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Monthly Archives: October 2019

Thank you all for subscribing!

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Yours truly

More than 8 years ago, I decided to start my own blog I called Uchambuzi Tanaka now this Current Affairs About Kenya. I initially only had a few subscribers. Over time, and without any promotion whatsoever, the blog today passed more than 3,000 subscribers, many who I know to be Who’s Who in Kenyan political scene.

At some time along the way analytics told me I had penned an estimated 1 million words but I didn’t believe, even though now looking back I can see how that is possible. This is particularly so when initially I used to churn 3000 to 5000 word blogs on a very regular basis! Several of my readers complained so I am now to a manageable blog size requiring only a few minutes read.

My intention all along has been to condense some of these into a few ebooks and I hope to do so in due course, God willing.

I appreciate each and everyone of you and will put the pen down only when the mission is accomplished, and that is helping in making sure we have a united country and one devoid of the hate and tribalism we’ve witnessed and lived with in the past.

Thank God and thank Uhuru and Raila, this may soon be a thing of the past, namely, the hatred and division, at least having neither as dominant and decisive factors in how we conduct our affairs, especially elections.

Indeed, we owe the two men a ton of gratitude for the handshake and BBI that it bore, now let’s join them in making sure what the BBI taskforce puts forth as their proposals is fully implemented. I have more to say about this in my column this weekend.

 
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Posted by on October 30, 2019 in Politics

 

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We Need Financial Bailout, Reigning in KRA and Constitutional Changes, Says Kiprono Kittony

Kiprono-Kittony(1)

President Uhuru Kenyatta (l) with Kiprono Kittony (r) at a past event.

In his article below Kiprono Kittony, Vice Chairman of World Chambers Federation, articulates a compelling case why we urgently need in Kenya a stimulus package to get our economy back on track and restore business confidence.

I concur with his sentiments and urge us all to reflect and share with others, even as we encourage our MPs to heed and do the necessary. The president has, of course, no choice but to push for this and we are confident he will as this relates and affects implementation of the much anticipated BBI Report, ditto his Big Four agenda.

The article is an easy read and I strongly recommend you read it but if pressed with time, here is an excerpt of his main argument:

The content of this [stimulus] package should be subject of an open dialogue between the private sector and the government. However, some basic minimums need to be included in the package.

The first basic minimum is the introduction of checks and balances to ensure the Kenya Revenue Authority (KRA) does not kill enterprise in the name of tax collection.

Second, all pending payments need to be released and legislation needs to be subsequently enacted to penalize offenders and cushion victims of delayed payments [from the government] who are currently in cat-and-mouse game with auctioneers.

Third, and perhaps more important, a constitutional review is needed to address the elephant in the room [and that is] over representation in the legislature. As a country, we moved from having one legislative body to having 49 (Senate, National Assembly and 47 county assemblies) without critically interrogating the cost.

The cost of running a bloated legislature explains why recurrent expenditures are spiraling out of control. This naturally puts pressure on KRA to collect more and more taxes each year, despite the fact the tax base is not expanding commensurately with the collection targets.

This in turn explains why businesses have been hit with unreasonable tax demands.

According to Kittony, and we concur, this is a recipe for disaster worse than where things stand now and therefore the need to urgently address the problem and proposed with an economy saving stimulus package as well as reducing the bloated government, starting with the numerous counties we don’t need.

Stimulus Package for Kenya

 

 
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Posted by on October 29, 2019 in Politics

 

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Deconstructing BBI Central Kenya Narrative Part II

Uhuru and Raila(3)

President Uhuru Kenyatta and Opposition leader Raila Odinga shre a light hearted moment at the foot steps of Harambee House after their meeting where they resolved to work together and unite the country after the long protracted elections. March 9, 2017. Photo/Jack Owuor

According to the Star, Mt Kenya MPs have indicated that they will oppose the parliamentary system of governance should the BBI report propose so.

The more than 30 legislators who addressed a press conference in Parliament buildings on Thursday, said they will reject a proposal to either elect a Prime Minister or President in Parliament.

“Our people are underrepresented. What we want is one man one vote, ” Ndaragua MP Jeremiah Kioni said.

