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God Save Us From Sycophants in August

Prayer1

I have been unable to update my blog last couple of weeks or so owing to travel doing so now please disregard if you’ve already seen elsewhere this column and the one I am posting next.

My weekend oped in the Star on July 8, 2017 God Save Us From Sycophants in August:

US President Donald Trump is likely to serve only one term because one, he will have convinced the few that gave him the benefit of doubt that he, in fact, is not presidential or two, he may get the boot earlier by way of impeachment.

However, the progressives don’t want the latter option because then they’ll get Vice President Mike Pence, a real conservative with ability to implement a worse conservative agenda than Trump ever will.

Regardless of what outcome awaits Trump, one thing we know for sure is — as he declared at the height of his improbable candidacy — that there is a core group of supporters who will never abandon him no matter what he does and that, according to him, includes voters he will never lose even if he were to stand in the middle of a busy New York street and shoot someone. That bold and unbelievable declaration in its own right has come to be borne out as, indeed, Trump did end up being elected President, despite losing the popular vote.

The reason Trump was elected despite all his flaws is because people who never even bothered to vote before came from the woodwork and voted for him as President, regardless of what he said or did — and no matter how outrageous and crude he was or became.

A voter fixated on voting for a candidate no matter their flaws simply because they wouldn’t consider other options available, usually for nefarious reasons, is a very dangerous voter to have in any country.

In Kenya, the nefarious reason is usually tribalism and ethnicity or clannism but the phenomenon is more defined and readily apparent in local and regional level elections.

When it comes to presidential voting, however, even though there have been many occasions where marginal or second-tier candidates received votes exclusively from their tribes, it does not always follow that the presidential winner — even where they have rigged themselves into or back into office — that their victory has been or can be defined to be a function of tribal voting.

In other words, even when President Daniel Moi outrightly rigged himself back into office in 1992 and 1997 after multiparty politics resumed, one cannot say he did not receive substantial genuine votes from other than his Kalenjin tribe — never mind he would brag many a time he could buy any votes he wanted for Sh100.

Perhaps the best example we have where tribalism was not even a factor at all in presidential voting was in 2002, when the opposition united in rejecting Moi’s project Uhuru Kenyatta, and we saw Kibaki win in unprecedented numbers.

What’s of note beyond tribalism not being a factor in 2002, is the fact that among the Agikuyu community, Kibaki trounced Uhuru by 71.8 per cent to Uhuru’s paltry 27.4, an outcome that reflected the national trend. Kibaki won with 62.3 per cent of the vote, sending Uhuru home to lick his wounds with a face-saving 30 per cent. The voters, even Kikuyus who Moi tried so hard to woo, had had enough with the incumbent and it didn’t matter that he fronted one of their sons to succeed him.

Question is, would the Kikuyus have given a non-Kikuyu anywhere near what Kibaki received had that person been the one Raila endorsed?

Empirical evidence beyond the scope of this column shows no. Not even close. When it comes to presidential elections, Kikuyus ( 95%+) vote only for one of their own.

This is just wrong.

Our beloved country needs our brothers and sisters from Central Kenya to break loose from whatever has held their community hostage and to not seeing men from other communities as deserving of a chance to lead the nation as well, ever when more qualified than their “own.”

Only a sycophant, ignorant or stupid person cannot see this is nothing but a noble and very Kenyan ideal and God save us from any of them, come August 8.

 
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Posted by on July 21, 2017 in Uncategorized

 

Jubilee Don’t Dare Rig August Poll

Kenya Elections

In my oped this weekend Jubilee Don’t Dare Rig The Polls, I make the case why:

In the weeks leading to the last presidential election in the US, it became apparent that Hillary Clinton, though much loathed even by many in the Democratic Party, was inching closer to victory than her challenger, Donald Trump, started the talk of the election being rigged in her favour. This was a way to prepare his cult-like supporters for his loss, which never came to be.

The fact is, it is not possible to rig elections in the US and, according to experts, that has not happened in American history.

Rigging, however, is a mainstay of autocracies such as North Korea, Cuba, Belarus, Zimbabwe and less autocratic states such as Kenya, where incumbents, mostly rigged in to begin with, are never willing to transfer power.

Instead, they cling to power at any cost. What is rigging exactly?

For an election to be rigged, there has to be a top-down and intentional manipulation of the result, using the state machine such that the outcome is different from what it would be if the votes are cast and counted according to the elections law.

