Buildings =\= Progress

There is something I see often in content online and more so recently prevalent on Kenyan TikTok.

It is where someone posts these new buildings and restaurants and like Thika Road or a bypass and captions it “Welcome to Kenya”

The point, and I get it, is to show development and building and roads are often seen as progress for a country and in a way especially for roads, it has positive effects for value chains. I get it.

But I’d like to kill this trend post haste.

I don’t know who told us all that building things is a sign of development. Especially when done by loans provided by colonisers. And then the government misuses funds at the rate they do. It doesn’t make sense y’all.

In a country where (good) health, education, water and even food comes at a prohibitively high cost it is ludicrous to look at buildings and think “this country is doing fine”

It is not.

And I think we have to agree that the sign of a country doing well is when the majority (if not all) of the population is able to meet their basic needs. And when I speak of health I am absolutely including mental health because Kenya can kill you with stress.

And that’s facts.


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