Agriculture remains the mainstay of the Kenyan economy, accounting for about 24 per cen t of GDP and 74 per cent of employment (GoK, 2008) . It is a key sector in the economic pillar of the Kenya Vision 2030. It is also a key sector whose functions have been devolved by the Constitution of Kenya, 2010. The sector has direct implications on at least two critical areas that the country has to address, namely food security and employment creation. This directly impacts the poverty incidence levels, the health of Kenyans and their general quality of life. It is thus paramount that the devolution in the sector is carried out in a way that it addresses the aforementioned challenges and do not excercabate them.
Prior to ushering in the devolved government on 4 th March 2013, the agricultural sector has been managed in at least 10 separate sub-sectors n amely crops (both industrial and food), horticulture, livestock, fisheries, land, water, cooperatives and marketing, environment and natural resources, regional development, and development of arid and semi arid land (ASAL). There have also been initiative s carried under disaster mitigation under Office of the President and Ministry of Special Programmes. This has also corresponded with the work of respective ministries, departments and Semi Autonomous Governments Agencies/State Corporations . This paints a complexity in transition in two ways. First is the merging that will take place at the national level (reducing the 42 ministries to the constitutional 22 maximum), and secondly is transferring of the functions identified for devolution to the county gover nment. The administrative, political, economic and financial implications of this dual transition are not yet clear, and this could lead to major gaps in performance if roles and responsibilities are not clarified.
In this line, this brief discusses two u rgent matters that are of great importance to the Agricultural Sector especially as relates to devolution. They relate to the overall policy and legal framework of the sector, and service delivery especially related to the myriad of state corporations that have hitherto been key to the sector’s performance.