Tag Archives: G7

Raila Leading By Example As Usual Hands Over Gifts From Foreign Trip To The Republic

NAIROBI, Kenya Jun 4, 2012, Capital FM

Prime Minister Raila Odinga has surrendered gifts given to him while on an official foreign visit.

Speaking while surrendering the three items which included a handmade decorative Turkish glass bowl, glass and brass ewer and plate, Odinga said he was doing so in accordance to Article 76 (1) of the Constitution and Section 11 (3) of the Public Officer Ethics Act which bars a public officer from keeping a gift or donation he received while on public or official visits.

The Public Officers Ethics Act 2003: 11 (3) states “A public officer may accept a gift given to him in his official capacity but, unless the gift is a non-monetary gift that does not exceed the value prescribed by regulation, such a gift shall be deemed to be a gift to the public officer’s organisation.”

Article 76 (1) of the Constitution states: “A gift or donation to a State officer on a public or official occasion is a gift or donation to the Republic and shall be delivered to the State unless exempted under an Act of Parliament.”

He said he hoped it will set a precedent for other public servants who have been ignoring the Act even though it was enacted in 2003.

‘’Some people will ask why now? But there is always a beginning to everything. Wherever we travel you usually get gifts but we ignore specific provision of our Constitution and laws,’’ he said.

The Act defines a public officer as any officer, employee or member, including an unpaid, part-time or temporary officer, employee or member, of  the Government or any department, service or undertaking of the Government; the National Assembly or the Parliamentary Service; a local authority; any corporation, council, board, committee or other body which has power to act under and for the purposes of any written law relating to local government, public health or undertakings of public utility or otherwise to administer funds belonging to or granted by the Government or money raised by rates, taxes or charges.

Odinga who is accountable to the National Assembly said the twin laws are meant to discourage corruption among public officers who might be influenced by donors who might need favours from the government.

The PM explained he was surrendering the gifts to the National Assembly in accordance to Section 3 (2)(a) which determines the National Assembly as the responsible Commission for a member of the executive such as members of the National Assembly including, for greater certainty, the President, the Speaker and the Attorney-General.

“We have seen sometimes in the rural areas, public officers receives cows, goats which they just go and slaughter, that will be going against the law.

We are saying this law must be respected,” Odinga stated.

National Assembly Speaker Kenneth Marende commended the premier for the act but added that the Public Ethics Officer Act needs to be strengthened to ensure compliance by all public office holders.

“The Act envisages that there will be regulations, which will provide for value for example of gifts that must be surrendered, but as it is now it very clear you surrender those gifts that are of non-monetary value or if they are souvenirs you don’t surrender,” he said.

The Speaker who received the gifts as the chairperson of Parliament’s Powers and Privileges Committee subsequently handed over the gifts to the Director General of the National Museums of Kenya, Idle Farah.

Raila haters and opponents who never see anything good he does will, of course, find something nasty or otherwise negative to say about this noble deed by the PM but most Kenyans who are neither and even opponents capable of calling a spade a spade would appreciate and commend as I do the PM for doing this and hope the rest of the political class will follow suit.

Capital FM

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Posted by on June 4, 2012 in Law, Politics


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Parallels and Contrasts Between America’s Mitt Romney and Raila Odinga







During the sometimes bizarre and sometimes surreal Republican nomination process here in the US, one thing was certain: a majority of primary voters in the Republican party did not want Mitt Romney, the former Governor of Massachusetts as the presidential flag-bearer for the Republican party.

The primary reason given by many of these voters is that Romney is not conservative enough and in particular the fact that he introduced healthcare law in Massachusetts when he was governor that became the model President Barrack Obama patterned his own healthcare law that most Republicans loath because they see it as a form of wealth transfer to the poor—something they are naturally opposed the mean spirited and heartless many of them are.

Be that as it may be, we saw quite some drama during most of the process when so many characters occupied the “anyone but Romney” spot only to crush and burn a few weeks later.

After several of these crushes and burnings, the field was left with 2 arguably “Romney alternatives” in the faces of former US House Speaker Newt Gingrich and former US Senator Rick Santorum.

These two gentlemen went after each other so viciously in a bid to outdo each other and position themselves as the alternative to Romney but when neither would knock the other one out and remain the only one challenging Romney, the two now started urging each other to simply abandon their efforts and have their supporters join forces with the one left to defeat or more precisely deny Romney the nomination for the Republican party.

