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KNLS transfers services to the county

The national government has handed over the Kenya National Library Services (KNLS) to the county government of Uasin Gishu, in line with the government’s agenda of strengthening the devolved units.

Speaking at the handover ceremony held at the KNLS grounds, Uasin Gishu Governor Jonathan Bii noted that the transfer of KNLS to the County government is so significant for the region as the facility is an important resource to the region.

“The KNLS has been a hub of knowledge and information for our region for many years, as it houses an extensive collection of books, digital resources, and educational materials,” said Bii.

He noted that the library has a seating capacity of about 200 people, and as the population increases, the county government has a plan to expand the space.

“This facility is beneficial for students and learners, as it plays a vital role in helping our students and learners improve their knowledge and skills, “said Bii.

“If a reading culture is inculcated in our young people, especially students and early learners, we will become a very informed and transformative society,” he noted.

Bii noted that the library provides a quiet and conducive environment for study and research.

“The management and administration of national libraries have been devolved to counties, making these transfers in line with the county’s responsibilities as we are not only transferring the books but also the human resources,” said the governor.

He added, “We are going to modernise and centralise the services at the sub-county level so that learners and students may access services easily.”

He commended the Intergovernmental Relations Technical Committee (IGRTC) for ensuring the simplest transfer of functions to the counties.

The Deputy Governor, John Barorot, further noted that the county will work on having library services delivered electronically.

“We need to enrich the library by making sure we have it with enabled devices like laptops and iPads and allow connectivity of WI-FI so that anybody can come in and do research electronically,” said Barorot.

The County Executive Committee Member for Education, Gender, Social Protection, and Culture, Dr. Janet Kosgei, noted that the modernization of the library will make it inclusive and dynamic so that it can serve everyone.

Peter Njogu, the library services representative, further noted that the library has been educating at least 100,000 members of this community every year and is hoping to expand to more people as the county takes over.

“We are going to have a collaboration where we are going to share the electronic resources available so that we can continue with e-learning and reach more members of society.

The representative from IGRTC, Monica Mwambua, further noted that the summit that was held in February this year pronounced itself as the complete transfer of devolved functions to counties, and President William Ruto is committed to ensuring that all functions are constitutionally marked for transfer to counties.

“We have identified functions in agriculture, health, and other devolved functions, and the reports that we have indicate that resources amounting to Sh. 400 billion will be transferred to counties in the near future,” she noted.

“The national government is very committed to ensuring that service delivery at the lower levels is actualized, and this can only be done when the resources are handed over to the county government to perform the functions that were given to them by the constitution,” she noted.

By Judy Too

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