Kisumu Senator Tom Ojienda faced significant criticism from Kenyans on Tuesday for launching a mabati structure designated as the new office for the Assistant Chief in the Achego sub-location.
The structure itself is constructed from iron sheets, commonly known as mabati, featuring an earthen floor, and a wooden door with a blue latch.
Senator Ojienda, during a political event on Sunday attended by residents from various parts of the county, cut a green ribbon to signify the official launch of the office, much to the ire of Kenyans across the country, who used the development as a stick to beat him with.
“I always say, turn to the government because that is the only way you can bring development to your people,” the Senator said during the launch.
Responding to the development, Kenyans termed it a joke and a mockery of Kenyan voters.
“I don’t know if the leaders we have do things intentionally to see Kenyans’ reactions, how can this be called an office? This country by all means needs to be serious,” one stated.
Further, a section of Kenyans accused the senator of misusing public funds and sparing peanuts to construct the low-budget shack and fronting it as an office.
“What a perfect insult to the community of intellect! I mean, when we’re busy launching our haciendas with basic degree certificates, a whole professor is launching a cowshed and calling it a national government office,” one remarked.
Others questioned why such officials were in government, mocking residents with mediocre projects.
Most opined that such actions diminish Kenya’s standing in the eyes of foreign nations.
Kenyans seized the opportunity to compare Ojienda’s launch to another instance where Embakasi East MP Babu Owino was lauded for launching a modern assistant chief’s office.
Ojienda, who is among the leaders expelled from the Orange Democratic Movement (ODM) for violating party rules, was further trolled for his perceived disloyalty for aligning himself politically with President William Ruto and visiting State House frequently.
“Is this the kind of development that he and his colleagues went to seek from statehouse?” one questioned.
Others questioned why the law professor saw it fit to commission a poor-quality structure despite knowing that his constituents and journalists were in attendance.