Nakuru Governor Lee Kinyanjui deserves a pat on the shoulder as the city is on the edge of size. Nakuru will soon have city status. Now history and time are on your side because this is long overdue.
In fact, this letter would have come sooner, but I took care not to overcrowd it at celebrations after it was approved by the Senate. I have a fundamental issue that you need to address as you prepare to become a city.
Excellence, whether you take this opportunity or let it pass is entirely up to you. It is said that the prevailing lesson in history is that humanity is incorrigible. They must learn from the mistakes made by the cities of Mombasa and Kisumu when they were granted status.
You have a year to serve the people of Nakuru and hopefully you will get a second term. The first thing you need to tackle is the master planning of Nakuru City. This has to be your legacy, the ability to live in history whether or not you are re-elected.
Careless or lacking urban planning was the choice of your predecessor cities. The leaders of the time allowed themselves to be blindly shackled in endless celebrations and then married off for conformity. Her plan was, consciously or unconsciously, not to have a plan.
Years later, they are literally suffocating. Urban planning must be your greatest focus, and no matter what the odds, no matter how crooked the rules, you must master this task in order to lay a solid foundation for Nakuru City.
I beg you to go all the way. If it means hiring the best urban planners in Kenya, the region, or even the continent, do it. Serious cities around the world were planned with the best of their time, not nobody. Pay for it.
Your Excellency, the fate of our nation are not slums. Nakuru is perfectly brought up to provide guidance at this hour. Needless to say, you were once one of the fastest growing cities in this region and the closest to the capital. You must march with honor.
You should develop a solid basic master plan for Nakuru City and walk away – if you so choose.
This task is not easy to master, you must have the consolation that the more difficult it is, the more glorious the triumph. Over to you!
-The author is chairman of the Association of Construction Managers of Kenya.