Kenya as a nation and inexorably all 47 Counties of Kenya are going through an economic recession. That means there is significant decline in economic activity spread across the economy. There is a contraction in the economic activities of the nation. People’s purchasing power is reduced and less money in circulation. Look out, it is all there to be seen and felt.
In the circumstances, we must rethink how carefully we expend the lesser resources available. Counties must wake up to the reality of the economic recession and be extremely prudent in how they spend their tax payers’ monies. The Counties, the nation are no longer in the dizzy, intoxicating past days of the Eurobond when money seemed to flow like the mighty Nile in Kenya.
Farming is the sure fire investment for the Counties of the former Western Province of Kakamega, Bungoma, Busia, Vihiga and the neighbouring Trans Nzoia. The farming economic activities are the backbone of the region’s economy and the majority of its people and therefore that is where most of the devolved resources, however meagre they are, must be concentrated so as to spur the the rebounce of the region’s economy.
The Governors, MCAs, County Public Servants must redirect their energy, intelligence effort in strengthening farmers in their farming endeavors so as to increase the economic output of farming. They must eschew largesse, wastage, useless trips helter skelter to allover and apply the resources to boost agricultural production.
The citizens of the Counties of the region must maximize output per square unit, per acre or a portion of an acre so as to feed themselves and have surplus for sale, for income.
We must think hard, innovatively to grow our region’s economy to have agricultural produce that can be exported to generate foreign exchange, the way tea farmers and horticultural farmers in other parts of Kenya earn the bulk of their income by exporting their produce.
So pray what foreign exchange flows into our region. Absolutely none. Can our County Governments tell the region what they intend to or have championed as their export commodities and services from the region to the rest of the world. For without any export of commodities or services, the dream of rising from poverty to prosperity is a pipe dream. We have to recreate the region to be a net exporter-to beyond, outside Kenya-of goods, commodities, services if we have to start overcoming the challenges of disease, ignorance and poverty.
So as we navigate the economic recession, we must think, strategize how we will rise out of our subsistence economy to an export oriented economy that brings foreign exchange to our region. It is fool hardy in this times of economy recession to indulge in grandiose economic projects that entail us exporting our meagre monies to other regions or parts of the world. We must invest our resources carefully, prudently to create more goods and services for us to sell rather buying from others.