It’s interesting to note the only one time we did not have any rigging to speak of in Kenya was in 2002, when the opposition united to reject then President Daniel Moi’s project Uhuru Kenyatta. The wave and longing for change was too strong and formidable that Moi was wise enough not to even try rigging.

How sad Mwai Kibaki, the man whose presidency was ushered in with an aura of euphoria in 2002, would, just a few years later, nearly plunge the country into a civil war for his flagrant rigging and return of Kenya back to the dark days.

Thanks to the intervention by the Panel of Eminent African Personalities led by former UN Secretary General Kofi Annan and the opposition leader Raila Odinga’s resolve to find a peaceful solution to his being rigged, we had the formation of the Government of Nation Unity, making him Prime Minister while Kibaki remained as President.

Raila would yet again be rigged out in 2013, but under the circumstances, he found himself with few options but to counter the claim beyond going to the Supreme Court as he did, only to be rebuffed in what remains the worst decision to be rendered by that court, ever.

What about August 8?

Can one assume Jubilee operatives have continued to scheme ways to yet again rig out the opposition leader? Of course.

Will they succeed? The answer is No.

The winds of change and a united opposition, are just too strong and powerful to overcome with rigging, just as was the case in 2002, save in the minds of Jubilee hardliners.

What if that happens? What if these hardliners attempt to rig President Uhuru back to power, notwithstanding the clamour for change sweeping the country?

Well. We are a country governed by law and most Kenyans have no choice but to follow it. This means, seeking legal redress in the Supreme Court would be the first option.

However, in the event circumstances unfold pointing to a Chief Justice Willy Mutunga-like abdication of judicial duty to allow the status quo preferred by those in power, let it not be of any surprise to anyone such an affront to suffrage can and must only met with non-violent mass action to make sure the will of the people as expressed by the majority is effected.

Jubilee, you therefore have a choice: Let the will of the people be expressed at the polls in an uninhibited environment followed by un-interfered with vote transmission and tallying or the same outcome will be effected by either judicial or mass action.

NASA will not be cowed into not taking this route because of a few reckless henchmen more interested in clinging to power at any cost rather than ensuring peace and prosperity for our beloved country.

 
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Posted by on June 16, 2017 in Politics, Uncategorized

 

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Deciphering Jubilee Propaganda In Daily Nation

Propaganda

In Greed and Lies in the Ballot Tender Wars, two Daily Nation reporters, John Kamau and John Ngirachu purport to provide what to a casual reader looks like a well written piece of news reporting you would expect from good journalists in a major daily.

A closer examination of the news story, however, reveals this is nothing but a carefully choreographed piece of Jubilee propaganda.

The authors open with a declaration “[a] vicious tender war over the printing of ballots for this year’s General Election is afoot, sucking in wheeler-dealers, politicians, members of the First Family and, most recently, opposition leader Raila Odinga.”

How can war be “afoot” in a tender that has already been illegally and un-procedurally awarded? Where were these reporters when the illegality was taking place? Did either of them investigate, let alone pen anything about the goings on leading up to the illegal and un-procedural award?

“Jubilee on Thursday denied an allegation that President Uhuru Kenyatta and members of his family were involved in the procurement of ballots,” they tell us; of course. It would be historic and a real bombshell were Uhuru or any member of his family were to admit the truth!

“It also increasingly became clear, from the revelations made by their political rivals, that the National Super Alliance does not have clean hands in the affair,” fair; it would naturally follow in a real journalism piece of a demand and production of evidence backing this claim, not just verbal allegations but none follows; rather, what follows is predictably allegations from Jubilee’s loudmouth in Parliament.

“It was claimed they are fronting Paarl Media of South Africa who are alleged to have met Mr Odinga on various occasions.” That claim comes straight from the loudmouth.

“The two printing companies having been clashing for printing contracts around Africa. In some places such as Uganda, the two companies actually shared the job.” Okay; good bit of news.

“Also, as the political rivals battled each other throughout the day, it also emerged that ANC leader and Nasa principal Musalia Mudavadi took risks with the facts in claiming that Mr Muhoho Kenyatta was the local agent of Al Ghurair Printing and that there was a risk of the election being rigged through the printing of excess ballots.”

Putting aside composition issues in this paragraph, the authors tells nothing about what risks Mudavadi took and why but the reader can understand why Uhuru Kenyatta’s brother being the agent of Al Ghurair presents a real risk for the election being rigged through the printing of excess ballots.

