Universal Journal of Management Vol. 6(2), pp. 59 - 69
DOI: 10.13189/ujm.2018.060203
Reprint (PDF) (384Kb)


Good Governance and Service Delivery: A Study of Citizen Participation in Kisumu County


Kimutai, Gilbert Kiplimo 1,*, Aluvi Patrick Amisi 2
1 School of Development and Strategic Studies, Maseno University, Kenya
2 Department of Humanities and Social Sciences, University of Kabianga, Kenya

ABSTRACT

Citizen participation is embedded in the Constitution of Kenya 2010 and the County Governments Act of 2012. The responsibility of operationalizing and implementing these provisions lies with both levels of government. Citizen participation is the process through which stake holders input and share control over development initiatives, decisions and resources which affect them. Strengthening citizen participation is a key focus of Kenya's devolution under the constitution and legal framework. This ambitious devolution shifts some key decision making from central to county governments creating a window of opportunity for more "bottom-up" engagement backed by a constitutional and legal framework that include provisions for government to share information, consult the public and regularly gather citizen feedback. Although counties are mandated to facilitate public participation, the actualization and subsequent impact of this aspect of good governance on service delivery is a matter of public debate. This paper sought to investigate the influence of citizen participation in governance on service delivery in Kisumu County. Its objectives were to examine the existing avenues available for citizen participation, to assess the extent of citizen participation in governance in Kisumu County, to examine the challenges hindering effective citizen participation and to assess the contribution of citizen participation in promoting good governance and service delivery in Kisumu County. A sample of 112 respondents was selected for the study. These included 42 county government officials and 70 local residents purposefully selected for the study. Data was collected through interviews, collated and presented in tables and discussions. The findings of the study indicate that public participation has been largely entrenched in key government roles in Kisumu County. The input of the public is sought and co-opted at every stage of the project cycle. The study established that this participation has enhanced public ownership of government projects and promoted accountability. However, the scope and effectiveness of public participation in the County has been hampered by political interference, low turnout in government functions and lack of adequate understanding of government procedures among the community members. The findings suggest that civic education must be intensified to increase the scale and quality of public participation in Kisumu County.

KEYWORDS
Good Governance, Citizen Participation, Service Delivery, Devolution

Cite this paper
Kimutai, Gilbert Kiplimo , Aluvi Patrick Amisi . "Good Governance and Service Delivery: A Study of Citizen Participation in Kisumu County." Universal Journal of Management 6.2 (2018) 59 - 69. doi: 10.13189/ujm.2018.060203.