The Machakos County government will soon have its own airport if the county assembly approves Governor Alfred Mutua's budget estimates for the 2019-2020 financial year.
The budget was presented by the Deputy Governor Francis Maliti, who also doubles as the Finance and Economic minister.
Mr Maliti said that the airport is a key cog in the vision to transform the county from a third world to first world status.
“Airports are not just places to catch planes, attend an in-transit business meeting, or do some duty-free shopping. They are among the largest investments a city or a region can make,” said Mr Maliti.
But a large chunk of the ambitious Sh12 billion budget will go to the health docket.
The county allocated 32 percent of the budget to the health sector in line with the Astana World Health Organisation (WHO) and UNICEF declaration of 2018 which outlines a global standard for primary health care.
Mr Maliti said the county will upgrade Machakos Level Five Hospital to a model referral facility and allocated Sh542 million for maintenance and equipping of all facilities in the hospital.
“Machakos County is among the four counties piloting the Universal Health Care (UHC). I have allocated Sh136 million for maintenance and equipping of the four level four hospitals and Sh35 million for completion and upgrading of community hospitals and dispensaries in the county,” he said.
The devolved unit has also proposed an allocation of Sh255 million for completion of government buildings.
These will include conference facilities, trade and exhibition centres and an office complex.
The county allocated Sh17 million for avocado and green grams (ndengu) farming, Sh5.5 million for distribution of free chicks and Sh5 million for artificial insemination.
Other allocations include Sh2 million for extension officers’ motorbikes, Sh30 million for hatcheries and bee keeping promotions.