- Category: News and Highlights
KIPPRA hosted a delegation of senior civil servants from Pakistani’s National School of Public Policy on 26 October 2016. The officials wanted to learn about Kenya’s public policy formulation and implementation processes.
KIPPRA’s Acting Executive Director Dr Dickson Khainga welcomed the guests and introduced the institute’s staff present at the meeting. To set the tone for the discussion, Dr Khainga gave a brief background of KIPPRA — its mandate, the laws governing it, its structure as well as its clients, partners, networks and research associations.
Having had a clearer view of KIPPRA’s mandate, some of the visitors wanted to know what guides research programmes as well as how the institute manages to remain objective even with the government as the main funder.
Dr Khainga explained that although KIPPRA comes up with an annual research programme, the demand for client work may affect the implementation of the programme on schedule. On the issue of objectivity, the acting ED said KIPPRA had put in place quality control structures that ensured that its research output was of international standard. Further, Dr Khainga noted that in the current era where freedom of expression is witnessed among many Kenyans, especially on social media, the institute could not afford to produce poor quality or unsubstantiated research work. Dr Khainga went ahead to point out that because of the high quality of research work at KIPPRA, the institute had been ranked the best think tank in Sub-Saharan Africa for two consecutive years.
One visitor also wanted to know what Kenya was doing to ensure it is the regional hub to which Dr Khainga responded by enumerating the various infrastructure projects that the government had initiated. These include the Standard Gauge Railway and the upgrading of the Jomo Kenyatta International Airport as well as many roads countrywide. He added that the government had also introduced many operational and structural changes in public institutions to ensure improved service delivery. Dr Khainga also added that Kenya’s key development plan, the Vision 2030, which is being implemented, gives a clear roadmap towards Kenya becoming a middle income country by 2030.
On trade, Dr Augustus Muluvi, KIPPRA’s Acting Programmes Coordinator, noted that although Kenya exports a number of products to the region and beyond, there was need for diversification and value addition to avoid exporting raw products.
The visitors also wanted know what KIPPRA had done in relation to governance and fighting corruption. Dr Khainga explained that the government had set up the Ethics and Anti-Corruption Commission (EACC) and initiated reforms in the judiciary to ensure corrupt officials are punished. He added that KIPPRA played a role by being part of government taskforces formulating anti-corruption policies. Dr Jacob Chege, who is in charge of the Governance Division at KIPPRA, said the complex nature of corruption in Kenya slows its eradication. According to Dr Chege, there is need to modify the law to give EACC more powers to deal with the vice.
On political governance, Dr Khainga said KIPPRA partners with counties through building capacity as well as conducting research on various issues affecting the counties.
Another visitor asked what Kenya was doing to involve the private sector in development. In response, Dr Khainga said for a long time, the government had no clear structures for dealing with the private sector. This allowed for individual lobbying by private sector firms for incentives. According to Dr Khainga, this had changed, as there are now clear structures to motivate and involve the private sector.