They said that inclusivity in the government will play a big role but it should be able to address leadership, representation, resource, allocation and the structure of the gThe legislators who included senators and MPs said they will hold a meeting after Building Bridges Initiative has released its findings where they will give their take.

Following this news, I had the following exchange with a netter:

Netter:

These [MPs] are not few. Uhuru needs to do something. Mambo bado.

Remember even some Luo mps realized that Moi did kifunga macho to them. An MP in Lamu representing 10k voters will have same weight with one in Siaya with 150k voters. Those folks will decide who rules.

Parliamentary system will see battle line drawn and may see even unexpected quarters gang….eg Duale for it and am MP from Nyanza tell Raila hell no.

My response:

I am not privy as to what the strategy to make sure BBI passes is, but I can put two and two together and tell you I see two different paths to that end, even one involving NO referendum. I am therefore not concerned about what these MPs say or do because we know ALL of them are thinking their own jobs and EATING first and how BBI will affect that. As a progressive, that is the least of my concern and our task is educate and inform the public as we are to be focused on what matters.

What matters is amending the constitution to address the BBI core issues, which are: (a) Ethnic antagonism and competition b) Lack of a national ethos c) Inclusivity and devolution d) Divisive elections e) Safety and security f) Corruption g) Shared prosperity h) Responsibilities and rights. Nearly all of these can be done legislatively and by Executive Orders and I know there’s one path ALL of them can be done without need to amend the constitution and therefore NO need for a referendum but let’s first wait and see the report.

Netter’s response:

True about 2007 and Hague. Raila rejected the results. Ruto was his lieutenant and Uhuru was working for Kibaki. Kibaki and Raila should have been hauled in Hague also. Ruto and Uhuru were not running for office then. Tell us who behind the violence in subsequent elections and why? He claimed elections were stolen?

If Raila didnt run during these elections and condemned related elections, we would not be talking changing the system of Govt. Ruto was not with Raila when violence broke out in 13, and 17. Who was in charge? Raila. Uhuru and Raila are focused on all violence happening every time Raila losses. Those seats are make him get accommodated. They think he will get a seat so shut the hell up. What if we change the constitution, Ruto wins the presidency and Jubilee is majority as in today’s case but he appoints Duale and Kiunjuri as DP and prime ministers, Khalalwe and Kibutha as DPM, and Jumwa in powerful ministry, then gets others supporting him from Luo, Kisii, Meru, Maasailands and all over Kenya since PM will be from majority party? He will meet their requirements but Raila will be out.

So if Ruto appoints a Migori MP or let say one in Jubilee as DPM as long as he is Luo, will that make Raila happy? So assuming we have current situation, who would have been PM? Duale or Kidiki? Since no Luo MP is in Jibilee, how do they get one without nominations? Raila will reject the results and violence will be there.

The system of Govt is not the problem. Just make Raila accept results and nobody will fight.

On Mt. Kenya, let us see if Uhuru will make it. He will run against elected leaders and with Raila on his side, he wont make unless they address representation issue. The posts of PM and deputy PM are accepted in Kenya but how you get them is the issue. One man one vote will have to be the mode of electing leaders. Hio short cut being made for Raila to assume power will be rejected. Wacha RV and other leaders speak and Uhuru may have to forget RV abd Mt. Kenya

But UK will be well received in Nyanza.

My response:

I will not indulge you or anyone opening wounds of 2007 as far as I am concerned, that’s now history and I am happy in the role I played in ending Uhuru’s ICC case.

However, that doesn’t mean we simply forget what happened, or what happened in 2017; rather, we only keep that in mind as it informs our way forward in making sure it does not happen again. This is all what this is about, namely, ensuring future elections are peaceful and the country remains united and not divided along tribal lines. You obviously believe this is about Raila but so be it. We know what it is about and those who matter and will make it happen know.

I am talking about the powers that be notwithstanding what those stuck in the past wish to do because they just don’t have what it takes to stop the momentum we have to bring about lasting change to fix these ailments for the good of our beloved country.

You can dismiss Uhuru now as useless and a Luo who now belongs to Nyanza all that tells us is how much you hate Raila but that’s alright; it’s your prerogative.

All I know is thanks to the humble Uhuru Kenyatta, Uhuru Will Atone for the Sins of His Father and Usher in New Era for us mpende msipende (like it or not).

