I have been away on travel and thus my late entry of my views on the Miguna issue.
My first preference was not to say anything about the matter, assuming anything and everything that could or need to be said about it, has been said but have changed my mind after seeing Miguna’s letter circulating on the Internet, which I append below.
I understand Miguna is upset over what happened to him.
This is perfectly understandable.
I am sure each one of us would be equally upset, but I know the response will not be the same.
What I cannot understand and am therefore reading in disbelief, is what Miguna is trying to say in this letter about Raila and in particular how his appointment came about and the manner in which his termination came about.
The name calling is downright shocking, especially coming from Miguna who has known Raila for a very long time.
Miguna knows he was one of many, many, many ODM supporters who literally camped at the PM’s office for a long time, before an opening could be found for them.
Each one of these supporters had an expectation for appointment of some kind in the Raila Administration for any number of reasons, including obviously political patronage which is alive and well in Kenya just as in any country but Kibaki’s preventing Raila from being sworn in as president made it all but impossible for Raila to dish out the appointments his supporters had hoped for because he was forced to share the presidency with Kibaki, which in turn meant Raila could only offer so much in appointments and whatever else.
I sometimes laugh in hindsight, when I remember Raila saying to his obviously disgruntled and unhappy supporters early on in the coalition that he only had half-a-loaf to share.
The reality is, even he, looking back, will tell you he only has had less than a quarter loaf to share and as a result, he has had a large number of disgruntled and unhappy former supporters, many who are now going around trashing him vz PNU supporters who Kibaki has done very well in giving plum jobs and otherwise making sure they are well taken care of.
You heardly hear any of Kibaki’s 2007 supporters going around whining as you do from Raila supporters and this is almost 5 years later.
I know this first hand as I have many friends from both sides in both categories (happy PNU supporters/disgruntled unhappy ODM supporters)–the happy ones were taken care of, the disgruntled ones were not.
Miguna was one of the lucky ODM supporters to even get a piece of the quarter loaf Raila has been thrown at by Kibaki.
He should be happy and thankful for it, no matter how the gig has ended, or will end.
Many others did not and some moved on without any bitterness, others are obviously bitter and are the ones leading in trashing Raila whenever the opportunity arises, including right here in these fora.
Only a few weeks ago on another trip to Nairobi, I crossed paths with yet another one of these (Unhappy former ODM supporter).
The fellow supported Raila in 2007 so I have always assumed he remains a supporter.
I was wrong: the dude is now for anyone but Raila: Why? Because he did not get the appointment he was promised!
He told me this himself. Apparently, back in 2007, he was to vie for a certain constituency and apparently, he was a serious contender who had good chances of winning (this I knew and remember vaguely from that time).
However, as it was the case in a number of other constituencies, this individual was persuaded to abandon his candidacy by another (seasoned) candidate, who promised once elected, he will see to it that President Raila Amolo Odinga appoints him in his administration.
You can imagine the rest of it: No President Raila; no appointment.
The fellow is now rabidly anti-Raila as any can be for these turn of events.
I find this absurd and told this individual as much in person.
You cannot give and withdraw political support based on rewards expected.
Political patronage is a stable in any political system, but no one should expect it as right.
This is why I find Miguna’s protestations in his letter below equally absurd.
I assume there has been a lot going on behind the scenes at the PM’s office before Miguna’s suspension.
Indeed, I privately communicated to Miguna about some of it a couple or so weeks ago.
But in the end, this is all about politics and more specifically, I assume Miguna is paying the price of raffling the feathers of many key players other than Raila and if that’s the case, I’ll further assume the choice for Raila was to have Miguna stay on at the expense of demoralizing these many key players or reluctantly agree to Miguna’s termination for cause.
Unless one is a first rate hypocrite (I don’t want to say first rate idiot), one must agree the choice is clear: Preserve the morale of many at the expense of one, and not vice versa.
Miguna is now challenging his suspension in court.
Given generally how these things turn out, the facts surrounding the Miguna matter are complex but his challenge in court regarding the legality of his termination is easily resolvable as that is simply a matter of interpreting his contract as to termination–something not essential for non-contractual employees.
But let me give you my prediction:
If Miguna prevails, he is unlikely headed back to the PM’s office, especially given his letter below and what else he has been saying lately about the PM.
I can see being given a comparable position in some government department, should it be legally concluded that he has not violated his terms of engagement and that therefore his suspension or ultimately his termination is deemed illegal.
If Miguna does not prevail, in other words, if he is ultimately permanently terminated (he is now under suspension without pay) Miguna will join the long list of of once Raila supporters but now anti-Railaists such as the fellow I mention above and the many we know in these fora who endlessly rant and rail on how horrible and bad Raila is, simply because they have a personal ax to grind against him, not disagreement on policy or anything close.
