ISIOLO, Kenya, May 19 – The Government will not tolerate persons who plan to undermine efforts aimed at availing quality health services to Kenyans through corruption, President Mwai Kibaki has warned.
The President emphasised that the health of Kenyans must never be compromised because of greed and through schemes meant to put money in pockets of people who have no capacity to deliver health services.
In this regard, President Kibaki directed that the ongoing investigations on the Civil Service Medical Scheme be concluded speedily, asserting that civil servants like other taxpaying citizens deserve a functional, efficient and cost-effective health scheme.
“I will therefore be expecting an expeditious completion in the ongoing investigations on the Civil Service medical scheme. Civil servants like other taxpaying Kenyans deserve a functional, efficient and cost effective health scheme,” the President said.
President Kibaki was speaking on Saturday when he opened the Catholic Diocese of Isiolo Matercare Referral Hospital in Isiolo County, constructed at an estimated cost of over Sh96 million.
The Head of State said punitive action will be taken on those found to have participated in any acts that may have compromised the health of the Kenyan people.
He observed that the Constitution and the country’s development blueprint, Vision 2030, underscored the priority that the Government has given to the health sector.
Said the President: “Indeed, every Kenyan has the right to the highest attainable standard of health, which includes the right to quality reproductive healthcare services.”
President Kibaki affirmed that his Government paid special attention to strengthening the country’s healthcare sector particularly the maternal and child healthcare as outlined in the Millennium Development Goals.
He pointed out that among the measures the Government has taken to boost the health sector include increasing financial allocations, expanding and rehabilitating health facilities, improving supply of quality medical products and streamlining the management of the financial resources.
“We will continue implementing these measures. In doing so however, we must firmly deal with unscrupulous persons who may want to take advantage of the initiatives we are taking,” President Kibaki said.
Noting that there is famine in some parts of Isiolo County due to crop failure in the last season, President Kibaki said the Government will intensify the on-going relief food distribution to ensure there is adequate food in the affected areas.
President Kibaki also urged local farmers to boost agricultural production in the region by applying modern agricultural practices and techniques.
On security, the President said the Government was keen to address the challenges being experienced in the County mainly as a result of banditry, cattle rustling and differences among various clans.
In this connection, he directed both the Kenya Police and the Administration Police to intensify security patrols in the area so as to stamp out banditry, cattle rustling and other criminal activities.
He urged district peace committees to step up efforts in peace building and conflict resolution in order to address inter-communal differences.
“On their part, I urge members of the public to cooperate with security agencies through community policing,” President Kibaki said.
The President also directed the Ministry of Lands to fast-track issuance of title deeds to local residents in order to streamline land ownership and management in the county, noting that plans to upgrade Isiolo Town to a Resort City have made land a major source of conflict between different
He advised the people of Isiolo County and other counties to unite and agree on how to share resources instead of engaging in conflict, adding that religious leaders should also partner with the Government in fostering peace and harmony among various communities.
The Head of State affirmed that Isiolo set fundamental growth which would change the face of the town with a good communication and road network system.
In view of this, the President urged local residents to join other incoming investors in enjoying the emerging opportunities as a result of mega projects planned to cut across the town especially the Lamu Port South Sudan and Ethiopia Transport Corridor.
Commending the Catholic Church for the role it has continued to play in complementing the Government’s efforts in provision of affordable healthcare services, the President expressed optimism that the ultra-modern health facility in Isiolo will improve access to quality
maternal and child-care services in the region.
President Kibaki thanked Matercare International for their contribution to the welfare of the Isiolo County community and Kenyans at large.
The Head of State assured the Catholic church that the Government would support the hospital by deploying medical personnel and provide an ambulance too.
A two kilometre earth road leading to the modern hospital from the main highway to Isiolo town would also be tarmacked, the Head of State pledged.
Prof George Saitoti, who spoke on behalf of Medical Services Minister, Prof Anyang’ Nyong’o, thanked the Matercare international for investing such huge resources in the welfare of Isiolo people and Kenyans in general.
Prof Saitoti said that the construction of modern health facility would greatly supplement Government’s efforts in addressing challenges in public hospitals such as inadequate resources and upgrading of obsolete equipment and other vital facilities.
In his sermon during the colourful occasion, the Vice-Chairman, Kenya Episcopal Conference Bishop Phillip Anyolo termed the event a day of celebrating life as well as important culture that upholds human dignity.
Bishop Anyolo asserted that the health facility was one of the structures erected by the church to celebrate human life in the best way, particularly to protect and nurture lives in the region.
He said, “Don’t fear to visit the hospital but use it in the best way possible. This hospital has been constructed to celebrate life and it will used well for the benefit of human life.”
The Bishop reminded Kenyans that any society and the nation at large evolved into what it celebrated and appealed to wananchi to desist from embracing cultures that heralded self-destruction as well as the destruction of families, institutions and even the entire nation.
Bishop Anyolo stressed that any society celebrated what it believed in and cautioned Kenyans against celebrating vices such as greed, hatred, selfishness, pride, deceit and perversion among others.
In the sermon based from the book of Acts 18: 23-28, he pointed out that ungodly and illegitimate practices like homosexuality and lesbianism were direct attack to the essence of human life.
Other speakers included the Director, Matercare International, Dr Robert Walley and the Apostolic Vicar of Isiolo, Bishop Anthony Ireri.
The occasion was attended by assistant minister Kilemi Mwiria, several legislators, acting head of Public Service and Secretary to the Cabinet Francis Kimemia, acting permanent secretary Internal Security Ministry Mutea Iringo, senior government officials and numerous catholic bishops
across the country.