• Mutindika says the event will take place at Jomo Kenyatta International Complex Centre currently under construction at the Mamboleo ASK grounds.
• Guests will include President Uhuru Kenyatta and his handshake partner Raila Odinga.
Kisumu county will host this year's Madaraka Day celebrations on June 1 if things go according to plan.
Nyanza regional coordinator Magu Mutindika said plans are underway for the national event. Counties have been hosting major national holiday events on a rotational basis.
Speaking on Dunga Beach in Kisumu city, Mutindika said the event will take place at Jomo Kenyatta International Complex Centre currently under construction in Mamboleo ASK grounds.
“On June 1, Kisumu will host the celebrations, let us prepare to welcome our guests,” he said.
The guests will include President Uhuru Kenyatta and his handshake partner Raila Odinga.
Mutindika said having the two leaders grace the event will be a boost to the county's economy. He said the hotel industry is set to benefit from the influx of people who will be attending the celebrations.
Already, works on Mamboleo Road are ongoing ahead of the event. It is part of the 63km Mamboleo-Miwani-Chemelil-Muhoroni-Kipsitet road being tarmacked at Sh4.9 billion.
The government had awarded the contract to Sinohydro Corporation in a joint venture with Gragab Agencies, according to a March 12 letter from the Kenya National Highways Authority. This came after the National Treasury approved the funds.
Sports CS Amina Mohamed had led national government officials in inspecting ongoing construction works at the Jomo Kenyatta International Stadium, which is nearing completion.
Accompanying her were Sports PS Joe Okudo, Kisumu Deputy Governor Mathews Owili, regional coordinator Magu Mutindika and county commissioner Josephine Ouko.
The Sh415 million stadium was set to be commissioned mid this month by President Kenyatta but that was delayed. Uhuru had inspected ongoing works and said he would be back to commission it.
The 30,000-seater stadium will have a football, rugby, tennis and hockey facilities, among other sports.
The President was last in Kisumu in October when inspected various development projects and launched the construction of the stadium. It was to be constructed within the city centre but there was not enough space.
In December, Raila visited the site and called for structural adjustments. He said he would ask the President for additional funding so it can accommodate many people for a major sporting event. It was one of the many projects going on across the country.
Raila said the stadium will provide employment opportunities to the youth, saying tokenism or handouts are not a solution to unemployment. The ODM boss said the country needs sports groups to cultivate talent.
He regretted the low representation of Kenyan professional players in other global leagues, saying Kenyan talent largely remains untapped.
Edited by Kiilu Damaris