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Government to streamline charcoal trade

The Ministry of Environment, Climate Change and Forestry is in the process of streamlining charcoal trade in the country, Cabinet Secretary Soipan Tuya has said.

Tuya said this would ensure trading in charcoal is conducted lawfully and in an environmentally sustainable manner by putting in place appropriate legal safeguards.

“We also commit to decriminalize charcoal trade, modernize and commercialize the charcoal value chain; promote youth-owned and operated briquette-making enterprises and support the scaling up of clean cooking,” CS Tuya said.

Speaking during the signing of 2023 to 2024 financial year performance contracts with Principal Secretaries and Chairmen of Parastatals under her ministry at the Kenya Meteorological Department complex, CS Tuya listed the promotion of agroforestry and sustainable waste management as her ministry’s other top priorities this year.

“The priority value chains for intervention include biomass energy (wood fuel), agroforestry, and solid waste management and the objective in agroforestry is to develop a policy and regulatory framework to attract climate finance funds into the sector and establish 5 million acres of agroforestry woodlots in drylands,” she said

The CS added that they also intend to map and organize waste collectors into cooperatives and provide “circular economy” waste separation sites/infrastructure.

She noted that the 2023 to 2024 financial year departmental performance contracts were a cascade of the ministerial targets signed between herself and President Dr. William Ruto on Tuesday this week at State House, Nairobi.

The targets contained in the performance contracts, CS Tuya said, were drawn from the ministry’s recently launched 2023 to 2027 five-year strategic plan, Kenya Kwanza administration’s Bottom-up Economic Transformation Agenda (BETA) as well as deliverables agreed upon during a Government retreat in Nanyuki late last year.

“I am aware that all the PCs have incorporated the Nanyuki agreed one year deliverables (by 30th June, 2024). It is on this basis that the Performance Contracts for FY 2023/2024 have met all the requirements as per the 20th Cycle Performance Contracting Guidelines and are therefore, finalized and ready for signing,” she said.

At the signing ceremony, also attended by the Principal Secretary for Performance Management and Service Delivery in the Office of the Prime Cabinet Secretary Ms. Njoki Wang’ombe, the CS reminded officers in her ministry to strictly comply with established Government performance management guidelines.

“As we sign these contracts today, let me remind you that you are required to strictly adhere to the performance reporting, both quarterly and annually. My office will be expecting to receive these reports promptly and at stipulated timelines. I hope all the set targets will be achieved and you are encouraged to timely communicate to my office any challenges and constraints affecting the implementation,” the CS said.

At the same time, the Cabinet Secretary underscored the importance of performance contracting in Public Service saying the Government uses it to enhance productivity and foster accountability.

“The Government continues to use performance contracting as a key tool for accountability and is part of the broader public sector reforms aimed at improving efficiency and effectiveness in the management of the public service to improve service delivery,” she said.

In their address, Principal Secretaries Eng. Festus Ng’eno (Environment and Climate Change) and Mr. Gitonga Mugambi (Forestry) assured CS Tuya of their commitment to see to it that the performance contracts were successfully implemented.

“We are going to take necessary measures to ensure that the delivery is done,” PS Mugambi said, and advised ministry staff to regularly document necessary performance evidence in prescribed formats for ease of reporting and evaluation.

Eng. Ng’eno reiterated his forestry counterpart’s assurance, adding that the performance contracts were fully aligned to the ministry’s 2023 to 2027 strategic plan and various source documents including Kenya Vision 2030.

“I want to give you our assurance that the performance contracts are aligned to our 2023 to 2027 strategic plan that was launched just last week, Bottom-up Economic Transformation Agenda (BETA)…,” PS Ng’eno noted.

On her part, PS Wang’ombe congratulated the ministry for being the first to sign departmental performance contracts saying it had set a positive precedence for others to emulate.

She assured of her State Department’s continued support to ensure that ministry’s achieves its performance contracting objectives.

“As the Principal Secretary in charge of Performance Management, I commit to support your ministry throughout this process. My team and I will provide the necessary tools, frameworks, resources and facilitate effective performance measurement and evaluation,” PS Wang’ombe assured the CS.

By Wangari Ndirangu


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