- There are also other similar initiatives like the Huduma Mashinani Majuu campaign that is being championed by the State Department for Diaspora Affairs.
- The campaign has been able to take consular services to over 9,000 Kenyans in 100 cities abroad in 22 countries abroad.
Kenyans are a creative lot and the latest catchphrase on the lips of many is ‘stori za jaba’ meaning that either something isn’t true or that it’s just a pass-time talk.
You can trust our entrepreneurial spirit to conjure up something that puts lots of issues into perspective.
What is interesting, though, is the fact that more often than not, we seem to speak to one another more audibly in Kiswahili catch-phrases more than in any other language.
This way, more Kenyans are rallied into action on a national issue that requires focus and direction.
Some of these initiatives speak to our collective past, present and a shared future that transcends what divides us to bring out the best in us.
My office, for example, is leading a campaign on patriotism aptly named ‘Uzalendo’ since in recent times; this national value that is enshrined in our Constitution has not been embraced as it should be.
Kenyans don’t see much value in upholding and safeguarding our ‘communal’ interests and would rather benefit individually at the expense of the majority.
This is the reason why public resources are vandalised and taken for granted.
The Uzalendo campaign aims are speak to the hearts and minds of fellow Kenyans for them to extol this virtue in all that they do so that Project Kenya can succeed in achieving our aspirations as a nation.
The reason behind this is the fact that there is a need for something beyond enforcement or coercion that moves people towards a desired outcome.
The mantra of the campaign is aptly captured through the phrase ‘Mimi Ni Mzalendo Je Wewe?’ Our intention as an office is to really rally all Kenyans to see the value in protecting that which is Kenyan since this is the only way we can spur ourselves into prosperity.
There are also other similar initiatives like the Huduma Mashinani Majuu campaign that is being championed by the State Department for Diaspora Affairs.
The campaign has been able to take consular services to over 9,000 Kenyans in 100 cities abroad in 22 countries abroad, thus they don’t waste a lot of time travelling from their hometowns just to renew a passport or get some government services.
Another great initiative is the Kahawa Ni Dollar Campaign which has helped eliminate middlemen and cartels that have been cheating the farmer from getting his due share.
Now, coffee farmers can now be paid directly in US dollars, and they can now open dollar accounts directly.
This will also help them negotiate for better exchange rates thus taking advantage of the shilling depreciation to make more income, or to retain value for money in a dollar account.
It will also have the multiplier effect of many more Kenyans engaging in forex trading from the comfort of their homes through digital jobs and e-commerce since there will be a wider customer base.
Another great initiative is the Sema Campaign by the Executive Office of the President aiming to encourage Kenyans to report corruption within the public service.
When they speak out, the anticorruption apparatus can then swing into action and ensure to Kenyans that remedial action is taken.
This way, we shall have a better, more accountable society that benefits from government services as public goods.
In this regard, there is also a new app in town aptly named ‘Pasha’ that is aimed at allowing the citizenry to give feedback on government services.
An initiative of the Commission for Administrative Justice (CAJ or the Ombudsman), and the Ministry of Public Service, this app aims at ensuring there is continuous feedback on what the government should do to improve the quality of life for us all.
Further, the government is also rallying Kenyans to embrace farming to reduce food imports.
It’s interesting to note that in Taveta, more than 14,000 acres are under rice plantation, with the potential of increasing to more than 36,000 acres.
This is even more than the 20,000 acres in Mwea. Most of the Taveta rice is, however, sold in Tanzania, yet the Kenya Kwanza government is keen on increasing rice production in Kenya from the current 18 per cent to 40 per cent.
Through the fertiliser subsidy programme, the ‘Mbolea Mashinani’ clarion call helps in pushing this initiative to ensure that more than 6.4 million farmers have access to the 12.5 million fertiliser bags being availed to them during both the long rains and short rains.
This alone will help increase maize production to the targeted 72 million bags by the year 2027 under a campaign named 72 by 27.
The aim of this is to reduce maize importation and to ensure the country is self-sufficient.
For example, an increase of 21 million bags of maize from the initial 40 to 61 million has helped reduce the cost of unga by nearly half, from a high of Sh240 to the current Sh130.
This has translated to better household incomes, by reducing the cost of food, which according to the The Beta Plan, accounts for more than 50 percent of household income.
To lower the cost of production and living, the government has also reduced the cost of electricity by 3.44/kwh per unit so if a hustler consumes 100 units a month, he will save Sh344.
A lot is being done by the government, na hizo sio stori za jaba!
The writer is the government spokesman.