Kenya: Most Nairobians Want City Hall Stripped of All County Functions, Survey Shows

A majority of Nairobi residents want Nairobi Metropolitan Service (NMS) to take over all the functions of Nairobi county government until 2022, a survey has shown.

The survey by Consortium of Researchers on Governance Africa (CoRG Africa), showed that 64.6 percent of Nairobi residents support transfer of all county functions to NMS.

TRANSFER

Interestingly, 53.4 percent of those interviewed said that they were in agreement with the High Court declaration that Nairobi county government Deed of Transfer of functions to NMS was irregular.

"A total of 64.6 percent of Nairobi residents support transfer of all county functions to NMS till 2022. Those who disagreed cited concern over its effect on devolution," said Charles Mc'Olonde, CoRG Director.

According to the survey, a majority of the respondents, at 89.3 percent, affirmed that they were aware of the contents of the Deed of Transfer of functions signed between Nairobi County government and the National Government in February 25, 2020.

The Deed saw four county services of health, transport, public works, utilities and ancillary services, and county planning and development services transferred to NMS.

In terms of service delivery in the first 100 days, there was a reported improvement in service delivery in three out of the four transferred functions with 72.7 percent of the respondents said that NMS has performed exemplarily in regards to public works, utilities and ancillary services.

The same function saw 86.2 percent saying that service delivery in that sector has improved in the past 100 days.

CORRUPTION

A total of 57.7 percent of those interviewed said that performance of transport function has been good with 72.4 percent noting improvement in the sector in the last 100 days.

However, county health services and planning and development performance have been termed as fair with 66.1 percent of the respondents saying that they have noted improvement in the latter while only 25.2 percent for health services.

"There is uncertainty over NMS role in county health in light of Ministry of Health's Covid-19 involvement. Concerns have also been expressed over county planning and development operations, especially the publicized demolitions in Kariobangi and Ruai lands," said Mr Mc'Olonde.

The new office also received a near clean bill of health in terms of propagating corruption with 97.8 percent of the respondents saying that they have not heard or read about cases of corruption being perpetuated by NMS in the past 100 days.

In terms of accessibility, the Major General Mohammed Badi-led office scored poorly 70 percent of the respondents saying that NMS is less accessible to the public and 9 percent saying it is not accessible at all.

GRIEVANCES

More than 88 percent of the respondents said that they are yet to attend any public meeting by NMS with another 62.2 percent saying that they are not aware if there is someone within the new office who is responsible for coordinating public participation and giving progress reports.

Moreover, more than a half of the respondents stated that they are not aware if NMS has a system for receiving public feedback and grievances concerning the conduct or performance of its officials.

"Members of the public are not conversant with the internal workings and procedures of NMS, with regards to public participation, progress reporting, oversight and office accessibility," he said.

The survey was conducted between June 23 and 27, 2020 to assess NMS performance with regards to the delivery of transferred county functions within the first 100 days.

A total of 834 respondents were interviewed with a stratified multi-stage sampling method used with wards as primary sampling units.

The sample size had a 95 percent confidence level and a 5 percent margin of error.

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