What you need to know:
- Education is at the core of national survival post-2020.
The new decade, starting 2021, offers opportunities as well as challenges that Kenya needs to be aware of if we are to move into the next level of social, economic and political development.
Even as we celebrate some hard-won victories like the passing of a new constitution and the development of infrastructure, this decade may prove rough for countries that don’t prepare to face challenges.
Virus outbreaks in the past decade should warn us that the new decade may be no different. The Ebola virus, HINI swine flu, zika in the Americas as well as Covid-19 are all warning signs that the world may face even deadlier viruses.
The ministry of Health should put in place strategies to combat future outbreaks, resolve differences with medical personnel and start the production of personal protective equipment (PPE). Research should be emphasised for vaccines.
Wealth production in the country is uneven. Some areas earn foreign exchange through cash crops while the coast is the base for tourism. However, vast lands in the country are lying idle. National and county governments should look for ways to utilise this land to generate wealth by prospecting for minerals, and facilitating irrigation.
Education is at the core of national survival post-2020. A citizenry equipped with knowledge and skills to generate wealth is necessary. Recruitment of more teachers will improve the quality of learning. The continued investment in science and technical subjects will promote the medical and manufacturing sectors.
Dialogue is key in bridging the divide brought about by the BBI debate. Bearing in mind that the initiative was intended to prevent national disunity that characterise general elections, the opponents and proponents of the BBI should craft a winning formula.
No one can dispute that technology and innovation will be a major mover in the new decade. African countries have for long been mere consumers of technology. They should now move towards generating it. Having our own platforms through which content can be uploaded and viewed throughout the world will create companies that can compete with YouTube and Twitter. Konza technological city has a lot of potential.
Stricter supervision of chemicals in the country will ensure that we reduce the prevalence of lifestyle diseases. We need sensitization on the right nutrition.
Lastly, ‘doughnut economics’. That’s the term used by Kate Rayworth, Oxford economist and writer of a book by the same name. She advocates for governments moving more of their people into a position in which the environment provides for their life essentials.
Acting upon these areas will ensure we have a smoother sailing into this new dawn.
Peel Maina, Nyeri