The Msambweni Member of Parliament, Suleiman Dori has called for more private sector investments in the counties to effectively address poverty and underdevelopment.
The second term MP urged governors in devolved units to create the necessary conducive environment to inspire investors to settle in the counties.
Speaking in Kinondo township on Wednesday, Dori urged his constituents in Kwale county to embrace and welcome foreign and local investors with open arms.
He said the 47 regional governments need to remove all bottlenecks that stifle investment opportunities for Kenyans at the grassroots levels.
“We need not give investors the cold shoulder but welcome them with open arms and work with them for the betterment of our people,” he said when he met the management of the Australian mining firm Base Titanium.
The Kwale Minerals Sand Operations (Base Titanium) commenced production in 2013 and features a high-grade ore body with high-value mineral assemblage such as Rutile, Ilmenite, and Zircon.
The MP said he was ready to work closely with Base Titanium to help tackle the myriad problems that local communities in the mining zones face.
He said Kwale people should change their mindset and treat investors with respect and courtesy saying it is only through investments that meaningful development can be realised in the countryside.
“I want to tell the people of Msambweni that investors should not be fought but brought closer,” he said adding that its time grassroots leaders abandoned whipping public passion against the mining industry and other big time investors.
Dori said Base Titanium has significantly helped his constituency and Kwale County in general in addressing the issue of school dropouts through issuance of bursaries that have so far been able to support 2,700 poor students from across Kwale.
“Base Titanium has played a big role in helping address the education situation in Kwale. Each year we get a lot of students seeking sponsorship and the MPs office through the NGCDF and the County government cannot support all of them. Were it not for Base intervention many students would be at home but Base has been on hand to help them with sponsorship,” he said.
The Base Titanium Community Relations Manager, Pius Kassim said they have plans to increase the number of scholarships to be awarded to students this year to cater for more students especially those living close to its mining operations.
“We plan to increase the number of scholarships that we will be offering this year from 300 to 400 to widen the educational opportunities available to our neighbouring communities,’’ said Kassim.
He said the mining firm spends a fortune on community projects, including schools, hospitals, academic scholarships for bright but poor students, drilling of boreholes among other things in its area of operation.
By Hussein Abdullahi