NAIROBI, Kenya March 5 – A Kuria community caucus has proposed the creation of an exclusive county in Luo-majority Migori in its submissions to the Building Bridges Initiative (BBI) steering committee on Thursday.
The community led by Kuria East lawmaker Marwa Kitayama said the creation of a county for the Kuria will enhance the delivery of services to Kuria residents.
The legislator who was also accompanied by Kuria West legislator Mathias Nyamabe and Migori Senator Ochillo Ayako said the new county will also boost resource distribution and employee opportunities.
The formation of the new devolved unit, the MPs said, will help address ethnic antagonism and divisive elections.
“The community in its consultative meetings has identified the creation of our own county as the single most important benchmark,” the caucus said in a joint resolution document.
“We want to have our own county so that we can have our governor who will be able to advocate our issues, the office of governor will enhance and bring the delivery of services near the Kuria people,” MP Marwa stated.
According to the caucus, residents of Migori region have suffered losses since the advent of devolution singling out the scraping of some constituencies created during the regimes of former presidents Daniel arap Moi and Mwai Kibaki.
“Devolution led to scrapping of various constituencies which were fully functioning in delivering services to our people,” Senator Ayiko said.
The caucus also pushed for the scrapping of Nairobi county which they suggested to be placed under the national government to create room for formation of Kuria county, in a proposal fronted by former aspirant for Kuria West constituency seat, Matiko Bohoko.
“We propose that not only Nairobi should be put under national government but also other major towns of our republic,” the caucus noted in part of the submissions noted.
“We want Kenyans to decide whether we deserve our county,” Bohoko added.
In addition, the group said upon the creation of the new county, the new devolved government will manage the portion of their budget from the existing budget allocated to Migori county, dismissing the need for additional funding.
“Our bargaining power has been compromised as budgets and projects sabotaged, it is easier for us to seek services in Tanzania because their roads are better. Funds in Migori county are not well channeled to our people,” MP Marwa said.
The group said they are usually viewed as spoilers in national issues which it says has led to huge discrimination.
“We have always been a barometer in knowing who will form government, we have always voted for those forming gov’t and this has put us at crossroads with our neighbours during election period,” Marwa added.