I remember the first time I visited Nairobi’s Central
Business District (CBD). The tall
buildings, numerous vehicles, and the unending population left me in awe. Fast
forward a few years later, the ‘awe’ has been replaced by deep concern for the
people of Nairobi.
Why am I so concerned? Walk with me.
We are living in times when everyone is talking about the
need to decongest the city, but needless to say, the population keeps
increasing. We continuously talk about the need to beef up security, create
jobs, clean up the city …but all we seem to be doing is talk, talk and more
I am worried because, despite the fact that we have had some
very well laid policies and plans, our implementation of the same has
continuously gone missing. And do not, even for a moment think that it is the
leaders that we choose who should shoulder all the blame.
The truth is that the joke is on us the electorate. It is us
who continuously elect leaders based on party instead of a track record. It is
us who elect leaders based on the size of their pocket instead of brains. We
are the ones who accept to live in deplorable conditions.
For as long as we keep tolerating mediocre leadership,
conditions within our city will only get worse. We need to demand better healthcare,
and yes, it should be affordable. We need a better business environment, and
for this we have to demand it. Conditions should be favorable for aspiring
entrepreneurs to come in and make it. Decongestion of traffic is not even a
matter of discussion. Ideas on this have been tabled; what remains now is the
matter of implementation.
We need to see our city get back to its glory days. We need
to get done with the basics and move on to the next level of challenges.
I look forward to a time when snatching of phones along the
streets will be a thing of the past, a time when, I will not have to avoid
hawkers with every turn, a time with proper healthcare and leadership, a time
when I will look at the CBD in awe.
It may seem far away right now, but with every passing
minute, that day draws nearer. However, to achieve this, we need to start
moving in the right direction, a step at a time.