WE’LL REVISIT NYAHURURU CLAIM, VOWS GOV. KIMEMIA
Nyahururu still belongs to Nyandarua County, Governor Francis Kimemia has said.
Speaking during a ground-breaking ceremony for an ultra-modern office block at the County Assembly grounds on October 17 , the Governor said all arms of the County Government are still grappling with loss of the commercial hub to neighbouring Laikipia County.
“At a time when other counties enjoyed huge infrastructure at their disposal, inherited mainly from defunct local authorities, Nyandarua had none of these as our facilities were locked up in Nyahururu town – the former district headquarters – which was transferred to Laikipia County,” he said.
For the four years that the Nyandarua County Assembly existed since 2013, Members faced serious challenges not just for lack of offices, but also inadequate room to transact business in a decent manner.
Members had to transact business from a tiny room provided by the Presbyterian Church of East Africa in Ol’Kalou town.
“The Honourable Speaker, Members and their personal staff simply had nothing to show for an office. This is what my Deputy and I meant when we told our people that Nyandarua is a marginalized County that needs special attention and should never be compared to other counties in the former Central Province,” said Governor Kimemia.
The Nyandarua County Assembly Service Board in its Strategic Plan, 2014 – 2017 prioritized the construction of the County Assembly to house the debating chambers and enable the Assembly move from the PCEA Church.
The Clerk and other Assembly staff were housed at the former Ol Kalou town Council Offices opposite Ol Kalou Police Station.
“The initial plan was to build a prefab Assembly at the former Ol Kalou Town Council grounds, but later the design was changed to a modern chamber including Offices for the Speaker, Clerk and a few offices for the staff supporting the County Assembly business, Committee Rooms, Board Room and a Restaurant,” said Speaker Hon. Ndegwa Wahome.
The location of the site for the new chambers changed to the present location.
The New Assembly Chambers was started in 2014 and completed in March 2017 and the Assembly moved from the PCEA Church.
Governor Kimemia said though resources that would have gone to finance development activities in Nyandarua had gone towards construction of the new Chambers, the struggle had not been in vain.
“The ultra-modern office block whose grounds we are breaking today will be a landmark in our growing town, owing to the many members of staff it will accommodate and the public it will serve. The Executive is also working to complete an ultra-modern office block to accommodate our many staff members, and mitigate our loss of Nyahururu. As I have previously said, our ties to Nyahururu is a matter we shall revisit,” he said.
The Governor said Nyandarua should build its internal capacity in critical sectors, and prioritize local contractors, technical staff and youths as part of the County Government’s “Buy Nyandarua, Build Nyandarua” agenda.
“While we should appreciate support we have received from the National Government on both ends, let us also work to address the shortage of technical staff – civil, quantity surveyors and architects – in our County by supporting those among our children who are pursuing further studies in these fields, and providing opportunities to those who are already qualified,” he said.
He said the County Government has already forwarded to the Executive Office of the President all presidential directives and commitments on Nyandarua for implementation, following President Uhuru Kenyatta’s recent visit and pledge to lift up the County as its co-Governor.
“Many investors and development partners are keen to support the County. Already, the Export Processing Zone, European Union and University of Nairobi have been to see us with very encouraging proposals,” he said.
Over 10 bills – after public participation – will soon be forwarded to the County Assembly as part of the County Government’s continuing transformative agenda.
The Governor supported the National Government in its continuing efforts to stabilize the country ahead of next week’s repeat presidential polls.
“Tumaini Supermarket in Kisumu that was vandalized a few days ago is owned by a Nyandaruan. We want to continue living peacefully with all communities in our County. We urge former Prime Minister Raila Odinga to respect and utilize the institutions we have in addressing his grievances,” he said.
He concluded: “When I served in the National Government in 2013, we thwarted an attempt by some people to carry out a revolution. I support Acting Cabinet Secretary for Interior, Hon. Fred Matiang’i, in his continuing efforts to stop violent demonstrations.”
The function was attended by several senior County Government and Assembly officials, Members of County Public Service Board, as well as members of the public.