It’s where a central government delegates certain powers and responsibility to lower levels of government according to the constitution.

In Kenya we have the National government when delegate its powers and responsibilities to the county government.

  • To promote democratic and accountable exercise of power.
  • To foster national unity.
  • Give powers for self – governance and help people participate in affairs that afford them.
  • To recognize the rights of the communities to manage their own affairs and to further their development.
  • To promote the rights and interest of minorities and marginalized groups.
  • To ensure equitable sharing of national and local resources.
  • To facilitate the decentralization of state organs.
  • To enhance chalks and balances in power.
  • To promote social and economic development.


It’s based on democratic principles

Founded on the doctrine of separation of powers.

Reliable source of revenue

Not more than two thirds of the members of representative bodies are from the same gender.


County Assembly

This is the law-making body where member are elected after every five years during the general election and serves for term of five years.

Composition of the County Assembly

Elected members voted in registered voters of the wards.

The number of special seat members to ensure no more than 2/3 rds of the memberships of the assembly are of the same gender.

Representatives of the youth and persons with disability.

The speaker who is an ex-officio member.

Features of the County Assembly

It makes and amends laws of the county.

It sensitizes the making of the county executive committee and other organs.

Receives and approves plans and policies for management and exploitation of the county’s resources.

Approves plans and policies for the development and management of the county’s infrastructure and institutions.

Summon any person to appear before it for the purpose of giving evidence or providing information.

Process of Law Making in the County

The laws are made by the county Assembly which is necessary for the county to effective perform its functions.

A bill has to go through the following stages.

1st Reading

A bill is introduced in the assembly as members familiarize with its contents.

2nd Reading

The bill is discussed and amendments or improvements are suggested

Committee Stage

Here it’s scrutinized by the committee and suggestions from the second reading included.

Report Stage

The committee reports to the assembly where members confirm tht her suggestions have been included.

3rd Reading

The bill is once again debated in details and any further amendments included.

Governors Assent

The governor signs the bill into law.  It is then published in the Kenya Gazette.

Executive Committee

It implements the policies and programmes of the county. It’s headed by the governor who is assisted by the Deputy Governor.

Powers and functions of the county governor

  • Appointments of the country Executive committee and approved by county assembly
  • Acts as a link between the country and National government.
  • Implements the policies of the National and county government in the county.
  • Nominates candidates for election of Deputy county government.
  • Shall be a member of the county Assembly and executive committee.


  • He is the deputy chief executive of the county.
  • He/she is a member of the county assembly.
  • Acts as the county Governor when the governor is absent
  • Shall be a member of the county executive.
  • Shall be the principle assistant to the county governor.


County governor

Deputy County”

Members appointed by governor with approval of assembly.


  • Implementing county legistlation.
  • Implementing national laws in the county.
  • Managing and coordinating the functions of the county administration and its departments.
  • Preparing bills for consideration by the County Assembly.
  • Providing rull regular reports to the county Assembly on matters relating to the county.


  • Development of agriculture in the areas of crop production and animal husbandry.
  • Development of fisheries and fish farming
  • Provision of health services.
  • Promotion of public health and sanitation.
  • Environmental management through control of air, water and noise pollution.
  • Provision of acceleration facilities such as sports stadia, county pallow and beaches markets and trade fairs.
  • Management and development of county transport and infrastructure.
  • Provision and management of pre-primary vocational educational such as village polytechnics, home craft centres and child care centres.
  • Regulation and development of trading activities through provision of trade licenses, markets and trade fairs.
  • Management and management of county transport and infrastructure.
  • Village polytechnics, home craft centres and child care centres.

Relationship between the county and National government

  • A function or passenger government at one level may be transferred to a government at the other level by agreement between the governments.
  • National and county government perform their functions and exercise their powers with due respect to each other.
  • The National and county government assist, support and consult as appropriate and implement each other’s legislation.
  • The National and county government liaise to exchange information and co-ordinate policies and administration to enhance capacity.
  • Both government co-operate in performance of their functions and exercise of powers and at times set up joint committees.
  • Through national legislation, procedures for settling dispute between national and county government are provided.
  • Parliament an arm of the National government sits out legislatives to ensure that county government has adequate support to enable them to perform their functions.
  • National government has powers to intervene in a county government of the latter to enable to perform its functions.
  • In case of a conflict, national legislation prevails over county regulation.
  • The natural government through the president may suspend the county government.


  • The high population growth stretches the available resources.
  • Underdeveloped transport and communication network.
  • Inadequate resources to provide them with a solid   base
  • Interference in their working by the National government.
  • Rivalry and wrangling among leaders in the county.
  • Inadequate personnel to man key departments within the county.
  • Embezzlement or misuse of devolved funds by the corrupt county officials.
  • Delay in remittance of funds to the county by the national government.
  • National calamities such as drought and floods.
  • Duplication of roles with the National government.


  • Diversify sources of reliance for the county government.
  • Attracting investment
  • Strengthening the fight against corruption.
  • Establishing disaster management committee.
  • Formalizing the relationship between county and National government
  • Improving skills of personal in the county government by the capacity building through in-service and training.
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