Kinyanjui: Kiamunyi, Lanet, Mawanga estates to reap big once Nakuru becomes City

Nakuru residents have okayed the Nakuru Municipality to become Kenya’s fourth City.

At the same time, Governor Lee Kinyanjui has hinted of the expansion of the City-to-be boundaries to include adjacent estates.

He highlighted estates like Kiamunyi, Lanet and Mawanga that would ultimately benefit from the development funding set aside for Nakuru City.

In September 2017, the Cabinet approved the elevation of Nakuru and Eldoret municipalities to Cities.He was speaking on Tuesday when he received a public participation report on the envisaged City status.

The City status ad-hoc committee chairman Mr. John Kitilit said a majority of the stakeholders were for the City status but wary of increased levies and taxes.

“Majority of Nakuru residents are ready for the City status, but wary of increased levies and taxes” said Kitilit.

He added that residents, among them politicians, were skeptical on the conferment citing infrastructural unpreparedness.

Governor Lee Kinyanjui said his was to progressively solve emerging issues among them having a sustainable development funding model.

Nakuru Municipality chairman Lawrence Karanja refuted claims of an arbitrary increase in taxes and rising cost of living once Nakuru attains City status.

He said a variation in the charges must be approved by the County Assembly of Nakuru before taking effect.Governor Lee said his office would present the finding to the local Assembly for a debate before handing it to the Senate.

“From here, we shall be presenting the report to the county assembly and then Senate” said Kinyanjui.

Kinyanjui is optimistic that the document would be passed and handed to President Uhuru Kenyatta to confer the City status later in the year.

The Governor said his office was committed to seeing locals appreciate the City status value by having meaningful development footprint.

PHOTO/NGPU: Nakuru Governor Lee Kinyanjui(Left)receives public participation report from City status ad-hoc committee chairman Mr. John Kitilit.

Legislators oppose ‘speedy’ elevation of Nakuru to City

The process of elevating Nakuru to city may hit a snag after Nakuru legislators caucus presented a report that indirectly rejects the process which they term as pure public relation.

The report that was on Monday presented to the ad-hoc committee that is collecting views from members of the public on city status process cited various issues that are yet to be addressed before Nakuru can gain the city status.

According to Nakuru legislators, Nakuru still faces challenges of storm water drainage, solid waste management, lack of proper cemetery and a cremation, health facilities and ambulances, poor economic planning, Poor structure for SMEs and Industries, poor public transport sector system, water sewerage and sanitation.

Other areas that the legislators raised concern on the process include lack of proper public participation and its timelines with legislators arguing that members of the public have not had enough time to air their views on the elevation of city status.

The report that was prepared by all the Nakuru Legislators was tabled to the John Kitilit-led committee by Nakuru Senator Susan Kihika who was accompanied by Nakuru Town East MP David Gikaria and his Bahati counterpart Onesmus Kimani Ngunjiri.

Through the report, the Nakuru legislators have challenged the county government of Nakuru to address the challenges that Nakuru is facing before talking of the compliance to become a city.

The leaders are calling for a joint deliberation among stakeholders on the way forward for Nakuru Municipality becoming a city and that the process should be given up to 10 years to deliberate on the same and ensure all measures are in place.

“Majority hold the view that the county government has not given sufficient information on the impact of Nakuru becoming a city. The above challenges should be addressed before we even dream of becoming a city” stated the leaders in their recommendation read by Senator Kihika.

Nakuru Town East MP David Gikaria who attended the session raising concerns on the security status arguing that there is need for more police stations in Nakuru Municipality.

The MP also took issue with Members of the County assembly whom he claimed might be compromised when the report shall be tabled.

He cautioned the county assembly legislators against being compromised to pass reports without understanding their impact.

“We know the report will land at the Senate but also at the county assembly, but we are worried with the way our MCAs behave. They should not be compromised to pass the report without reading the recommendations” said Gikaria.

Sentiments echoed by his Bahati Counterpart Onesmus Kimani Ngunjiri.

The vocal MP who is also the chair Nakuru Legislators’ caucus calling on the Kitilit –led ad-hoc committee to go through the report presented and make conclusion depending on the recommendations the MPs had made.

“We are not opposed to the City status but we are saying let there be engagement among stakeholders. As legislators we have participated so as committee go through the report and call us again” said Ngunjiri.

Their insights coming barely a week after Nakuru Street Traders and Hawkers Association presented a petition to the ad-hoc committee stating similar concerns.

The ad hoc committee on the elevation of Nakuru was constituted and mandated to collect public views.The committee will then write a report with recommendations that will be tabled in the county assembly as well as Senate.

PHOTO/Pristone Mambili:Nakuru Legislators Senator Susan Kihika,MPs David Gikaria(Nakuru Town East) and Kimani Ngunjiri(Bahati) when they presented their report to the ad-hoc committee on city status.

Street traders and hawkers want elevation of Nakuru to city held back for 8 years

Members of the Nakuru Street Traders and Hawkers Association-NSTHA have opposed the elevation of Nakuru Municipality to City status.

Through a memorandum presented on Monday to the Ad Hoc Committee on elevation of Nakuru to city status, the NSTHA members led by their chairman Simon Ole Nasieku they are a worried lot that the cost implications of city will entrench poverty and unemployment syndrome.

The members have also raised an issue of fearing eviction from their current business operation areas.

They cited the county government report LHPP/DCU/VOL 1 2018 on mushrooming of kiosks/stalls and car wash in Nakuru town.

According to the traders, the report that was prepared by Stephen Mucheru Chege committtee and commissioned by Governor Lee Kinyanjui bears witness to their worries.

“To date no alternative venues have been established to accommodate the victims of the Stephen Mucheru Chege county report commissioned in 2018 by Governor Kinyanjui” read part of the memorandum.

The Memorandum of opposition also cites unpreparedness in the planning of Nakuru in terms of infrastructure , street lighting and security, solid waste management, storm water drainage Plan,housing,lack of own land for future development of the city with cemetery being full.

It is due to the above concerns that the members of the Nakuru Street Traders and Hawkers Association want the clamour on Nakuru City status held back for 8 years to usher in acceptable and affordable avenues for the victims of the implementation of the Stephen Mucheru Chege county report.

The memorandum presented to John Kitilit-led committee further calls for more sensitization and awareness on the City status which according to the members there has been none and the Nakuru residents are still in darkness.

“There has not been any public sensitization on the city status” said Nasieku.

Nakuru Town East MP David Gikaria who attended the public forum challenging the Ad Hoc Committee on elevation of Nakuru to city status to ensure that they conduct the sittings at grass root level to get real issues from the locals.

The legislator also proposing the extension of the timeline for the committee arguing that the current one month is not adequate for them to get views from the locals.

“As we even do the public participation, let us also go to the grass root where we can get the real views. I propose that we also have an extension timelines for the committee” said Gikaria.

The John Kitilit-led Ad Hoc Committee on elevation of Nakuru to city status was constituted and mandated to collect public views.The committee will then write a report with recommendations that will then be tabled in the county assembly.

Speaking after receiving the Memorandum from Nakuru Street Traders and Hawkers Association-NSTHA, Kitilit stated that theirs is to write a report based on the views collected.

Earlier in the day the Ad Hoc Committee had received views from Nakuru transport stakeholders called for the de congestion of the town and ensure conducive bus terminus and parking.

PHOTO/Pristone Mambili:Nakuru Street Traders and Hawkers Association-NSTHA chairman Simon Ole Nasieku at the County chamber presenting a memorandum of opposition to the elevation of Nakuru Municipality to City status.

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