The factors influencing success of Constituency Developement Funds (CDF) projects in Nyeri county, Central province, Kenya
Mwangi, Joseph Wambugu
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The formation of Constituency Development Fund was an attempt to balance development among the regions in the country by devolving funds proportionate to the poverty index in each constituency. In addition, unlike other development funds that filter from the central government through larger and more layers of administrative organs and bureaucracies, funds under this program go directly to the local levels and thus provide people at the grassroots the opportunity to make expenditure decisions that maximize their welfare consistent with the theoretical predictions of decentralization theory. Although the CDF takes a relatively small amount of national resources, that is, 2.5 percent of the government's ordinary revenue, its impact can be significant if the funds are efficiently utilized. Despite the fact that the CDF Act stipulates how the fund should be managed, the debate as to whether the funds are effectively and efficiently utilized at the grass root level has been documented. Several challenges have been cited including; low stake holder participation in identification of development priorities of the constituency, poor project selection and prioritization, weak monitoring and evaluation systems and lack of accountability and transparency of utilization of the funds. This has been evidenced by the large number of stalled projects while others remain ongoing long beyond their due date. This study will help shed light on the factors influencing Constituency Development Fund (CDF) projects. The purpose of the current study was to make analysis of the factors influencing the success of the constituency Development Fund (CDF) projects. The specific objectives of the study were to determine the influence of strategy, project term capacity, project communication, monitoring and evaluation and client consultation on the project success. The descriptive study was carried out in the Nyeri County. The target population will be all the Constituency Development Fund (CDF) projects initiated in the 2008/2009 financial year. Data was collected from the Constituency Development (CDF) managers in the selected constituencies and project implementers. Purposive sampling was used to select four out of six constituencies in the Nyeri County. Stratified sampling was used to select projects from each of the categories; health care, educational, increased productivity and administration and security oriented projects. Data collection was through questionnaires to the project implementers, interview schedules to the CDF managers and observation checklists which gathered data concerning the state of the projects as well as the quality of materials and workmanship. The data collected was analyzed and interpreted both quantitatively and qualitatively using statistical package for social sciences (SPSS). The data is presented using descriptive statistics; such as tables, percentages, bar graphs, cross tabulations and correlation statistics. The findings of the study revealed that the extent of CDF project success in the Nyeri County is low since most projects are completed over budget or their designs are altered to trade off the budget escalation. Most projects lack proposed schedules of implementation and thus there are no standards against which progress can be checked. Various factors were identified to impact on CDF project success. These include; professional preparedness of project participants, stakeholder involvement, project communication and monitoring and evaluation systems.