“In a statement to the Nation, Al Ghurair said it has had “no contacts with Mr Muhoho Kenyatta” and dismissed the Nasa statement as “false.” Okay; we know denials like this mean nothing, especially given the circumstances of this case.

“It also denied that any of its officials or representatives was received at State House and explained that the Chairman of Dubai Chamber of Commerce and Industry, Majid Saif al Ghurair, who met President Kenyatta is not the chief executive officer of Al Ghurair Printing.” Okay; here’s where excellent journalists distinguish themselves and even get a shot at a Pulitzer; the assertion is factually correct but the reporter’s failure investigate or dig deeper leaves the very false impression whoever wrote the Al Ghurair statement intended, namely, given Majid Saif al Ghurair who met Uhuru is not the CEO of Al Ghurair, it therefore follows any claims he made a deal with Uhuru is false.

Here’s a small problem: the Majid Saif al Ghurair who met Uhuru and is friends with Uhuru’s brother was the CEO of Al Ghurair at the time they met he just only yesterday was replaced as CEO of the company! In other words, the statement is true as to whether Majid Saif is the CEO of Al Ghurair but is false as to the question whether he was the CEO when he met Uhuru.

The reporters missed that entirely, leaving the false impression noted above.

“Please note that there are two distinct business conglomerates in Dubai which share the same family name. The other business conglomerate is Saif Al Ghurair group which has no connection or shareholding in Al Ghurair Printing and Publishing,” the paper quotes Mr Lakshamanan Ganapathy, the general manager. Fine; nobody is talking about Saif Al Ghurair.

“And far from being a fishy operator in war torn countries, the company, one of the biggest printing operations in Asia and Europe, is actually a trusted security printer, often contracted by the United Nations Development Programme, to provide election materials for countries that require UN help to conduct polls.” The company may as well be but that does not preclude its being used to rig elections in Kenya, especially given its procurement has been at the direction of the president—and that’s the problem at hand.

“The Dubai-based company has been printing all electoral material for the Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission.”

“In a country where lucrative ballot printing has become a vicious commercial war, the current row has not surprised observers.” The issue is not how lucrative the printing business is, rather, the issue is ballot integrity.

“In 2013, the tender was given to the British company Smith and Ouzman, whose officials were later convicted of paying bribes to Kenyan officials to print by-election ballots. It is now being alleged that the local fixer for that contract is a Mr Ahmed Kassam, believed to be a business associate of Mr Caroli Omondi, Mr Odinga’s chief of staff in the last government.”

The injection of this assertion here that’s partially factual is quite revealing as to the authors’ intentions in that it has no probative value but; conversely, the innuendo in it can only point to this being an attempt to smear Raila.

“In the current tussle, the Dubai printing firm said that “Majid Saif Al Ghurair has no connection or association with Al Ghurair Printing and Publishing.” Again, being clever by half—refer to the exposition above on this semantical dancing around the issue.

 

“If (he) led a delegation to Kenya and met the President, it would be purely an intergovernmental bilateral relationship building exercise in his position of chairman of Dubai chamber of commerce and it has no connection with the ballot paper project.”

Very clever; well, the man either led the Dubai delegation and met with Uhuru or he did not; which one is which? They’re either contradicting themselves of have been tricked by their own trickery intended to falsely create a narrative this Majid Saif is not Majid Saif as exposed above.

PAARL MEDIA

“On Thursday, it also emerged that Mr Odinga’s allies were rooting for Paarl Media, which supplied Uganda with ballots for presidential, parliamentary and district woman councillors.” Which allies? Name them or one may as well dismiss the assertion as gossip.

“Al Ghurair printed papers for district chairpersons, district directly-elected councillors and sub-county women councillors.”

“The row between the two companies, on who would eventually win the lucrative Sh2.5 billion tender, has been fought for the past eight months, after the chief executive officer of IEBC Ezra Chiloba wrote to the Dubai-based company on October 18, last year, notifying it that its bid to supply and deliver 130 million ballots, election declaration forms and poll registers had been accepted.”

Didn’t you tell us in your opening this war is “afoot?” Be that as it may, why do you seem more interested in the “war” aspect of this rather than the illegality and un-procedural manner in which the tender was issued?

“Reacting to insinuations that it was connected to State House, the company said it was “not associated’’ with any political party in any country.” Predictable denial which means nothing.