 

 

 
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Posted by on October 27, 2019 in Politics, Uncategorized

 

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Deconstructing BBI Central Kenya Narrative Part I

Uhuru and Raila(3)

There are many who have their guns in the ready to shoot down BBI report simply because they have assumed and concluded implementation of the report will benefit Raila therefore it must be opposed on that ground alone. This is a myopic and backward view and to set the record straight, I had this exchange with a netter espousing the same ill-informed view:

In response to BBI taskforce issuing a press-release announcing readiness to present the report to the president without mentioning Raila’s name in the press-release, many took that to be this report has nothing to do with Raila when, obviously, it took the handshake to create the taskforce.

Be that as it may, Raila haters were already celebrating with one netter saying the following:

They made us think BBI was a Raila-Uhuru baby. Raila even told us what he wants on it. Uhuru kept quiet on the content, but Rao run his mouth all through. It looked like a Raila project. This made other side upset.

Let us wait for content to see if they embraced what Raila wanted or came up with an independent outfit. Rao should have shut up the hell. Let us give them time. We will know if it is a Raila product or a Kenyan one. Problem for Rao is his mouth.

My response:

BBI is the product of the handshake. I know like Trump and his cult-like supporters here in the US, truth and facts mean nothing to Ruto and his Tangatanga supporters.

That being the case, we await what the BBI Task Force is proposing on the way forward.

Your problem and like-minded who hate Raila is you see everything from the “if Raila likes it, then it’s bad for the country,” which is flawed logic for several obvious reasons but let me just give you two:

First, the definition of “country” by Raila haters is “Central Kenya,” which is obviously false and not the case at all Kenya belongs to ALL of us, from every corner of the country to the other and even in Central, only the backward looking or stuck are incapable of realizing Kenya belongs to ALL of us. Raila haters in Central are the minority those who love, like or at least have no qualms for the man to be finally sworn as president are in the majority, even super majority truth be told.

Second, Raila is someone who has sacrificed a lot and more than anyone alive today anyone other than a hater would know he has the country at heart and therefore if he says this is good for the country, chances are it is and most people including yours truly would rather back him up than back those opposed to the idea merely because it has Raila’s blessing or name attached to it.

That level of simplistic personalized approach to resolving complex issues that determine the fate of our country do not belong in any modern society but we know there are always going to be haters who would tie everything to their love or hate for an individual but they’ll see dust as the rest of the country moves on with building bridges even though welcome to come along.

Netter’s response:

It is Raila who made everyone think he was controlling. If he kept quiet, like UK, all would be fine. Let us be patient and see whether they will adopt what Kenyans wanted or what Raila told us they will do. I will be the first one to support it once Raila’s footprints are not visible.

My response:

Raila obviously never “made everyone think he was controlling” this is just another falsehood you all believe with no basis in reality.

Both Uhuru and Raila have been consistent that they will wait to hear and see what the BBI taskforce recommend and hit the ground running to promote same.

Any statements made by Raila in the interim are only made in that spirit.

Let me break this down for you; if Uhuru and Raila want anything in the report, neither of them is going to publicly blab about it as they have their men and women in the BBI taskforce they can call and give instructions but whatever that is, it will be done through consensus in the report and that’s the essence of this report.

It will be naivety of the highest order for one to think this report will not have anything neither men want.

When you say, “Let us be patient and see whether they will adopt what Kenyans wanted or what Raila told us they will do. I will be the first one to support it once Raila’s footprints are not visible,” all you are doing is affirming is what I stated in my previous post, namely, you’re stuck with personalizing this exercise to Raila when that’s counter-productive and irrelevant in the final analysis because the BBI proposals will be adopted and implemented mpende msipende (like it or not).

Netter’s response:

Probably I would see it same way if someone focuses on Jubilee. Let us wait and see.

 
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Posted by on October 27, 2019 in Politics, Uncategorized

 

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The Truth About Central and 2022 Politics

Central Province(1)

The Former Central Province Counties

A forum member shared this piece The Rebels Within: The Politics of Kieleweke and Tanga Tanga in Central Kenya in which the author basically makes the case Uhuru is toothless in Central and that therefore he will be of no consequence as to Ruto’s quest to succeed him, which the author says is all but investable that Ruto will succeed in this. The writer attributes this to Kikuyu tycoons blaming Uhuru for loss of business, especially in Nairobi owing to bad economy and failing to prevent Sonko from becoming governor and so they’re backing Ruto just so to teach Uhuru a lesson, or so goes the theory.

