Kenya: MP Asks Residents Not to Vote for Him If Road Not Tarmacked

22 February 2021

Are you tired of your MP's empty promises? Have local leaders delivered on the pledges they made during the 2017 campaigns?

With just over a year to the next General Election, politicians are busy rebuilding their relationships with voters.

They will be visiting schools, dispensaries, markets, churches, mosques and other public facilities to reconnect with their electorate as the country enters the campaign mood. In the August 8, 2017 polls, more than 60 per cent of MPs were sent home, largely due to unfulfilled promises.

Cognizant of this fact, a legislator in Meru put his political career on the line on Sunday when he told his constituents not to re-elect him if he failed to fix an important road in Kaguma area as per his 2017 election manifesto.

Central Imenti MP Kirima Nguchine said he would not ask for votes from residents of Kaguma area if the Kariene-Kaguma road pledged through the national government was not paved.

The 13-kilometre stretch serves the crucial food basket producing various cereals and legumes, bananas, mangoes and other fruits. It also serves Kaguma quarries, which supply the bulk of building stones in the county.

Sorry state

The road, which links Kariene to Mate, is in a sorry state. Speaking at Nduruma chief's camp where he introduced new Ngandune assistant chief, Millicent Kagendo, Mr Nguchine urged residents to use the road as a judgment tool.

"We said if the road is not tarmacked before the next election, I will not come back to seek your votes. I always say that. I want to keep that word: I won't come here to seek votes if it remains in a poor state," he said.

Mr Nguchine, a lawyer and also the African Independent Pentecostal Church of Africa (AIPCA) chancellor, assured locals that construction would begin soon.

"A Chinese contractor will soon be coming to start the project," he said.

The MP also complained that many national roads in the area had been taken over by the county government, leaving his office with just a few to maintain.

"We only have Makandune-Kiamuri-Kauthene, Kaguma-Nkando-Kariene, Kariene-Mbuinjeru-Githongo, Katheri-Kinjo-Equator, Equator-Rurii-Kambau, and Katheri-Kithaku roads. Sadly, the county government lacks the capacity to maintain all the roads in their jurisdiction. Often, I am forced to intervene in some roads that had not been allocated to the national government to save our people," said Mr Nguchine.

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