It was reported in the media today that contrary to what was reported the other day that some crazy people were trying to have Kibaki run again for president despite the absence of a legal basis to do so, Kibaki is ready to retire. Go to http://www.capitalfm.co.ke/news/Kenyanews/Kibaki-ready-to-retire-in-2012-12505.html for the full story.
Reading this piece instantaneously took me back to January 1, 2008 when having been up sleepless since election day in 2007, I recall a friend of mine and I watching the unbelievable swearing in of Kibaki at State House. Sitting there as a witness was another friend of mine I had tried to contact without success from the day before in frantic efforts to find out if there was anything he could do being a friend of the president but seeing him there obviously dispensed that idea.
A few days later, I left the country in controlled rage and determined to lobby everyone in Washington for help in getting Kibaki to renounce his swearing in and allow the people’s will to prevail. You could not have asked me to name more than two people I held in more contempt at that time than Kibaki and Kalonzo and between the two, Kalonzo more than Kibaki. Fast forward, we have had the compromise leading to the current coalition government and I must say Kibaki has redeemed himself in my book notwithstanding a lot that has happened and continue to happen detrimental to the country’s interests on his watch.
On balance, however, having worked closely with his partner, PM Raila to usher in the new Constitution and more recently, having backed down and allowed the appointment of crucial constitutional office holders to be done in conformity with the spirit and letter of the new Law of the land and other things I can list (even including ICC where HE the President seems to have taken a less sombre direction) Kibaki has done great to reclaim a positive legacy in our country’s history despite 07.
Needless to say, however, the President owes the country a smooth transition to seal his legacy. What a sweet irony it would be for him to hand over the presidency to the man who many agree is largely responsible for Kibaki being elected president in the first place and what an even more sweeter irony would it be for him to hand over the presidency to a man who believes he stole the seat from him in the second place! I am sure even he would find that much amusing and what an incentive for him to make this happen if anything to close this chapter with us all saying all is well that ends well.
I wish him well as he starts to wind down to exit the stage and may he have a good and long life in retirement.