The writer also posits that having contributed to Raila hatred in Central, Uhuru cannot make the about turn he has and now expect people in Central Raila is not the devil reincarnate as he (Uhuru) and others depicted him all these years.

The following are my thoughts as I shared them with the netter who shared the link:

The piece is clearly and obviously sponsored by Raila haters from Central who are hiding behind Ruto to spew their hatred and he’s letting them because it benefits him. Not surprising but the desperate false message being peddled that Ruto has more and bigger balls than both Uhuru and Ruto to take the presidency come 2022 is just laughable.

He doesn’t have such; just tiny, small ones that will soon run out of gas.

Responding to another netter on the same topic, the netter posting this link said,

I wish you read the article. You would understand why Ruto has gained grounds in Central. He is not an angel but the best alternative to them. Uhuru is giving another alternative which does not seem as enticing as Rutos.

He only needs to let them know who he prefers. Ruto is there and has a lineup. Folks assume and think Raila is the other option. So it is a choice btw Ruto and Raila. If you think they will vote for Raila because UK wants them to, wait to 22. They may be making a wrong choice but I dont think UK will have an easy ride.

Problems in Central are being blamed on UK. He is where Moi is with Kalenjin nation. He can only use your friends Kamanda and Ngunjiri. How is Kieleweke doing in general. Taps seems dry now.

To this, I responded,

I read the entire article. The author is advancing the same Raila hate and badmouthing I have heard for years, including the one I have blogged about by–yes, a wealthy Kikuyu then friend and business associate who did not know I am friends with Raila and used to call him names whenever our conversation went around to him but I never bothered to correct or tell him off because the relationship was about business, not politics.

Until he saw me on TV next to Raila in one of the interviews at Pentagon (just before 2007 elections) and that was the end of our business relationship!

It is also obvious the brown bag recipient/writer is someone from Murang’a who it’s of course no secret hate the fact they are always overshadowed by your brothers from Nyeri and Kiambu.

On this one, he has a point but it’s not a problem or issue unique to your 3 counties, Raila has been dealing with, and continues to battle fault lines between and among Luhyas and Kambas who must remain on his camp but obviously Mudavadi is constantly spoiling for him, and Kalonzo never sure not uncharacteristic of him.

In case anyone missed it, this is why I support Owalo in Kibra even though it remains the case the seat is ODM’s to lose.

To this, the netter responded,

I can see you read it unlike [the other netter]. Dauti Kahura writes well and is a known journalist. Unfortunately he spoke the truth and never expected you to agree with him.

That was expected. Unfortunately Uhuru is facing that heat. It is not that they hate Raila. The problem is not Raila bit Uhuru. Folks speak negatively about UK.

Today he can get more votes in Luo Nyanza than in the whole Mt. Kenya region. Hana support Toyota. Their hatred for Uhuru and Kahura said so is seeing rise of Ruto. Alternative onge as Luos say….no alternative.

To this I responded,

You’re dug in, so am I and the truth shall set us free: I am telling you and will keep telling you the issue in Central is NOT Uhuru, but Raila hatred. We know even Uhuru rode on that hatred to the presidency but that’s alright; he has since come to terms with reality and that is, you cannot deny people their franchise just because you must cling to power no matter what, or because some people have been programmed to hate Luos and moronically keep swearing that Raila will “NEVER” be president with the only sin he has committed is being born a Luo, and to Jaramogi, a family that has been antagonistic with Kikuyus since independence.

Fortunately, Uhuru and like minded leaders from Central, including Her Majesty Governor Anne Waiguru have shaken the ugly monkey off their backs and will now lead to a new Kenya where such hatred of a man has no place in our politics.

Notice the difference in someone like me who supports Raila, but I DO NOT HATE RUTO; in fact, I am on record saying where Ruto to be pitted against Matiang’i for the presidency, I will support Ruto!

