BY JOAN WANJIKU,NAIROBI,12TH NOV,2021-A section of leaders from the Ukambani region led by three governors has endorsed ODM leader Raila Odinga to succeed President Uhuru Kenyatta in next year’s general elections.
In a meeting hosted in Wote, Makueni County, Governors Charity Ngilu (Kitui), Prof. Kivutha Kibwana and Alfred Mutua (Machakos) called on the former premier to prioritize access to water, and invest in water storage facilities.
The leaders in a written declaration, read out by Governor Mutua, said Odinga was well equipped and positioned to lead the country while fostering economic growth.
“We the leaders drawn from Machakos, Makueni and Kitui have agreed to unite our people on a political path that benefits our people as a whole,” read the statement.
“We unanimously support the agenda of shared prosperity and inclusivity being championed by the Raila Odinga through Azimio la Umoja and the vision of our nation founded in the utu, umoja, usawa, usalishaji and ustawi kwa wote.”
In the declaration, the leaders chronologically identified the challenges facing their people stating that Odinga was the one to ensure the issues are resolved.
They pointed out lack of economic opportunities, persistent droughts, inadequate infrastructure, insecurity, rise in poverty levels and unemployment of the youth as some of the challenges facing the county.
“In order to effectively address these challenges, we have resolved we will join hands with the Odinga for the 2022 elections under Azimio la Umoja,” read the declaration.
Governor Mutua highlighted resolutions by the leaders regarding political interests in representation, economic prosperity, devolution in terms of resource distribution, eradicating poverty (drought), insecurity, infrastructure developments and creation of employment opportunities.
The governor who referred to Odinga as a development conscious leader said that having worked with him in the past government, the leaders had no doubt that he was going to liberate the country.
In his brief speech, Odinga acknowledged the role of Kamba leaders in fighting for the Nation’s independence appreciating the likes of Paul Ngei and Muindi Mbingu.
He echoed the governors’ words saying that Kenya should uphold unity as a final result of peace and prosperity.
“Nimeleta U tano. Utu, undugu, umoja, usawa na uzalishaji. Tunasema inawezekana,” he said.
In line with the requests of the Ukambani leaders, Odinga said that he would focus on ensuring resources are trickled down to the county levels.
“This is one of the commitments I am making, that I will bring more resources down to the counties and ensure they are used effectively for the benefit of the people of our country,” Odinga stated.
The ODM party leader identified tribalism as the key source of division. He promised that his government’s main agenda is to unite Kenyans and eradicate poverty especially in the region where arid weather conditions are prevalent.
“Tunataka kumaliza ukabila. Pia tungependa uchumi wetu uimarike. Tutumie mbinu zetu wakati mvua inanyesha kwa wingi kuvuna maji ili tusiteseke ukame ukija,” h