“(We) have gained reputation as one of the most reliable ballot paper printers by delivering all the ballot paper projects on time without any mistakes with very high quality,” said the statement. That may be true but does not eliminate the prospect for being corruptly used to perpetuate election rigging.

“In Jubilee’s elaborate fightback, it sought to link Mr Odinga to Paarl and demolish claims that a printing deal was struck at State House.” Yes, and this piece is a good piece of that effort.

STATE HOUSE

“On Thursday, the Kenya National Chamber of Commerce and Industry denied that Mr Majid Saif Al Ghurair, whom it had hosted in his capacity as chairman of the Dubai Chamber of Commerce and Industry, met privately with President Uhuru Kenyatta at State House in October 2016.”

“KNCCI chairman Kiprono Kittony said that there was no private meeting between Mr Al Ghurair and President Kenyatta and that none of the issues discussed then touched on anything to do with the printing industry.” I take Kiprono at his word for he’s a man of his word but even if that were true, it does not affect the impropriety of having someone so closely associated with the Uhuru and his brother being given the tender.

 

“In Parliament, Majority Leader Aden Duale led MPs from the President’s party in asking Mr Odinga to account for his relations with Paarl Media, the South African company that challenged the award of the Sh2.5-billion contract to Al Ghurair.” If Duale were a serious person and not one prone to the endless stupidity he subjects and punishes us with every time he opens his mouth, one might take him seriously and call on Raila to respond.

However, he’s not therefore no need to respond.

“Cord should have full disclosure about the company that lost to Al Ghurair,” said Mr Duale.” See above.

“He claimed that the latest controversy around the IEBC, sparked by the statements by Nasa principals, is a diversionary tactic.” Nonsense.

SPEND TIME

“They (Cord) must tell us clearly. Do they want to spend time in the corridors of justice with flimsy cases or do they want to prepare for the General Election?” said Mr Duale. There’s no Cord! And, no, this is not a “flimsy” case but a very serious allegation based on known facts that something has to be done about not the least of which shall be Jubilee abandoning any plans to rig, using stuffed ballots.

“He also asked Mr Odinga to declare whether he would emulate President Kenyatta in declaring that he would concede if he loses the election, without putting in the caveat that the elections would have to be free, fair and credible.”

Here is a good example of this man’s stupidity: he’s telegraphing to the world that Jubilee does not intend the elections to be free, fair and credible! How moronic but the world is watching and, more importantly, the elections better be free, fair and credible!

“Mr Duale claimed that there was information that two directors of the company – Ben Sachs and Dr Peter Shailesh – met Mr Odinga thrice in December 2015 and twice in April 2016 and that they allegedly struck a deal.”

“In the deal, Mr Duale further alleged, they agreed to contribute Sh1 billion to Mr Odinga, but only if he helped Paarl Media secure the contract for the printing of the 120 million ballots.”

Again, were this to come from a serious person, and not one prone to payukaring, Raila may feel obligated to respond; Duale is a joker so no need to respond.

“The Majority Leader said that matters went awry for the Nasa presidential candidate when the contract failed to go the way of the South African company after he failed to get the cooperation of Mr Chiloba, the secretary of the Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission.” In other words, the joker is bragging Uhuru having selected Al Ghurair, nobody else had a chance!

‘ONE BILLION’

“It’s about him losing the tender. It’s about him losing the one billion for his campaigns,” said Mr Duale. A bald-faced lie not unlike many we’re used from this man.

“Mr Duale offered no further evidence to support his allegations or explain what sense it would make to pay a 40 per cent “donation” from a contract, still deliver and make a profit.” Great observation which points out the obvious the man is only good in payukaring and lobbing baseless claims and allegations against mostly Raila who gives them nightmares.

“On Thursday, IEBC Chairman Wafula Chebukati said with 53 days to the election, the commission will not cancel the tender.” Lame excuse but if the tender remains in effect and Al Ghurair has to supply the ballots, Jubilee better not even think about siphoning extras to stuff boxes as that will be a recipe for disaster to their detriment.

“If you look at the timelines we have, actually today we should be doing the artwork for the ballot. So, we do not have time to go into procurement of the ballot tender again,” he said.

Again, there’s plenty of time to retender and get the right company to supply the ballot papers consistent with the law and procedures.

“Printing ballots requires large volumes of security paper, which few printers can have in stock and which cannot be procured from paper mills on short notice.” Not an issue.

