SPEECH BY HON. WYCLIFFE AMBETSA OPARANYA, EGH, MP MINISTER OF STATE FOR PLANNING, NATIONAL DEVELOPMENT AND VISION 2030 DURING THE LAUNCH OF THE 2ND APRM COUNTRY REVIEW MISSION PREPARATORY ACTIVITIES ON 22ND OCTOBER 2009
Permanent Secretaries present,
Members of the Diplomatic Corps,
Development Partners present,
Ladies and Gentlemen,
Let me begin by thanking all of you for accepting our invitation to join us today during this breakfast meeting. We have invited you to witness the launch of the 2ND APRM Country Review Mission preparatory activities in Kenya. The Ministry of State for Planning, National Development and Vision 2030 is mandated, among other core functions, to coordinate KenyaÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s engagement with the New Partnership for AfricaÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s Development (NEPAD) including the African Peer Review Mechanism (APRM).
As most of you are by now aware, Kenya acceded to the African Peer Review Mechanism in March 2003 becoming the third country in Africa after Ghana, and Rwanda to be peer reviewed. His Excellency Hon. Mwai Kibaki, The President of the Republic of Kenya was reviewed by his peers at the African Peer Review Heads of State Forum in June 2006 in Banjul, The Gambia.
Kenya acceded to the APRM on 9 March 2003 together with Algeria, Republic of Congo, Ethiopia, Ghana, Mozambique, Nigeria, Rwanda, South Africa, and Uganda. Subsequently acceding were Burkina Faso, Cameroon, Senegal, Gabon, Mali, Mauritius, Egypt, Benin, Malawi, Lesotho, Tanzania, Angola, Sierra Leone, Sudan, Zambia, Sao Tome and Principe, Djibouti, Mauritania Togo, Cape Verde and Mauritania which has since been suspended from AU programmes following the coup. This brings the number of participating countries to 29, more than half of the AUÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s membership. Out of these, 12 countries have so far completed the peer review. These are Ghana, Rwanda, Kenya, South Africa, Algeria, Benin, Burkina Faso, Uganda, Nigeria, Mali, Mozambique and Lesotho have so far completed a peer review.
When Kenya voluntarily acceded to the APRM in March 2003, it was among the first ten countries to do so. Kenya went on to be the third country to undertake a country review, which was completed and the Report was presented to the APR Forum in June 2006.
The APRM process provided Kenya as a country with the opportunity to undertake a comprehensive self assessment in the four thematic areas of democracy and good political governance, economic governance and management, socio-economic development and corporate governance. This exercise enabled the people of Kenya to assess the status of the country and the challenges facing it.
As a result, the people of Kenya were able to engage in a constructive manner with various Government and opinion leaders and express their views for greater participation, accountability, and transparency in the management of the countryÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s public affairs. Indeed, KenyaÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s accession to the APRM can be viewed as the GovernmentÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s commitment to working towards a more equitably developed and prosperous country, a commitment which has expressed itself again through Vision 2030.
Ladies and Gentlemen: Kenya has been consistent in its engagement with the APRM process from initiation of the Country Review Report to its presentation at the APR Forum and subsequent progress reports.
The Government has tabled three progress reports to the APR Forum, the first [half-year] progress report covering June 2006-January 2007, the second [annual] progress report covering June 2006-June 2007, and the third [biennial] progress report covering June 2006-June 2008. On 26th October 2008, Kenya presented a paper on Resource Control and Management at the 1st Extra-Ordinary Meeting of the APR Forum in Cotonou, Benin.
The 2nd APRM Country Review Exercise
The 10th Summit of the Committee of Heads of State and Government Participating in the African Peer Review Mechanism [APR Forum] held on 31 January 2009 in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia agreed that Dr. Graca Machel, the Lead Panelist for the APRM for Kenya, lead a team for a 2nd Review giving emphasis on Democracy and Political Governance aspects of the country especially in light of the post-election violence and the mediation efforts which yielded a coalition government.
It is in the light of this agreement that Kenya is now set to host the 2nd Country Review Mission to be led by Dr. Graca Machel and a team of experts from a number of institutions and experts in Democracy and Political Governance Pillar to conduct the 2nd APRM Country Review exercise from 16th Ã¢â‚¬â€œ 30th November 2009.
The review exercise will focus more on the Democracy and Political Governance Pillar of the APRM, with a particular emphasis on the institutions and stakeholders charged with carrying out the envisaged reforms. This will incorporate holding consultations with members of the Civil Society Organizations, the Private Sector, the Media, the Government and other key stakeholders. The Mission will also be held in the provinces. Hence you are all expected to participate in this important exercise and to make your views known on how the reform process needs to be carried out.
As I conclude, I wish to sincerely thank the Development Partners especially UNDP, SIDA Sweden, DfID and GTZ who have continued to support the APRM process in Kenya. Also I wish to re-affirm that we are, as a Government, committed to ensuring that the objectives of NEPAD within the context of the Africa Peer Review Mechanism are fully integrated within both our short and long term policies. We have indeed demonstrated this by establishing the National Governing Council with members drawn from the private sector, civil society, and parliament to spearhead this process in Kenya.
As we embark on this 2nd review mission, I wish to appeal to all of you to support us through the process like you have previously done as we endeavour to make Kenya a better place to live.