Amid countrywide complaints of dismal service delivery, the government has promised to set up 290 new Huduma Centres. The objective of this move is to have a Huduma Centre in each and every constituency in Kenya.
Currently, there are 52 Huduma Centres spread across the country. However, the spread is not even, for instance, there are 5 centres in Nairobi. The construction of 290 Huduma centres means some areas will have more than one Huduma Centre. The government says this will bring services closer to Kenyans.
The announcement was made during the 1st Huduma Centre Managers’ Conference held in Shanzu Mombasa. The conference centred around the theme, “Huduma Kenya in the Digital Era.” The theme is aligned with plans to digitize government services with the aim of improving service delivery,
Presiding over the event, the Cabinet Secretary for the Ministry of Public Service, Gender, and Affirmative Action told to the managers: “Your dedication to innovation hasn’t gone unnoticed. The advancements in service delivery, including features like Service by Appointment and Track My Service, are truly commendable,”
The Cabinet Secretary acknowledged that a portion of Kenyans, particularly those who are digitally disadvantaged and persons with disabilities, require additional in-person support. Thus, she encouraged the Huduma Centre managers to look out for visitors who need help and offer prompt assistance.
290 Huduma Centres Part of Recent Developments
Today, residents in Kenya can access over 45 services at Huduma Centre. The most common ones are ID replacement, Police clearance certificate, HELB – Student Loan Application and Repayments, and Issuance of Single Business to name but a few.
However, there have been complaints of delays from some sections of the public. A few have taken to social media to lament.
That said, Huduma Kenya has made a series of adjustments aimed at improving service delivery. This year alone they have extended working hours in 18 high-traffic centres, made visits to centres by appointment, and extended their call centre hours. Furthermore, they have revamped their website.
An addition, of 290 Huduma centres will further strengthen the ongoing progress. The cabinet secretary reminded her audience that this initiative would be rolled out in collaboration with parliament. This is because the budget will have to go through parliamentary approval.