Mbagathi Highway has been renamed Raila Odinga Way, making ODM party leader Raila Odinga immortal in the memory of Kenyans in generations to come.
The renaming exercise was done through a joint effort between the Nairobi Metropolitan Services (NMS) and Nairobi City County.
A section of political leaders have been calling on government to name a road after the Former Prime Minister to honor his sacrifice and fight for democracy in the country.
On September 20, the Nairobi County Assembly minority whip Peter Imwatok introduced a motion seeking to have the city’s Mbagathi Way renamed after the ODM Party leader.
The Makongeni MCA defended Odinga, saying he has contributed immensely to the development of the country, and need to be recognized.
He cited Raila’s selfless sacrifice in championing good governance, democratic space and the development of infrastructure.
“ We (ODM Nairobi leaders) have been in the streets with him leading from the front. It pains us that people who didn’t do anything to impact society positively are being appreciated more than those who sacrificed more including giving their own live’s from youthful age and happiness for the good of our country,” Imwatok noted.
Imwatok argued that Odinga’s handshake with both President Uhuru Kenyatta and retired President Mwai Kibaki restored peace and harmony in the country.
However, Kenyans expressed mixed reactions towards renaming the road. Some of them thanked the state for recognizing true heroes of Kenya while others criticized the move.
“Young Kenyans born in 2000s will hate changing of Mbagathi way to Raila Odinga Way because most don’t read and are ignorant. Raila commissioned the construction of Mbagathi Way in 2005. It was constructed using concrete slabs, still going strong with no potholes or cracks 16yrs later,” Abraham Mutai explained.
On the other hand, Mark Mwita was agitated, questioning why over-ambitious leaders were being honoured at the expense of the ailing economy.
“I don’t see any need why we should start labeling our roads after politicians For what reason, gain do they have?” Mark Mwita wrote on twitter.
Mbagathi Road is now among the recent roads that have been renamed in honour of Kenyan leaders. Others include Accra Road which was renamed Keneth Matiba Road and Dik Dik Road which was renamed Francis Atwoli Road.