2019 Annual Regional Conference

2nd KIPPRA Annual Regional Conference on “A Gendered Approach to Unlocking the Potential For Sustainable Development" held in Mombasa on 11th to 13th June 2019


13th July 2019


We, the participants at the 2ND KIPPRA Annual Regional Conference, have met in Mombasa, Kenya, from 11-13 June 2019 at Whitesands Hotel for the conference themed: “A Gendered Approach to Unlocking the Potential For Sustainable Development”.

We express our gratitude and appreciation to all the partners who have supported KIPPRA in organizing a successful conference.

We acknowledge the importance of adopting a gendered approach to unlocking the potential for sustainable development as a strategy for the promotion of gender equality. We note that gender mainstreaming was established as a major global strategy for the promotion of gender equality in 1995 during the Fourth World Conference on Women, which adopted the Beijing Declaration and Platform for Action in Beijing, China.

In addition to the Beijing Declaration and Platform for Action, Kenya has ratified other gender-related global and regional normative frameworks that call for the advancement of the status of women in all spheres of life.

The Sustainable Development Goals call for urgent actions and collaborative efforts of all stakeholders in elimination of the root causes of discrimination that curtail women and girls’ rights in private and public spheres.

We call for continued support of the global normative efforts to accelerate progress towards gender equality and the empowerment of women and girls, which advocate for systematic integration of gender perspectives into sectoral norms and standards.

We appreciate that in Kenya, the State Department for Gender Affairs is mandated, through Executive Order No. 1 of January 2018, to coordinate gender mainstreaming efforts within Ministries, Departments and Agencies, and within counties to advance gender equality and women’s empowerment, through formulation and coordination of policies and programmes.

The Intergovernmental Framework for Gender Sector Coordination adopted by both the National and County Governments in January 2019 provides a mechanism for consultation and cooperation between the National and County governments on issues of gender equality and women’s empowerment. This coordination framework is designed to facilitate the realization of the objects and principles of devolution provided for under Articles 174 and 175 of the Constitution of Kenya.

However, although there are a plethora of policies, laws, regulations and administrative practices addressing gender issues, this conference underscores the need to integrate a gender perspective in policies, legislative frameworks and institutional mechanisms that support the design, implementation, monitoring and evaluation of the “Big Four” agenda of food security, affordable housing, manufacturing, and universal health coverage.

While the Constitution of Kenya provides strong guarantees for equality and non-discrimination, lack of political will towards implementation and/or operationalizing of gender-related laws impedes the protection of the rights of women in Kenya and, subsequently, the realization of gender equality in Kenya.

We note that most gender-related interventions and programmes are underresourced and are not supported by evidence, due to lack of coordinated mechanisms for production and utilization of gender statistics.

Therefore, the Conference makes the following resolutions:


  1. The law enforcement agencies and justice system, including the Director of Criminal Investigations (DCI) and Director of Public Prosecutions (DPP), shall ensure that the law is enforced and the rights of women and girls are protected.
  2. Private and public sector institutions shall comply with legal provisions that ensure that women are free from all forms of violence, including sexual violence, within the workplace.
  3. Private and public sector institutions shall put in place mechanisms to protect the rights of women in the workplace including the formulation and implementation of workplace policies that guard against sexual harassment.
  4. Both levels of Government shall enhance technical, financial and administrative capacity of law enforcement agencies to handle gender-based offences to ensure rule of law is maintained.
  5. Parliament shall within one year fast-track the enactment of the Constitution of Kenya (Amendment) Bill 2018 which seeks to amend Articles 97 and 98 of the Constitution to ensure the two-thirds gender rule is realized.

