We, the people and leaders of Murang’a County convened the Comprehensive Dialogue on 18 February 2012 at Ihuura Stadium, Murang’a Town on the development and political future of the County.
The meeting was called to discuss and adopt a clear roadmap to the rebirth of Murang’a as a “model county.”
The people and leaders in the Comprehensive Dialogue came from diverse sectors, including professionals, business, farmers, teachers, traders, clergy, community leaders, civic leaders, civil society, senior civil servants from the County and Members of Parliament.
The conference deliberated and agreed on a concrete action plan on the five developmental sectors of education; agriculture; health, water and sanitation; investment and industrialization; and leadership and governance.
The said people and leaders also agreed on the political future of Murang’a County, particularly the need to take a common and united approach to the crucial up-coming general elections in order to enhance peace, unity and stability at the county and national levels.
We, therefore, issue the “Murang’a Declaration on Development and Political Future” to guide our development programmes and political action in 2012 and beyond.
THE MURANG’A COUNTY COMPREHENSIVE DIALOGUE:
1. ACKNOWLEDGING the historic sacrifice by the past generations of the people and leaders of Murang’a County in the struggle for freedom against British colonialism; the “Second Liberation” for democracy against one-party dictatorship; and for the new Constitution and enduring democratic order in Kenya, particularly the role played by:-
a) Nationalist patriarchs/matriarchs such as Nyanjiru (of Weithaga) who organized the 1922 resistance together with Harry Thuku; Job Muchuchu, Jesse Kariuki (nicknamed ‘the Eye of the Nation’), Joseph Kang’ethe, James Beauttah (ceded his position to Jomo Kenyatta to travel to London to petition the Colonial Office on land in 1928) and Bildad Kaggia of the “Kapenguria Six”;
b) Mau Mau fighters such as Field Marshal Mbaria wa Kaniu, General Ihura wa Kareri, General Kago wa Mboko, General Kahara wa Hungi, General Muiruri wa Njuguna, Brigadier Hannah Njoki Gaichĩng’a and Njeri Kamau wa Gĩthirĩ;
c) Veterans of the “Second Liberation”, including Kenneth Matiba, Charles Rubia, Prof. Maina wa Kinyatti, David Mukaru Ng’ang’a and Maina Wanjigi of Muoroto issue;
d) Many heroes of the struggle for the new constitution.
2. RECOGNIZING the provisions of the New Constitution of Kenya adopted on 27 August 2010, particularly in regard to Leadership and Integrity, the Bill of Rights relating to Human Dignity, Environment and Economic Rights, and the relevant sections on the Executive, the Legislature and Devolved Government.
3. RECALLING the various consultative forums convened by the leaders of Murang’a on diverse aspects of development and public governance, including:-
a) The October 2011 round-table on Leadership and Governance relating to the Criteria for Electing Leaders to the various offices defined by the constitution;
b) The June 2011 meeting on the vision of Murang’a University, leading to the gazettement of the Murang’a College of Technology as a full fledged University;
c) The 27 January 2012 meeting of Stakeholders in the education sector convened by the MCI Education Committee relating to the action plan to improve the standards of education in the country;
d) The 12 December 2011 meeting of Murang’a leaders relating to the debt owed by Murang’a Coffee farmers, culminating in the waiver of Ksh1.2 billion by the government of Kenya;
e) The 18 February 2012 award of 32 scholarships to deserving bright students, including 16 girls and 16 boys, for four years presented during the February conference.
4. RECOGNIZING the need to respect the cultural and ethnic diversity of Kenya as the foundation of a stable and peaceful society;
5. REITERATING our commitment to the vision of a county where peace, justice and equality form the cornerstone of a prosperous society;
6. EXPRESSING SOLIDARITY with thousands of Internally Displaced Persons (IDPs) still in temporary shelters, and urging the Government of Kenya, particularly the Ministries of Finance, Lands, Special Programmes, and other relevant state departments, to speed up the settlement of all displaced persons and to expediently and exhaustively deal with the problem of IDPs.
THEREFORE, WE, THE PEOPLE OF MURANG’A COUNTY:
7. RESOLVE to adopt the “Murang’a Declaration” to foster unity and guide our development and politics to ensure the rebirth of the county and its transformation into a “model county”.
To this end, the Consultative Meeting further decides to:
a) DECLARE that the people of Murang’a County will support the “PNU Alliance” as the vehicle through which we will pursue and achieve the development aspirations and political future of the county and to support all efforts to:
i. Ensure the continuity of the Grand Coalition of President Mwai Kibaki, to which the county leadership belongs, in order to secure the legacy of socio-economic transformation;
ii. Work with likeminded leaders and political parties to promote and strengthen the PNU Alliance to ensure democratic elections and formation of the next government;
b) PROMOTE a leadership with integrity committed to unity, national integration and reconciliation and opposed to the politics of ethnic divisions and hatred as the surest way of sustaining and perpetuating the legacy of economic development, peace, freedom and shared prosperity experienced in the last one decade.
c) COMMEND the unity of county leaders and urge for continued spirit of cooperation in the interest of the development of the county.
d) SUPPORT the on-going efforts to combat impunity especially relating to the post-election violence and to work to reclaim the dignity and sovereignty of the nation.
8. ADOPT specific measures to promote key strategic development sectors, including:
i. Improving the standards of education, ensuring access to all through bursaries; establish a Leadership Academy; and promote the Murang’a University into a centre of excellence.
ii. Promoting the productivity of the agricultural sector, including the coffee, tea, horticultural and dairy industries as the basis of wealth creation and employment;
iii. Attract investment and industry into the county;
iv. Support the improvement of health, water and sanitation;
v. Adopt urgent measures to ameliorate youth poverty, unemployment and disillusionment;
vi. Ensure the sound leadership and governance of the county, including the unity of leaders from all sectors of the county.
9. DECIDE to remain fully seized on the matter.
Dr. Moses Mwangi
Murang’a County Initiative
The Murang’a Declaration on Development and Political Future