The National Super Alliance (Nasa) will begin its administration with a national conference on cooperative government and intergovernmental relations, if it forms the next government.
In its manifesto launched Tuesday evening, Nasa says the aim of the conference is to get an agreement between national and county governments on how to cooperate in running the affairs of government in the next five years.
“The relations among the two levels of government and organs of state within them have been adversarial and antagonistic rather than cooperative as required by the constitution,” Nasa says in its manifesto.
The opposition outfit says the success of the devolved system of government is dependent upon a properly functioning and well managed system of cooperative government and intergovernmental relations.
Among other things, the conference will come up with a charter on cooperative governance and set out the cooperative governance tenets to be followed in the next five years.
It will also align many national government ministries and sectors which perform functions that interface with devolution, to ensure their commitment to devolution.
Key among them will be the National Treasury, the Ministry of Devolution and Planning; Provincial Administration and the security sector.
At a functional level the Ministry of Devolution and Planning will be aligned to focus more on
Inter-governmental matters rather than supervision of county governments.
Nasa is also promising to fast track amendments to the Intergovernmental Relations Act to strengthen the Intergovernmental Relations Technical Committee to enable it effectively facilitate cooperative government and intergovernmental relations. The amendments will seek to clarify the roles and relations between the committee and Devolution Ministry.
Nasa says the bad blood between the Senate and the National Assembly have not only affected the legislative process but also the proper implementation of devolution.
“Nasa believes that through his legislative role to assent to Bills passed by the two houses of Parliament, the President can intervene and establish harmonious working relations between the two houses of parliament,” it says.
While the manifesto acknowledges of the strained relationship between senators on one hand and MCAs and the county governments on the other, it proposes legislation to restructure and improve this relationship.
The manifesto acknowledges county governments not only as service delivery units but also important players in the development of the country.
“County governments must be given adequate financial resources to enable them discharge this important role,” it states, promising to allocate more financial resources to the devolved units by fully implementing the constitutional principles requiring that funds must follow and match functions.