All of these efforts failed and the very person nearly all Republicans did not want as their nominee to face Obama in the fall is now guaranteed to be the nominee, having racked up 1191 delegates of the 1144 needed to be nominated.

The closest contender who has since bowed out of the race only has 265.

The Republican party nomination drama and theatrics is very similar to what is happening in Kenya with respect to the presidential politics even though the dissimilar in important respects.

The major difference between the Republican nomination process and the Kenyan situation is, while many have been opposed to Mitt Romney’s nomination as flag-bearer for the Republicans for valid, intellectually sound substantive reasons, there has not been a single reason articulated by the so called G7 why each and all of them are adamant about “stopping” Raila from being reelected as president.

Not once.

However, we can surmise the following reasons as to why:

First, Raila presents the most threat to their ill-gained wealth, corruption and impunity.

In a blog to be posted soon, I will discuss 10 things that must be on the To Do List for our next president and leading that list is taking corruption head on for the first time and ensuring an end to impunity for real.

No one can make a case that passes the laugh test that there is anyone among those vying who is better suited to address corruption and impunity in Kenya than Raila himself.

In a rational society, this fact alone would be a sure-in for Raila as president.

Unfortunately, however, we are not dealing with a rational society when it comes to Kenyan politics.

Characterized as it is by individuals who would lie, distort and manipulate facts at will for their own selfish needs and without caring one whit about the average Kenyan, and given the abundance of illiteracy, tribalism and a general lack of information or sophistry among a large segment of our population, these shameless politicians have and continue to believe they can get their way regardless of truth, fact or welfare of our country.

Let’s hope not anymore.

Second, the so-called G7 or otherwise those bent on “stopping” Raila, are driven by an abnormal level of mixed hate and jealousy for Raila that is unprecedented and unparalleled both in Kenya and the rest of the world.

Every country has a presidential candidate a good segment of its population just can’t stand or simply hates but usually this is along ideological lines.

The level of hatred and intensity directed at Raila by those who hate him cannot be attributed to ideology at all.

Rather, people hate Raila or can’t stand him largely because of his tribe or based on false information and beliefs they hold to be true when it’s simply not true.

Leading in the spreading of that hate and vitriol are none other than Raila’s political opponents who know that is the only way they can hurt him politically, given they are all individually or collectively lightweights compared to Raila and his accomplishments as a leader.

Finally, but not least, the so-called G7 and other Raila haters are determined to gang against him because Raila is popular among Kenyans from all walks of life save for the tribalists and those brain-washed by the same G7 crew.

What they don’t understand is, no matter how much they smear and drag his name through the mud, Raila still remains popular and, like Mitt Romney, he will emerge at the top despite all manner of effort to stop him from getting there.

The only difference is, while Mitt Romney’s top may be the nomination as flag-bearer for the Republican party, Raila’s top will be the presidency of Kenya he was previously given the nod but not sworn.

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Posted by on June 3, 2012 in Politics


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Mudavadi Is A Very Weak and Indecisive Leader Kenya Does Not Need As President

Even in the weeks leading to launching his run for the presidency, it became readily apparent that Mudavadi is a very weak and indecisive leader.

Readily apparent, that is, to those who don’t know him very well.

Those who know Mudavadi have always known these are undesirable qualities he possesses but as long as he had a strong, decisive leader to follow, he would do just fine in whatever supporting role and this is has been the hallmark of his life.

When Mudavadi was appointed youngest minister in our country at 39, thanks to his late father’s close relationship with Moi, he did not distinguish himself in any way and his service as minister is more remembered about his being implicated in the Goldenberg and cemetery scandals among other shady dealings ODM is now demanding that he comes clean about before thinking about running for president which Chapter Six demands no less.

When Mudavadi was appointed by Moi as Vice President, a position he held for the shortest period of time in our country’s history, he left without any record of achievement there either even though one may give him a break for indeed, he had not served long enough to accomplish anything.

When Mudavadi became our Deputy Prime Minister and Minister for Local Government, he continued with his record of non-achievement so much so as noted above Kenyans will remember him for the cemetery scandal he has yet to come clean than anything else.

When Mudavadi became the deputy leader of ODM, did what deputies usually do: nothing worth of noting.

Indeed, rather than work hard to grow and strengthen ODM as any strong leader would, Mudavadi chose to bolt when it came clear to him that he doesn’t have what it takes to replace Raila as the party leader for the same reasons he doesn’t have what it takes to become our next president than Raila does.

The very manner in which Mudavadi bolted ODM exposed him as an indecisive and uncertain leader because it took months for him to make a decision a novice but decisive leader would have made in a matter of days.