Action: National Police Service, Director of Criminal Investigations (DCI), Office of the Director of Public Prosecution (ODPP), the Judiciary, Parliament, National Government, County Governments, The National Treasury

Enhancing Capacity Building for Enforcement of Gender Laws

  1. We acknowledge that while law enforcement agencies are tasked with enforcement of the law, capacity and resource challenges may prevent them from effectively carrying out their duties and functions. This undermines the efficacy of investigations and prosecutions against offenders.
  2. We call upon both levels of Government to address the issue of inadequate technical and administrative capacity of law enforcement agencies that handle gender-based offences to ensure rule of law is maintained.

Action: National and County Governments

Promoting Civic Education

  1. There is need to empower women through civic education, awareness creation and access to information on their rights as this is critical to alleviating gender inequality. This would also ensure that women are able to participate effectively in decision making.
  2. We urge the National and County governments to collaborate extensively with non-state actors and establish programmes to create awareness and build the capacity of women and girls as rights’ holders.

Action: National Government, County Governments, Non-State Actors

Family as the Foundation for Promoting Gender Equality

  1. Noting that equality is not a concept that is entrenched in the society which then informs value systems, emphasis shall be placed on informal education where the benefits of equality are advocated for as beneficial to all members of the society – men, women, boys and girls.
  2. We recognize that the family is an important space for creating gender equality awareness and for promoting gender equality and women empowerment conversations.
  3. Engaging men and boys as advocates for gender equality is integral to the effective implementation and achievement of the Agenda 2030 for sustainable development. Men and boys’ engagement for positive masculinity will maintain the momentum on addressing gender inequalities, strengthen human rights, and promote women’s empowerment.
  4. We urge the two levels of Government and other actors engaged in promotion of gender equality to target the family as the place for civic education on programmes that aim at advancing inclusion of men, women, boys and girls in the development process.
  5. The State Department for Gender Affairs shall work closely with County
    governments and non-state actors in rolling out a programme that targets family as the space for promoting gender equality awareness within the 2020/2021 financial year. The programme shall include awareness on family, societal and national values that promote gender parity.

Action: State Department for Gender Affairs, NGEC, County Governments and Non-State Actors

Gender-responsive Budgeting

  1. We observe that most gender-based interventions suffer from inadequate allocation of resources.
  2. We urge the National Government, County Governments, and development partners to integrate gender-sensitive planning and budgeting to ensure the needs of all Kenyans are considered in development programmes towards the achievement of the “Big Four” agenda and the Vision 2030.
  3. Gender dimensions shall be analyzed and defined within the “Big Four” agenda to ensure programmes are designed with gender quotas in mind.
  4. To monitor and evaluate implementation and impact of sector-based initiatives from a gender perspective, there is need to institute an audit of the gender expenditure within the “Big Four” agenda.

Action: National and County Governments, The National Treasury, Office of the Auditor General, Office of the Controller of Budget, Development Partners, and other Non-State Actors

Allocation of Adequate Resources for Gender Mainstreaming

  1. Gender mainstreaming has been identified as a strategy for promoting gender equality in Kenya. We note the various milestones by the State Department for Gender Affairs and National Gender and Equality Commission (NGEC) in taking lead in implementation of gender mainstreaming at both levels of government.
  2. Currently, gender mainstreaming is facing challenges including inadequate human and financial resources and resistance from various actors across the country. It is critical that the role of promoting and entrenching gender mainstreaming is broadened to more state departments and agencies so that State Department for Gender Affairs and NGEC mainly perform supervisory and oversight roles across board to ensure that gender mainstreaming is implemented.
  3. The State Department for Gender Affairs and NGEC should be effectively funded to efficiently discharge their role with regards to promoting gender mainstreaming in the country. Gender mainstreaming shall be given prominence in the National Gender Policy (currently at Cabinet approval level) so that ministries, departments and agencies of both National and County governments incorporate gender mainstreaming in their development plans.

Action: NGEC, State Department for Gender Affairs


Promoting Gender-balanced Participatory Approaches in Agriculture

  1. Noting that women are majorly involved in the agricultural sector, their contribution is invisible and therefore not considered in national plans.
  2. Women and the youth shall be involved in agricultural sector planning and development of strategies/programmes, and capacity building initiatives.
  3. The National and County Governments shall develop awareness raising programmes that promote agriculture to the youth as a viable employment choice while contributing to food security concerns within the country.

