Guest Post by George Kiarie
Kiambaa at independence produced some of the powerful leaders in the Kenyatta government. Some of these leaders came to occupy powerful political and executive positions in both the Jomo Kenyatta and Moi administrations. Little happened to improve agribusiness and education in Kiambaa constituency as a whole.
As a consequence little gains were made in uplifting the people’s quality of life.
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Huge tracts of arable land alienated by colonial settlers were simply taken over by the new ruling African elite, among them Mbiyu Koinange and his siblings, Njenga Karume, James Karugu and a host of well connected political and business people with close links to the Kenyatta government.
Ordinary people remained dispossessed and alienated both economically and politically. Government resettlement funds were largely appropriated not for the benefit of the poor, but to advantage senior civil servants and the political class. Even the Mau Mau settlement fund hardly reached those those uprooted from their ancestral lands during the creation of the colonial white highlands.
Fast forward to contemporary times, Kiambaa is a basket case of poverty , overcrowding and violent crime
It is thus no wonder, the ‘Hustler nation ‘clarion call has found alot of traction in Kiambaa constituency. Majority of the youth and women fend for themselves as hawkers, touts and menial workers. Simply put, they live on less than a dollar a day. Other hordes of youth wallow in petty crime and illicit brews.
Farm based production has almost ground to halt. If you drive around Kiambaa you see neglected pieces of land with little or no cultivation activity . You get a sharp contrast and the picture changes as you drive to neighboring Kabete and Githunguri constituencies. People get busy, roadside idlers get fewer and so do drunken young people idling by the road and village alleys. You see young people delivering fresh farm produce or milk to the market. Back in Kiambaa the same activity is done by their relatively older men and women,some of who are already in the retirement bracket.
Kiambaa requires visionary, hands-on leadership . Selfless and inspired cadre of people with unquestionable fidelity to integrity.
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