Luo Nyanza professionals shift focus to development


Professionals from Luo Nyanza have identified two priority projects in each of the counties in the area they want the Jubilee government to implement for development.

Information and Communications technology expert Shem Ochuodho said they plan to brief President Uhuru Kenyatta and his deputy William Ruto on the projects.

In Migori County, the professionals who met in Nairobi under the banner Nyanza Development Forum said priority should be given to improvement of sugar farming to be more profitable. They also want the government to boost mining in the border county.

In Homa Bay, the professionals called on the government to revive the cotton sub-sector and expand rural electrification.

In Kisumu, Mr Ochuodho who spoke to theNation in Nairobi said, focus should be on revival of industries like the East African Breweries and the Kisumu Cotton Mills.

Mr Ochuodho who is currently working as a consultant in South Sudan also called on donors and the government to boost irrigation and rain water harvesting in Kisumu.

“This is because for a quarter of the year, the area is hit by floods while another quarter is dry thus affecting crop production,” Mr Ochuodho said.

In Siaya, Mr Ochuodho said local professionals have identified food security as key for the area.

He said there’s need for investment in irrigation and for construction of dams in Siaya.

Mr Ochuodho added that Siaya has potential for electricity generation in its water falls, a thing that could boost rural electrification.

The politician said fishing which cuts across the four counties should be improved.

“We also want the fight against water hyancinth intensified and resources in Lake Victoria properly handled,” Mr Ochuodho said.

He said Nyanza professionals are planning to establish a microfinance institution to empower locals economically.

“Priorities in Luo Nyanza are shifting towards economic empowerment,” Mr Ochuodho said.

Mr Ochuodho said Luo professionals with the backing of Luo Council of elders also plan to meet on May 12 to deliberate on the future of the area.

The groups want to change the mindset of locals from concentrating on politics to entrepreneurship.

“We want them to stop focusing on presidency but engage in development activities. We are not saying that a Luo should not be President but we should first improve our economic livelihood. We require a lot of civic education to change locals’ mindset to focus on development. We want Nyanza people to take charge of their lives and government to just complement their efforts,” Mr Ochuodho said.

Luo Nyanza is currently seeking alternative leadership following uncertainty over former Prime Minister Raila Odinga’s continued stay in politics after losing the March presidential election.

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