Counties that will empower women and youth economically and politically will reap fruits of devolution, First Lady Margaret Kenyatta said today.
She said by empowering women, a community is empowered while by empowering the youth the future is secured.
She commended the Maasai community for embracing change by electing Peris Tobiko as their first woman MP of Kajiado East Constituency as well as having the first female Maa chief Margaret Nadupoyi Lenana.
The First Lady was speaking when she presented the 23rd fully kitted Beyond Zero mobile clinic to Kajiado County.
She said the new measures undertaken by the Maasai will no doubt impact the community positively.
“Congratulations to the people of Kajiado County for empowering women by giving them leadership positions,” she said.
The First Lady said Kajiado County continues to bear the brunt of HIV/AIDS epidemic and that at the end of 2013, the county had over twenty thousand people living with the disease, 13 % of whom were children.
She called on the Maasai community to shun negative cultural activities as they compromised noble development goals for the community.
“I am aware that women and girls in this county face challenges that increase their vulnerability to HIV/AIDS: marriage of underage girls; female genital mutilation; and high school dropout rates among girls. These factors all have a negative bearing on the goals to which we are all committed,” she said.
The First Lady urged the Ministry of Health to intensify implementation of national disease control strategies, including community based activities for Malaria prevention and treatment in endemic areas.
“Although Malaria is not endemic in Kajiado, we need to keep up the fight against this killer disease. We must ensure that mothers and young children sleep under treated mosquito nets supplied by the Government as a preventive measure,” she added.
She also called on the County health department to take measures to curb diseases caused mostly by flies such as eye diseases problem which is prevalent in Kajiado county saying if left untreated it can lead to blindness.
She thanked Kenyans for their support saying the success of the Beyond Zero campaign is because of the goodwill of all citizens and philanthropists from across the world.
Kajiado Governor Dr. Joseph Ole Nkedianye commended the First Lady for coming up with an innovative way of supplementing Government efforts in providing better healthcare for all Kenyans.
He said Kajiado County Government has allocated 1.2 billion shillings from its budget towards the health sector to ensure that its residents access better medical care.
“When people are healthy, then it is easy to achieve development objectives,” said the Governor.
Kajiado Senator Moses Mositet accused provincial administrators of having been compromised to give aliens Kenyan Identity Cards which has led to lapses in national security.
He called on the Government to come up with a proper vetting procedure of people to ensure only genuine Kenyans acquire identification documents.
“How come we have people employed in some institutions who cannot even speak a word in Kiswahili and yet they have Kenyan National Identity cards,” the senator asked?
Other speakers included, Kajiado Central MP Moses Ole Sakuda, Principal Secretary for Health, Dr. Khadijah Kassachoon and the Director of Medical Services Dr. Nicholas Muraguri.