SPEECH BY HER EXCELLENCY MARGARET KENYATTA, FIRST LADY OF THE REPUBLIC OF KENYA DURING THE 6TH ANNUAL MURANG’A COUNTY INITIATIVE SCHOLARSHIP AND AWARDS CEREMONY AT IHUURA STADIUM, MURANG’A COUNTY ON 24TH FEBRUARY, 2017.

On August 14, 2018 In Statements and Speeches

Governor Mwangi Wa Iria,

 Distinguished Guests

 Ladies and Gentlemen,

 It is a joy to be back with you again, to celebrate the 6th Annual Awards Ceremony. Let me begin by thanking Governor Mwangi wa Iria for prioritising education as one of the key pillars  of Muranga’s development agenda.

 I also applaud the Muranga County Initiative (MCI) for your continued investment and commitment to this critical project. Let me also thank all parents and teachers present for wholeheartedly embracing this program, and tirelessly supporting the children. And, finally to the wonderful young people – our student- we celebrate you! We celebrate you for your dedication, for your hard work, for your undistracted focus on academic excellence. Most of all for your ambition.

 For those of you who will be receiving a bursary today —  you have distinguished yourselves for your potential. You are a beacon of hope to your families, communities and to your country.  I want you to know that the MCI program is providing you a platform from which you can achieve your individual dreams and strive for the greatest goals. I truly believe that each one of you has the potential to become who you want to be: scientists, researchers, doctors, business men and women, engineers, lawyers, teachers, artists, and country leaders of the future.

 As Nelson Mandela once said: “education is a great engine of personal development. It is through education that the daughter of a peasant can become a doctor, that the son of a mine worker become the head of the mine, that a child of a farm worker can become the president of a great nation.“ To all the children here today - Remember that. Remember that you each have special gifts and abilities to contribute to this country. And I urge you to continue taking advantage of the opportunities of education. And to take opportunities of the MCI program, and others available, to excel and succeed in your academics, and pave a bold path into brighter futures. I have learnt that the first MCI beneficiaries, are among us today,  and I urge to be role models for those behind you. May your success and experience be an inspiration to others, and may you practice the gift of giving back to your community during your career lives ahead of you.

 It is impressive to see that the performance of students already in the program has had an impact of the County’s education performance – and that the general Mean Standard Score in the County has been steadily rising. There is no doubt that this kind of progress has resulted in the investment and interventions by the County Government in collaboration with initiatives like the MCI.

 So it is important for us, as parents and as citizens to support these kinds of interventions which not only create hope for our children, but also have a domino effect on our society—mitigating problems and maximising opportunities. Educating children holistically — ensuring their effective emotional and cognitive development — averts many societal problems and unlocks many communal opportunities. Because no nation which allows its children to wilt in the shadow of neglect, can ever hope to achieve social cohesion, peace, stability, economic prosperity, or any of the other goals which we all aspire to for our society. So, let us continue to support the Murang’a County Initiative, and to support the children before us, knowing that an investment in their futures, is an investment in our nation’s future.

 With those remarks, let me close by once again congratulating all the scholarship recipients and awards of the day. We celebrate with you, and we look forward to all that you will achieve.

And to our County heroes and heroines here present today, may we continue to learn from you and appreciate you always.

God Bless You All.