The Road Ahead for our Country
Driving through snail-paced traffic, you are forced to look around and think, what is wrong? Why doesn’t traffic move? Why are we stuck here?
There are many things wrong with the country but there are also many things right with the country. However the opinion can differ from person to person because of experience and incidents, for example if you have been caught unfairly with a traffic offence you will hate cops, if you have paid City Council to not harass you in any way, you are managing pretty well. Yes we are to blame for many broken pieces in the system too. Instead of standing up, staying stubborn and asking, working and implementing change, it is easier to miss that community meeting, pay someone else to go to the Government office and the list goes on. Since majority are citizens and a few are in the appointed office of the Government, what is it then that they can do better for us in the coming year?
I’ll start with the obvious- traffic. Why is it more on some roads, less on others, I will leave it to the experts to advise, but a few key things are for certain. We need a metro and a reliable bus system, where they stop diligently and follow the traffic rules. I bet if a Matatu driver was taken to London and shown that if he had a public transport system like that and the respect and value he can have for his life, he will never drive irresponsibily here. There is also a need for a major culture change, most Kenyans still consider having a car as a status elevation and abuse this technological device to road rage and killing innocent lives. The Government should implement traffic lights and let the Traffic Policemen charge those who break the law and not have them move or stop the traffic forever. Let them do their correct job and not multi-task them and then underpay them and then have the system rusted.
The Government needs to create almost a million more jobs every year. Yes they need to continue to incentivize the industrialists, innovators, SMEs and women to play the game of business and benefit by creating jobs. The human resource in Kenya is far more intelligent than neighbouring countries and if they are put to work, it will be more productive for everyone. You never know we could end up making our own Car, or the next technological or agricultural improvement can come from any of these young minds.
Infrastructure improvement is not far behind, while many roads and the superhighway have been built, there is still more to be done. Drainage systems, regular maintenance, power to more parts of the country and just generally a better functioning city council in every county but not at the expense of exploitation of resources whether finance, land or minerals. The environment must remain top priority otherwise in a few decades we are not far from becoming a desert stretching from North Eastern Kenya into all over Kenya.
While the judiciary has seen its own set of improvements, the law still fails to protect the people. Every Kenyan should have the confidence that if he or she went to the court he will get a fair trial, it will not cost millions and that there is justice at the end of the day. Basically the time between a case filed to its conclusion needs to shorten significantly and make the perpatrators that they can’t get away with it. In fact there needs to be a serious set up of investigative departments for homicide, literally like a CSI Miami American version. The Police stations need serious upgrades with up to date systems, Internet, technological gadgets to fight the upgraded crimes.
That brings me to the final point, the insecurity in the country needs to be addressed seriously. Overall we are a safe country and every other country in the world is facing terrorist threats, murders, robberies and so on. The problem here is that there is never a proper investigation done or justice brought to those who tried to break into your house, factory, or killed someone you know. These stories pile up like X-Files in the system of OB reports. While there is need for more Police, there is need to put the idle youth to work, give them dignity in their lives too. Give the Police better lives so they are not tempted to misbehave.
These are very basic points but are hanging on to us for the past decades like leeches and if they can be dealt with one at a time and quickly they can pave the way to deal with other complex problems. We have a bright future still ahead, let’s not loose to laziness, politics and heavy pockets.