Mudavadi claimed in recent days leading to his announcement that he was consulting widely but a strong leader doesn’t go door to door asking voters whether a decision is about to make is good or bad.

A strong leader makes a decision and influences others to follow.

Mudavadi’s indecisiveness on its own is enough reason not to be voted as president because we need a strong, decisive leader to occupy that office lest the likes of Mudavadi will be taken advantage by their cronies who would then run the country down the ground even worse than we have heard before.

Granted, both Kenyatta and Moi were no push-overs when the country was being run down the ground by their cronies and hangers-on but the difference is, in 2012, we need a strong leader who also believes in ending corruption and impunity, with a proven record of doing such and that person is not Mudavadi as he has no proven record of reform and his involvement in the scandals mentioned about taint him and actually disqualify him as president is Chapter Six means anything.

Mudavadi has been going around telling the public that Raila is a “dictator;” well, guess what Mr. DPM: The country needs someone with a doze of dictatorship mentality to fix the mess we have been in than it needs a very week, indecisive leader like you who everyone will push-over to get what they want all of which will be for their narrow, selfish interests and not in the interest of our country.

Mudavadi may compare and be comparable to others running for president but in terms of leadership qualities, he is simply a student who has yet to master the skills from the masters such as Raila.

The reality is, if there was to be a match-up between Raila and Mudavadi, all votes for Mudavadi will be votes by those who vote for him because they hate Raila or simply don’t want him to be president and the rest will be those he will get from the few in the Luhya community buying into this tribal notion that it’s time for their tribe.

None of the votes for Mudavadi would be on account of his leadership skills for he has demonstrated he lacks them and what little he has is not needed in our country at this stage in our history.

This is not an idle charge but as noted above, Mudavadi has demonstrated he is a very weak and indecisive leader we definitely don’t want to see occupying State House because his cronies will take advantage and drive the country even further under the ground in both corruption and impunity, not to say anything about development Mudavadi has not shown any leadership worth noting.

But there is more in support of the fact that Mudavadi is a very weak and indecisive leader and look no further than his clinging to the DPM position despite having clearly become ineligible to hold that office under the law.

Mudavadi’s continued holding that office despite being ineligible to hold it shows that he is one who would do what is in his selfish interest and if that’s contradicted by the law, the law be damned.

Fortunately or unfortunately for him, depending how one see this, Mudavadi is not alone in that category as many a politician are guilty of this as well.

Indeed, other than Raila and maybe one other candidate seriously considering a run for the presidency, all these other contenders have demonstrated when it comes to the rule of law, they prefer to curve themselves an exception such that the rule of law does not apply to them.

It’s called impunity and by clinging to the DPM position despite clearly not being eligible anymore, Mudavadi has earned himself membership in the class of those who have become masters of it.

A leader who respects the rule of law would have done the honorable thing and resigned as DPM rather than clinging to the position until forced out.

In sum, when taking into consideration the indecisiveness Mudavadi has demonstrated and coupled with the fact he has over the years shown to be a very weak leader and when one considers the fact that Mudavadi has been implicated in some of the worst corruption scandals in the country and given now his continued flaunting of the law in refusing to step aside as DPM, Mudavadi has made the case he deserves not a single vote by anyone who is serious about electing a leader who can transform our country.


Posted by on May 7, 2012 in Politics, Uncategorized


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My Take On Who Raila Should Pick As Running Mate Should Mudavadi Finally Defect

In his DN column titled What Raila Should Consider In Choosing Running Mate, Prof. Makau Mutua argues that for ODM, “it’s time to exhale” and that “thank heavens Mudavadi is history.”

I disagree that it’s time for ODM to exhale and that neither do I see Mudavadi’s impending departure something to celebrate for ODM.

This is because it need not have been but since it has or shall, Raila and ODM must deal with it accordingly and consistent with their common end objective of once again sweeping the country at the polls.

This being politics we are talking about and specifically involving the master politician in Kenya himself by the name Raila Amolo Odinga, it would not surprise anyone someday that the man himself engineered the whole thing with the full blessing of Mudavadi himself to pave way for what I agree with the good professor to be “a free hand to make an inspired pick for running mate.”

I am merely speculating here and wouldn’t that be the engineering of the century were it to turn out to be that way, however.

I do agree with Prof. Makau that Mudavadi’s defection would be a double-edged sword for Dr. Odinga in that he must make as near perfect a pick for his replacement as running mate lest the whole thing blows in his face.

