By PATRICK KIMANZI – COUNTY DIARY Editor
KITUI – The Ngilu administration has vowed to keep straight ahead with development road map and will switch on the Kitui stone crusher despite the stalemate, sources have told COUNTY DIARY
An inter-parties meeting convened by Kitui Governor H.E Charity Ngilu, aimed at resolving and legitimatizing the operations of the Kitui ballast crusher that is set to generate millions in revenue collections for the people of the semi-arid county, ended in disarray yesterday.
Despite Kitui Government officials explaining at length and presenting projected earnings, facts, figures and tons of meta-data, leaders representating the beneficiaries kept rallying their ranks and created a rumpus cutting shot an important economic meeting – to the chagrin of Musangi.
Gung-ho Ngilu unbowed
But defiant iconic Governor Ngilu, her eyes focused on her 5 pillar escalated development blueprint that contain cohorts and roadmaps towards exploiting natural resources spread across Kitui County, has vowed to keep the crusher rumbling and busy.
Vast natural resources
“There will be an agreement. The Ngilu development jaggernaut has set the eyes on the prize. We will have development policies. Kitui is bestowed with vast resources that must be exploited to benefit our people” said Philip Mumo, the minister whose mandate include the environment docket.
Emotions and temperatures ran high during the rendezvous held at a city hotel – as KRC leaders questioned the authenticity of the ballast crusher lying idle at Kwa Kilui – while Musangi weeps.
“Elected leaders are used to preempting everything. They think they are so smart and that we are dimwits. We will put up a fight” said former Kitui Rural Hon. Charles Nyamai said.
Millions at stake
While maintaing that the Kitui county Government delivered the machine without any legislation, the benefits of the crusher outweigh the sentiments.
“This crusher will keep benefiting and uplifting livelihoods of over 200,000 people in Kitui for years yet some nondescripts, including expired politicians want to derail the crusher for their own benefit. We will not allow politicking. Musangi wants the crusher working” he said speaking to COUNTY DIARY.
Rushed impact assessment
Among other issues raised at the meeting held in Nairobi, health impact assessment was either rushed or ignored by Ngilus gung-ho way of doing things – which seem ill advised, the gathered professionals said.
“Again, I would like to understand the health impact when operations commence. What adverse effects will the crusher pose to those who people around habitating near the stone crusher. Why are we not talking about these things?” added a section of leaders, according to Whatsapp posts seen by COUNTY DIARY.
Chinks in the chain
“Others posted that while the crasher is not a bad idea after all, the authorities need to address the existing the communication gaps. They should tell us who really owns the crasher” said the professional body.
The crusher must and should operate within a legal framework to avoid illegitimacy in the whole process. This has not been addressed during today’s meeting, the said.
Rallying the masses
“Look at this stalemate from this perspective. If it were not for the cheap rhetoric and mere politicking – this crusher would have been used to construct Mutomo highway road earning the county millions in revenue. But look! All we have are politicians and so-called professionals trying to benefit themselves by rallying poor people against their own development” said Minister Mumo summing the hard-line stance taken by the phalanx of defiang leaders.
Some people at Kwa Kilui said that some Governor handlers had employed spin doctors from the area led by an MCA popularly known as Mbaki Mbaki. He is said to move around, convincing people and musing that all was okey. It’s not(sic)!” said a WhatsApp post Sunday.
Patrick Kimanzi, a former Daily Nation correspondent is the COUNTY DIARY Editor. Yohana Kimwele contributed to this report from Kitui. Email The Editor: (firstname.lastname@example.org).