The August 8 General Election will have huge implications on Kenya’s political and socio-economic future.
Like South Korea, Singapore or Malaysia, there is everything to dream for and put Kenya where it should be.
History has made Kenya what it is today; a country full of mistrust and suspicion.
That means a lot needs to be done to build confidence and trust for one another.
That is why the presidential election outcome will be historic.
For Jubilee, it would be President Uhuru Kenyatta’s last term. It would be a time for him to build and cement his legacy.
Should the National Super Alliance prevail, it would mean the first real taste of power for veteran opposition leader Raila Odinga.
But it would also mean dealing with a lot of expectations placed on his shoulders and managing a fractured country.
The Nasa opposition alliance has sold itself as pro-devolution.
Travel all over Kenya and you will realise a lot that still needs to be done to improve livelihoods. There have been changes in the country, especially in real estate and infrastructure development.
Yet our rapidly growing population is a great challenge to whichever person or party assumes power after August 8.
Projections from reputable institutions such as the World Bank show a significant population growth in Kenya by 2050.
Unfortunately, the country still cannot feed itself and the troubling joblessness crisis does not show any signs of reducing.
Agricultural production is declining every season thanks to climate change.
What all this means is that Kenya must invest in policies, strategies, laws and structures if we are to catch up with the ‘Asian Tigers’.
We must put in place mechanisms that successfully deal with the country’s Achille’s heel: Corruption.
The next national and county governments, National Assembly, Senate and County Assemblies will have a lot to do if Kenya is to make a huge economic leap forward. The Judiciary will also be expected to play its part properly.
The same applies to supportive players such as the civil society, media and development partners.
But, even with our shortcomings, it should be noted that the country has made milestones in the past one-and-a-half decades.
We have a progressive Constitution, a lot of investment has been made in infrastructure, the Judiciary is more robust and independent, there are reforms in education, expansion of electricity connection, reforms in the National Health Insurance Fund (NHIF) and several others.
Yet the road ahead is tough. The challenges we face are of immense proportion.
The next government will still have a lot to do to improve security in many parts of Kenya, reduce unemployment, poverty and ill-health, improve infrastructure and exports and other matters.
HARRISON MWIRIGI GIKUNDA, Nairobi.