Unlike the professor, however, I am not worried or concerned with the PM listening to his “sycophants and underlings” because he is his own master strategist and rarely so in Kenyan politics.

As for who the best pick should be for Raila’s running mate, it’s worth noting what the ideal universal qualities of a vice president are:

First, he or she must obviously be someone ready to step in and effectively take over as president should the need ever arise—God forbid–during the presidency.

Second, he or she must be someone who is loyal and in every respect of that word.

Third, he or she must bring to the table something of value to help make the ticket a better one than the ticket being without him or her in comparison to all others.

These are the qualities by which Raila must evaluate each and every prospective candidate and whoever gets the most points as to each, gets the nod.

Prof. Makau says the Raila should not let tribal math determine the pick and I fully agree with him on that.

However, it’s important to note that, one of the considerations Raila or anyone for that matter must make, is regional balance which de facto means tribal consideration.

The way I have been saying is we must end tribalism as a major determinative factor in how we elect presidents.

This is because I don’t believe one can expect to have an electoral process in which tribe does not matter given the constitution itself recognizes and actually mandates that regional balance (read balanced tribal representation) is and must be a hurdle to overcome for anyone aspiring to be sworn as president.

In other words, benign tribal consideration is okay; it’s invidious tribal consideration that is evil and must be shunned by all.

If Raila considers having a Kale as his vice president to meet regional balance, then that’s quite alright.

If on the other hand, Raila’s opponents band together into a tribal outfit solely for the purpose of “stopping” Raila to be reelected president, then that’s wrong and condemnable as backward because we must elect leaders by virtue of their leadership ability, not by tribal affiliation.

Conversely, one cannot deny Raila or anyone for that matter a vote on the basis that he has not picked one of their own for his running mate as that, too, is wrong and condemnable as backward because people must realize we can only have one president and one vice president therefore every tribe cannot have one or both.

Rather, what should matter is that the one selected as the running mate meets the criteria stated above and nothing more or less.

Prof. Makau says it would be a “gargantuan political error” if Raila were to pick a Luhya running mate to replace Mudavadi with another Luhya because “there is no Luhya politician – except perhaps Speaker Kenneth Marende – who fits the bill.”

I disagree only because I am sure if the sole issue was “replacing” Mudavadi with another Luhya, there are several individuals who would fit the bill.

A whole community can simply not be devoid of capable leaders who can step in and hold the position of deputy party leader.

I will agree with the good professor, however, that Raila should not pick another Luhya albeit for a different reason and that is, regional balancing.

I also join Makau in rejecting the “Tribal mathematicians” argument that Raila must appease the Luhya by picking one of their number as running mate to make up for Mr Mudavadi’s “loss” or those arguing that Raila must pick a Kalenjin to swing Kalenjins from archrival Eldoret North MP William Ruto.

My thinking on this has been and continues to be there will be a major paradigm shift in Kenyan politics in 2012 brought about by none other than Raila himself such that the traditional tribal calculations will not be the major determinative factor in who we elect as our next president.

I know I have previously argued that Raila should not drop Mudavadi or that if he did so, he had to do it with his blessing lest he finds himself in deep trouble with the Luhya vote but, with Mudavadi basically showing himself the door, and despite spirited urging from his own backyard, his walking away is tantamount to telling Raila he has his blessing to pick whomever he pleases for his running mate.

In other words, Raila is not dropping Mudavadi as his running mate as I previously cautioned him not to but Mudavadi is dropping himself as one and all reasonable and objective Luhyas cannot possibly hold that against Raila nor can they not understand if they believe in Raila and ODM ideals, then so much the better getting a running mate from elsewhere to better balance the ticket.

The focus, that is, now must be regaining the presidency and with that comes the opportunity to implement the same ideals the community has all along anticipated will occur with the Raila presidency.

Nothing changes with the departure of Mudavadi.

The reality and truth is, Raila is far much better off with someone outside Luhyaland as his running mate and he need not go far than the Rift Valley to find someone to bring the more desirable regional balance.

Prof. Makau dismisses the notion of having someone from RV on grounds “none has the requisite credentials” and while crediting Dr. Sally Kosgey with “intellectual heft,” he nonetheless dismisses her as carrying Moi baggage while dismissing all other senior politicians from the region as being “heavily” compromised.

I disagree.

Both Dr. Sally Kosgey and Henry Kosgey are viable options Raila could easily pick as running mate under the criteria stated above, even though Dr. Kosgey may get a strike for the loyalty factor.

