Q: Thanks for taking your time to talk to us. Kindly begin by telling us who South Kanyamkago is and your short history before joining politics.
A: My name is Graham Kagali Angogo, the current Member of County Assembly, MCA for South Kanyamkago Ward in Uriri Constituency. I am an accountant by profession and previously before joining politics, I worked in various sectors among them the sugar industry as well as the tobacco industry where I served last before being elected to the County Assembly of Migori.
Q: That’s Ok. Now you have been described as a quiet guy by several of your colleagues, which is strange given that politicians world over are known for being talkative. What is your opinion on this assumption?
A: I am not a quiet person per se, but I have to admit that I am a firm believer in action. That is more evident back in South Kanyamkago which I represent where I have already done a lot within the short time I have been in the assembly.
Q: You are the Majority Chief Whip in the County assembly. Why do you think members saw it wise to elect you to such an influential position given that you are a first term MCA?
A: I have been a strong defender of the ODM party, both within and outside the assembly. I have been a strong advocate for her unity and I have been in the forefront trying to strengthen the party, all though to the Orange house which is our national headquarters . I have also been involved in the marketing of the party across the country.
Q: Let’s talk about co-existence in Migori County and specifically Uriri constituency where you come from. It is a fact that you come from a minority community, and yet you were able to be elected as chief whip in the assembly dominated by the Luos.
A: Yes, it’s true I was elected mainly by the members of the Luo community and let me say here that Luos are the easiest people to live with. They have no problem, are very welcoming, very hospitable and if it were not for this, we would have not lived with them for almost eighty years when Luhyas migrated to this place in 1940s.
Q: So what should residents of South Kanyamkago expect from you before your term ends?
A: A lot, to be honest. To begin with, we started off by having committees at polling level stations. There is a 20-member committee spread all over all the polling stations within the ward and they have assisted me manage their areas as a unit.
The number one issue has been poor road network which is made worse by the fact that we mostly have murram roads which require regular maintenance.
Secondly, I am keen to ensure that the perennial water problem in South Kanyamkago becomes a thing of the past. Let me admit that my ward is better off in terms of water availability as compared to other wards within Uriri constituency.
We have helped youths and women groups to empower them as the backbone of this economy especially in terms of production especially in groups.
“I would like to be remembered for empowerment of women and youths. I hope by the time I finish my term, several women and youths can boldly say, ‘I can put food on the table courtesy of a better leadership that I got from Graham Kagali’
Q: Away from that, What’s your opinion on the ward development fund?
A: Let me say that Ward Development fund is an idea that should have been implemented much earlier because it’s really the essence of devolution. Let me also assure our people within the county that as MCA’s, we believe devolution is not about self-enrichment and acquiring positions but is more about identifying and solving the people’s problems without having to call on the governor or the executive to come and intervene.
Q: Now, apart from the devolved functions, you have been working quite closely with Uriri Member of Parliament. Kindly tell us if there is any national project you have lined up for South Kanyamkago Ward in line with the partnership?
A: I will only point the Oyani Vocational College at the expansive Oyani Dairy Farm, because of our team our work have commenced.
Q: At the end of your term, what main thing would you like to be remembered for in South Kanyamkago and the message you have for the residents of your ward?
A: I would like to be remembered for empowerment of women and youths. I hope by the time I finish my term, several women and youths can boldly say, ‘I can put food on the table courtesy of a better leadership that I got from Graham Kagali’.
Secondly, the message to the South Kanyamkago residents; let’s work together.
Q: Finally, any closing comment?
A: I would like to end it by commenting on the state of the entire county. From the just ended Devolution conference, there is a lot of resources in our county still waiting to be tapped. We have a lot to learn, a lot to bring in to Migori County and we have set formulas for this. We have set interactions and bench-marking programmes so that Migori County should not just be known for Sugar and gold, but other things that can put us on the map for more positive view.