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Kiambu Ward reps upstage MPs, lobby Ruto for projects

Central

 

 When President William Ruto inspected the construction of the 67-kilometre Thika-Magumu Road at the Kamwangi Trading Centre in Gatundu North, Kiambu County. [File, Standard]

Members of Parliament in Kiambu County have come under fire for failing to pitch a strong case for the region during last week's tour by President William Ruto.

Instead, the MPs engaged in political attacks and 2027 succession politics.

The visit by the president to Kiambu presented a chance for the elected representatives to directly engage and push for much-needed development initiatives in their constituencies.

However, rather than focusing on the pressing needs of their constituents, the MPs resorted to tearing into the governor, diverting attention away from crucial regional issues.

This lapse in strategy, however, gave the Members of the County Assembly (MCA), lower in the political hierarchy, chance to lobby for projects on behalf of their constituents.

The president, accompanied by his deputy Rigathi Gachagua, granted the requests made by the MCAs for the tarmacking of certain roads in Lari and Gatundu South constituencies.

Political grandstanding

“The president came prepared to unleash development goodies to our people. But Instead of utilising their platform to advocate infrastructure, healthcare, education, and other vital projects, the MPs engaged in political grandstanding, which ultimately yielded no tangible benefits for the people they represent,” said Godfrey Mucheke, who is the leader of majority at the Kiambu County Assembly said.

During the president’s tour of Lari where he commissioned the Uplands-Kijabe-Mai Mahiu road for Sh4.56 billion, it took the intervention of Lari/Kirenga MCA Josphat Kinyanjui to have construction of Kiracha-Limuru Road approved by the president.

After being introduced by Governor Kimani Wamatangi, the MCA, who is a person living with disability, pleaded with the president to have the three-kilometre Kiracha-Limuru Road and Gitithia which links Kirenga area and Mai-Mahiu be tarmacked.

“I have heard what Kinyanjui has requested. He has described the three kilometres as a discount road of the road that we have commissioned. I agree and that road will be constructed,” the president said and directed the Principal Secretary for Roads and Infrastructure Joseph Mbugua to take it up.

MCAs win

Kinale MCA Dominic Kiranga was next in lobbying for roads in his ward after being given an opportunity by Wamatangi to address the president at Soko Mjinga where Ruto launched a market.

“Kinale is the only ward in Kiambu County that does not have even a single kilometre of road. And since I am your grassroots leader and you are committed to serving your people, I am sure you will remember us and do for us at least 20 kilometres of tarmac roads,” Kiranga requested.

The president quickly responded and pledged that “for the respect of this gentleman (Kinale MCA”, his administration would tarmac the Kinale to Kiracha Road.

When the President toured Gatundu South last Friday where he commissioned Rwabura irrigation project, it was the Ndarugo MCA Njinu Ndiba who drew the attention of Ruto to have a road that connects Ndarugu and Fly-Over along the Nairobi-Nakuru highway tarmacked.

“It’s only 20 kilometres but because of current status, if people want to go to Fly Over, they have to travel for 150 kilometres,” the MCA said, and in response, the president pledged to have it upgraded to bitumen standards.

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