Uhuru lifts night curfew in Lamu, promises free education

Thursday May 25 2017

President Uhuru Kenyatta waves to Hola residents when he arrived in the region for a public rally on May 24,2017. PHOTO | PSCU

President Uhuru Kenyatta waves to Hola residents when he arrived in the region for a public rally on May 24,2017. PHOTO | PSCU 

By LUCAS BARASA
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By KALUME KAZUNGU
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President Uhuru Kenyatta and his deputy William Ruto returned to the Coast on Wednesday and pleaded with residents to re-elect them in the August polls because of the Jubilee government’s performance.

Speaking in Lamu at the start of a four-day tour of the six coast counties, the President promised free secondary education in public schools from January 2018.

“We want to ensure free education from Standard One to Form Four from January next year. The government has set aside Sh5 billion to refurbish secondary schools. From January no child will pay fees,” said the President.

The Head of State lifted the ban on night fishing in Lamu that was imposed at the height of insecurity in the border county because of Al-Shabaab attacks in 2011.

NIGHT CURFEW

He further announced the lifting of a night curfew in parts of Lamu and other counties that were prone to Al-Shabaab attacks to allow Muslims to attend prayers during Ramadhan.

The President and his deputy also addressed rallies in Hola in Tana River County and Marereni in Kilifi County.

On Friday, they are expected to address more campaign rallies in Kilifi town and in Kwale County.

The Jubilee leaders listed their administration’s achievements in infrastructure, health, education, power supply, issuing of title deeds, the standard gauge railway and Lamu port.

President Kenyatta announced that construction of the Garsen-Witu-Lamu road, which he launched two months ago but which is yet to start, would be completed by the end of next year.

FULFILLED PROMISES

The President, who was visiting Lamu for the third time since his election in 2013, said his administration had fulfilled its promises to Coast residents.

The building of Lamu-Port South Sudan Transport (Lapsset) corridor was on and the first ship is expected to dock before end of next year, he said.

In Lamu, King Fahad Hospital got a Sh200 million facelift while Faza Hospital benefited from equipment, enabling it to conduct its first Caesarean section operation recently.

He dismissed claims that his administration had oppressed Muslims, saying five out of 22 Cabinet secretaries came from the community.

Pate Island residents were given title deeds and another 11,000 are to be distributed in Lamu.

NOTHING TO OFFER

Flanked by Mr Ruto, Cabinet secretaries Najib Balala, Eugene Wamalwa and Dan Kazungu, President Kenyatta scoffed at the opposition, saying it had nothing to offer Kenyans.

He challenged Nasa principals Raila Odinga, Musalia Mudavadi, Moses Wetang’ula, Kalonzo Musyoka and Isaac Ruto to tell Kenyans what they did for them when they were in government.

His government, he said, moved swiftly to lower the maize flour prices to Sh90 for a two kilogramme packet by importing the grain “but because our opponents have no agenda they have started another propaganda campaign”.

OPPOSITION RHETORIC

Mr Ruto said Kenyans will have a chance to choose between development and opposition rhetoric come August. “On August 8, Kenyans will select Jubilee or propaganda and fake promises. You should not joke with your votes,” he said.

He said the Jubilee administration had done more development than the previous regimes.

The DP said the cash transfer for the elderly in Lamu had been increased from Sh25 million to Sh80 million annually.

He said the Lamu port would create jobs for thousands of local youths.

Leader of Majority Aden Duale said Muslim-dominated areas had benefited most from the Jubilee administration.