Othaya residents have urged the government to have the Kenyatta National Hospital-Othaya Annex renamed after the late Emilio Mwai Kibaki as a way of honouring him.
The Level Six Teaching and Referral facility which serves eight counties in the Mount Kenya region with 300-bed capacity was built to help decongest Kenyatta National Hospital.
According to the residents who speaking to KNA Wednesday, naming the facility after the late Kibaki will help them keep his memories as their longest serving Member of Parliament for Othaya constituency from 1974 to 2007.
“My plea to the government and President Uhuru Kenyatta is to spearhead the renaming of Kenyatta Annex Hospital to Kibaki Teaching and Referral Hospital in honor of our late President. President Kibaki Mwai did a lot for this country, so by extending this small gesture of renaming this facility after him will be a great national honour,” said Moses Mwangi, a resident.
“Kibaki was a selfless leader. Even after implementing many developmental projects in the country he did take the credit of naming them after him. He was a true leader. Let the government name this facility after him since the fallen icon hailed from this area,” another resident Francis Kiragu said.
However, though the residents want the facility renamed after the third president, close allies who worked with Kibaki during his era said that he never wanted development projects named after him.
“We tried so many times for instance to have the Othaya hospital named after him but he flatly refused. On roads, Uhuru highway and Thika road he equally refused to have his name tag on them,” National Assembly Majority Leader Amos Kimunya stated as he eulogized the former President.
The residents are also calling upon the government to allow them to view the body of the late President in Othaya town, before his final interment Saturday.
“Most of us cannot afford to travel to Nairobi to view the body of our late President. We are therefore requesting the government to allow us to view his body here in Othaya as a way of paying our last respect. He was our longest serving Member of Parliament. Most of us interacted with him when he was an MP and we would like to have this last chance to view his body,” Esther Wamaitha said.