Action: Ministry of Agriculture, Livestock, Fisheries and Irrigation, County Governments, National Government, Development Partners, Non-State Actors

Challenging the Patriarchy System and its Effects on Food Security

  1. Gender inequalities in agriculture hinder optimum production and effective participation in the sector due to patriarchal systems which perpetuate stereotypes, cultural norms and gender roles. Lack of financial resources, inadequate transport systems and lack of access to markets and information, predisposes women to the negative impacts and effects of climate change. These gaps reduce women and men’s resilience to cope with environmental shocks and perpetuate the incidence and severity of poverty.

Action: National Government, County Governments, Universities and Research Institutions, Private Sector, Civil Society, Non-State Actors

Mitigating the Effects of Droughts and Floods on Food Security in ASALs

  1. Kenya is prone to frequent weather-related episodes of droughts and floods. The most affected counties are in the arid and semi-arid lands (ASALs) particularly Kwale, Mombasa, Taita Taveta and Garissa.
  2. Female-headed households are more likely to suffer from food insecurity in ASALs. It is critical for County governments in ASALs to change the production system to embrace appropriate technology to mitigate the effects of droughts and floods on food security. Such technologies include irrigation, drought tolerant crops, feedlots, silage making and adoption of fortified foods.
  3. Research institutes need to identify the unique attributes cushioning households that do not suffer from food insecurity (the outliers) in the ASALs. These could provide key lessons and replicated in other ASALs households.

Action: County Governments, Ministry of Agriculture, Livestock, Fisheries and Irrigation, Universities and Research Institutions


Effective Inclusion and Participation of the Poor and Vulnerable Groups in Infrastructure and the Affordable Housing Programme

  1. It is important to ensure that housing and infrastructure projects in energy, transport, water and sanitation are affordable, accessible and appropriate for the targeted beneficiaries.
  2. The quality and nature of infrastructure provided also affects the safety and security of rural and urban dwellers, especially the vulnerable groups. The housing and infrastructure needs of the low income households in informal settlements, and other vulnerable groups such as women, youth and persons living with disabilities are unique and distinct.
  3. Implementation of the Affordable Housing Programme shall ensure that the needs, priorities and interests of the poor and vulnerable groups are internalized. There is need to track allocation of houses through sex disaggregated data and consider PWDs.
  4. The implementation of the housing programmes and projects shall be reviewed to ensure inclusion, participation and access to opportunities equitably for all during design, construction, operation and ownership. This shall include an analysis of quotas for allocation of opportunities to women, men, youth, persons living with disability and marginalized groups. The quota system shall reflect the 2/3 rule and other affirmative action mechanisms in place.
  5. Innovative financing mechanisms shall be pursued using formal and informal instruments to enhance access to housing especially for the vulnerable and marginalized groups.
  6. The NGEC and KIPPRA together with strategic partners shall provide support and capacity building to National and County Governments on mechanisms to ensure equality across gender, vulnerable and marginalized groups in the housing and infrastructure projects.
  7. NGEC and KIPPRA shall initiate capacity building on gender and equality standards to be applied in the Affordable Housing Programme. Gender and equality standards and indicators for the Affordable Housing Programme shall be put in place within the first quarter of 2019/2020.
  8. Further, the allocation of the houses shall be done through participatory processes.


