By: Erick Kyalo
GARISSA—Communities across the country will soon be at the forefront in tackling climate change by coming up with resilient programs, which will be implemented by the government through the Financing Locally-Led Climate Action Program (FLLoCA), developed with support from the World Bank.
The programme, which will be implemented by the National Treasury and the devolved governments in selected counties, will help the communities to know what initiatives they can undertake to minimize the impacts of climate change in their localities.
The grassroots committee at the ward level will be required to come up with projects that may be undertaken to address the climate change such as construction of dams, which will be forwarded to the county committee for approval and implementations.
Each county will receive at least Sh100 million and will be required to add at least 2 percent of their development budget for the climate action programme.
Speaking during a stakeholders meeting with officials from Garissa, Wajir, Mandera and Tana River counties, Commission on Administrative Justice Vice Chairperson Washington Opiyo Sati said that the project will also build capacity for the county governments to respond to issues of climate change.
Sati further emphasized that there was need for county governments to be prepared and develop grievance address mechanisms to address issues that may arise from the program so that projects do not stall.
“The communities may not have the knowledge or the information on what to do, so this project will enlighten them on how to choose projects to minimize the impact of climate change,” he said
“The program will have a number of complaints that will arise among the climate change initiative. The county government should have mechanisms, structures and knowledge tools to be able to handle the complaints so that the citizens can get reprieve,” he added.
The Ombudsman vice chairperson further called on the county assemblies and the County Attorneys to fast track the process of passing access to information acts at the county level, which will guide the public who need certain information for their use.
Garissa county director of climate change Abdilatif Ahmed said that the program will enable the communities to withstand shocks brought about by droughts or floods which are the main disasters caused by climate change in the county.
“The first phase will be a county climate change institutional support fund, which will be used to build institutions and strengthen their capacities through development of policies related to climate change,” Ahmed said.
“In the second phase, we will develop a participatory climate risk assessment, which will be community led. We will go to every ward, analyze, map and develop a locally-led climate action and invest in projects provided by the communities on a priority basis,” he added.