By Kennedy Lumwamu
An MCA has accused Governor Jackson Mandago of discriminating against non-Kalenjin, charging that development projects are deliberately being bent to disadvantage areas represented by members of the county assembly who are not locals of Uasin Gishu County.
The leader of minority at the county assembly Ramadhan Ali, who is also the Kiplombe Ward MCA, says that in Eldoret, although county assembly committees deliberate on and approve budgets for various projects, when it came to implementation the technical staff deliberately by-pass areas where the MCAs are not from the majority tribe.
In the county, Francis Muya, who is the MCA for the populous Langas Ward, and Peter Chomba, who represents Huruma Ward, are the other two MCAs, apart from Ali of Kiplombe, who are non-locals. Uasin Gishu County is predominantly Kalenjin; Muya and Chomba, who were elected on Jubilee Party tickets, hail from Central Kenya while Ali is from Western.
According to Ali, only Sh700,000 was released in the supplementary budget for the maintenance of roads in the county, which is not enough. He further reveals that the county government set aside only Sh280 million for the 2018-2019 financial year for construction and road projects, which he said was not enough for the whole county.
But a senior official in the finance department, defending the county government, says that this year, priority had been given to other areas.
While declining to be named because he was not authorised to comment on the matter, he said last year roads received a lot of money because at the time it was a priority.
But Ali disagrees. “The Jet-Kapchumba Road, crucial in the transportation of farm products, was allocated very little money” he said.
“I feel there is some deliberate blocking of development in some areas, perhaps as punishment to the people for voting in outsiders. In my ward, we borehole projects whose drilling stopped more than a year ago. It seems being an MCA isn’t enough; one has to know someone for there to be progress.”(