Trans Nzoia County

Public Service Management

The sector is comprised of the office of the Governor, the Enforcement Department, Disaster Management, the County Public Service Management and the County Public Service Management Board. The objective of the sector is to provide effective strategic leadership and Coordination of the County Government Public Service.

The Mandate of the sector includes among others; providing leadership in the county’s governance and development, providing leadership to the county executive committee and administration based on the county policies and plans, promoting democracy, good governance, unity and cohesion within the county, promoting peace and order within the county, promoting the competitiveness of the county, accountable for the management and use of the county resources and promoting and facilitating citizen participation in the development of policies and plans, and delivery of services in the county, coordinate emergency services, and enforcement of County laws and Regulations.

Other functions of the sector include; establishing and abolishing offices in the county public service, appointment and deployment of office holders, exercise disciplinary control over public officers, preparing regular reports for submission to the county assembly , promote the values and principles of public service referred to in Articles 10 and 232, facilitating the development of coherent, integrated human resource planning and budgeting for personnel emoluments in counties, advise the county government on human resource management and development, advise county government on implementation and monitoring of the national performance management system in counties and make recommendations to the Salaries and Remuneration Commission, on behalf of the county government, on the remuneration, pensions and gratuities for county public service employees.

Finance and Economic Planning

The department is responsible for the provision of financial advice and reporting services for all functions within the county.

Other roles include county budget preparation,expenditure management and control, revenue collection and management, management of accounting books and records, cash office management and financial recording.

The department also oversees the county procurement services, interprets and implements the procurement Act and other relevant policies.

Sector Objectives

  • The Mission of the sector is to ensure effective revenue collection and accountability in public expenditure. The key objectives developed for the sector include:
  • To mobilize adequate financial resources to finance the operations of the County Government;
  • To enhance public participation in planning and budget process;
  • To ensure compliance with PFM ACT 2012 on financial budgeting, management and reporting requirements;
  • To upscale the use of integrated financial management information system (IFMIS);
  • Automation of revenue management and other related financial operations.

Sector Strategies The key strategies for the sector include:

  • Prepare and implement revenue enhancement plan;
  • Training and Capacity building for implementation of integrated financial management information system;
  • Automation of revenue management and other related county operations; and
  • To improve budgeting process through participatory budgeting.

Gender, Youth, Culture, Sports and Tourism

The Sector is comprised Gender and Social Development, culture, children, youth, Sports; and Tourism sub-sectors in the county. The sector is charged with the responsibility of social protection, youth and women empowerment, talent and skill development, preservation and promotion of culture, Social and Community development, Protection, rights and advocacy of needs of persons with disabilities, rehabilitation of destitute, registration of women, youth, self help, and community based organizations and tourism promotion and development.

The sector aims to implement strategies that spur economic growth and address the social economic needs of the community. The county is endowed with rich tourism potential. It is part of the western tourism circuit which has of late been a key marketing focus by the Kenya Tourism Board. The main tourism attractions in the county are around the Mt. Elgon ecosystem and the Saiwa Swamp. The main attractions are elephants, sitatunga antelopes, buffalos, waterbucks, primates, leopards, among others. The main sites are: beautiful scenery, nature trails around Mt.

Elgon, Kitale nature conservancy, river Nzoia, agro tourism (maize plantations like no other in the country) and Kitale Museum (snakes, artefacts’ and nature trail). The county has several tourism class hotels and restaurants. These include Aturukan, Mid Africa Hotel, Vision Gate Hotel, Iroko Twigs Hotel, Super Break Hotel, Sky Nest County Hotel, Kitale Club and Mt. Elgon Lodge among others.

The county had a total of 5,910 registered groups that included, self Help groups; Community based organizations, Women groups, youth groups and special groups of people with disability. The number of children who need special protection is 3,966 while 988 children are orphaned. Poverty levels are quite high in the county with 451, 738 persons categorized under absolute poor, while another 558,602 persons are food poor.

Health and Nutrition

The Health Sector mandate is to promote and participate in the provision of integrated and high quality curative, preventive and rehabilitative services that is equitable, responsive, accessible and accountable to Kenyans. With a projected population of 949,359 persons in 2013 of which 472,121 are male and 477,238 are female.

The population is projected to increase to 1,100,794 by 2017, delivery of quality health care services to the people of Trans Nzoia County will be a vital component of the success of devolved services in the county. The county has a total number of 146 health care facilities. These range from VCT centres to the district hospitals and are owned by the government, NGOs, private citizens and Programmes.

