Kenya’s struggle for constitutional reforms has its roots in the desire to correct deficiencies in its post-independence governance framework which was premised upon the highly centralised system started in the colonial days.
The main objective of this struggle has been the restoration of power to the people to manage their affairs, particularly, in matters of local development. The postindependence governance framework was characterised by poor governance as evidenced by corruption, ethnic conflict, insecurity, political uncertainty; and poverty.
Some of the negative outcomes include the alienation of large portions of society from the mainstream economy; wasteful public investments; massive poverty and ethnic animosity; and cut-throat political competition and intolerance. The post-election crisis was largely due to weaknesses in key institutions of governance including the constitutional framework, Judiciary, police, Executive, the electoral system, and Parliament. The weaknesses of these institutions can be traced back to the recentralization of power in the executive through post-independence constitutional and legal amendments. This resulted in monopolisation of power as opposition political parties, were initially frustrated and eventually outlawed. A small politicalcum- economic elite that accumulated both political control and economic wealth to protect the centralised system captured state power. Democratic advancement was stifled as the governance of the country drifted from constitutional rule to personal rule. The national goals of fighting poverty disease and ignorance, which had been set at independence, were distorted.
Download Report of Task force on Devolved Government here.