Over Sh. 600K Raised To Assist Thika Jua Kali Fire Victims.

More than sh. 600,000 has been raised to help the victims of the Sunday’s Jua Kali-Engen fire, thanks to donations of friends and well-wishers led by local leaders who included Thika Town MP Alice Wambui Ng’ang’a, politicians Stephen Ndichu, Patrick Wainaina (Wa Jungle) and Morris Mburu among others.

MP Alice Ng’ang’a gave her personal contribution of sh. 300,000, Thika Town Constituency aspirants Morris Mburu and Patrick Wainaina (JungleNut) donated sh. 50,000 and mabati sheets worth sh. 150,000 respectively. A senatorial aspirant and former area MP Stephen Ndichu gave sh. 20,000.

Speaking during the exercise, Alice said that she would continue seeking for funds to see to it that the victims were able to go back to their businesses. She noted that the Jua Kali facility was under the County Government of Kiambu and therefore called on more presence of the devolved government in ensuring safety and a good working environment for these small artisans whom she said contributed enormous revenue to the county government.

“As you know, MPs who are the people representing the national government on the ground, were left with only two major roles and that is security and education. All the other functions were devolved and therefore the County Government of Kiambu should do more to ensure they develop the right infrastructure to ease the lives of the people in their jurisdiction. Even these link roads within town are supposed to be developed and maintained by the devolved system,” said the MP.

Ndichu called for peaceful campaigning and electioneering saying that confrontational politics would take us backwards. He reminded both the electorates and the candidates that the ultimate decider was the voter and no amount of animosity would change the people’s verdict.

“Tuache siasa za fujo na kurushiana maneno. Just to echo the wise words of Former Kiharu MP Kenneth Njindo Matiba, ‘Let the people Decide.’” Said Ndichu.

He called on the scrapping of some of the elective posts that were created by the 2010 constitution saying that majority of them were a burden to the taxpayer.

“I don’t see the reason why we should overburden Wanjiku with so many irrelevant positions. I believe it is time we made amendments to the constitution and did away with the senatorial seat, the women representative as well as reducing the number of MPs and MCAs. This wage bill is just too big. We need also to amend the law to give the president more powers to implement his policies and discipline wayward officers in his system,” said the former Juja MP who is ironically eying the Kiambu Senatorial seat.

As a longstanding MP in the area, Ndichu gave a detailed chronological sequence of events of how the Engen Jua Kali came into being but also pointed a suspicious figure in the manner in which the area was hit by frequent and mysterious fires. He said that it was the high time the authorities dug deep to unearth the reasons behind these unexplained infernos.

The victims expressed their gratitude to the well-wishers and hoped that they will be able to rise again.

“The generosity of the people of Thika and the outpouring of the support from our leaders across the political divide to help Jua Kali artisans whose kiosks were razed to ashes by fire is a true Kenyan moment. We truly pulled together to help friends in their time of need and this we do not take it for granted,” said Macharia.

Macharia said that even though the total loss from this horrific incident was enormous, the little that was raised would go some length to assist the victims in putting up something for the time being. He added that they would continue working to raise as much as possible and disperse the funds to the traders as fast as they could.
A massive fire on Sunday night consumed property worth about sh. 50 million, rendering hundreds jobless.
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