Kisumu Boys must go – Nyong'o

Governor Anyang' Nyong'o
Kisumu Governor Anyang' Nyong'o
Photo credit: File | Nation Media Group

The century old Kisumu Boys High School and other schools within Kisumu City will be moved outside the city centre, Kisumu Governor Anyang Nyong’o has said.

Prof Nyong’o said the schools add no economic value despite sitting on prime land at the heart of the lakeside city.

According to the governor, a city is commercial-oriented and should be run as a profit-making entity.

“Considering the value of the place, that land needs to be useful. We need to construct an integrated urban centre rather than schools,” Prof Nyong’o told journalists in Nairobi while giving updates on the upcoming 9th edition of AfriCities Summit set to take place in Kisumu between May 17 and 21, this year.

Kisumu Boys, whose history dates back to the early 20th Century during the construction of the Kenya-Uganda Railway, will be relocated to a 105 acres of land parcel in Kibos area.

According to a plan unveiled early last year, Kisumu Girls High School, Manyatta Arabs School, the Kisumu County Referral Hospital, the main bus terminus and the Jua Kali market will also be affected.

“Each school has a field, a swimming pool and other amenities that have occupied [large parcels of] land.  Why don’t we take them to an area where schools share amenities? We don’t need to have a field for each school in a town.

“Five schools can have one field because they don’t use it all the time. Students from school A can use it the morning and in the afternoon school B brings its students,” Prof Nyong’o said.

The governor gave an example of the Kisumu ASK grounds in Mamboleo whose land was converted to a 30,000 capacity Jomo Kenyatta International Stadium in Kisumu.

“ASK show ground is an area of about 100 acres. It used to have a show of two weeks in a year and the rest of the year the 100 acres remained idle in the centre of the city,” he said.

“And now an investor has built ultramodern convention centre and the other one has expressed interest in constructing a hotel around the stadium,” he explained.

The project dubbed “Transforming Kisumu City through enhanced urban aesthetics”, intends to revamp the city’s economy and the services by improving the city’s drainage system, establishing an integrated solid waste management system, provision of green spaces within town and improving public health and sanitation.

The Kisumu County Referral Hospital will be merged with the Jaramogi Oginga Odinga Teaching and Referral Hospital.

The plan to demolish Kisumu Boys High school has been met with resistance as former students threaten legal action against the Kisumu County Government.

The school is credited with having produced a string of leaders including Kisumu East MP Shakeel Shabbir, Kisumu West MP Olago Aluoch, Embakasi East MP Babu Owino, former Kisumu Governor Jack Ranguma, business man Kamlesh Pattni and the CEO of the Institute of Economic Affairs, Kwame Owino.