Each day we walk, drive and board buses in silent fear. Who knows where the next siren will sound and lives lost. It is a scare that is killing our economy. Our breath is held by terror clip. I am left wondering who is a terrorist or why clear lives of innocent blood!
It is hard for families that have lost loved ones through this difficult cloud of terror. The world is full of things, good and bad. But my heart is not weary of the worst. For there is always an equal measure of goodness about to happen. Kenyans have built their economy with minimum natural resources. The dawn of oil in Turkana will not mean reversed era. We will not stop to hold up our national responsibility because of peace of our sisters and brothers in Somali.
The WestgatE terror incident united us – WeAreOne. Subsequent terrors at Thika road, Gikomba market, Likoni Church and many more places will leave us standing strong. Unfortunately, some of us have opted war than peace to reign for Africa’s emerging economy.
Where is this driving us to? An article by CityLab recently found that insecurity on streets of Cairo contributed to more traffic congestion. Nairobi and other cities will they be forced to adopt home workers or cycling to work – at least safer.
“It is possible to provide security against other ills, but as far as death is concerned, we men live in a city without walls.” – Epicurus quotes (Greek philosopher, BC 341-270)
I dread rains especially the sudden downpour when there was sweat sunshine hours ago. In this tropical country who would want wet weather throughout the year. Not only do humans in this country avoid rain but also their carriages are adversely affected. I recall one legendary singer who sang that Nairobians fear rain more than cars on the road.
He was correct. Think of rain and you start running for a shelter – may be stopping/cancelling all day’s business plans. Media house would have another story to cover that evening. With headlines of “Transport has been paralyzed in many parts of Nairobi following a sudden heavy downpour this afternoon”. Even the gorvernor would agree that many of the city’s roads are rendered impassable leading to heavy traffic just because of drop of water from the sky. This situation adversely impacts transport and commutters are always stranded in the town Centre.
My recent encounter was on the superhighway. Barely two years after completion of Thika. It is seems to be a no go zone with heavy downpour in our city. This Thika superhighway was heavily flooded and if you drove a vitz – lucky if you went through the sea on our superhighway.
Just few minutes of rain renders Thika Superhighway impassable. Motorist reduce their speeds to near zero, as the water fills the road. It is a superwaterway maybe and not a highway. I almost gave a tick to this completed road but drainage has left me the opposite. The authority has neglected the drains despite the Chinese doing a commendable work. More blame is direct towards us, some residents fill drains with garbage and all form of plastic. When it rains, water is therefore left with nowhere to go, but to fill the road. Lets stop this, think global while acting locally.
Steps to green future
The Kenya’s Capital City, Nairobi is taking position among the best cities and next tigers of economies on the continent. First, it was the Economist Intelligence Unit (EUI) study that revealed Nairobi will be one of the fastest growing cities in the world by 2016. The EUI defined competitiveness as a city’s ability to attract capital, business, talent and visitors. Nairobi battled off some of the world’s largest cities to come in at the 50th position for the quality of human capital. Johannesburg was 53rd in this category while Tokyo and Beijing trailed in the 56th position.
Now, the 2012 MasterCard Global Destination Cities Index, ranks Nairobi – the green city in the sun, as one of the most popular destination city in Africa. According to the Index, Nairobi which is the Commercial hub of Kenya is projected to be visited by an estimated 1.8 million tourists in 2012 injecting an estimated $1.5 billion an equivalent of Kshs.170billion into the city’s economy. It translates into a 10% growth in visitor numbers and a 16.7% growth in visitor spending over the 2011 Index results.
Nairobi ranks fourth out of 13 cities surveyed in Africa – both in terms of visitor numbers and visitor spend – highlighting its status as the financial heart of the East African region and a significant African economic hub. Further, the noteworthy 16.7% growth in projected visitor spending for Nairobi sees the city ranked in 10th position globally among the fastest growing destination cities examined in the Index.
The MasterCard Global Destination Cities Index ranks 132 global cities by their total international visitor and their cross-border spending in the destination cities, and gives visitor and passenger growth projections for this year. Besides Nairobi other Best African Cities ranked among the thirteen top destinations include Accra, Cairo, Johannesburg, Casablanca, Beira, Cape Town, Dakar, Durban, Kampala, Lagos, Maputo, and Tunis.