Tuesday, 3 May 2016

Why Duale will determine the Pastoralists’ political future come 2017

Majority Leader Hon Adan Duale with  Sultan Hassan Omar Shurie

There is no one from the pastoralists’ political landscape who can whip a crowd quite like him. Nor are there many with his special talents for handling political foes.

From a junior politician in the 10th Parliament to a political bigwig in the 11th Parliament. Currently he commands myriad support across the North – the political base of the pastoralists - not basing on tribal cocoons compared to his foes.

Patronage from his followers is overwhelming, above all, to his political opponents who deploy all means to thwart his political determination. But, he has outshined their conspiracies innumerable epochs and emerged as the winner. Refer to him as the Member of Parliament for Garissa Township or rather the first Majority Leader of Kenya’s National Assembly, Adan Barre Duale. 

The effect of Hon Adan Duale’s national position – Majority Leader of the National Assembly – is being felt across Northern Kenya; from Marsabit to Mandera, Moyale to Masalani just to name a few.
Before Jubilee came to power, Garissa residents – and the region at large - were treated to frequent power blackouts as businesses often came to a halt due to lack of energy. In those days, electricity was a preserve of few and those in urban areas and businesses in rural areas were left to find alternative ways of operating.

Things are different today. Jubilee government’s national project of Kindaruma-Mwingi-Garissa 135 KV line has reached Garissa - the gateway to Northern Kenya since independence- twitted the Majority Leader @HonAdanDuale. The honorable member for Garissa Township also reminded us in his tweets that ‘’history is being made by expanding the transmission line and transforming energy supply to all corners of the country’’. After connecting Garissa, the Ministry of Energy plans to extend the national power grid transmission to Wajir and Mandera. This, says the Majority Leader, will translate to more industries hence improve the economy of the region thus empowering the residents. The President, H.E Uhuru Kenyatta, will be in the region to officially launch the project sometime in May, this year.

Hon Duale addressing a mammoth crowd
The energy sector has recorded tremendous progress and continues to register growth under the Jubilee administration. The dedication by President Uhuru Kenyatta's Jubilee government to transform the energy industry is clearly godsend and will help boost the country's economy.
Last July the President broke ground for Africa's biggest wind-power project in Laisamis, Marsabit County – One of the Northern Kenya counties - as Kenya took giant steps in asserting its position as a leader in green-energy production globally. According to reports, the project is the biggest single private sector initiative in Africa, costing about Sh70 billion with a galaxy of investors participating in the project.

The region does not support any other economic activity except nomadic animal husbandry due to its harsh weather. But this is set to change with the new investments that the power project will unveil.
The Jubilee government's goal is raising electricity access to 70 per cent by 2017 and universal access by 2020 and the North won’t be left behind since NEP’s celebrated son will deliver its fair share.

This is a clear indication of Jubilee administration’s interest in developing the restive north. This and other ongoing projects will definitely change the economic aspect of Northern Kenya positively since investors will be attracted to the region due to the availability of power and other related infrastructure necessary for business. Hon Duale, as the undisputed kingpin of the pastoralist politics, has a say in all these and how they unfold.

A mammoth crowd in Northern Kenya listening to the Majority Leader Hon Duale
On Nomadic animal husbandry, the president, on March while addressing the Pastoralist Leadership Summit, announced the formation of the Independent Livestock Authority with the objective of providing a ready market for the Pastoralists livestock.  In the same Summit, the President launched the Sh6 billion Equalization Fund to assist the marginalized areas in providing basic services to bring the counties development to par with the rest of the country.

Infrastructure-wise, the road from Garissa to Madogashe is under construction and the contractor is on site. Meanwhile there is also a plan to start the construction from Elwak to Mandera town as the Madogashe one connects all the way to Wajir.

Lately, the Majority Leader has locked horns with his opponents in their attempt to register a tribal, individualistic political party in the name of Pastoralist Party of Kenya to ‘’fight for pastoralists interest’’ when in the real sense it’s the political vehicle of one Senator who is fond of ranting on social media and castigating other leaders even when he has nothing to show for his time in political office since 2002.
The Senator also knows that his own political star is at its peak today and cannot shine brighter than the Senate seat he currently enjoys. The writing is on the wall!

Hate or love him, the Majority Leader Hon Adan Barre Duale remains the kingpin of the Pastoralists’ political landscape. Hon Duale knows the way, goes the way and shows the way! And the Pastoralists have no option but to be with him. And sure they will.