Spectacular fireworks exploded over towns and markets in Migori County in a blaze of light and colour to welcome in the New Year, as the region kicked-off a wave of celebrations to welcome 2023.
From Isebania town at the border of Kenya and Tanzania to Rongo town at the border of Migori and Kisii Counties, the roars, cheers and claps from elated residents illuminated this quite balmy and moony night, as the clock’s three arrows tic-toked past 00.00 hours.
To the chagrin of the many local population caught unawares, the sky erupted in light at midnight as fireworks shot-up from buildings and homes across the region bust and glimmered overhead.
“This is reality putting Migori on the map in terms welcoming the New Year,” former Civic leader in the defunct South Nyanza County Council, Mr. Geoffrey Odera, commented as he joined enthusiastic residents gathered at a pub in Uriri Market to usher in the 2023.
The celebratory mood was also boosted in the region by a host of Churches and Mosques whose pastors, bishops, Imams and followers spent the whole night belting out religious songs and offering prayers to welcome the eagerly awaited New Year.
At the Calvary Church in Uriri Market, Bishop Moses Ogada, ushered in the year 2023 with a sermon calling on Kenyans to embrace love, peace and the spirit of open heart to give to the less fortunate people in the society.
The Bishop also urged parents not to spend too much of their money in celebrations but to spare enough to cater for their children’s education this year.
Pastor Joseph Onyango of the SDA faith, appealed to the political class to go slow in their politics and think seriously about the economy, the creation of jobs and wealth.
Majority of the residents, however, expressed confidence that the hard economic situation witnessed in 2022 will change for better during the New Year.
Key voices from the business community, religious institutions, trade unions, women groups and professional groups called on politicians to tone down their political rhetoric and focus their energies on growing the economy.
They also asked politicians to ensure the full implementation of the New Constitution 2023 or they risk blowing up the gains made in the past 10 years.
By George Agimba