The life expectancy at birth is 54 years for male and 56 years for females giving an average of 55 years. This is slightly higher than the national average of 52 years. Total annual deaths are estimated at 9 people in every 1,000. The neonatal, infant and under five mortality rates are very high which calls for immediate action to arrest the situation. Furthermore maternal mortality rate is high and more efforts have to be applied to reverse this trend.

The major diseases in the county include malaria (34.8%), flu (22.8%), respiratory tract infections (9.5%), stomach ache (5.3%) and diarrhoea (2.8). The high prevalence of malaria is worrying for in the past malaria has been unknown in the county with an average distance of 5 kilometres and in the rural areas and 1 kilometre within the urban centres to the nearest health care facility.

Despite this seemingly good access to healthcare facilities, 21.3% of mothers give birth in healthcare facilities a very low percentage given the spread of healthcare facilities. Children immunization is low standing at 70% which may be the cause of high child mortality. Key Sector Objectives The mission of the sector is to provide quality health services that are equitable, responsive, accessible and accountable to the people of Trans Nzoia County.


Education and ICT sector is comprised of the Early Child Education, Adult and Continuing Education, Youth Training and the County Education Board in the county. This is a key sector for the success and development of Trans Nzoia County given the vital role the human capital plays in the development of a region.

It is on this premises that the county must carefully nurture its human resource capital to achieve the desired development in the next 5 years and beyond. Currently there are 761 ECD centres, 483 primary schools, 169 secondary schools (151 public and 18 private), 14 youth polytechnics, 4 campuses of universities (University of Nairobi, Jomo Kenyatta University of Agriculture and Technology, Mt. Kenya University and Moi University) in Trans Nzoia county. In addition there is one technical institute and one teachers college.

As at the end of 2012, the number of pupils in the Early Childhood Development Centres (ECD) was 36,185 with 956 teachers. At the start of 2014, the County had 813 ECD centres with 478 centres being public and 335 centres being private. The teacher pupil ratio was 1:38. The schools are both public and private.

There are 525 primary schools in the County of which, 336 are public schools and189 are private schools. The County has 220,019 pupils enrolled in its primary schools. Out of these 109,477 constituting 49.7 percent are boys and 110,542 constituting 50.3 percent are girls with 4,559 teachers.

The teacher to pupil ratio is 1:48 which is above the recommended ratio of 1:40. The dropout rate is 22percent The county has 178 secondary schools of which 163 are public and 15 are private. The enrollment is 44,734 of which 23,753 are boys and 20,981are girls. Teachers are 999 and the teacher pupil ratio is 1:45 which is above the Ministry of Education recommended range of 1:40 and a transition rate of 52.7 percent.

Under higher education, the country has witnessed an explosive expansion of university education in the last few years especially in the area of opening new campuses across the country.

The county has benefited from this expansion and to date the Universities of Nairobi, Mt. Kenya, Jomo Kenyatta University of Agriculture and Technology and Moi University have opened campuses. In addition there is Kitale Technical Training Institute and Nzoia Teachers Training College.

Lands, Housing, Physical Planning and Urban Development

Lands, Housing, and Urban Development Sector comprises of Lands, Housing, Survey and physical planning departments. The sector is responsible for urban planning and design, land use planning, zoning, land survey and mapping including providing topographical data for site planning and development purposes. The function will also provide guidelines on boundaries and fencing including road and shared access boundaries.

Other roles include the coordination of urban development within the county through long-term strategies and development guidelines including statistics, urban design and planning, development control, property, estates and facilities management and development and outdoor advertising The main roofing materials used in the County are corrugated iron, grass and asbestos sheets. On the other hand, the main types of walling material include mud/wood, brick/block, mud/ cement, stone corrugated iron sheet, grass straw, tin among others.

The main types of flooring materials used by households in the County include earth, cement, and tiles.In terms of ownership of dwelling units, 68.8 percent of the households in the County live in their own houses while 31.2 percent live in rented housing units. In addition, there are 315 government houses in the County.

The County has two types of land ownership; public and private. The government owns the land where government facilities are erected, and also river and road reserves. Land ownership is either Free hold land, Leasehold or on Temporary occupational basis. The mean holding size for a small scale farmer is 0.607 Hectares while the large scale farmer holds an average of 12.15 Hectares. The increased sub division of land, due to land inheritance, has considerably reduced the mean holding size of land for small scale farmers.