Data and Transparency in Design and Implementation of the Affordable Housing Programme

  1. Adequate access to housing, energy, water and sanitation has a positive impact on health, education and economic situation of women, men, youth and people living with disabilities.
  2. There is need for effective data collection on the housing and infrastructure situation of the intended beneficiaries across the different demographic and socio-economic groups. This data is imperative for evidence-based policy formulation and programme design and implementation.
  3. There is need for enhanced transparency in implementation of the housing programme. The poor and vulnerable groups in urban and rural areas will be actively engaged in capturing relevant data to inform policy, programmes and projects on affordable housing. Mechanisms for data collection across targeted beneficiaries for the Affordable Housing Programme shall be put in place in 2019/20.
  4. KIPPRA in partnership with strategic partners shall undertake to collect and analyze data relevant to housing, energy, water and sanitation policy in the financial year 2019/20. Data and information on the affordable housing programme shall be made accessible to the public to enhance transparency.
  5. The National and County Governments shall make public all information related to the design and implementation of the Affordable Housing Programme in the financial year 2019/20.

Action: KIPPRA, National Government, County Governments, KNBS, Development Partners

Enhancing Women’s and Girls’ Safety in Rural Public Spaces

  1. Women and girls safety is increasingly being violated in public spaces. These public spaces include; on way to and from schools, health facilities, markets, water points and while in their productive lives. Sexual harassment is one common form of violence that women in Kenya face, especially in their work spaces, which are largely in agricultural settings, hospitality industry and others.
  2. There is need for enforcement of anti-sexual harassment policies and building the capacity of different service providers to ensure protection of women and girls from violence. These include the transport industry (especially the Matatu and boda boda transport sector); agriculture sector that includes the tea, coffee, flower and other commodities; schools, places of worship and health facilities; markets and on way to and from each of these spaces.
  3. Reporting of violence in these spaces shall be encouraged to inform policy and design of better interventions. Partnerships with the private sector shall be encouraged if we are to enhance prevention and response of GBV in public spaces.

Action: National Government, County Governments, Private sector, Non-State actors, Development Partners

Collaboration and Partnerships for Affordable Housing in Kenya

  1. There are numerous actors involved in provision of housing, and water, energy and other infrastructure services. They range from public and private sector and non-state actors.
  2. There is need for better coordination and partnerships among these actors. This includes inter-governmental coordination between County and National governments.
  3. Collaboration and partnership opportunities identified during the conference among stakeholders in housing and infrastructure provision shall be formalized within three months of this conference.
  4. The National and County Governments shall take lead towards realization of accessible, affordable and appropriate housing and infrastructure.
  5. The Intergovernmental Relations Technical Committee (IGRTC) will work with the National and County Governments through established structures to ensure effective cooperation, coordination and interrelations in implementation of the Affordable Housing Programme.
  6. The local, regional and global non-state actors, private sector and grassroot community actors shall participate in the formulation and implementation of the housing and infrastructure projects in collaboration with the National and County Governments.

Action: National Government, County Governments, IGRTC, Non-State Actors


Women and Affirmative Actions for Entrepreneurship Development

  1. Access to credit is still a challenge that faces women in economic participation and inclusion. There is need to reverse the trend of low participation of women in the manufacturing sector to leverage on more opportunities for growth.
  2. There is need to increase engagement of women in decision making levels such as boards, both in the public and private sectors.
  3. There is need for the private sector to make deliberate efforts to increase participation of women, youth and people living with disability in procurement processes.

Action: WEF, YEDF, Uwezo, NGAAF, AFC, Development Partners, Non-State Actors, Private Sector, National and County Governments, Universities and Research Institutions


Improve Response to Gender-based Violence through Universal Health Coverage

  1. Increased cases of gender-based violence (GBV) negate the realization of health for all and violates the rights enshrined in the Constitution. The survivors of violence are not necessarily guaranteed equal, easy and timely access to health, legal or other related services when they experience GBV.
  2. Universal Health Coverage (UHC) offers an opportunity to make available quality, survivor-centred, timely and affordable medical services countrywide in all health facilities.
  3. The design and implementation of UHC shall ensure that the needs and priorities of women, men, boys and girls are fully considered to ensure their access to health care and maintaining good health.
  4. Continuous investment and capacity building by service providers will be an essential component of ensuring access to quality services. In addition, investments to prevent GBV from happening shall be upscaled to ensure GBV does not occur in the first place.

