Most countries are opening up not because the cases on covid-19 are going down but the preparedness is topnotch to deal with any eventuality. The USA has made over 4m beds and now they are giving out ventilators to help other nations. That was not the case in the beginning but they strategically planned over the period. Same to countries like France, Germany, UK, South Korea, India, South Africa…etc.
The born of contention is not the rising numbers instead is the readiness to deal with those numbers, something that’s a mirage in Kenya. It seems the daily talk has been the end on itself but not the beginning of a new dawn. In Kenya most health sector functions are devolved thus the governors are key in combating the coronavirus pandemic.
President Uhuru Kenyatta on his presser to the nation mentioned Siaya County having only 10 beds leading to uproar on social media. Those making noise rightly so but I don’t know how they react knowing your own Governor is worse than Rasanga. Health care was devolved to help regions to be self-autonomous and reduce over relying on national hospitals thus easing congestion.
I will not restrain myself to mention the Governors who have made the nation lose the bet that was almost going through on the opening up of the country. It is a shame when millions of cash is send to the counties only to benefit few disregarding the intention of the urge to get the new constitution since independence.
I will begin with the Siaya Buffalo who sometimes back could spend over sh. 10m for a one week outing with the wife abroad. Worse enough the electorate in Siaya new all this but opted to vote him back because of party slogan leaving the competent Engineer Nicholas Gumbo during 2017 elections. Colonel Amoth Rasanga whos’s the brother to Acting DG Dr. Amoth has nothing to show after seven years at the helm. My serious concern is not even on the Governor’s corruption and public looting behavior but the character of Wabukala and his team. Do we still need that commission in Kenya really?
In Migori County, there’s bald headed Governor Zackary Okoth Obado graduate from Kenyatta University with Bachelors Degree in Education. The only information I have about him is the alleged killing of Rongo University Student. Most projects seen on the ground are either NGO initiated or National Government.
His neighbor from Homabay County is known as Cyprian Awiti who makes Rasanga appear like buttered bread. The gentleman who weighs 1/4 tonne is not even aware he’s the manager of the most vulnerable people in his region. Residents seek treatment from Kisii general hospital all this time since he took over in 2013. A treatable ailment like Malaria kills many lives because of poor medical facilities. A well-schooled Awiti, who hails from Rachuonyo Sub County with masters from university of Manchester, cannot lift up the spirits of Homabay residents.
Back to western, starting from Busia we get the only brown man from Teso community. Governor Sospeter Ojaamong Odeke attended his O-level education between 1979 and 1983, and proceeded for his A-level education in the same school from 1984 to 1985. After his A-Level, Ojaamong qualified and joined Kenyatta University where he graduated with Bachelor of Education (Science) degree, majoring in Biology and Chemistry. He also holds a Post graduate Diploma in Business Management from the Kenya Institute of Management.
Don’t be surprised why I have spent all this time to talk about his biography. There’s nothing else substantial to talk about him because he moves from one court to the next defending himself against corruption allegations. He spends his time with lawyers on litigation issues. I rest my case.
Wycliffe Wangamati is one of Kenya’s pioneer actuaries with deep understanding in pension management and investment consultancy. Mr Wangamati, sits on the board of Alexander Forbes East Africa’s businesses. As the second Governor of Bungoma County, he has continued with his personal business but this time using county coffers. The long-nosed Governor controls the procurement processes to his advantage. The flamboyant English man has employed many individuals to perform PR stands on his behalf with nothing to show off apart from 20 litres Jerricans. It’s now 3 years since he started constructing 300 beds capacity hospital at this point just beyond foundation by an inch.
The Governor has opted to become a career politician moving across the country with his staff in each and every BBI rally to shield himself from the Jaws of Kinoti. Bungoma residents should not expect much from the Kanduyi based businessman instead wait for the remaining two years to do the right thing.
