On Tuesday 25th August 2020, the Kenya ICT Action Network (KICTANET) launched the 2020 ICT County Survey Report at a specially convened session of the Senate ICT Committee. The report assesses uptake and adoption of ICT at County Level as well as challenges and highlights key areas for growth. It also provides a measurement, audit and growth glide path framework. KICTANET hopes to roll out the survey to all 47 counties. Due to budgetary constraints, the 2020 report samples 3 counties – Uasin Gishu, Kajiado and Taita Taveta, representative of urban, rural and extra rural populations.
The County ICT survey and subsequent assessment is based on the ICT Governance & Management (ICT G&M) Framework1, which was adapted from the Information Systems Audit and Control Association (ISACA), Control Objectives for Information and Related Technology (COBIT) Framework and customized for the Kenyan Counties.
- This Framework provides linkages between the overall objectives of the County government and specific ICT process and activities that can assist county governments.
- It also provides a mechanism for continuous monitoring, measurement and maturity of the ICT processes.
Toward Smart Counties
The customized COBIT framework has twenty-five ICT sub processes that need to be implemented and monitored in order to deliver an effective SMART County. These were identified, questionnaires designed and feedback assessed under the following broad nine categories.
Table 1 below shows the rating/score for each of the categories (maximum score of 5) with respect to the three sampled Counties of Uasin Gishu (Urban), Kajiado (Rural) and Taita-Taveta (extra-Rural).
Each category and its sub processes were evaluated, assessed and given a score that ranged between Zero (0) and Five (5). A zero score implies that the expected ICT processes were non-existent or are incomplete, while the highest score of five implies the processes and procedures not only exist but have matured to be established, predictable and optimized. Detailed findings behind the score are within each respective County report but in general, those categories highlighted need immediate attention across board since they result in an average score that is below performance Level 1.
|Category Measured||Uasin Gishu||Kajiado||Taita- Taveta||Average|
|1||ICT Policy & Strategic Plan||2.3||1.8||1.3||1.80|
|2||ICT Risk Assessment & Monitoring||0.6||1.0||0.5||0.70|
|3||ICT Financial & Procurement Management||2.0||1.4||2.3||1.90|
|4||ICT Personnel/Skills Management||1.8||1.6||1.5||1.63|
|5||ICT Service Planning & Architecture||1.4||1.3||1.2||1.30|
|6||ICT Security and Business Continuity||1.1||1.2||0.5||0.93|
|7||ICT Infrastructure , Operations, User & Support||1.8||1.8||1.5||1.70|
|8||ICT Deployment and Info-sec Apps||2.1||1.5||2.0||0.93|
|9||National ICT Projects||0.9||0.7||1.2||0.93|
ICT Risk Management
Specifically, the performance in the categories of ICT Risk Management, ICT Security and National Projects and National Projects recorded poor performance.
The Counties are urged to begin instituting an ICT Risk & Security Frameworks and working closely with ICT Authority to activate National Optic Fiber Backbone Infrastructure (NOFBI) at County Levels.
Some of the notable challenges behind the low performance included but not limited to change of County Government leadership that leads to new priorities that may not align with the previous county leadership.
Other challenges included weak institutional make up for the ICT Department, including being placed under Finance, Education or other departments hence limiting their control scope and ICT budgets.
Additionally, most of the counties reported that the national projects including the NOFBI, the Digital Learning Program (DLP) and the National Data Center were all happening without sharing information with County management.
This presents an opportunity to:
- Review and improve the working relationships between the two levels of governments – as far as ICT development is concerned.
- Both National and County Government and ICT sector stakeholders to pull together to re-evaluate hurdles slowing down or impeding roll out of fiber and other back bone infrastructure with a view to streamline and simplify processes surrounding multiple levels of approvals for investments relating to fiber roll out.
- A harmonized, unified, fully or semi-digitized process would go a long way in delivering the benefits of ICT across all 47 counties of this nation.
The full report can be accessed at or https://www.kictanet.or.ke/downloads/