The County government of Kakamega under Governor Wycliffe Ambetsa Oparanya deserves commendation for putting in place and in action progressive policies, programmes of transformation and working hard to try and achieve them. In the Kakamega government programmes one can discern a deliberate, co-ordinated effort to transform the lives of the people of Kakamega County. The County boasts of well-maintained roads. The major roads in Kakamega town, linking it to the neighbouring Counties are very motorable and free of potholes.
The County headquarters and the towns of the County are clean. Yes, it’s a County where owners of business premises, who either use them to trade or collect rent, have been put on notice to renovate them so that they comply with the requisite by-laws on maintenance of public premises whether they are government-owned or private owned.
Kakamega County administration has gone public with plans that it’s working to achieve the statutory threshold by law for city status for Kakamega town and is set to have a population of at least 500,000. The recent notice given to owners of plots in Kakamega town that have remained undeveloped with some going as far back as 40 years is a courageous act of leadership. Our towns will never grow until the holding of urban land for speculation is made very expensive through rates payment and repossession of plots on leaseholds from the Counties that remain undeveloped for years. Towns are not farms, cemeteries, towns are for planned human habitation with economies of scale for services to be easily cost effectively provided to a large pool of people
The County government is on the way to open the under construction Modern Hospital at Kakamega and Masinde Muliro University will utilize it as a Teaching facility. The Bukhungu Stadium project saw Western Kenya host Mashujaa Day National celebrations on 20th October 2018 and CECAFA Championships earlier on.
The County government of Kakamega still has many challenges, including the intractable Mumias Sugar Company collapse, the low agricultural productivity, lack of markets for farmers produce, achieving better health care for its citizens, delivery of clean water to all residents among others. But truth be told the Oparanya led County government has made demonstrable outstanding strides and has a game plan, picture design of making Kakamega County a viable modern County. Kakamega County has the advantage of the population with 12 Constituencies and over two million people. The Counties of Bungoma, Busia, Vihiga, Trans Nzoia, truth be told, instead of going to benchmark in Rwanda, Uganda, name them, look next to you at the County which is going places, Kakamega County. Swallow your pride, learn lessons, and interact with the Kakamega County government for benchmarking and get to work to catch up.
West Media is making its overviews, observations of what it is persuaded to highlight devolution and if it’s making clear progress and showing signs of promise. West Media will give credit where it is due without fear or favour. The greatest asset of the region is its people, and those who are entrusted with leadership must take bold, visionary steps to transform the socio-economic architecture of their Counties with their eyes on the bigger picture, the future, rather than being bogged down on pettiness, subsistence activities that will never lift the majority of the great sons and daughters of the region from want, poverty, deprivations, and hopelessness. The County of Kakamega is marching in the right direction and if it manages its succession well in 2022, the future augurs well for its residents. Western and its people will not be respected by the rest of Kenyans unless we demonstrate we are upto task to think, plan and implement programmes, projects that can transform our people, our economies first before we can have bragging rights to aspire to lead the entire Nation. Governor Oparanya is headed in the right direction. Keep it up.