By Phil Wesonga
The late Kibra MP Hon Ken Okoth was a superb MP but to equate his record as MP to that of the Rt Hon Raila Odinga is stretching it too far. Okoth left an enviable record in the education sector. He was level headed and a sober debater. We will certainly miss him.
I can however state without fear of contradiction that Mr Okoth was nowhere near ODM Party Leader Raila Odinga in terms of delivery of development and better life for the people of Kibera.
For starters Mr Odinga was elected as MP for the larger Langata Constituency a record four times against strong system candidates and police harassment. Okoth on the other hand was selected through controversial party nominations to swim through the smaller Kibra elections as a compromise candidate using the ODM party wave two times only.
Mr Raila’s record as MP left a legacy of better water and sanitation facilities for slum dwellers, power supply to informal settlements, new schools, the world renowned slum grading project and generally better roads. The former Prime Minister of Kenya Raila Odinga also settled hawkers in the world famous Toi market and allowed them to build stalls. Its Raila who first built public bathrooms and toilets in Kibra.
Mr Raila even built the Raila Education Center for gifted but poor students using his own funds. Tweeps have been erroneously attributing this school to Ken’s efforts but the truth is, after Mr Raila exited the scene, Ken ignored the school and left it derelict being that it was not a public school. The school was only renovated in Ken’s sunset days in the first term due to public pressure and the impending elections. He did it to win back Raila’s base.
While praising the good work he did, we must also point out that against the wishes of his party, Ken welcomed CS Waiguru and the scandalous NYS into Kibra. The poor masses of Kibra were used as Guinea Pigs to plunder public funds via ghost projects in the NYS. He has died without apologising for this humongous blunder.
The truth is, without Raila, Ken would never have been MP.￼