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Mumbo Jumbo on Labour Day As Critical Issues Went Missing

Mumbo Jumbo – Blatant act of Omission on climate calamities and insecurity!

High ranking personalities gave speech on the Labour Day celebrated at Uhuru Park in Kenya today. To my surprise none of them mentioned anything about the climate change and the humanitarian calamities many Kenyans experience. It appeared as none of them was informed about climate issues or they did not just care about it. This has raised eye-brows among climate experts including myself. The government could be charged in the law court for negligence and lack of the duty of care under the law of tort.

As much as we affect our environment we are also affected by the environment. Many Kenyans are now feeling the impacts of climate scenarios. Many households spend much more saving on buying food in order to sustain their families but there is nothing left for health services should there be need to do so. This is a real catastrophe especially for many families with no stable income. The low earning families are the first to perish in Kenya. The minority wealthy persons including the President will be the last to suffer from climate impacts. This ought not be the reason for neglecting a mention about climate change and adaptation and how far is the leadership committed about it. I find it difficult to forgive the Secretary General Mr. Francis Atwoli, the Deputy President Hon. William Ruto, and most importantly, the President, His Excellency Uhuru Muigai Kenyatta. They blatantly and deliberately missed out in important and relevant topics on the Labour Day!

The President spoke of promoting the industries including reopening KICOMI, the obsolete Kisumu Cotton Mill that has been dormant for decades. At the same time he addressed the nation saying that new clothes are being imported from China to kill the Mitumba (used clothes from the West). This was offensive. To make matters worse, he promises to reopen the textile industry but he failed to elaborate further how this should care for the climate disasters…neither did he talk about the water hyacinth killing the lake ecosystem.

As many Kenyans are drowning economically, still the presidency failed to come up with clear ideas of how to offer more climate security! Attention was more on re-election bid other than addressing the immediate problems and challenges that people face. No idea, no policies, no clue about the climate! Am sorry but this is a serious crime of omission. Textile industry cannot provide employment to the majority of unemployed youth! One must learn from India.

It is a pity that issues of water shortage and risks facing the entire agricultural sector was not properly addressed. The DP Hon. Ruto said something very embarrassing about agricultural sector. He repeated what he said back in 2013 yet the population is faced with sky rocketing price of food. Prices of consumer goods are too high for the average people while the wages remain frustrating for many families that are already too antagonized by the economy. There is a big show of gloom on the faces of many Kenyans. To prove this fact, not many Kenyans closed their businesses to follow the celebration. There was nothing to celebrate or rather, there was no good news from the government.

The negligence of addressing climate change and adaptation is not forgivable by all standards. So many Kenyans are scared by what may follow. So many farmers are losing their herds while others go without safe water due to poor weather. Even wildlife on which Kenya’s economy has relied for years is not safe neither! Kenya is losing its beautiful flora and fauna as nobody’s business and the government seems to have no clue other than the Climate Act of 2016 whose implementation is still in limbo! The climate council that is supposed to be chaired by the President has never been commenced. I find this a question begging!

All this would translate into more poverty, slow economic growth, high inflation, more deaths, poor health services, more corruption, more bitterness, more sufferings, more social mobility and, most importantly, more environmental and humanitarian disasters!

Share your opinion on this article: was it right for the President to skip a mention on climate change? Is he in support of the already global process?

About Peter Onyango

Dr. Peter Onyango O. is one of our main contributors. He is a senior law lecturer, a writer, a consultant, peace ambassador, and a researcher. He assists so many professionals, legal minds, and debaters with his skills and scholarly wealth! He supports children and village community as a way of giving back to community. He edits, proof reads, and publishes various articles for our page!

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