The capacity development programme was launched at a ceremony in Bondo Town on October 11th, 2010 and attended by the Mr. Oburu Odinga, the Member of Parliament for Bondo and Assistant Minister of Finance in the Government of Kenya, Mr. Evans Kitule, representing the District Commissioner, as well as local government officials, community based organizations, and over 47 persons from the towns of Bondo, Kisii and Homa Bay who participated in the first two training workshops under the programme.
|(From R-L) Hon. Dr. Oburu Odinga, the M.P for Bondo and Assistant Minister of Finance in the Government of Kenya, Mr. Robert Goodwin, Chief LVWATSAN, UN-HABITAT and Mr Robert Njoroge of NETWAS (Local Regional Implementing Organization of the Capacity Development Programme.|
In his remarks to the launching ceremony, Mr. Odinga, drew attention to the long history of water problems in Bondo and noted the rapid development now taking place in the town and around the Lake. These developments have made it necessary to give urgent priority to water supply and, increasingly, to the need for piped sewerage. He extended his appreciation to UN-HABITAT for taking the initiative to assist in improving water and sanitation infrastructure under the Initiative and called for a comprehensive approach to dealing with issues of water and sanitation, of which capacity building should play a central role.
The representative of the District Commissioner noted the impact of the Initiative in improving the lives of the people living in the small towns around the Lake and recognized the importance of the current phase of the Programme which is giving more emphasis to capacity development.
"Capacity building is essential to empower people to take responsibility for their own development", he said. He pledged the full support of the District and Local Authorities in ensuring a successful outcome for the capacity development activities.
In his remarks at the launch, Mr. Robert Goodwin, the Chief of the Lake Victoria Section, speaking on behalf of UN-HABITAT, noted that the Initiative had already delivered substantial improvements in water and sanitation and that enhanced human capital and institutional capacity would be central to the long term sustainability of Programme.
The activities at the launch included a colourful performance of drama, music and dance by the students of the Yieke Primary School of Bondo who, with assistance provided under the Initiative, have formed a sanitation club to promote improved awareness of proper hygiene and sanitation.
The Iniative capacity development programme is being delivered to the project towns, through a partnership arrangement between UN-HABITAT, the Netherlands Development Corporation (SNV), UNESCO-IHE, the Federation of Canadian Municipalities, Gender Water Alliance, and NETWAS International. The delivery phase of the programme will last for about 9 months, until June, 2011 and will focus on five key thematic areas, utility management, urban catchment management, pro-poor governance of watsan services, gender and vulnerable groups and local economic development. The programme will address the capacity development needs of about 3,000 persons in the 10 project towns.