Nairobi residents have urged the government to strengthen its instruments of disseminating information to the public to enhance citizenry participation in development programmes and policies.
The residents who had gathered at Charter Hall, Nairobi on Thursday to present their views to the Task Force for Improvement of Government Information and Public Communications in Kenya, said for effective delivery of information, the government should strategize on effective methodologies that can reach every corner of the country.
The government has been initiating various development programmes but they are not felt by the public due to what they termed as poor communication.
Members of the public told the Taskforce led by its Chairman, David Makali that there is need for administrative structures of the county government to collaborate with national government so that all information for dissemination is channeled to a coordination point for communication.
“We also urge the government to stamp its authority on bloggers who are abusing social media and remove masqueraders who issue government communication,” they said.
Youth representatives, requested the government to utilise the existing youth empowerment forums to communicate information to the youths.
In his address, Makali said the Taskforce will complete its work of gathering views from members of the public and stakeholders within two weeks, and come up with a policy reform that will improve development in the country.
Makali noted that the government was undertaking a lot of development projects, but members of the public do not know where to access the information.
He said the task-force’s main duty among others is to look at the government structure of communications and challenges thereof, effective communication and how people can be able to access government information or statistics efficiently and timely.
The Chairman said the government is determined to implement the Big Four Agenda, noting that its success will also count on the public input.
“ We are gathering your views so that the government can know the platforms and initiatives it can take to ensure it achieves development and eliminate bottlenecks that drags effective communication and implementation of programmes ,” he added.
The Nairobi County Commissioner (CC), Flora Mworoa said the views from the members of the public will help the government to improve service delivery and how to provide information to the public.
“Communication is very important, it must be timely and correct to avoid misunderstanding and misinformation as people have different ways of perceiving communication given by the government,” she added.
The CC assured members of the public that the government was doing its best to ensure that all chiefs and assistant chiefs have offices in their areas of jurisdiction.
The 15 member Task Force was formed on January 18 and commissioned on January 30 this year by Information communication and Technology Cabinet Secretary Joe Mucheru with an aim of improving Kenyans’ access to information on government’s activities concerning social, economic and political development of the country.
By Bernadette Khaduli