“On Thursday, Mr Duale claimed that Mr Odinga was “aware” of the Smith and Ouzman scam.” More smears which is the stable of this lunatic.

“A former secretary of the IEBC, James Oswago, Hamida Kibwana and Trevy Oyombra have since been charged in connection with the scandal, with the United Kingdom set to remit the money paid in bribes back to Kenya.”

More to do with Uhuru and Jubilee than anything to do with Raila.

Finally, notice what’s missing in this story: nowhere does it note the reporters attempted to even contact Raila or NASA for their take on the false allegations by the loudmouth Duale, let alone the purported denials by Al Ghurair.

More so this is a Raila hit piece camouflaged as a news story.

 

 
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Posted by on June 16, 2017 in Politics, Uncategorized

 

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Jubilee’s Acts of Desperation Must Be Rejected

NASA_Gusii-1

 

My Star column this weekend:

Just before the most bizarre elections in US history on November 8, Donald Trump prepared his mob of followers for the then impending loss, boldly claiming the only reason he would lose would be through rigging in favor of his opponent, Hillary Clinton.

That, of course, was not true, besides the whining candidate ended up being elected as President, courtesy of the unique electoral system in the US that allows a candidate who did not win the popular vote to be sworn in as President if he wins the Electoral College vote.

Trump also won because many voters were exasperated with politics as usual and, therefore, wanted an outsider, inexperienced and tone-deaf as President. It was, and still is, an act of desperation. Americans are now living the very nightmare many were afraid of for electing Trump as President.

Voters acting in desperation to elect an unfit candidate is not the norm. Rather, it’s those seeking office, especially high office such as the presidency, who resort to acts of desperation to either gain or cling to power.

We’ve seen that unfold in Kenya many times, most notably in 2007, when elections were so flagrantly stolen, plunging our country into chaos and almost into a civil war.

When the opposition united and picked Raila Odinga as their flagbearer, you could almost touch the panic in Jubilee because the writing was on the wall that their days in power were numbered.

The fact that Jubilee has panicked is obvious: That they’re now headed into desperation is also obvious. Desperate people do desperate things.

Many examples of Jubilee’s acts of desperation abound but, for the sake of time, three stand out the most.

First, there was retaliation against Mombasa Governor Hassan Joho, when Jubilee realised he could not be cajoled or threatened to abandon his criticism of President Uhuru Kenyatta’s administration. In their act of desperation, they brought the state machine down on Joho’s head. This backfired.

When the High Court recently ruled that presidential election results at the constituency level announced by returning officers should be considered final, the allegedly reconstituted IEBC appealed this well-reasoned, constitutional and common sense court ruling, arguing that the suspect commission must be the final decider on who won what and where; a scheme we know has failed in each of the past election cycles, most notably and egregiously in 2007.

This appeal is the second major act of desperation in recent times as there’s no doubt that the IEBC did not independently decide to appeal this decision but, rather, did so under direction from those who put them there.

The Court of Appeal cannot but affirm the High Court decision which, as noted above, is a well-reasoned, constitutional and commonsensical decision to preserve the integrity of the electoral process and, more importantly, shield the vote from the machinations of those ready, willing and able to thwart the will of the people at the National Tallying Centre if history teaches us anything.

The third most recent act of desperation by Jubilee is its laughable effort to try and prevent NASA from receiving campaign funds from foreign donors.

This is despite the law allowing any political party to do so within certain parameters, while Jubilee loots and allows unlimited inflow of cash from all manner of foreign sources for itself.

Again, when desperate, people do desperate things. These are just but three most recent major examples.

There’s no doubt there is more to come but as Kenyans, we must be vigilant in identifying and pointing them out. More importantly, we must be prepared to tell Jubilee there’s a limit, beyond which they cannot go even with their acts of desperation for the sake of peace.

 
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Posted by on May 19, 2017 in Uncategorized

 

Raila Will Not Be President for Luos or NASA Strongholds Only; He’ll Be President for All Kenyans

Raila3

My Star oped this weekend:

When Barack Obama beat all odds to become America’s first black President, all eyes were on him, not in just how he would perform, but how he’d tackle problems the Blacks have faced as a group for hundreds of years.

For their part, the Blacks — at least those most affected by these problems — expected Obama to find solutions overnight. That was a pipedream.

On the other hand, some saw the election of Obama as the messianic fulfillment of the Civil Rights movement of the 1960s.

