Wednesday, 17 September 2014
Almost two years and Eastleigh has nothing to write home about Kidero's government.
On Tuesday, in his meet-the-people-tour, Nairobi governor Dr Evans Othiambo Kidero made a stopover in Eastleigh - the unrivalled Somalis business hub on the east of Nairobi christened "small Mogadishu".
Despite being a jubilant, I wish to bring to the attention of Nairobi's 'Commander in Chief' that I voted for him during the last general election, but had the Supreme Court upheld the Court of Appeal nullification of his election, I would not have voted for his re-election. Why? You may ask. It's simple. Very simple. In the last 18 months he has been in office, there is nothing to write home about.
We the people of Eastleigh live in estates that are chocking under the weight of garbage and bursting sewers. To add insult to an injury,our roads are under construction for over 3 years,probably more than it took to complete the Thika Super Highway. Hawkers are everywhere on the streets for their only market (former Nairobi City Council Market) has been grabbed. The mushrooming Merus-owned miraa kiosks make the environment dirty as they throw garbage and miraa leftovers (Somalis call it barixi and hardly buy) on the roadside and in drains. Eastleigh is literally chocking!
I invite the governor and his Environment Executive - a former Town Clerk no less! -to visit Eastleigh and stay there for a day and perhaps spend a night in one of Eastleigh's skyscrapers to see the extent of dirt. Not just to be dropped by a fuel guzzler, talk to the people for less than ten minutes and disappear to where-who-knows.
Eastleigh is the only suburb outside the Central Business District that contributes close to 30% of the entire revenue collected by the City County of Nairobi. For your information, Eastleigh is dotted with skyscrapers of which many were constructed within the last eight years. I have been taught that development comes with social amenities. None exists here. People travel from all over Kenya and neighbouring East and Central Africa countries to Eastleigh to shop. You will virtually find anything under the sun in Eastleigh.
The recent police crackdown in Eastleigh -Police are being investigated for harassment, extortion and assault -in the name of fighting terror had a serious negative impact on its business and image. Eastleigh has bounced back!
Kidero where are you???