Quite frankly, my wish is, it is the former and not the latter outcome for Miguna.
The last thing I would wish to see here or anywhere else, however, is Miguna bashing Raila.
I can see he has already started doing this but that’s neither pretty nor necessary, no matter the outcome.
Loyalty and friendship demand nothing less.
I do believe this is also an opportunity for Miguna to re-examine and re-evaluate where things went wrong and adjust accordingly and if he does so, I am sure his contribution in the political discourse and engagement in Kenya has yet to hit high gear.
Conversely, if he does not and stays on the course he is on, and especially where bashing Raila continues to be a part of it, Miguna would likely write and shout himself out of any continued relevance in the political discourse and dispensation in Kenya.
That would be tragic, indeed, for a man who has shown so much stamina and audacity.
As I have communicated to him privately, in calamity, there is greatness that can be revealed only by the greatest.
On the other hand, the average succumb in calamity, to even lower depths for their lack of foresight and ability to remain calm, even as they weather the storm, which they can, if applying themselves accordingly.
The difference is often one about character.
The stronger emerge even stronger, the meek, even weaker.
What shall it be in Miguna’s case?
Only time will tell but he has a lot to do with that but, as I have noted above, he is needs to correct course quickly and plot a new survival strategy as he must and I would not burn bridges with anyone no matter how tempting for that may be the very bridge to a new future.
The point: Miguna should start making amends with Raila by at least not hurling any more nasty stuff as he already done and gather enough strength and offer an apology to Raila who, purely from a political analyst point of view, has done the right thing for himself, his office, the party, and ultimately the country as all these decisions have a bearing and impact on his presidential ambitions.
Miguna himself will make the same call, were he in Raila’s shoes.
And so will each one of those crying foul.
It’s called the politics of survival.
Those in it must always be on a look-out not to become casualties.
If they are unable to and find themselves under the bus, they have no one other than themselves to blame.
I never buy this foul cry that anyone has thrown anyone under the bus: the people have thrown themselves under the bus or train or whatever moving vehicle.
This is the lesson all aspiring political players should and must learn.
The arrogant and tough talking Alexander Haig, former US Secretary of State, found this the hard way after essentially declaring himself president when then President Ronald Reagan was being treated for gunshot wounds, only to find out his old pal Reagan did not find any of this declaration amusing when told about it and a result, Reagan distanced himself from Haig and ultimately showed him the door.
Peace, Love and Unity
Samuel N. Omwenga, Esq.
Letter from Miguna:
`I have sacrificed my career, my life – even my family – for Raila
>>>> Odinga. For him to throw me under the train in such callous, inhumane
>>>> and clearly barbaric manner astounds me. I have loved Raila Odinga. I
>>>> have fully trusted Raila Odinga. I have committed all my life and
>>>> energy to defending and promoting the interests of Raila Odinga and
>>>> that of the citizens of Kenya and the country at large. I have done so
>>>> without much remuneration.
>>>> Before relocating to Kenya in September 2007, I earned between $20,000
>>>> and $50,000.00 (CAD) per month. I spent more than $50,000.00 (CAD) to
>>>> campaign for Raila Odinga in North America.
>>>> I did all these things for higher ideals. I believed (I now realize,
>>>> wrongly), that Raila Odinga was the “agent of change” for our country;
>>>> the “bridge between the old and the new Kenya”.
>>>> I have worked as a slave for Raila Odinga. Raila Odinga knows that I
>>>> have done nothing wrong. He has been made aware by the IIEC that I was
>>>> NOT involved at all in any conspiracy to undermine the commission. I
>>>> have been advised that the IIEC has informed the PM that an internal
>>>> IIEC investigation has revealed that the articles authored by Gikonyo
>>>> Boaz (whose contents nobody has refuted) is one Dr. Baraza. The PM has
>>>> been advised that I have no connections, links, nor do I know who Dr.
>>>> Baraza is. Despite all these, the PM decided to “sacrifice” me “to
>>>> save Major Oswago” who is also innocent of the frivolous charges.
>>>> So, quite clearly, the PM and those around him simply wanted to
>>>> “sacrifice” me for parochial, mischievous and malicious political
>>>> But in doing so, they acted inhumanely, did not follow due process,
>>>> and grossly breached my legal and constitutional rights. Nobody can
>>>> justify these acts. I am not a dog that can be brutalized without
>>>> I shall protect the rule of law and the Constitution. Those who fear
>>>> democracy, the rule of law and refuse to uphold the Constitution have
>>>> no business pretending to represent the ideals of the new dawn.
>>>> For now, that is all I can say.
>>>> Miguna Miguna