Non-progressives, meaning conservatives in White America, viewed the election of Obama as a passing cloud and the elected among them, especially those in Congress, swore to frustrate and obstruct Obama for the duration he’d be in power, which they did.

Racists, among them, mobilised to ensure Congress had the numbers to achieve this objective such that in the midterm elections of 2010, Obama suffered what he called a shellacking: The Democratic Party losing more than 60 House seats and a half-dozen Senate seats as well as Republican gains in state and local elective offices.

Despite this massive defeat at the polls in 2010, and continued united obstruction by Republicans, Obama went on to be reelected in 2012.

Obama has now exited the presidency after eight years in office with a record of accomplishment that arguably puts him at the top tier of the most successful US Presidents.

Did Obama, as first Black President, make a difference in Black America in his two terms in office?

The answer depends on who you ask. Average Black Americans will tell you he did if anything in breaking that ceiling telling their young the colour of one’s skin is no longer a barrier to achieving greatness in the US.

Black intellectuals such as Prof Cornell West see the Obama presidency as a failure not just for the Black community, but for America, they argue, Obama did not break from being beholden to Wall Street as all Presidents are in favour of Main Street.

There are parallels between Obama and NASA flagbearer, Raila Odinga.

Just as a presidential bid by a Black was resisted for hundreds of years until Obama came along, so too have Kenyans resisted the presidency of a Luo solely based on tribalism no different from the racists’ attitude in America. Like Obama in 2008, Raila is now poised to finally break this resistance to a Luo presidency, which has been cleverly exploited by those in power, and their henchmen, who stand to lose the most when Raila is sworn in as President.

Like Blacks in America, the Luo and others, who so fervently believe in Raila expect him to solve all their problems overnight once sworn in as the Fifth President.

Like Blacks in America, they, too, will be disappointed when Raila completes his term in office as president. For as Obama was not elected to become President for the Blacks only, this too will be the case with Raila. He will not become President of the Luos or NASA strongholds only.

This is the major and irreversible mistake Uhuru Kenyatta and his Number Two William Ruto made when they were sworn to lead the country, namely, assuming and acting as though they were elected to be President for their own tribesmen and strongholds, or, more accurately, to be President for a subset of their tribesmen and henchmen from their strongholds.

To allow these henchmen to use their presidency to loot and further suffocate all other Kenyans, who are barely trying to survive thanks to the historic looting, apathy for their suffering and incompetence of the Jubilee government.

Nobody is saying it’s going to be a walk, but all indications are Raila will be once again elected but this time be sworn in as our next President. When that happens, let everyone be on notice that he will be a President for all Kenyans, not for the Luos, or NASA strongholds.

This is just but one reason why a Raila presidency is most welcome and will be transformative.

 
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Posted by on May 12, 2017 in Uncategorized

 

Gang Violence in Kenya Is A Problem But Extrajudicial Killing Is Not Solution

Eastleigh_Gang2

In Gang Violence Is A Problem But Extrajudicial Killing Is Not the Solution, I make the case how the recent execution of two suspected gang members is not the solution to gang violence. I also make the case Jubilee government has failed to provide solutions for this and many other problems so it’s time to be booted from office and let the opposition led by Raila take over power and let them have a crack at fixing these monumental problems all prior governments have failed or have been unwilling to address.

And now the oped:

Donald Trump deployed uncouth tactics to win the presidential race, including blatantly appealing to racists on the far-right of American politics.

One way he did so — and this is how he launched his presidential race — was by leading efforts to discredit and undermine the legitimacy of President Barack Obama by advancing the bogus claim that he was born in Kenya and therefore not qualified to be US head of state.

The other tactic was to constantly trash the city of Chicago as the epicenter of black youth violence, as part of his attempt to appeal to racists and others as being the tough “law and order” candidate, who would get rid of the problem.

Seventy days plus into his moribund presidency, President Trump has not set forth, let alone even suggested, a single proposal to address the gang violence problem.

Nobody expects that he will, ever!

Neither is the man expected to do anything to address the problem of police brutality aimed at mostly the black youth and other minorities in the US, which increased last year and at the height of his candidacy.

There’s anecdotal evidence that youth and gang violence in Kenya is increasing to uncontrollable levels on President Uhuru Kenyatta’s watch. His Jubilee government is doing nothing to address this problem.

