Should Imran Okoth the best MP in the country go up to the big office?

9 mins read

Some of the work the Okoth brothers have done in Kibra constituency in Nairobi is beyond imagination. It is hard to believe that they have used the same amount of money all MPs get and done things that no other MP has done with the CDF money. And you will never hear a word from Imran. He is not in rallies screaming about his incredible success as an MP.

The guy just goes to work and he keeps at it. He has built schools everywhere in Kibra but beyond that is the investment in technical training for Kibra school kids and residents that is also stunning. You check his Twitter and you ask yourself if such a politician actually exists in Kenya. This man gives hope to our country through his work and never says anything.

You can take ten constituencies together and add the development work the MPs have done in those ten and Imran’s work in Kibra will beat all of them combined.

If Imran Okoth is to join the national government I would beg Raila to appoint him as CS in charge of CDF money in the whole country.

He is not going to be bullying the MPs and telling them what to do because that is their job as MPs but he can have a team that visits every constituency in Kenya and monitors the work being done by CDF and giving ideas and suggestions to MPs.

Raila today asked Imran to quit the race for Kibra MP and he will work with him in the national government. There is no MP in Kenya even close to Imran Okoth. He is a very special political leader and human being. Just compare and contrast what that MP in Kibra has done compared to others.

What happens to CDF money in Kenya?

A resident crossing Kumfunje bridge in Webuye, Bungoma County. Children pay Sh10 to use the bridge while adults pay Sh20. You are lucky just to make it to the other side. Where is the CDF money to help with this.

Read: Pimp our country for a ride?

I came across some of the key public needs in our country that just stuns me when you consider that the national government gives out tens of billions every year as CDF to constituencies for local development for the last 19 years and now we also have the county governments with their own hefty budgets for the last 10 years.

This is a school Lamu. Where is the CDF money to help here? These kids are more worried they could drown on the school lake and the last thing in their minds is what the teacher is talking about.

How can we do this to kids when M.Ps get hundreds of millions every year to develop their constituencies and obviously providing descent learning places is a big step towards providing quality education to the kids.

This is a school in Kibra built and equipped by Imran Okoth with the same amount of money the other MPs get and steal for personal use.

And Imran keeps building these schools that look like real places for young people to learn. They look like university colleges in the best countries in the world.

Kenya gives more money for CDF than any other country in the world in proportion to our GDP. In fact, Kenya gives more money to the CDF than countries that earn 3 to10 times higher GDP and of course, every party in Kenya now wants to double the CDF.

It is campaign time and dangling more CDF money will attract more M.Ps and spirants to that group because as we know the CDF is primarily pocket money for our M.Ps.

They eat it all and paint some school wall and give general statements like oh I have put money in this or that school. They never tell how much and what that money achieved and nobody ever follows that up.

It is the same country and the MPs are free to do whatever they want with the CDF. You are a lucky student to be in a place like Kibra. There is no supervision for CDF even though this is national government money.

And inside the schools that Imran builds in his constituency he has put the public investments needed to make those places conducive to learning.

This MP is building schools with the interests of the kids at the centre of his plans. Others paint walls to help cover up their theft of CDF.schools.

Yes, we want a unified country and that is the big agenda for Azimio la Umoja. That is great and ordinary folk like me proudly wearing their Kenyan badge just want to be Kenyan and they have no issue with anybody. So we have a united country.

How about on development. It used to be that some areas of Kenya like the North Eastern Province were ignored and given little money for development in the national budget.

In fact, it came to a point where Kenyan political leaders allocated development funds according to their political interests often based on tribalism.

In 2003 a bill for Community Development Fund (CDF) was introduced in parliament and passed.

Remember there was a time parliament and MPs actually worked for the citizens of the republic as opposed to fighting as to who is their next boss.

So they pass the CDF Act and that means that every constituency in Kenya gets a certain amount of money (2.5% of the National Budget).

That money goes directly under the control of the M.P for every constituency.

Some M.Ps have done wonderful work for their communities and constituencies while others have done absolutely nothing or even made things worse.

There is no unified code of standards and expectations on how our M.Ps can use CDF to bring opportunities for education and development for their constituents.

If we want a united country so bad and yes we do, how about a unified set of standards on how we use taxpayers and public money to support and build communities.

We could start this by simply setting up basic life needs for every constituency and county.

Water. Food. Health Facilities. Mobile Health Clinics. Electricity. Good Schools. Safety. Good Roads. Commercial Centres. Access to Banks. Land ownership in rural communities with title deeds. Not too much. Those are a few things Kenyans want.

Can our next government ensure that our political system works with ordinary Kenyans and set up structures and checks and balances to ensure that every MP is obliged to provide specific services in health, education, infrastructure, water availability, and other things that the people in constituencies need?

Kenyans do not know how much money we spend on CDF every year and what is being done with that money. That is where everything must start with CDF and all government fundings. Imran Okoth would be a very capable person and leader to supervise that from State House under the Raila Odinga and Martha Karua government.

Adongo Ogony is a Human Rights Activist and a Writer who lives in Toronto, Canada

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