Involvement

Nǐ hǎo, wǒ de míngzì shì

by Ben Ayuko

{image by gettyimages}

 

Over the last decade there has been a very noticeable growth in Chinese presence in our country.

As Moses Wetang’ula, speaker of the National Assembly, once said, “China is a signatory to almost every major infrastructure project in Kenya…” And well, it doesn’t seem like slowing down any time soon.

-There is of course the Confucius Institute that launched in 2006 at the University of Nairobi after the then President of China, Hu Jintao, paid Kenay a visit. Its aim was/is to help merge Chinese culture with Kenyan culture. They even teach the students kung fu. {https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hOtpytrCBGs&pp=ygUpY29uZnVjaXVzIGluc3RpdHV0ZSB1bml2ZXJzaXR5IG9mIG5haXJvYmk%3D}

-There was the 50km long Thika superhighway in 2012.

-The construction of the Standard-Gauge Railway line (SGR) in 2017- a billion-dollar project that has become such a normal part of Kenyan Life.

-The Express Way which was completed in 2022 is probably the latest mammoth project that has been undertaken by Chinese contractors, though there’s definitely more to come.

Now, obviously, this isn’t everything. These are some of the higher profile projects that Chinese companies such as China Wu Yi, Sinohydro and Shengli Engineering have procured multiple contracts for all over the country, e.g. building apartments, malls and offices in Meru Town as well as the Coloho Mall in Athi River {Zhong-Wu}

-They are also involved in the automobile industry whereby companies like BYD and NETA are trying to normalize the concept of electric cars in Kenya in order to reduce our carbon emissions and preserve the environment.

-They are involved in our farming as well. Jianguo Liu {Jack Liu} is the man who introduced the concept of Juncao Grass or Magic Grass as the farmers call it. It earned its name because of the extra-ordinary advantage it has over normal Napier grass. It is a drought tolerant and stress resistant grass that produces almost double the yield in milk and meat on the animals it is fed to. It also has a longer shelf-life than normal fodder that farmers usually feed their livestock. It is also useful in fighting soil erosion. Basically, this grass is slowly revolutionizing how farmers go about managing their product. {Juncao Grass .The Best Solution to Mitigating Fodder Availability @kenyacitizentvContacts 0752600777 (youtube.com)}

As the years pass, the Chinese influence in our culture is slowly becoming undeniable. Who knows? In 50- or 60-years’ time, Kenya might have 3 national languages.

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