National Youth Service (NYS) targets to generate Ksh. One billion annually up from the current Ksh. 40 million in agricultural production to boost food security in the Country.
Principal Secretary, Mrs. Mary Kimonye during her familiarization tour at NYS Yatta Complex, Machakos County on Monday 31st August applauded NYS for their effort to boost food security in the Country.
“I want to commend the officers and servicemen for the good job they have done in these field stations. It is quite impressive, their efforts will go a long way in realization of the President’s Big Four Agenda on food security and nutrition,” she reiterated.
Mrs. Kimonye called for mechanization, use of modern farming technology and harvesting of rainwater for irrigation purposes, a move which she said will provide an opportunity for expansion of the field stations.
She noted that the Athi River NYS station if fully equipped with modern farming technology will be able to cultivate 3,396 acres of land for food production up from the current 300.
The Yatta Complex comprised of three NYS farming field stations namely; Mavoloni field unit, Athi River field unit and Yatta field unit which mainly engage in crop and livestock production.
The tour was an opportunity for the Principal Secretary to better understand the programmes currently being implemented at the field stations, the opportunities available and the challenges facing the field units for planning purposes.
At the Mavoloni field unit, which covers an area of 70 Ha, the PS toured the orchards, maize and banana plantations as well as the horticultural unit. She also toured the livestock production unit which comprises of both ranching and zero grazing.
In Athi River field station the Principal Secretary toured the pawpaw and avocado farm where grafting of local and imported varieties is being carried out, as well as the horticultural section which also has Green-house farming for vegetables, beans, tomatoes among other plants.
The Yatta station houses the Yatta School of Agriculture and School of Plant Operators and Mechanics which offer technical support to TVET institutions such as Meru Ploytechnic, Nkabane Technical and Kiirua Technical. Also supports the Yatta Academy and Huduma Secondary School.
The Principal Secretary was accompanied by the Principal Administrative Secretary, Mr. Steve Ndele, Secretary Administration, Mr. Muktar Abdi among other officials from the Ministry and NYS.
Cabinet Secretary, Prof. Margaret Kobia, on Wednesday 26th August committed to continue strengthening the capacity of public service to deliver on H.E. President, Uhuru Kenyatta's commitment to end FGM by 2022.
Prof. Kobia made her remarks as she held a meeting with cultural and religious elders who are working with the ministry on the End FGM Programme.
She emphasized on the need to be on high alert and protect girls during the COVID-19 pandemic period because they are at high risk of FGM. "Schools have been a safe haven for children. They are now exposed and are at very high risk of not only being subjected to FGM but are also at high risk of early and forced child marriage, rape and teenage pregnancy," she said.
Prof. Kobia further called on parents and guardians to be the first duty bearers of their children and take responsibility to protect them against cultural practices that violate their rights.
She commended the Kenya School of Government for the steady increase in the number of public servants who are undertaking training and the development infrastructure geared towards creating a conducive learning environment.
She kick started the Greening Initiative in the Institution which is part of the Government's on going project to plant 1.8 billion trees and achieve more than 10% forest cover in the country by 2022.
The Cabinet Secretary also unveiled 15 newly built residential cottages at the Kenya School of Government, Baringo Campus. Later on, Prof. Kobia issued Affirmative Funds from Women Enterprise Fund worth Ksh.8 million to various women groups in Baringo County. She also donated dignity kits for girls, masks and shukas.
The Cabinet Secretary was accompanied by Mrs. Mary Kimonye, Principal Secretary, State Department for Public Service, Prof. Ludeki Chweya, Director General Kenya School of Government, Mrs. Agnes Pareyio, Anti-FGM Board Chairperson,Mr. Henry Wafula, Baringo County Commissioner, Dr. Ademola Olajide, UNFPA Country Representative, Mr. Titus Lotee, CEO National Government Affirmative Action Fund among other national and county officials.
Principal Secretary, Prof. Collette Suda has called on Affirmative funds beneficiaries to repay the loans on time in order to allow others to benefit.
Prof. Suda made her remarks on on Saturday 22nd while she presided over the issuance of Uwezo Fund cheques worth over Ksh. 1.4 million to various groups of youth, women and Persons with Disabilities in Rongo Constituency, Migori County.
She asked the beneficiaries to explore alternative income generating activities in order to be able to repay the loans which stands at 23% repayment rate in the County.
“Uwezo Fund is a revolving fund that you need to pay back within the given period of time for others who have applied to benefit. The Government Affirmative funds aims at empowering the vulnerable groups to improve their economic status,” said Prof. Suda.