Tranzoia governor Patrick Khaemba started to construct a level 4 health facility is 2013 and abandoned it later in 2016 till today. Khaemba has spent most of his time reporting to the summons before a senate committee on Public Accounts and Investments over irregularities in the county’s audit. Roads and other infrastructure projects is mirage. Kitale town is very dirty under the guy who has spent most of his lifetime in public sector. The coronavirus cases should not be reported there because there’s nothing at all in terms of preparedness.
Stephen Sang from Nandi County is a shame to the young generation. He has preferred populist projects with short term benefits to the residents. The residents depend on Eldoret town for medical attention. The gentleman who was vocal when he was a senator has failed to rise up to the occasion. He’s focused on tribal wars to please the majority locals in the view getting their support. He should learn from his counterpart Jackson Mandago.
Nyeri Governor is a “scam”. Mutahi Kahiga can manage to buy sanitizers donated to the county. His main focus is to fight his deputy Caroline Karugu. The fight has escalated as both resort to political rallies, social media and other underhand tactics to hit at each other. When will he deliver? I won’t blame Nyeri residents because they didn’t elect him. The clueless man cannot put up well with his deputy because she’s focused with upright morals to help Nyeri People as opposed to greediness for public coins by her boss.
Alex Tolgos is an engineer and Governor of Elgeyo Marakwet County since 2013. His neighbor is Stanley Kiptis, Governor Baringo County. Both are the reason Kenyans from those sides hate devolution. I don’t have much to talk about them now that they both stay in Nairobi. Unfortunately most Kenyans from the region are illiterate and the politicians’ wishes that the situation remains that way for easy manipulation.
James Nyoro is an Agricultural Economist from the University of Nairobi and London’s University Wye College. There’s new dawn in Kiambu thanks to the ouster of Ferdinand Waititu. The major health Facilities so far were put up by the former Governor William Gitau Kabogo. Hospitals in Kiambu town, Githunguri and Thika are some of the few projects Kabogo initiated. Waititu had no plan and opted to early tangatanga campaigns.
Hate him or love him, Mike Sonko before he gave away his county to Major, had uplifted many facilities. Pumwani and mama lucy are some of the examples. He has been and still in the forefront of helping the vulnerable wholeheartedly. But I won’t forgive him for killing the dream of devolution by transferring county Functions to the National Government.
Granton Samboja is a disgrace to Taita Taveta residents. The former media personality wants to use a “Kibwana” strategy to be reelected. The scenarios are different but he wants the residents believe that his incompetence is because of the legislature. His focus is 2022. He has spent most of the time for grilling in the senator and boardroom meetings. He will depend on Joho is the coronavirus come knocking. The colonel from Siaya is better than him. But is still wonder why Kenyans vote for retired military and police officers.
Having said that, Nakuru lost five years in the hands of a police officer at helm known as Kimani Mbugua. It is saddening especially when massive amount of money was allocated to the county. Lee Kinyanjui is trying start from scratch. At this moment so far he has done a commendable task. I wish him well.
The counties in other hardship regions like Samburu, Turkana, Mandera, Wajir and Garrissa have done tremendously well. Though all Governors stay in Nairobi but on the ground there’s hope seen on residents’ faces. They depict the reason for devolution. The cases reported so far have been dealt with the enhanced facilities in the said regions.
Join me also in applauding the following Governors;
Ali Hassan Joho
Wycliffe Ambetsa Oparanya
If all Governors could have performed this way then our bet of opening up the country could have been achieved.
President Uhuru announced that counties will receive sh. 5B as Covid fund. Let us assume we have 50 counties for easier arithmetic, which means each county will receive sh. 100m. Mr. President this money will go to fumigation across all markets using sh. 500 of chlorine just to colour water. Kindly use your administrative powers to send the money directly to the vulnerable instead of feeding 38 Governors. That’s my plea Mr. President basing on the previous behaviors of the County CEOs, the cash will disappear in the wind. The money is being released without clear specific instructions to the varied needs of the counties with minimal or no monitoring tools. It’s a scam.