The percentage of persons with title deeds in the county is 45 percent. This means that a 55 percent of the county residents owning land have no title deeds. This is very significant statistic as it implies that the majority of the county residents (mostly farmers) cannot get credit against their land as collateral. The instances of Landlessness in Trans Nzoia County have risen in the last 7 years.

Agriculture, Livestock, Fisheries, and Crop Management

The department of Agriculture, Livestock and Fisheries is responsible for
implementation of national polices at the county level.

The Sector is comprised of the Departments of Agriculture, Livestock, Veterinary Service, Cooperative Development & Marketing and Fisheries. The key objective of the sector is to ensure sustainable development of agriculture, livestock and fisheries for food security and economic development. It is specifically responsible for;

Agriculture, Livestock, Fisheries and Cooperatives sector is responsible for implementation of national agriculture polices at the county level.

The department will be responsible for providing veterinary services, promoting crop and animal farming and fisheries within the County, supporting plant and animal disease control and management and monitoring activities of livestock sale yards, county abattoirs and sale of other animal products.

The department will work closely with other agricultural agencies to provide complementary strategy and support to reduce poverty, food insecurity and enhance environmental management in line with national policy.

The sector is the major source of employment for over 80% of the rural population directly while a sizeable number of the county residents are employed in the few small scale agro- processing industries. The main crops produced in the county are maize, beans, wheat, tea and potatoes. Other crops include coffee and horticultural crops.

The total acreage under food crops is 143,807.5 hectares while that under cash crops is 1477.12 hectares. The average farm sizes ranges from 0.60705 hectares for small scale farming to 80.94 hectares for large scale farming.
Under fisheries, this is a relatively new concept as an income generating activity, however, there about 1500 fish ponds and 7 dams stocked with fish.

The main fish types caught are tilapia and catfish. There a lot of potential for the sub sector especially after the national government’s efforts of promoting fishing under the Economic Stimulus Programme since 2009 and the National Fish Farming Enterprise Productivity Program (FFEPP) a Vision 2030 flag ship programme being implemented in the county.

In the livestock sub sector, the main livestock species include: cattle, goats, chicken, fish, and sheep. The population of major livestock species as at the end of December 2012 was estimated at 19,000 zebu cattle, 167,200 grade and crosses, 100,900 sheep, 27,600 goats, 5,000 pigs, 594,500 indigenous chickens & 105,600 grade layers and 11,500 rabbits. The total milk production was approximately 90,423,400 litres; of which 89,500,000 litres representing

98.98% was from grade dairy cattle and their crosses. Zebu cattle contributed 1.02% of the total cattle milk production. The milk industry is dominated by small scale producers who account for 70% of the dairy industry’s output. Beef production in the county is a minor activity.

The Cooperative sector is also active although not very vibrant. By 2012, there were 214 registered cooperative societies in the county with a membership of 39,655 members and total turn-over of Ksh. 77,310,588 and share capital of Ksh. 1,266,596,246. Of the 214, 92 were active, 120 were dormant while two had collapsed.

The main crops produced in the county are maize, beans, wheat, tea and potatoes. Other crops include coffee and horticultural crops. The total acreage under food crops is 143,807.5 hectares while that under cash crops is 1477.12 hectares. The average farm sizes ranges from 0.60705 hectares for small scale farming to 80.94 hectares for large scale farming.

Under fisheries, this is a relatively new concept as an income generating activity, however, there about 1500 fish ponds and 7 dams stocked with fish. The main fish types caught are tilapia and catfish.

In the livestock sub sector, the main livestock species include: cattle, goats, chicken, fish, and sheep. The population of major livestock species as at the end of December 2012 was estimated at 19,000 zebu cattle, 167,200 grade and crosses, 100,900 sheep, 27,600 goats, 5,000 pigs, 594,500 indigenous chickens & 105,600 grade layers and 11,500 rabbits.

Transport, and Infrastructure

The Sector is comprised of roads, public works and energy sector in the county. “The Kenya Vision 2030”, identifies infrastructure development as a critical component for socioeconomic transformation our economy.

The sector aspires for a county with modern road network and towns and centers with good infrastructural facilities that would make the county competitive thereby attractive to both local and international investors.

In terms of infrastructural development, the county has a total length of 4,060 Km of road network of which bitumen surface is 154 km, gravel surface covers 167 km, and earth surface is 786 km while 2953 km is unclassified roads (rural access). The county is covered by 23km of railway line ending at Kitale Railway Station ( Mwisho wa reli) and has one Airstrip.

