Lamu county set to have three headquarters

Photo of the current county headquarters in Mokowe town. PHOTO: NATASHA NEMA

Lamu, KENYA: Lamu county will make history as the first county in Kenya to have three headquarters.

This is after the national government revealed plans to build two more county headquarters to be located in Faza and Hindi areas in Lamu East and West respectively at a cost of Sh.300 Million.

The new county headquarters are expected to be completed by end of this year.

Lamu county currently has its headquarters located in Mokowe town having been moved from Lamu island where it had been previously located.

Speaking shortly after he paid a courtesy visit to Lamu governor Fahim Twaha at the Mokowe county headquarters on Thursday, Principal Secretary in the Ministry of Transport, Infrastructure, Housing and Urban Development Paul Maringa said the national government would partner with the county government to push through with the plan.

Maringa assured that the money for the project had already been set aside.

He said of the Sh.300 Million, the national government would foot 70% of that amount while the county government will chip in the remaining 30%.

The current headquarters in Mokowe cost Sh.220 Million and was completed in July last year.

Maringa said the reason for the additional two headquarters was to ensure service delivery to citizens is decentralized as much as possible.

He said design works and the general architectural plans have already been finalized and have been submitted to the governor for approval after which the ground works will commence.

Maringa assured residents that new premises would take into account coastal idioms including the faith and culture of the people of Lamu.

“We have had a very fruitful engagement with governor Twaha.Apart from the already existing county headquarters here at Mokowe, we have arrived at setting up two others at Faza and Hindi.We have ensured all designs for the intended headquarter premises are in line with the culture and faith of the people in this region. So don’t confuse if you see the structures looking like mosques and old Lamu buildings,” said Maringa.

The PS said they were also looking forward to signing an agreement between the State Department of Public Works and the Ministry of Transport, Infrastructure, Housing and Urban Development with intention to forge a partnership with the Lamu county government that will be guided by a Memorandum of Understanding-MoU which will be signed by the end of this month.

“The primary drive of the MoU is to cement the original guidelines of the Constitution that says when we set up county governments, the national government has the responsibility to build capacity in the respective counties. That’s why the ministry is looking forward to providing capacity building to locals within Lamu so that in three years’ time, the region will be relying on their own qualified quantity surveyors, electrical, civil and mechanical engineers as well as local architects which will serve all construction needs in the entire county,” said Maringa.

He said the MoU will enable Lamu to set up good operating systems to be able to train their own people that will, in turn, enable for clear supervision both technically and administratively.

Lamu Governor Fahim Twaha pledged support for all intended and ongoing national government projects in the county.

“I am happy for the planned development projects in Lamu by the national government. I will support such projects by all means possible for the greater good of Lamu,” said Twaha.

Prof Maringa together with Lamu Port South Sudan Ethiopia Transport-Lapsset Corridor Development Authority Director-General, Silvester Kasuku and other board members are on a tour of the port site in Kililana.