She noted that many businesses have been hard hit during the COVID-19 pandemic which they continue to record losses that will make it hard for beneficiaries to repay back the loans.
The Principal Secretary condemned the increase in teenage pregnancies which interferes with the girls’ education and their future. She asked parents to guide and teach their children.
She further urged men to protect women and girls during COVID-19 pandemic from the rising cases of Gender Based Violence which has continued to be recorded in the Country.
The Principal Secretary was accompanied by Uwezo Fund CEO, Mr. Peter Lengapiani, among other National and County officials.
Cabinet Secretary, Prof. Margaret Kobia today presided over the virtual signing of financial year 2020/2021 Performance Contract by the Ministry’s Principal Secretaries and respective Chairpersons of the State Corporations under Public Service and Gender.
While speaking during the virtual meeting, the Cabinet Secretary noted that, the Performance Contracts signed by the state officers will accord them and their management an opportunity to implement the performance targets that are aligned to the development agenda for both the Ministry and National Government.
Adding that the Performance Contract is a tool of management that enhances accountability for results against resources that have been entrusted to the Principal Secretaries and their respective departments and corporations.’’ The tool will not only be instrumental in supporting evidence-based decision-making but also will also be used to hold you to account for your actions.”
Prof. Kobia acknowledged the unprecedented environment that Covid-19 has placed the economy under, noting that service delivery has been affected by the pandemic.
“The global pandemic has affected service delivery in all sectors of the economy. Some sectors have closed down while others are re-opening amidst strict health containment protocols,” she said.
However, she called upon those in public service to be innovative enough to sustain service delivery so that service delivery is not considerably affected to a level of complete halt.
She urged the Chairpersons of various State Corporations and management to put in place service delivery innovations that are coupled with COVID -19 recovery strategies and plans.
Prof. Kobia lauded the Ministry for developing an on-line Government Performance Contract Information System that has been rolled out to various Government Ministries, Departments and Agencies.
The Cabinet Secretary reiterated the President’s emphasis on the need to ensure completion of already existing projects before embarking on new ones. She, therefore, urged the Ministry Departments and Agencies to use the President’s emphasis as a guide to implementation of the projects they have committed to this financial year.
“I will be keen on ensuring that this directive is followed in your respective State Corporations,” she said.
In her remarks the Chief Administrative Secretary, Hon. Rachel Shebesh, commended the job done by the Semi-Autonomous Government Agencies satisfaction under their watch.
“I am proud to report that in many cases; our SAGAs are doing an excellent job in serving our citizens,’’ she said.
The virtual meeting was attended by Principal Secretaries Mrs. Mary Kimonye and Prof. Collete Suda, Chairpersons, Directors, Director Generals and Chief Executive Officers of Ministry’s State Corporations.
Chief Administrative Secretary Hon. Rachel Shebesh on Thursday 13th August, commended stakeholders working in women empowerment sector in West Pokot County for their role in mitigating Gender Based Violence.
Hon. Shebesh lauded the GBV program by World Vision in West Pokot county when she visited the Child Protection Unit at Kapenguria police station which is being supported by the Non-Governmental Organization.
The unit is acting as a safe house for young girls rescued from early marriages and Female Genital Mutilation in the County. West Pokot is among the 22 hotspot Counties where FGM is practiced.
The Chief Administrative Secretary called on other state and non-state agencies to emulate the effort made by World Vision by coming on board to complement Government effort towards ensuring Gender Based Violence is minimized.
Addressing Chiefs and Assistant Chiefs Hon. Shebesh reminded them that as the leaders on the ground, they carry the onus of implementing the Presidents Directive of ending FGM by 2022.
“It’s your role to ensure that no Female Genital Mutilation takes place within your jurisdiction; the law is clear and we must enforce it to ensure that we protect our girls from the vice.” said Hon. Shebesh.
West Pokot County Governor, H.E Prof. John Lonyangapuo who had earlier hosted Hon. Shebesh to discuss possible areas of collaboration between the Ministry of Public Service and Gender and the County Government said that he fully supports the President’s Directive and pledged his support towards working with Anti-FGM board to ensure that FGM is eradicated in West Pokot by 2022.
The Chief Administrative Secretary Inspected the Children Protection Unit at Kapenguria police station and also presided over Women Enterprise Fund cheques issuance worth over Ksh 6 Million to various groups in West Pokot County.
Hon. Shebesh was accompanied by the County Commissioner, Mr. Apollo Okello, County Women Representative Hon. Lilian Tomitom, and Anti-FGM Board Chairperson Mrs Agnes Pareyio among other National and County officials.