Eastleigh Neglected: From Trash to Treasure…
Eastleigh is one of Nairobi’s economic strongholds. This area that is mainly occupied by the Somali community is responsible for over 30% of Nairobi’s annual revenue. The somali’s are respected and admired for their unrivalled business acumen. However, this business hub didn’t spring out of the blues. There are people who intentionally worked hard to build up Eastleigh to what to it right now and hope to make it even better.
One of these people is a Social Activist called Ahmed Mohamed, CEO Ark Media. Besides being one of Eastleigh’s successful businessmen, he is mostly known for his community leadership.
Ahmed Mohamed is the passion and heart behind the Eastleigh Neglected Campaign. This campaign was born out of frustration against the County government failing to provide services to the residents and businesses in Eastleigh. Despite the huge revenue that Eastleigh alone contributes to the Nairobi County, garbage is still not collected, feeder roads are in bad shape and sewage and drainage is blocked and others over flowing. This has of course affected business and caused many diseases.
Ahmed Mohamed is not just a hashtag warrior, after following up with the authorities about this issue and yielding no results, he shared scary images of the garage situation as at on the 16, Dec 2015, and tweeted this to Nairobi governor, Evans Kidero and the Nairobi County Government office: If this is not removed in 24 hrs, businesses & residents will hold a mass protest on Saturday. #EastleighNeglected
— Ahmed Mohamed ((ASMALi)) #StayHomeSaveLives (@Asmali77) December 16, 2015
— Ahmed Mohamed ((ASMALi)) #StayHomeSaveLives (@Asmali77) December 18, 2015
Ahmed Mohamed is also a business icon in Nairobi. He pioneered the first ever Business Summit in Eastleigh. The main purpose was to highlight Eastleigh as an open investment and business hub. Ahmed Mohamed also wanted to change the wrong perception that people might have based on what media decides to cover about this area.
The Eastleigh Business Summit was success and top corporate companies including banks were all present. It seems they understand Eastleigh’s economic muscle. The Summit was officially opened by the nairobi regional coordinator, Mr Njuguna Ndirangu and area MP Hon Yusuf Hassan.
— #InsecurityKE (@InsecurityKE) December 5, 2015
Apart from business, Ahmed Mohamed is passionate about connecting and promoting peaceful coexistence within all communities that live and work in Eastleigh. He wants to bring communities together for the betterment of the neighbourhood by highlighting the dynamism and vibrancy of Eastleigh.
Many people think Eastleigh was built entirely on hard work, that is not true: Eastleigh is the result of trust and unity by people from different culture and religion. Trust is an important key issue in Eastleigh. A handshake is more important than a signature on a paper.
— Ahmed Mohamed ((ASMALi)) #StayHomeSaveLives (@Asmali77) December 5, 2015
It has had its fair share of terrorism and terror related activities but it has come out of it stronger and more resilient. Tensions was as a result of fear of the unknown but now all the communities have realised that terrorism is a criminal activity carried out by individuals. It has nothing to do with religion or culture. There were also a lot of interfaith dialogues and forums which are helping change this narrative.
One of the first things to stand out about this city also referred to as “Garissa Ndogo is the sheer volume of activity. It has developed into one of Kenya’s largest commercial districts, with approximately 100,000 residents, more than 30 large shopping malls, thousands upon thousands of retail outlets, and a huge number of hawkers covering the sidewalks and even roadways, all packed into less than one square mile of land.
— Fatuma's Voice (@FatumasVoice) January 4, 2016
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