Written by Joseph Amunya Otieno
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The new Lugari DC offices at Panpaper Grounds in Mautuma.Photos/ Joseph Amunya.
Pressure has mounted on the government with fresh calls from a section of residents living in Lugari district urging it to declare the fate of a newly constructed District Commissioner’s office block at PanPaper grounds in Mautuma area.
The calls were made during official opening and commissioning of departmental offices for the Ministry of Gender and Social Development function, which was presided over by acting Lugari DC, Mr. Richard
The residents led by Lugari county council chairperson, Mr. David Amaswache, said that since the government had spent about Sh30 million in putting up the DC’ offices at Pan Paper in 2008, it was prudent for it to officially open and utilize the same facility rather than leave it idle.
“It defeats logic for the government to continue paying rent every month for the cooperative building, which houses the DC’s offices at Lumakanda when her own block is lying idle here,” said Amaswache.
Amaswache’s sentiments were echoed by Lugari ward councilor, Mr. Musa Wangila Makhapila, who asked the government through the Ministry of Internal Security and Provincial Administration to hasten the relocation of the DC’s offices from Lumakanda to Pan Paper.
“This time round if the government fails to respond to our request we will mobilize and lead a peaceful demonstration from Lugari up to the Western Provincial Commissioner’s offices in Kakamega,” said
The acting Lugari distict commissioner Richard Ajwang during the opening of gender and social development office at Panpaper
But while responding to these calls, the acting DC appealed to the area residents to remain calm as the government looks into the issue.
There has been a long standing controversy among residents of the area over the exact location of Lugari district headquarters, with one section preferring it to remain at Lumakanda while the other fighting
for its relocation to Pan Paper in Mautuma.
Those opposing relocation of the DC’s offices to Mautuma area argue that since Likuyani district was finally curved from Lugari, moving the headquarters to Pan Paper would not serve the original purpose for
which it was meant to serve.
Western Province Director of Gender and Social Development Officer, Mr. Ben Makotsi was among the invited guests who attended the opening ceremony.
He urged area residents, especially women and older persons, to fully utilize and benefit from government social services rendered through the ministry.
Others who spoke at the function included Lugari District Gender and Social Development Officer, Mr. Jacob Ligeve and his Kakamega Central District counterpart, Mrs. Leah Nyagah and Lugari District Officer, Mr. Lawrence Ngare.
The gender and social development department becomes the first one to move its offices from Lumakanda to Pan Paper following completion of construction for its office block, which cost the government about Sh3.4 million.
Apart from the DC’s office block, other departments that have so far put up offices at Pan Paper but are yet to relocate include youth and special programmes.
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