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Governor Nyong’o Unveils Ward Climate Change Planning Committees

By Treezer Michelle Atieno

In a significant move toward addressing the pressing issue of climate change, Kisumu Governor, Prof Anyang’ Nyong’o, launched the Ward Climate Change Planning Committees (WCCPC) and Environment Committee on 19th October, 2023 at the Mama Grace Onyango Social Center. The ceremony marked a crucial step forward in the county’s efforts to combat the impacts of climate change.

The establishment of these committees follows the gazettement of members outlined in the Kenya Gazette, a direct result of the enactment of the Kisumu County Climate Change Act 2020. Governor Nyong’o emphasized the importance of these committees in tackling climate change issues, recognizing the devastation it has caused to many communities in the region.

“Climate change has had a significant impact on Kisumu, and it is important to take steps to adapt to its effects and mitigate its impacts,” stated Governor Nyong’o during the launch.

The Governor, while handing over the Kisumu County Participatory Climate Risk Assessment report, highlighted the role of the committees: “The committees will play an important role in developing and implementing climate change adaptation and mitigation measures at the community level.” He underscored the significance of community participation in climate change action, stating, “The WCCPC will be responsible for conducting participatory climate risk assessments to identify the needs of their communities.”

The WCCPC is not just a bureaucratic addition but a means to ensure the community’s voice is heard in addressing climate challenges. Governor Nyong’o pointed out that the committees would be “responsible for monitoring and engaging with technical officers to ensure that climate change projects are implemented effectively.”

The launch also served as a platform for Governor Nyong’o to express his disappointment regarding the extent of quarrying business in Kisumu. He emphasized the need for regulations to oversee quarry operations and ensure proper closure and reforestation: “The business is a hazard in the community.” He urged the county assembly to take action in enacting regulations.

The members of the WCCPC, expressing their commitment towards community resilience, presented a declaration to the governor. In this declaration, they pledged to actively participate in climate change discussions and actions, supporting disaster management preparedness. Furthermore, the committees aim to transparently manage the county climate resilience fund, facilitating efficient access and utilization of climate finance from various sources to build community resilience.

This initiative aligns with the county’s broader objective of transforming the livelihood of its residents through accountable, efficient, and effective leadership. As Kisumu County continues its journey towards sustainability and resilience, the launch of these climate change planning committees stands out as a positive step forward. They have the potential to influence development planning, promote inclusivity, and build resilience at the community level.

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