• Oceans Alive Trust (OAT) have taken the Kuruwitu Conservation & Welfare – CBO (KCW-CBO) PANORAMA solution of 2018 and have upscaled the approach to support the Kuruwitu Beach Management Unit (K-BMU) in establishment of a 12,000ha Co-Management area.  
  • This presented challenges in that there were no guidelines to implement the 2007 BMU regulations and the modification laid down by the 2016 Fisheries Act. However, OAT and the CBO were able to exchange experience and provision tools and templates to guide the process as per the legislation. This guidance allowed the K-BMU to understand and develop in draft their constitution, spatial zoning, analysis of resource assessment, management implementation plan, by-laws. 
  • The CBO became a living classroom for peer-to-peer knowledge exchanges and provided solutions to K-BMU that resulted in the development of the first official Kuruwitu CMA plan.
  • The CBO solution and OAT’s experience provided the building blocks needed to complete CMA plan. 

Description of the Uptake

  • The CBO’s experience in the establishment, operation and governance of an LMMA became the building blocks of a participatory process whereby the CBO and OAT shared lessons learnt. 
  • The process, however, had to accommodate the devolution policies laid down by the Kenya Constitution and the Fisheries Act of 2016. In this process, County authorities were involved as the local “co-partner” to the K-BMU. As a result, the CBO solution could not be replicated wholescale. The upscaling had to adopt a modified CMA approach guided by OAT. 
  • As this devolved process was new, it required extensive stakeholder participatory consultations and capacity building. This was key to harmonize the CMA plan in line with expectations and make it compatible with the new legislation. 
  • A major lesson from the replication was that the solution based on indigenous knowledge could be blended with modern legislation. This approach and the draft OAT toolkit has the prospects of application to all coastal BMUs in Kenya.

Success factors

  • The K-BMU CMA plan is the first officially recognized document of its kind since the legislation was enacted. 
  • This CMA plan presents a model template to guide BMUs, Fisheries Authorities and OAT to replicate elsewhere in coastal fishing communities.
  • MoU established between K-BMU and KCW-CBO recognizing the legitimacy of the Tengefu as a no-take zone, assuring its perpetuity.
  • Experience and procedures developed within OAT have enabled its capacity to offer support to Fisheries Department and other BMUs to replicate the CMA plan process, working with County Authorities to establish other CMAs. 
  • An understanding and capacity of how to develop a CMA plan have been developed within local County Fisheries Officers and county authorities.  
  • K-BMU was able to secure user rights and stewardship over 12,000ha of ocean 
  • Formation of a County Multi-stakeholder Forum to harmonize the approach of CMA development.

Stumbling factors

  • Miscommunication between the KCW-CBO and the K-BMU arose when developing the CMA plan. The CBO LMMA is not recognized by legislation. However, it was declared as a no-take zone. 
  • The draft National CMA guidelines and 2019 revised BMU Regulations are still in draft and had not yet been officially released. This complicated the roll-out.
  • COVID-19 affected the progression of the process, hampering workshops and limiting the number of participants. 
  • The extensive array of stakeholder consultation makes the process expensive, but essential and partner support to the process is vital.
  • In the process of broad-spectrum stakeholder engagement, the expectation grew to over 100 activities. It is unpractical and unlikely that the K-BMU will be able to finance. 
  • It is uncertain that the county government would have the necessary resources for funding its part in the CMA plan. 
  • The lesson learnt is that it is important to tone down stakeholder expectations and to get them to focus on key priority issues.

Replication methodology

  • K-BMU CMA plan adopted the FAO Ecosystem-Based Approach. This included undertaking a participatory multi-stakeholder SWOT analysis. This allowed self-identification and ownership of issues and solutions to concerns notably socio-economic, ecological, governance, research and COVID-19. K-BMU were able to include in the CMA plan actions with indicators and the means of verification, assigning responsibility with indicative budgets. 
  • KCW- CBO as a living classroom provided the K-BMU with visualization of the solution through a peer-to-peer approach. K-BMU are now undertaking preparation of a constitution, identification of boundary jurisdiction, analysis of assets and zoning of ecological resources, developing appropriate by-laws for the protection of critical ecological zones and coral gardens. 
  • A difficulty was that the existing CMA plan was outdated and had to be revised. This meant additional resources were needed for OAT to host several stakeholder validation meetings to arrive at a consensus.