Also, to repeat what I highlighted in a recent column, we know resistance to Raila in Central is stiff, mostly based on historic hatred but the handshake shook things and the peripherally hating folk have been jarred loose and are happily singing our tune Raila deserves his chance to serve as president he has been denied for so long and more are joining the choir.

We know we won’t get all of you [the netter is a Kikuyu]; just enough to respectably say we have done well in the region and build on that to make this a more united republic.

 
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Posted by on October 21, 2019 in Politics, Uncategorized

 

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BBI Will Be Implemented One Way or Another

BBI Team

BBI Task Force with President Uhuru Kenyatta and Handshake Co-Principal Raila Odinga

I am not responding to what is or is not in the BBI for the simple reason the report is not official and it’s not wise to waste time commenting on what is supposedly reported to be in it for that could be a trial balloon or spin.

I know at least two individuals in the BBI task force but not once have I even bothered to pry from any of them what’s in the report. Like any concerned Kenyan, however, I have shared to one of them my thoughts and that’s what the task force has been doing, namely, gathering views and input from Kenyans.

We should know any moment from now what is in the report and most of us are ready to push for implementation of the report because we know and have confidence the task force has done the needful to give us a workable and acceptable document.

Btw, it is entirely possible BBI may make proposals that sidestep the constitutional provisions for a referendum, meaning, effecting its proposals without a referendum and I can see how that can be accomplished while staying within letter and spirit of the handshake. Let me just say it involves the Supreme Court.

In 2017, I wrote a paper recommending what I called our own “Nuclear Option” following the nullification of the August presidential election, and as Raila was struggling with the question of whither to participate in the runoff or not.

I made the case he should definitely not boycott the runoff election and offered the Nuclear Option as a solution were he to participate and be rigged out yet again.

My proposal was only shared with NASA principals and a couple other individuals including Orengo and the feedback I received was very positive as to its originality and groundbreaking but in the end Raila opted to boycott the runoff election nonetheless.

It’s amazing what God allows us to see thinking outside the box during a crisis and I recall vividly how that idea came to me literally out of nowhere as I was sitting there thinking hard what we could or should do in the face of this yet again in your face rigging with no assurance the same wouldn’t be done again in the runoff and then I saw the Nuclear Option so clearly and it still remain valid and can be effected were it to be put into play after another in your face rigged elections.

Fortunately, however, we don’t have to worry about that now as BBI is designed to fix this electoral theft once and for all.

I am mentioning it here only because that option involved or required the Supreme Court to rule in its favor and I knew we had the votes for that–strictly by how the Court voted to nullify the elections, ditto this one way I see BBI implementation without a referendum. I may lay what that is in my column this weekend, if BBI is not made public before then, otherwise, we’re ready to roll with what’s in the report.

With Uhuru and Raila ready to hit the road to promote the report, and given the goodwill among all Kenyans of reason and not driven by divisive and brown bag money politics, successful implementation of the BBI report is assured.

Do your part in making that a reality or, if you’re one of those clogged with impermissible reasons to do the right thing, well, we hope you’ll join us in the celebration of our success in implementing BBI as this change is inevitable and it will benefit ALL Kenyans, whether you support the report or not.

 

 
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Posted by on October 20, 2019 in Politics, Uncategorized

 

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Costly SGR and It’s Fall-Out, Kagame’s Take

SGR(1)

From a reliable source:

Rwandan President Paul Kagame has poured cold water on Kenya’s Standard Gauge Railway (SGR), calling it “a big sham and a rip-off.”

Speaking at the sidelines of an international seminar at Kigali, Kagame said it was “extremely disturbing” that Kenya’s ruling Jubilee Regime would escalate the costs of the SGR to astronomical levels so as to fleece Kenyan taxpayers of their sweat “for the benefit of a few people at the top.”

“They are now trying to excite Kenyans with the refurbished trains that weres used in China in 1950s, running on diesel engines. Terrible!” Kagame said. Tanzania’s SGR is four times longer than Kenya’s but only two times as expensive.

My not literal but nonetheless brother-in-law has a point here and my view is this is something Kenya must address, after tackling government restructuring.

Where there’s a will, there’s always a way and I can see several here that can bear fruit to everyone’s satisfaction.

Everyone, that is, except the gluttonous cartels.

 
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Posted by on October 15, 2019 in Politics, Uncategorized

 

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