August 19, 2022 - 5 minutes read

Transitioning the Kenya Kwanza Manifesto to Policy Instruments

By The Vellum Team

The Kenya Kwanza coalition will need to develop close to 200 policy instruments to implement its manifesto if it manages to take over the Government. 

An analysis of its key interventions by Vellum indicates that the coalition would need to implement 195 policy instruments to implement its manifesto. These instruments range from administrative procedures to changes to laws and then perhaps the Constitution to turn the manifesto into reality. 

The coalition has segmented the implementation of its manifesto into quick wins, short-term interventions, medium-term interventions and ultimately, long-term interventions. 

The quick wins are expected to have an impact within six months and would include the proposed changes to the dairy sector with the provision of Ksh8.8 billion to make animals feeds affordable and the resolution of pending bills, which are in the range of KSh500 billion. 

Short-term interventions are expected to yield results in between 6 and 18 months and would include establishing feedlots for cattle and the rehabilitation of crops such as coffee and cashew nuts. None of the two examples given by the coalition has been costed, but its pledge is to spend KSh250 billion on interventions in the agricultural sector by 2027. 

Medium-term interventions would, in turn, deliver impact between 18 and 36 months and include housing programmes, Universal Health Care, coffee, fruit and nut trees. The coalition’s proposals on health are quite radical and would need a wide range of consultation and consensus as management of healthcare is shared between the national and county governments. 

Among the coalition’s key proposals for the health sector are: providing National Health Insurance Fund cover for all Kenyans, employing Community Health Workers plus 20,000 medical workers, funds for the treatment of emergency, cancer and referral, a KSh100-billion fund for co-funded disease programmes, changing Kemsa’s role in the procurement of drugs and medical equipment and setting up a nationwide system for the employment and deployment of medical workers. While the changes are budget neutral, the pledges to set up special funds will obviously need special provisions. 

The coalition was not specific on the long-term changes, whose impact would be seen starting from the third to the fifth year of its administration. 

In terms of continuity, the coalition has indicated its intention to continue with some of the projects already underway, such as the construction of roads. The affordable housing programme would also continue, but with tweaks, such as increasing the supply of houses to 250,000 units per annum (the outgoing administration had a target of 500,000 over 5 years). The policy to have local Jua Kali artisans produce the products to be used in the construction of affordable housing would also continue, which is targeted at creating employment and technology transfer. 

Plans to fully realise the Konza Technopolis would align with the outgoing administration’s ambitions. 

Among the significant policy changes would be the delinking of the Kenya Power and Lighting Company from the Government’s development initiatives and leaving it to operate on commercial principles. 

The coalition also pledged to institute a policy, regulatory and financing framework for off-grid community-owned development projects (mini and micro-grids), mobilization of resources/financing to revamp the transmission and distribution network, and development and implementation of a strategy that will see accelerated development of geothermal power. 

In absolute numbers, the governance space would have the largest number of potential policy instruments at 34. These range from giving the Attorney General’s office the capacity it needs to be more efficient to the creation of special courts to handle terrorism, more financial independence for the Ethics and Anti-Corruption Commission and that the Government abides by all court rulings. 

As it moves to take charge, Vellum will provide further analysis and breakdown of the Kenya Kwanza manifesto to give a realistic view of its implementation, especially against the limits established in agreements with the International Monetary Fund and similar financial partners. 

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