Kenyan President Uhuru Kenyatta has announced that a national clean up campaign will kick off on Sept. 1 to help boost the country’s environmental conservation efforts.
Kenyatta said in a statement issued on Friday evening that the campaign which is dubbed “Cleaning Up Kenya Campaign” shall be led by cadres of the national government administration officers.
“The campaign shall be anchored on the National Government Administration Officers at the local level who shall work together with the local communities and with stakeholders both within and outside of government to enhance environmental restoration, conservation and management,” he said.
Kenyatta who was speaking during the launch of the Michuki Memorial Park in Nairobi County said every Kenyan has a responsibility to conserve the environment and emphasized the importance of environmental conservation.
He pointed out that the campaign fits within the ongoing “Kazi Mtaani Program” (residential estate clean-up) and shall complement the efforts being made towards the improvement of environmental and sanitation conditions at the grassroots level.
Within the Cleaning Up Kenya Campaign, he said local government officials (chiefs) are encouraged to proactively involve vulnerable members of their local communities and marginalized groups such as women, youth and persons living with disabilities.
The Park is named in honor of the late former minister John Michuki who played a key role in the clean up of Nairobi River and its environ during his tenure as the minister for environment.
Kenyatta pointed out that besides Michuki Park, his government is working on renewing several other green spaces within the city.
“We hope to extend this re-birth of our environment or what I call the ‘green renaissance’ to all Counties of the Republic,” said the president.
He regretted mistakes of the past especially weak enforcement of environmental and sanitation that led to Nairobi losing its green city status.
“As a government, we did not enforce the civic responsibility of the citizens to take care of the green spaces. And the citizens of Nairobi city were not organized enough to protect it. Because of this, and the rapid growth of ‘concrete spaces’ over the ‘green spaces’, there was a collapse of civic order and national duty in the city,” Kenyatta said.
He said green spaces are the lungs that help cities to breathe by improving the quality of air and absorbing toxins emitted by the environment.
“This is why we are targeting a 10 percent forest cover across the entire country by the year 2020. Within Nairobi, the Michuki Park is the first attempt at pushing this ‘green renaissance’,” he said. Enditem