President Uhuru Kenyatta has asked politicians to shelve narrow political interests and concentrate on working together in serving Kenyans.
The President, who affirmed his commitment to work with leaders from across the political divide to improve the welfare of all Kenyans, said his focus is uniting the country for purposes of achieving rapid development across the country.
“Individual interests of leaders should not be allowed to override the welfare of Kenyans. We need to work together to ensure Kenyans get affordable houses, provide universal health coverage, create jobs through enhancing manufacturing and ensuring food security and nutrition” President Kenyatta said when he presided over the ground-breaking ceremony for the Mama Ngina waterfront regeneration project in Mombasa.
In that regard, President Kenyatta commended former Prime Minister Raila Odinga for putting aside personal interests and agreeing to the ‘handshake’ aimed at uniting the country.
Noting that the development of the Mama Ngina waterfront is part of ongoing efforts to restore the glory of the seaside city of Mombasa, President Kenyatta insisted that current small traders operating at the site will be given priority when the project is complete.
The President also directed the Ministry of Lands working with the National Land Commission to ensure that grabbed public land at the site revert to public use by the time the upgrading of the recreation site is complete.
“You have five months to ensure that public land is repossessed and reverted to pubic use,” President Kenyatta directed.
The President also commended recent growth of the tourism sector, saying for the first time in the country’s history tourists arrival have surpassed the 2 million mark.
“This is a clear sign that the tourism sector is back on track and that means more employment opportunities for our young people, our farmers and our small scale traders,” he said.
Former Prime Minister Odinga; who was also in attendance, thanked President Kenyatta for his efforts to unite the country, saying that those engaged in the 2022 succession politics were slowing down the country’s development momentum.
On the regeneration of Mama Ngina Drive, Mr Odinga said the project marks the beginning of a journey that will completely restore the beauty of Mombasa.
“Mombasa has the potential of becoming better than Dubai as a business hub and a tourist destination. What we need to do is ensure that we remove the bureaucratic red tape and curb corruption to attract more tourists and investors,” Mr Odinga said.