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By Eric Omwombo 

Azimio leader Raila Odinga on Thursday, December 21, 2023, presided over the ground-breaking ceremony for Yala sub-county modern maternity, Ugunja market ring road and Yala junction-Yala hospital roads.

The County Government of Siaya allocated KES 102 million in the budget to undertake the three projects with the maternity set to consume KES 24 million and an additional KES 5 Million for equipment and machinery.

The Ugunja Ring Road and Yala junction-Yala Hospital Road will consume KES 47 million and 26 million respectively.

According to Energy and Transport Chief Officer Kevin Okoth Ajuul, the contractors that won the tenders have the capacity and are expected to adhere to the bill of quantity for residents to get value for their money

“We shall pass by from time to time to supervise works,” said Mr. Ajuul.

Health Executive Martin Konyango said the 24-bed capacity maternity will see deliveries increasing from 120-200/300 per month.

In the meantime, Raila lauded James Orengo’s administration for inviting him to witness the landmark projects that are a result of Devolution.

Raila said the roads are significant for the locals because they would boost trade and enhance transportation.

“Devolution has indeed made it possible for regions to benefit from projects that directly benefit residents ” said Mr. Odinga, adding “Most of the visible developments realized in counties is a demonstration that devolution which I championed for is working.”

At the same time, Mr. Odinga threw a jibe at his nemesis President Ruto accusing him and his Kenya Kwanza administration of plotting to sabotage Devolution.

“Ruto and his cohorts have formed a habit of delaying funds and releasing them it few weeks to the closure of the year to mess up developments and blame counties for lacking the capacity to absorb resources”, revealed Raila.

“As they hoard resources, they also delay implementation of projects meant for the counties including roads, purchase and distribution of inputs, health among others,” said the Azimio leader.

Raila also vowed to use the high cost of living that was not addressed by the By-partisan Committee NADCO talks to press the ruling government for reforms.

“I don’t have any problems with the other 3 issues that were agreed upon by the by-partisan committee only that of high cost of living,” Raila said amid applause.

He told off the COB for painting counties in a bad light saying that claims that certain counties were not able to absorb resources are deceptive and unacceptable.

Speaking at the same event Siaya Governor James Orengo, Siaya Senator Dr Oburu Oginga, Ugunja MP Opiyo Wandayi, and Alego-Usonga MP Samuel Atandi reiterated similar sentiments saying they won’t allow the state to reverse Devolution.

“We are not going to watch counties being starved. Hoarding resources for county development is illegal and uncalled for,” said Mr. Wandayi.

Atandi seized the platform to attack President Ruto over his recent remarks that the sword he held after being sworn into office is not a kitchen knife.

“Going by the president’s recent remarks, he has shown disrespect to those who entrusted him with the position,” said Mr. Atandi.

 

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