The main source of energy in the county is wood fuel and charcoal. Electricity is supply is quite low with only 145 market centres have been connected to the national grid, while 24 centres have no electricity.

In addition, 44 health facilities have electricity while 13 others have no electricity. At the household level, only 8.9 % of the households use electricity as their main source of lighting while 0.03 % of the households use electricity for cooking.

Development Challenges and Constraints

  • The major development challenges facing the sector are;
  • Unplanned/congestion of bus parks and parking bays,
  • Poor road transport and communication network,
  • Inadequate staff skills and competencies,
  • Encroachment of road reserves and way leaves,
  • Lack of routine road maintenance,
  • Inadequate supply of electricity characterized by frequent black outs
  • Low equipment maintenance.

Trade Commerce and Industry.

The Commerce and Industry sector is comprised of the departments of Economic Planning, Commerce, and Industry. The sector is responsibility for formulating key policies that will drive the development of the county. Specifically the sector is charged with: Providing coordination and guidance in formulation, implementation and review of economic, trade and industrial policies; coordinating the preparation of County Integrated Development Plans, and Sectoral plans.

The sector is also mandated to undertake Research, Studies and Surveys, coordinate monitoring and evaluation functions of County governments and build adequate capacity for Monitoring and Evaluation for the county government, maintaining a comprehensive and reliable county socio-economic database, Development of Micro and Small Business, Promotion of Small Medium Enterprises and other interest groups through; training, counselling, consultancy and Research, promote retail and wholesale trade and enforce fair trade practices and consumer protection.

Nationally, the sector plays a significant role towards achievement of the targets in the Vision 2030. The second MTP of the Kenya Vision 2030 has identified the sector as a priority sector under the economic pillar with the focus being on promoting trade, and improving the overall climate of industrial investment and doing business in Kenya.

At the county level, the Sector holds a vital key to the transformation and development of this county in its quest for employment creation, poverty reduction and wealth creation through agro industrialization.

The sector is expected to create jobs so as to increase youth employment by over fifty percent and set the industrial base for agricultural value addition and the overall development of the economy of the county.

Sector Objectives to deliver on the overall county development objective of poverty reduction, wealth creation and agro-industrialization by the year 2017, the following key sectoral objectives have been formulated:

The mission of the sector is to promote, co-ordinate and implement integrated socioeconomic policies and programs for a rapidly commercial and industrializing economy.

Water, Environment, and Natural Resources

The Environmental, Water and Natural Resources sector comprises of the departments of Water and Sanitation, Environment, meteorology and Forestry.

The Sector objective is to formulate policies that protect and promote water resources, forest conservation, wildlife management, and climate change adaptations and mitigation.

The mandate of the Sector includes:-Environmental policy management, forest development policy management, water resources management policy, and water and sewerage services policy.

It also includes waste water treatment and disposal policy management, conservation and protection of national wildlife, meteorological management, and water catchment area conservation, control and protection.

The mandate further consists of the restoration of strategic water towers of mt. Elgon and Cherangany hills. In addition, the mandate comprises of meteorological information and training, water quality and pollution control, coordination of climate change affairs, and management of public water schemes and community water projects.

Trans Nzoia County is blessed with adequate fresh water supply. According to the 2009 Census, out of the 170,117 households enumerated for water use, 19,702 had piped water as their main water source, 1,119 had ponds, and 34,441 depended on streams, 110,386 on spring/wells and boreholes. This situation has improved and in 2013, 28,855 households have access to piped water, while 5,813 households get their water from shallow wells.
In water supply, the county has 12 water supply schemes; (Kitale water works, Kapolet, saboti, Kiminini, Kwanza-Kolongolo, Kiboroa, Masaba, Kimondo, Endebess, suam-Orchad, Matumaini, and Chepkoiyo). The sources of the water for the schemes are River Nzoia, Kapolet Forest and Mt. Elgon. The average distance to water points in the County is one kilometre where, 40.6 percent of the households have access to safe sources of water while 59.4 percent of the households have access to unsafe water sources.

In sanitation, the main modes of human waste disposal by households are pit latrines, main sewer, septic tanks and cess pools. Other waste disposal modes include bucket and bushes








Last Update: December 1, 2021
November 30, 2021 152 DEBORAHTranszoia County
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