H.E Governor Wisley Rotich’s manifesto plan to rally the County’s professionals to adopt a village got a boost when he hosted a group of University Scholars in the United States who have chosen Elgeyo Marakwet for a pilot on the same approach.
The scholars, led by Professor Michael Touchton from the University of Miami, chose the County to implement a village projects research that will see 90 villages in the County benefit from projects funded by the group to a tune of between KSh100,000 to 200,000.
The team will tour the villages where locals will choose the projects they want implemented in the villages. So far, the team has done a pilot in Tambach ward with a second pilot set to be rolled out in Kapchemutwa ward in a week’s time before other wards follow.
The scholars will be implementing the research programme upto May 2023 together with a Kenyan Non Governmental Organisation, Innovation for Poverty Action (IPA).Prof. Touchton together with IPA officials Catherine Gakii and Aduda Lyndon today met the Governor and Deputy Governor Prof. Grace Cheserek at the County Headquarters for a briefing session on the mission.
He said the aim of the study is to establish a model for co-governance at village level and to determine how citizen decisions impact on development practices.
“In the end, we hope to come up with a model that can be useful in citizen engagement for sustainable development, an approach which your County is already a leader in through public participation and that is why we are here,” said Prof. Touchton.
Governor Wisley said the roll out of the research had come at an opportune time as the approach had been captured in his campaign manifesto as well as President William Ruto’s bottom up economic model.
“I wish to assure you that Elgeyo Marakwet is the right place for you because I was part of the team that crafted the national bottom up model and I domesticated it to my County under the Adopt a Village programme,” he said.
The Governor noted that the Ksh 100,000 to 200,000 grants by the team was not little saying it would go a long way in initiating development projects that are impactful to the County grassroots.
“We need to change mindsets so that we don’t always think of millions and billions, when we cannot successfully implement projects worth 100,000 or 200,000. That is why I am directing my staff here to ensure that the 90 projects are successfully implemented,” said Rotich.
The Governor asked professionals in the wards to take keen interest in the research project as they gear up to support the Governor’s Adopt a Village programme which seeks to have elites in the villages guide local communities implement wealth creation initiatives within their localities.
Present at the meeting were Senior County officials led by County Secretary Paul Chemmuttut and Ward Administrators from the pilot wards.
The catalog of micro-projects for the villages to choose from include; Culverts, Piping of water, Building of water intakes, Conservation works at water sources, tree nurseries, Bodaboda shades.
Others include painting of a public institution e.g dispensary, ECD center, plastic water tank installation in a public institution or market place, purchase of chairs and tables for an ECD center, disilting of water source, Fencing of riverine or water sources, Incinerators