President Kibaki on Sunday thanked Othaya people, whom he has served for 37 years, for giving him time to pursue his national ambitions.
Speaking at an interdenominational thanksgiving prayer service in Othaya yesterday, President Kibaki said he will retire a happy man after having tried to give his best as president and Othaya MP.
The president said his Government was committed to serving all without too much discrimination.
The president disagreed with those who say all key offices and personnel are disproportionately staffed by fellow brothers and sisters, but mostly brothers from the House of Mumbi.
The president categorically denied charges that he has been the most tribalist president even beating his two predecessors, Daniel arap Moi and Jomo Kenyatta.
Those who have analyzed hiring trends for all three presidents, however, contend the rate and ratio of employees in senior staff positions at all parts of the government, including nearly all foreign embassies are staffed by people who are either from the former Central province or speak the language very well to fool anyone coming from there.
Indeed, it is said but not confirmed there is one embassy where only one language is spoken among and between staff, which is neither English nor Swahili, the two predominant languages in the country.
“Whenever you go in this country, you are impressed by the steps that Kenyans have taken to uplift their lives,” Kibaki told the congregation, meaning neither he nor his portion of the government has done much to help the people and thus the reason he is impressed folk are still making it.
The president was first elected Othaya MP in 1974 after shifting his base from Nairobi’s Donholm Constituency (later renamed Bahati and now comprising parts of Kamukunji) where he was first elected MP in the first post-Independence elections in 1964.
The president also took a swipe at some unnamed leaders who he described as “proud”, saying the pride was likely to be a precursor to their downfall.
He said such leaders “must show humility rather than brag about their achievements as they were only the servants of Kenyans.”
Asked afterwards by a reporter to clarify who he meant by this reference, the president laughed, saying he would leave it up for people to imagine who he may be referring to.
A quick check of the news archives and analysis of media reports shows there is not a single leader in the country other than Raila who has accomplished anything to be proud of so it is likely this was a swipe of Raila, the president’s partner in the coalition government.
Indeed, a source close to the president confirmed Raila, indeed, was the target of the swipe.
The swipe, however, is unfair and inaccurate because Raila has not bragged about his accomplishments and neither has he acted other than with humility in all of his political life.
The PM did recently address a large crowd in Minneapolis, MN where he ticked off the government’s achievements while also stressing the challenges that lie ahead and offered reasons the country has not attained the progress it should have attained by now.
The speech can hardly be seen as bragging, however, and thus confusion as to whether the president really meant Raila or his (Raila’s) opponents who have been bragging about how good they are when, in fact, they are not good at all other than in engaging in empty talk and besmirching of Raila.
It therefore remains to be seen in the days ahead who the president really had in mind with the swipe and his laughingly saying he’ll leave it up to the readers to figure out who he meant, Kibaki may just have been having a little fun playing cat and mouse.
The prayer meeting at the Othaya Approved School Grounds was organized by churches in Nyeri County, including the Catholic, PCEA, the ACK, AIPCA as well as evangelicals such as PEFA and the Redeemed Gospel Church.
Archbishop Peter Kairo of the Nyeri Catholic Archdiocese delivered the main sermon.
He said Kibaki had served the country with a bit of humility and some wisdom at times.
Kairo added that Kibaki had brought progress in education, health, infrastructure and trade but noted that a lot more needed to be done to reduce graft, laziness, crime and consumption of illicit brews.
At the service, the president sat between his son Jimmy and daughter Judy, while younger sons David Kagai and Tony Githinji and Jimmy’s wife completed this row.
Also present were his grandchildren, Cabinet ministers Uhuru Kenyatta, Amos Kimunya, Beth Mugo, Chirau Mwakwere and Moses Wetang’ula, MPs Ephraim Maina (Mathira) and F T Nyammo (Tetu) and former Vice-President Moody Awori.
Wetang’ula said the president’s greatest achievement was in reinstating him as minister.
Uhuru said Kibaki had been at the center of national development since independence and has remained there without moving to any direction and will remain a role model to many in how to be hands off, hear nothing and see nothing, even as storms are swirling around you as was the case in 08.
At the meeting, Mwakwere confessed how Kibaki turned down his offer to lead a crusade for extension of his tenure beyond the constitutional limit but he is believed to be in a deep funk since he made the confession, wondering what caused him to confess this as he is now completely and truly exposed as a watermelon who during the referendum supported passage of the new constitution in the day time while being opposed to it at night and therefore a champion of status quo.
His confession was, in fact, the real headline of this event but given Makwere’s now diminished role in political circles and influence, the media may not care much to make anything out of it other than to feel sorry for him and his continued sliding into political irrelevance, if not oblivion.
***The foregoing is a parody of a story appearing on Standard Online***