Action: Ministry of Health, County Governments, NHIF, National Assembly and the Senate, The National Treasury and Planning

Improving Sexual and Reproductive Health (SRH) for All

  1. Sexual and reproductive health is very crucial in the achievement of UHC as envisaged in the African Union Agenda 2063 and Kenya’s “Big Four” agenda. To achieve this, Kenya will require to review and harmonize policies scattered across various institutions dealing with health care by adopting a multi-sectoral approach with line ministries and non-state actors.
  2. There is also need for political goodwill from policy makers in ensuring a family-centred model of SRH delivery. This effort will ensure increased access to unrestricted and universal access to sexual and reproductive health information and services and creation of awareness to all in the period of coverage of the “Big Four” agenda.

Financing Universal Health Care through Financial Risk Pooling

  1. Financing of health care for all has been a challenge. While NHIF has in the recent past upscaled the coverage to all, the scope of coverage for diseases and illnesses is limited and people have not been able to benefit fully from the scheme.
  2. Universal Health Coverage (UHC) is envisaged to ensure that all people and communities can access and use the preventive, curative and rehabilitative health services they need, of sufficient quality while ensuring that the use of these services does not expose the user to financial hardship.
  3. Financial risk pooling ensures predictability of financial risks and avails means of distributing the risks equitably and efficiently across high and low-income pool members. As such, financial risk pooling offers an opportunity to ensure UHC a success under the “Big Four”. This will require progressively increasing funding from the National Treasury, legal support to change the PFM Act 2012, review and amendment of NHIF Act, inclusion of informal sector mandatory contribution and more participation from County Governments within the period of implementation of the “Big Four” agenda.

Action: Ministry of Health, County Government, NHIF, National Assembly and the Senate, The National Treasury and Planning


Creation of Awareness on the Concept of Gender and Gender Equality

  1. It has been observed that on the mention of Gender bill, most people have the perspective that it is a women bill. Gender bill is not a women bill but a gender bill for men and women. It is meant to address issues of marginalization based on gender. In this regard, it is important that all State Officers, Public Officers and law makers and the general public are sensitized on the concept of gender and gender equality to change the perception that gender is all about women. This will also include creating awareness on the two-thirds gender rule bill and its importance to the Kenyan community.

Action: State Department for Gender Affairs, National Gender Equality Commission, Kenya Women Parliamentarians Association (KEWOPA)

Need for Extensive Gender Research to Build case for Gender Equality

  1. Government think tanks and research institutions shall enhance their research in gender-related topical issues to highlight legal and policy gaps, inform generation of gender statistics and provide pertinent information to the design and conduct of gender-responsive budgeting and modalities for developing gender policy in Kenya.
  2. The Kenya National Bureau of Statistics (KNBS) shall work in collaboration with data producers at National and County levels to ensure tracking of SDGs related indicators, including unpaid care work, labour market indicators, housing, agricultural asset ownership, among others.
  3. All county statistics shall be disaggregated by gender. The KNBS in partnership with other data producers shall produce demand-driven data while strengthening the capacity of various stakeholders to improve the collection, analysis and use of gender-disaggregated data for sound policy formulation, programme planning, national budgeting and accounting.
  4. KNBS in consultation with stakeholders shall develop a methodology to standardize collection and dissemination of administrative data to produce real time statistics to be used in evidence-based decision making and policy formulation.

Action: KNBS, Universities and Research Institutions, Private Sector, National and County governments, Development Partners


  1. The Kenya Institute for Public Policy Research and Analysis commits to ensure that these issues raised are communicated with the relevant agencies identified in this communique. The Institute also commits to follow up on these actions proposed during the conference and annually reports on progress made towards implementation of these recommendations.

Action: KIPPRA

Thank you all
Presented on 13 June 2019 in Mombasa, Kenya