DP Rigathi Gachagua has affirmed his commitment to ensuring the Mt Kenya region is empowered through the eradication of killer illicit brew while emphasizing that the region was on the verge of collapsing due to alcoholism and drug abuse.

Without urgent intervention, Gachagua said, the region’s population could nose-dive in a decade and make it difficult to be part of future governments.

The deputy president who has been at the forefront in the fight against illicit brew in the country said there seems to be a strategic plan by some individuals to sell poisonous alcoholic drinks in the region in the last several years.

This, he said, had in turn turned many local men into zombies who could not support themselves or their families.

He, however, said he will continue with the fight until the local man is empowered enough and his dignity restored.

“I want our men to be empowered. I want them to stop living in destitution. I want them to have money in their pockets to support their families and be respected.

“I want men to have enough money to give their women Sh3,000 for no reason other than loving them. Currently, when men given women money, they have already planned even for the change. I’m ready to do anything to restore the dignity of our men,” Gachagua said.

Once empowered, the DP said men will be able to take their rightful positions in their homes and make it easier for women to play their roles.

“We want our women to look good, have their hair done and dress the way they want. They are our flowers and that’s why I’m here. I’m a simple man and I look at things in a simple way,” the deputy president.

He said the agriculture sector that most locals depend on is improving with reforms being implemented by the government and will ensure farmers earn more money.

The deputy president revealed that he is in contact with senior members of the community for advice on the various issues facing the region.

Recently, Gachagua said he met former ambassador Francis Muthaura who was an adviser to the late President Mwai Kibaki.

“We have many members of our community who have a lot of experience and I will find them because I’m not a know-it-all. I listen to advice. I want to add to my knowledge because our house is very big and I can’t steer it forward alone.”

MPs Joseph Munyoro (Kigumo), Peter Kihungi (Kangema), Joe Nyutu (Murang’a senator), Irungu Kang’ata (Murang’a governor), Sabina Chege (nominated MP), Martha Wangari (Gilgil) and Mary Waithera (Maragua) accompanied the DP.