What an interesting way to end the last week of July – Mathare North was the place to be on Friday, July 27th! Sauti Yetu Debate was the climax of the week. Starting at 9a.m Mathare North residents gathered at Mathare North social hall,eagerly waiting for the County Assembly Representatives aspirants.
One by one each aspirant rose to ask Mathare residents to vote for them. Each aspirant had a unique strategy, and each spoke of how they are going to change the lives of Mathare North residents through Education, Job Creation, Better health facilities and good infrastructure. Mathare North residents raised the issue of the Environment, which they said was deteriorating day by day without anything being done.
One aspirant promised to demolish houses to pave way for planting trees and recreation parks. This brought up contentious issues of land usage, which showed the need for further dialogue and policy discussion surrounding use of land. Some residents discussed the need for shelter, while others brought up the fact that children no longer have grounds to play in since playgrounds have been converted into residential areas. Residents also spoke of issues of land grabbing and land ownership in the community.
One good part of the debate is that the aspirants present vowed to the public that they will ensure the election period will be peaceful. It is encouraging to see both aspirants and the community placing such value on peaceful elections.