NAIROBI, Kenya, Nov 11 – The Council of Governors (CoG) has capped attendance for the 7th and final Annual Devolution Conference at 3,000 in line prescribed protocols for the containment of coronavirus.
The 3,000 delegates will include 1,000 development partners, the Council announced on Thursday.
CoG said all the participants attending the conference scheduled to take place at Makueni Boys’ High School in Makueni County from November 23 to 26 will have their vaccination status verified by the Ministry of Health.
The Council also announced that the host county had 11 isolation facilities with 80 HDU bed and 9 ICU beds to support emergency response.
Cabinet Secretary Ministry of Devolution Charles Keter who read a joint communique following a stakeholder engagement forum convened by CoG noted that despite the huge number of attendants, the Council of Governors in conjunction with the Ministry of Health have already put in place strict measures to ensure the safety of all participants.
“The Ministry of Health and the Council are working towards ensuring strict adherence of the COVID-19 protocols. In this regard, strict containment measures will be adhered to including screening of the COVID-19 certificates at the conference,” Keter said.
He added that international guests attending the conference would need to be in possession of vaccination certificates, that would be verified by the Ministry of Health during the registration process.
“We wish to reiterate that, there will be no onsite registration. Further, the online registration will be closed on 18th November 2021 to ensure adequate preparations are undertaken,” he said.
Keter noted that the CoG had initiated a tree growing initiative that saw 1,999,999 trees planted in Makueni, Machakos, Kitui, Embu and Kajiado. During the conference, President Uhuru Kenyatta is expected to plant the two millionth tree.
“We are also planning to set up a devolution forest in Makueni where a historical monument has been erected to mark the final annual devolution conference. This monument will serve as a symbol of national unity, strength and prosperity attained through devolution,” he added.
The conference, themed ‘Multi-Level Governance for Climate Action: Sub-National Mobilization in Unlocking the Full Potential of Climate Action during and after Pandemics,’ will be the last annual devolution conference with future conference set to be held once every two years.
The conference, initially set to take place in August 2021, had been postponed twice following a surge in COVID-19 cases in the country. It is set to involve key stakeholders to come up with strategies to push for a greener economy and tackle climate change in the country.
Coming against the backdrop of the 2021 United Nations Climate Change Conference (COP 26) held in Glasgow, Scotland, the Devolution Conference will seek to mobilize support for climate action at the sub-national level.
During COP 26, Kenya committed to work with other African countries that form the ‘Giants Club’ conservation group to raise resources for investment in the continent’s climate change mitigation programs.
Kenya also committed to fully transition to green energy by 203o.
President Uhuru Kenyatta who led Kenya’s delegation to COP 26 held talks with the Japanese Embassy on a plastic waste recycling project which transforms plastic waste into various products through a chemical process of monomerisation, pyrolysis and gasification.