However, in the absence of any effective government intervention, summary execution or extrajudicial killing of even known gang members by the police, as recently witnessed in Eastleigh, doesn’t offer any solutions.

Granted, most people were in support of the executions of the two apparently well-known Super Power gang members by a plainclothes police officer because they’re fed up with these criminals who terrorize people in the area.

In other words, most people have no sympathy for these gang members, given the menace they have become in society.

That’s all true but let’s also focus on where the problem really lies — failure by the Jubilee government to create employment and other opportunities for the youth, who end up joining criminal gangs,where they commit all manner of crimes, including murder.

Jubilee has also totally failed to curb corruption, which has not spared programs intended to help the youth of this country. Indeed, the looting of more than Sh1.8 billion at the National Youth Service, which led to the resignation of the then Devolution CS Anne Waiguru stands as one of the monuments of corruption in a Kenya gone amok, though dwarfed by the Eurobond heist, of more than Sh215 billion that cannot be accounted for by the Jubilee government.

The solution to the escalating gang violence problem is therefore not extrajudicial killings, but ushering in a new government come August 8. A government that can address not just gang violence but the rampant corruption that’s now the worst ever in this country, and has prevented the government from addressing the needs of the people.

As Prime Minister, Raila Odinga was instrumental in the establishment of programs intended to alleviate youth unemployment and food insecurity, with the flagship project being the Kazi Kwa Vijana initiative.

KKV quickly became a casualty of corruption kingpins in the then Grand Coalition government. And later, as Raila would point out, senior officials who controlled the Ministry of Finance and aligned to President Mwai Kibaki killed the KKV program, along with others for fear it would succeed to the credit of Raila and his ODM wing of government.

Raila says he’s committed, now more than ever, to not only resume where he left off as Prime Minister with his half-loaf in finding lasting solutions for the country, but also promised to deliver immediate solutions to address the disgraceful high levels of youth unemployment in NASA.

 
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Posted by on April 9, 2017 in Law, Politics, Uncategorized

 

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Why Voters Should Send Uhuru Packing

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In my Star oped this week Why Voters Should Send Uhuru Packing, I offer some of the reasons why Uhuru will be a one-term president.

Excerpts:

But it wasn’t long after they were sworn in before UhuRuto obviated what many already knew: Their priority number one was to use state resources to thwart and ultimately succeed in walking away from the ICC without convictions, as they eventually did.

So much that for the first two years of the Uhuru presidency, all the focus was on leaving the ICC, when they were not busy filling every possible position in government with their tribesmen and women. They reserved the best positions for their cronies and hangers-on, who in turn made sure they successfully engaged in massive corruption.

And that’s a shame, reason and fact number one that this is a failed government.

To be sure, some of us — and to the chagrin of those with whom we have been in the opposition trenches — rooted for the duo’s success for, after all, we only have one President and one administration at a time and we have, as a country, needs that must be met.

Instead of capitalising on that goodwill and delivering on their promises for the sake of our country, President Kenyatta and Deputy President Ruto squandered it all and, even worse, allowed their cronies to engage in even more corruption, worse than this country has ever endured, which is reason and fact number two why this is a failed government.

There’s not enough time or space here to analyse all the failures of the Jubilee government based strictly on the promises made in their manifesto. They have failed to deliver on those promises, let alone even try, while pretending to launch “new” projects when in reality, they were put in the pipeline by none other than the person who gives them the most shivers.

Suffice it to say, however, that Jubilee has failed to deliver on promises ranging from providing transformational leadership, when they’ve given us worse, to making Kenya safe when, as one blogger put it, “The police have all the weapons and vehicles they need to arrive at a place where it is easy to trample on the rights of the common citizens but not to protect themselves from sporadic al Shabaab attacks and bandits in places such as Suguta Valley and Kapedo.”

From empowering the youth, where the massive looting at NYS tells you all you need to know, to providing food security where, as this same blogger puts it, “people are still dying of hunger in 21st Century Kenya and of all places in Tiaty constituency, where Jubilee reaped 51, 000 votes out of a possible 22,000.”
From a healthy Kenya, in which the doctors’ strike tells you all you need to know to, last but not least, tribalism, which is now worse than ever before.

These are just but a few facts and reasons why the Jubilee government has failed, and which the majority of the voters going to the polls must have in mind in sweeping them out of office come August 8.

 
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Posted by on February 20, 2017 in Politics, Uncategorized

 

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