On Wednesday, October 13, the Nairobi County Assembly approved a motion sponsored by Makongeni MCA, Peter Imwatok, to rename Mbagathi Way after Raila Odinga.
Imwatok had lobbied his colleagues in the Nairobi County Assembly to pass the motion arguing that the ODM leader has greatly contributed to Kenya’s democratic and economic development and that he should be honoured for his benefaction.
The MCA noted that it is important to recognize people who have contributed to Kenya’s advancement while they are alive and not when they pass on.
“Raila fought for a greater democratic space, good governance, rule of law and development of infrastructure against innumerable odds, including detention without trial for 10 years,” Imwatok explained.
He added that he will be holding talks with the Nairobi county leadership headed by acting Governor, Anne Kananu, to ensure that the motion is upheld and Mbagathi Way renamed after Raila.
“I will personally reach out to the Deputy Governor to see to it that Mbagathi Way is renamed after Raila,” he continued.
Nominated MCA, Mary Arivisa, also proposed renaming a public institution along Mbagathi Way after the former Prime Minister arguing that since the road’s name will be changed, the school along the same route should also be renamed after him.
“We had written to the Ministry to rename Mbagathi Primary School to Raila Odinga Primary School but it was a challenge since it was named after the road. Now that the name of the road will be changed, it shouldn’t be a problem,” the MCA explained.
The Nairobi Metropolitan Service (NMS) introduced a policy to guide on how roads will be renamed after an uproar in the capital when Kananu renamed Dik Dik Road in Kileleshwa after COTU boss, Francis Atwoli.
According to the policy by NMS, a County Addressing Unit comprising of members from the county and national governments will be appointed by the county executive for planning and urban housing to initiate the renaming.
NMS boss, Mohamed Badi, noted that Nairobi lacks a framework that peacefully addresses property and street naming, especially because e-commerce deliveries require street names.