Governor Peter Anyang’ Nyong’o has maintained that the Maseno trading center is within the boundaries of Kisumu County and that his administration’s plan to upgrade it into a town is in order.
In a statement where he was responding to a story done by a local daily claiming that he is on the spot over his decision, Prof. Nyong’o insisted that the plan was done in strict adherence with the Urban Areas and Cities Act, with elaborate public participation.
There has been a long standoff between Kisumu and Vihiga regarding the ownership of Maseno, with each county claiming that it lies within her borders.
Governor Nyong’o has come under sharp criticism from a section of Vihiga County leaders, among them Senator George Khaniri, who says that Maseno is theirs.
But contrary to their sentiments Nyong’o maintains Maseno “has for decades been the headquaters of the former Maseno Division. It also sits North West Kisumu ward of the Kisumu County Assembly”.
Nyong’o acknowledges that there has been disputes over the boundaries of the town, but he says this cannot stop the development of the “fast growing and important urban center”.
“Maseno belongs to all of us. What we need is not disputes but synergies that will build Maseno town into a robust cosmopolitan center that offers jobs and business opportunities, regardless of ethnicity,” said Governor Nyong’o in the statement.
The Governor is worried that some people want to fan fresh tensions over the noble plan to develop Maseno, which has been a uniting factor for residents of the two counties.
“We ask our brothers from Vihiga to join us in celebrating Maseno and stop making utterances that may stir tension and hatred between the two communities even as we look for ways of addressing the said dispute,” added Nyong’o.