Kiambu leading in implementing the Bottom Up economic philosophy

By Njeri Karu
In line with the Bottom-Up Transformation Agenda (BETA) that propelled the Kenya Kwanza
administration to power, Governor Kimani Wamatangi has been at the forefront of implementing the
Plan, which mirrors his manifesto.
His administration has been deliberate in rolling out projects as outlined in his manifesto to support the hustlers at the bottom of the pyramid.
On this front, the Governor and his team have been busy on the ground, implementing programs
beneficial to ‘Mama Mboga’, Bodaboda operators and other small-scale traders.
His administration is behind the market designs models adopted by the State Department for Trade in constructing markets across the country.
In Kiambu, Governor Wamatangi has set the ball rolling by initiating the construction of seven mega markets as well as the rehabilitation and renovation of the existing markets.
In his manifesto, the Governor identified the ‘hustlers’ as his top priority, ensuring they have decent
places to conduct their businesses. His administration has been focused on market projects, which are central to supporting ‘Mama Mbogas’.
Construction is currently underway for two Esp markets: Soko Mjinga market in Lari Sub-county and Tin’gan’ga market in Kiambu Sub-county.
These markets are strategically located with access roads on all sides. Plans to start Ngewa market, Gitwe market, Gikuni market, Gatukuyu market, and Kiandutu market are progressing rapidly.
“The construction of these markets will not only help traders make a living but also boost the economic growth of the county,” said Mburu Kang’ethe, CECM Trade, Industrialization, Tourism and Investments during the groundbreaking ceremony of the Gitwe modern market in Gatundu South Sub-county.
Two additional dome shades have been built at Rironi and Kiganjo markets, drainage systems, solar
lighting, floodlights and waste cube containers for garbage have been placed in these markets.
“We will renovate existing markets and construct modern ones to improve the trading environment and reduce congestion,” says Chief Officer of Trade Mr. Simon Kiberenge.
Governor Wamatangi has also prioritised constructing bodaboda sheds for motorcyclists, providing
them with a conducive environment for their business. Their operations have also been improved with the rehabilitation of rural access roads across the county.
In addition, plan to establish a County Aggregation Industrialisation Park at Waruhiu farm in Githunguri Sub County are already in the pipeline.
The project, which is in line with the Bottom Up Economic
Transformation Agenda is a partnership between the state department of Housing and the Council of
Governors (COG)will see each county allocate Sh250 million towards this initiate which will be matched with a similar amount from the national government. The park will serve as hub for agricultural
processing and manufacturing, providing a link between farmers, industries and the markets. Farmers will also get the opportunity to learn about various aspects of agriculture and agribusiness from different Agri professionals and companies.
The site has been handed over to the contractor awaiting launch as completion of the feasibility study of this project nears and value chains identified.
In the Directorate of Tourism, substantial work has been carried out as Kiambu moves to tap its
potential in the sector.
The focus is on mapping out, developing and leveraging Kiambu’s tourist sites while addressing barriers preventing the sector from thriving. Plans are in place to enhance cultural centres, rehabilitate existing tourist sites and develop more eco-tourism destinations.
Last month, Tourism and Wildlife Cabinet Secretary Dr. Alfred Mutua, accompanied by Tourism PS John Ololtuaa, paid Governor Wamatangi a courtesy call to discuss this important issue.
The CS pledged to collaborate closely with the county’s tourism directorate, including strategic
marketing of Kiambu’s tourist circuits.CS Mutua also promised to consult with the Ministry of
Environment to address environmental concerns, such as severe water pollution at 14 Falls, a once- thriving tourist spot, and modernising other attraction sites in the county.
Kiambu County boasts a rich array of tourism offerings, with over 70 attraction sites. These include resorts, agro-tourism experiences like exploring tea and coffee farms at sites such as Fairview Coffee Estate in Kiambu town and Kiambethu Tea Farm in Limuru and cultural tourism with historical attractions like Kimunyu Maumau Caves in Gatundu, Mugumo Gardens in Thika and Turi a Mumbi Cultural and Heritage Centre in Tigoni.
Eco-tourism options include the Forest Adventure Centre in Limuru, known for activities such as zip lining, archery, mountain biking and nature walks, as well as natural wonders like Fourteen Falls in Thika, Paradise Lost Amusement Park in Kiambu, and Kijabe Hot Springs, offering hiking and exploration of underground tunnels and caves.