THE UNTOLD STORY: WHY KENYA IS LAGGING BEHIND
By Peter Imbuyi | June 10th 2017
From The Bloggers DeskBloggers, prolific writers, editors, politicians, church leaders and influential journalists have addressed issues contributing to Kenya’s poor and worsening economy but all along they never spelled out or this never came to their minds.
It’s now five decades since Kenya attained independence from the colonialists and actually, Kenya cannot be compared to the ranks of nations like South Africa which got independence when I was only a one-year-old baby, two and a half decades ago. Asked why? I know what is already running in your minds, corruption. No, this time I defer with that in all latitudes and dimensions.
However, since independence Kenya has been trying to over-concentrate on the service industry at the expense of improving Agriculture.
This is what has led to the nation lagging behind. With the recent evidence, the Standard Gauge Railway applying here.
Great thanks to the Jubilee government for achieving one of the many promises they made to the Kenyans.But back to my point, how do you build a railway when Mumias Sugar, The Pan Paper Mills among other companies are nowhere to be seen? Apart from the levies subjected to this companies, there was a creation of employment opportunities to the citizens.
Today, the Jubilee government could not be struggling to allocate funds to cater for the construction, maintenance of roads and bridges, because it was evident in the areas the industries were located there, was good infrastructure.
In addition to that, the industries built schools and health centers to take care of the employees and their children.
The reasons why the colonialists came to Kenya was because of the fertility of the land and the need to acquire raw materials for their industries. This simply means that for Kenya to grow, we should just major in agriculture.
The whites only constructed roads and railways for easy transportation of products and raw materials but not to bring back any profit.
Constructing or establishing the SGR was a good idea but only because of decongesting the roads and ferrying of bulky goods and passengers was not a good reason for that. I think it would have been wiser to improve and maintain what we already have and the cash that remains to be taken for other beneficial projects such as improving our industries.
Kenya has lacked the urge and motivation to major on the full utilisation of its natural resources. These will include the prospection of minerals. Kenya is one of the nations blessed with a rich nature.
Ignorance has cost and will continue being a hindrance to its development. At the extent, Kenya gives all its contracts to foreign countries up to the prospection of minerals as they only get the few left reserves.
How can we import our own coffee and tea? Failure to have the necessary processing companies forces us to export unfinished goods to be processed and furnished only to import them again and acquire them from the shops at high prices.
How many times have the tea, coffee, sugarcane and miraa farmers complained and demonstrated because of poor farming conditions the answer is probably, so many. Agriculture is and will remain to be the country’s backbone however much we neglect it will always come back to haunt us.
According to me, the Agricultural sector is supposed to have been given more attention after security among other dockets. How many Agricultural institutes are there in Kenya, very few. Why and where are we heading to? Will we feed on Information Communication Technology? You visited the Kenya Airways, the government has pumped a fortune to ensure that it thrives, why don’t we also do this to agriculture?
The transport and communication industries in Kenya have been given more attention. This evident with the increased media stations and advancement of transport systems at the extent of clearing fertile land and setting up structures at the expense of cultivation.
My humble request to President Uhuru, Kenyans, and all politicians, is that they should consider taking up this step.
Abandoning agriculture is like denying our ancestry which is difficult. The government should major and establish agricultural research centers and institutes like the Huduma Centres, because of the good quality of services offered there thanks, Uhuruto.
Written by; Makah Peter Imbuyi, a student, blogger at Moi University pursuing a degree leading to Bachelor of Science in Strategic Management.
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