Poverty stalks area despite much natural wealth
Posted Wednesday, June 27 2012 at 19:08
Kilifi County is one of the most natural resource-endowed areas in the Coast and Kenya in general.
But the irony is that it one of the poorest with poverty levels standing at 68 per cent of the population surviving on a meal per day.
The population is surrounded by wealthy tourists and rich golfers in and out of the sprawling Vipingo.
GOLF COURSE ESTATE IN KILIFI
Kilifi County boasts of huge unexploited mineral deposits that include iron ore and titanium. It is also home to the salt production industry with nine salt farms situated along Gongoni-Kanagoni area in Magarini district.
The industry meets the domestic demand and some is exported to The Middle East and African states. Some of the prominent firms include Krystaline, Mombasa Salt Works, Malindi Salt Works, Kurawa, Kemu and Kensalt.
At Mjanaheri in the same district, the best building sand in the country is extracted for use in the Coast as well as the thriving construction sector in the capital city and other urban areas.
Kilifi County is also home to the booming business of building coral blocks mainly extracted from a huge coral base within Mtondia near Kilifi Town.
Flour slabs known as Magalana are also in plenty and are extracted in the stony Mayungu area South East of Malindi Town to satisfy the ever growing hotel and villa construction in the Coast region.
The County also has the largest acreage of tropical forest, the Arabuko Sokoke that is home to rare birds and animal species. There is a thriving butterfly export business from the forest that earns villagers about Sh.10 million annually by exporting the pupae to the US and Europe.
There are the Malindi and Watamu marine parks that attract thousands of tourists every year boosting the local economy. The Indian Ocean is attracts international anglers who come for water sports and sports fishing from all over the world.
The serene beaches add to the spectacular attractions that pull thousands of guests to the North Coast tourist hub each year.
The Baricho Water Works at Lango Baya is the main source of fresh water not only for County but also Mombasa Mainland North. Experts say that the wells dug on the banks of River Sabaki can supply the entire province if well harness.
HISTORICAL/ SITES/NATIONAL/ MONUMENTS/ ATTRACTIONS:
The Portuguese explorer Vasco da Gama after sailing from India built the famous Vasco da Gama Pillar in 1498 that is one of the global tourist attractions of Kenya.
Other historical sites include Gede Ruins, an ancient Arab settlement at Gede in Watamu, Rabai Church built by early missionaries, Mnarani Ruins in Kilifi, Chonyi Hills in Kaloleni, Devil’s Kitchen in Marafa, Kaya Fungo in Kaloleni and Mekatilili wa Menza grave (Giriama freedom heroine) in Bungale.