By Anthony Kagiri
I am looking for like minded people to establish the ‘Name and Honor Network.’ The aim will be to recognise those who have been diligent in discharging their mandate as public servants. Probably by doing this, we will motivate others by making them envious of their colleagues.
My first candidate for honor is City Town Clerk John Gakuo. Not that Gakuo has done us any favor in his four years reign at City Hall but because in my assessment he has managed to do what many civil servants shy from, ‘challenging the political class.’ I have admired his hard stance against the Mayor and his team of councillors to the extent of ducking their weapons- chairs. As reports have it, his time at City Hall is over but still I give him a standing ovation.
Mayor Geoffrey Majiwa and his team appear determined to give him a disgraceful exit. But wait a minute isn’t archaic to imagine you are going to eject a Town Clerk by acclamation and throwing chairs at him?
We have gotten used to chair fights amongst councillors but when these guys extended this to the Town Clerk’s office it got to my nerves. It was more fascinating to hear that the fight was occasioned by a denial to increase allowances for a burial ceremony. Mr Gakuo is one man I have immense respect for. For starters been able to handle the rowdy and mostly self seeking councillors is no mean achievement.
While I am not well informed on the internal operations in City Hall, as a Nairobian I have seen a little of Mr Gakuo’s works on the streets. Who could have imagined about five years ago that you could gulp fresh drinking water for free in the city centre? Now you have it through placement of strategic water taps in the city.
We all can remember the days of a dark city controlled by street children and thugs always ready to pounce on any unsuspecting person. The former District Commissioner has rectified all this. Our city now has basic facilities like street lights, dust bins, benches and trees. His predecessors had failed to do this. He has given us a clean flowery city. Gone are the days when the city streets were all messy with hawkers at every available space.
Workers’ strikes that used to be the order of the day in the 90s are gone. And for all this he has rubbed some shoulders the wrong way. God fathers of city hall and councillors who have the mentality that their seats gives them a ticket to control the Treasury and land registry at City hall are among those most affected.
If you ask me this man has brought order and sanity at City Hall. I am not well versed with the criteria of identifying candidates for Presidential awards but if you ask me, this man definitely needs to be on that list.
I am not ignorant to the many other challenges facing our city. I know we need water, better sewerage and waste management system, better roads……… but I also appreciate the much this man has done.
There you have it, Gakuo deserves a standing ovation. The Name and Honour Network is looking forward for the second candidate to honour.