NAIROBI, Kenya Jan 15 – Fafi parliamentary aspirant in Garissa county Abdi Omar Shurie of The National Alliance (TNA) says he will prioritise provision of healthcare, education and infrastructure in the region if he is elected in the March 4 election.
Speaking to Capital FM News, the businessman who holds a degree in Banking and Finance and is currently pursuing his Masters in International Conflict Management said he intends to use his background in the corporate world to ensure efficient management of the newly created constituency.
“Fafi is a very poor constituency. I want to better their lives by improving access to healthcare, education and infrastructure as well,” Shurie said.
With its status as a gateway to North Eastern Province, Garissa has experienced a spur of growth and investors have obviously injected a lot of money in the town.
Garissa County has ample water supply as the Garissa Water and Sewerage Company draws its supply from River Tana.
Farmers too are carrying out irrigation to great effect.
However high youth unemployment rates and a sense of laxity by law enforcement agencies have been a contributor to insecurity in the County whose effect has seen the decrease in investment.
He said he will make job creation for the youth a priority in a bid to provide the youth with an alternative from a life of criminality.
A parliamentary report claimed that Somali youths in Garissa were being lured into joining Somalia terrorist group Al Shabaab due to a lack of employment.
“My plan is to empower the youth, by creating employment opportunities and also trying to get them back to school so that they can at least improve their education status,” Shurie said in an interview at the Capital FM offices.
A parliamentary committee reports suggest the increased insecurity is a natural consequence of the incursion into Somalia.
Garissa County Commissioner Maalim Mohammed last month claimed Kenya’s intelligence intercepted a message seized from the al-Qaida-linked Somali militant group showing that the rebels are being offered up to Sh694,402 ($8,000) as a reward for killing Kenyan security officers.
But the youthful aspirant says all is not lost for the youth and calls for the wise counsel of the clan elders.
“I will also get the community and the national government and the local leadership sitting and finding a lasting solution that will keep these young guys from getting involved in any activity that may be criminal,” he said.
Shurie said he will work with the national and county governments and aid agencies to address the influx of refugees from Dadaab camps which are in the constituency.
“You can stop the influx of the Somalia refugees, but you manage it because there is insecurity in their country so they will always cross in.”
“By managing it, it is for the UN and the other aid agencies to be more active and to cooperate with the Kenya Government and of course the locals because there is already existing refugee camps and getting these people to remain with the limits of the refugee camps.”
“The UN has to give them the support that they require in order to stop them from getting out of their camps so that they get into town to better their lives,” he said.
Shurie says he is confident of being a member of the Eleventh Parliament especially since he does not have an opponent in the TNA party nominations.