Governor Ferdinand Waititu Meet and Greet meeting in Dallas Texas
Diaspora Speaks; Twenty Pointers of Making the Great County of Kiambu Greater!
Governor Ferdinand Waititu a.k.a Babayao is scheduled to meet Kiambu diaspora residents and Kenyans in general at the Maasai Grill, Dallas, Texas. To ensure diaspora residents have a focused driven agenda, they have gathered in an online What’s Up group where they have brainstormed the following issues that they would like to see His Excellency Governor Waititu address, and for him to act up during his tenure for the people of the great county of Kiambu:
- Roads: The roads, especially the feeder roads (road from the main roads), are said to be in deplorable conditions (“shamba roads”) in the entire county; from Githunguri, Juja, to Ruiru. What is the governor’s plan in fixing these roads? Hata kama ni marram, one contributor said.
Marking Roads in White/Yellow: What is your plan to ensure the roads are marked for the safety of the motorists?
- Security: What steps are we taking to ensure criminals don’t find refuge in Kiambu County?
- Air pollution: Good health is important for Kiambu residents and our country. What steps have we taken to ensure that factories such as Fresha in Githunguri, which is at the town center, are inspected? Some industries mix chemicals with waste water and that water goes in the ponds. All vehicles need inspection for emission. What policies is your county putting in place to ensure a safe environment based on international standards?
- Closure of Industries/Job Creation: Unemployment persists in our country and in our country for many years. Why close down Del Monte at the expense of 7000 employees? Is the repossessed land going to good use? Please work closely with Senator Paul Wamatangi on how to help create manufacturing jobs per his recent articulation on why we need to focus on our economic policy on manufacturing, and also in line with Jubilee’s Big 4 agenda. Are there any plans to revive most of the plants (factories) in Thika which have been defunct for a while? This is a great source of employment.
- Water Harvest: Under your leadership, what measures has your county put in place to ensure we harvest the rains and ensure a flow of tap water, and alleviate famine due to droughts? Do we have a plan in place to deal with perennial water shortages? Any plans to build new dams, recycling or water harvesting plants?
- Food Security; Does our county government has any incentives to our farmers to prevent them from selling their land to big time real estate businesses. Do you have zoning or codes that protect our food basket? What is the county government doing to protect our agriculture land (coffee, tea, food production) from completely turning into Nairobi bedroom?
What is the county government and the National government doing to ensure that Kiambu arable lands are protected from unmanaged and uncontrolled developments’ our food security is at stake and if we do not protect it, we will always depend on the communities and genetically modified foods with who knows with what China.
- Artificial Insemination (AI): Farmers in Kiambu have to cough Ksh 1,500 for artificial insemination services. When the heifer doesn’t “catch’ round one, then there is two, three and four. We are now at Kshs 6,000. How many of our peasant farmers can afford that amount? Muranga’s farmers enjoy free AI services courtesy of the county government. We need that in Kiambu. The veterinary officers are making a killing at the expense of the farmers. Free AI services for peasant farmers of Kiambu County!
- Gambling: Recent reports show that gambling is slowly becoming an epidemic in our country. What measures have you put in place to ensure we do not address this problem when it is too late as was the case with Alcohol? Gambling can affect the financial health, and relationships; it is a mental health issue.
- Alcohol: Kiambu has the highest numbers of bars. Consider bootleg liquor and/ or alcohol control. Pass a law that demands all bars be equipped with a crasher for empty bottles. Once these bottles are out of the equation, the bootleg Jameson and John walkers and the rest will disappear because they will not have packaging.
- Hospitals: Please build more hospitals including specialized ones like dialysis centers and cancer screening.
- Alcohol, Drug Abuse, and Mental Illness. What are short and long term goals when it comes to rehabilitation of our youth who are struggling with substance abuse disorders? What is the long time goal to make sure the rehabilitated youths are socialized and integrated back to the community? Do you have plan to set up a rehabilitation centers in every ward or Sub-locations?
- Mental Health: What is the county approach when it comes to mental health treatment of our residents? Do we have health coverage for our residents living with mental illness? (Some of them cannot afford NHSF premiums fee due to challenges that come with their disease process).
Any plans to set up a big county mental hospital to take care of these residents? Mathare hospital seems to be the only option and as you can imagine, its resources are overstretched.
- People Living with Physical Disabilities. What is the county plan in assisting people living with physical limitations? We should borrow a leaf from Isiolo county and provide them with free wheelchairs. It’s disheartening in this day and age to see our brothers and sisters walking on four legs in the street of Kiambu.
- Medical Professionals. What steps is your county taking to ensure that we reverse the brain drain especially relating to the medical professionals? Can we create a conducive work environment and terms of service that will ensure we retain our medical professionals? We have highly qualified Kenyan-born diaspora medics who would be willing to contribute their expertise to the health system at the county level instead of importing the Cuban doctors if given the similar terms. Why not try that to get the knowledge transfer that the county desperately needs?
- Title Deeds: Are there plans to issue the actual title deeds for the properties that were issued through allotments? (Same approach used in Nairobi). If yes, when should the beneficiaries expect this to happen?
- Corruption: What is the tactical and strategic initiative for the county to fight corruption under your leadership? Can you guarantee the people of Kiambu that there will be no corruption scandals during your tenure?
- Vision for the County: What is your vision for Kiambu in the next 5 years or 10 years if you are re-elected?
- Kiambu County as the Investment Destination: What are the initiatives that Governor has to make Kiambu the most attractive investment destination in the country? For example, providing incentives for start ups, reducing or waiving some county taxes, business fees, creating industrial zones etc.
- Job Description for the Deputy Governor. What is the job description for your deputy governor? Current constitution is silent on the roles of the deputy governor. This vacuum is what his causing the current rift between the governor and his/her deputy. Please help us understand how you have ensured that your deputy governor has clear duties to ensure he/she is answerable to the people of Kiambu on his/her salary.
- Diaspora Engagement. Affordable housing pillar of the administration is a good entry point for diaspora if people are well organized. There has been a push to build both police and civilian housing within the near future. If diaspora can get organized and present proposals for building the approved houses, the government could possibly lease the completed units and use them to house the police etc. instead of them building their own. Please elaborate on how diaspora can partner with the leadership of Kiambu County.
Thank you Note: Governor Waititu, we the Kiambu diaspora in Dallas and those that have traveled from other cities, and States, thank you very much for honoring us with your visit. It is really an honor and privilege to welcome you to Dallas. As you have noted with our presence here today, despite our current residence, we carry the concerns and love for our County and Country in our hearts and minds. Our investments are true self evidence of our continued dedication to the future of our country and county. It is our sincere hope and prayer, that after listening and giving our own feedback to our concerns and suggestions to a better Kiambu, that you will help in implementing and or addressing our collective concerns and suggestions. Hon. Governor, together we can make Kiambu great, and much more attractive for all kinds of investors. We request that you involve diaspora to help build a better tomorrow for Kiambu residents. We are ready and willing Hon. Governor. With your leadership and stewardship, we hope you will start addressing these concerns and instituting our suggestions in building a great Kiambu County.
Diaspora will reflect on these issues in 2021/2022 to assess your performance! We may not vote, but we have family and business interests in Kiambu County! We are optimistic that you will make the great County of Kiambu greater again!
By Diaspora Residents from Kiambu County