Henry Kosgey meets all of the three criteria and even though he does have a past some may argue as Makau does that puts him on the potentially “compromised” category, it is nothing insurmountable and the opposite is actually more plausible and that is, a compelling case can be made that he has if anything become a different breed of a politician almost on a class of his own.

Prof. Makau argues that the ICC charges for crimes against humanity that Deputy Prime Minister Uhuru Kenyatta and Eldoret North MP face at The Hague are sure to knock them out of the contest and thereby “detribalise” or throw up the Kalenjin and Kikuyu votes for grabs.

I disagree only because it’s my believe voting in these communities will not be as a bloc regardless of whether either or both suspects are allowed to vie.

Bloc voting is a thing of the past and I don’t have time to explain why the Luo vote for Raila would not be bloc voting in the sense how this phenomena is understood in political parlance.

Prof. Makau touts the credentials of Mandera Central MP Abdukadir Hussein Mohamed and says he makes a compelling case for Raila to pick him as his running mate.

I should without any equivocation note that I agree with most of what the professor has said about Abdukadir and would even add that he has a bright future in Kenyan politics, if he continues on the path he is on.

I only disagree that he makes the most compelling case for pick as running mate because on the one hand, I am a strong proponent for everyone in politics waiting their turn and, on that measure, there are many others who top him for their having waited their turn and leading that pack, is the Hon. Gitobu Imanyara.

Imanyara is a proven reformist, capable of taking over as president, demonstrably loyal and even more importantly, he brings more regional balance in the Raila ticket than anyone I can think of at this moment.

In other words, he is the complete package.

Finally, but not least, Makau argues that the other compelling candidate is Gichugu MP Martha Karua because “she’s fearless and the only senior woman politician with a long record as a reformer.”

I agree.

HMK, as I call her, is someone I have analyzed and concluded she is presidential material and in Who Is Martha Karua Part V, I noted the following:

I have no doubt many can look back to HMK’s conduct post-election 07 (PEV) and conclude HMK is the most dishonest, untrustworthy and certainly without any integrity and that would be on the surface, the appropriate conclusion to reach, but there is more to it than that.

There is no question, HMK came across during those grim days as shrewdly cold and recklessly inflexible, all the while advising Kibaki to take the most of hardline positions while the country was about to plunge into civil war, not to say anything about people having already been burned in churches and their homes with streets and homes still on fire.

For her hardline position, and her advising Kibaki not to relent even under the tremendous pressure being applied from everywhere, and despite the obvious need to so relent, if anything, to stop the violence, one can and should rightly say or conclude that HMK was then wallowing at the height of [recklessness and] impunity.

It therefore would be easy to conclude HMK lacks this trustfulness and honesty elements, when evaluating her leadership ability, solely based on her conduct post-election but I think this would be unfair.

HMK’s honesty, trustfulness and integrity, however, must be measured in totality, meaning in examining her complete personal and professional life, including her political life.

Starting with her conduct during PEV, this is clearly her biggest stain on her trustfulness, honor and integrity but she has explained her conduct as being driven by a desire to serve her master as zealously as she could.

In other words, in her quest to please Kibaki, HMK crossed the line without knowing to a level of zealotry that completely ignored or disregarded reality.

Or put differently, HMK was for impunity before she became against it but unwittingly so, according to her explanation.

If this is her explanation, it is understandable and forgivable, especially given the fact she has since decamped from the Kibaki regime, even though listening to how she puts it, her distancing herself from Kibaki has more to do with not standing Kibaki’s kitchen-cabinet than anything related to her PEV conduct or role.

I’ll give her a pass on that.

Beyond PEV, I have not heard of HMK as being implicated in conduct unbecoming an honest and trustworthy public servant with integrity to boot and given her earlier on and one may argue now resumed reformist attitude, she will make a compelling case for a VP pick for Raila.

In sum, in top consideration for VP running mate for Raila were Mudavadi to defect from ODM, I would have Henry Kosgey, Dr. Sally Kosgey, Gitobu Imanyara and HMK not necessarily in that order but evaluating each by the above mentioned criteria and giving the nod to whoever gets the most points.



Posted by on May 1, 2012 in Politics


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DPM Mudavadi Challenging Raila Has Exposed His Crippling Weakness

A deputy in any leadership hierarchy is like a spare tire in that that just as one expects the spare tire to be ready at all times to replace a punctured one, so too is a deputy in leadership expected to be ready at all times to take over from the individual he or she is deputy if necessary.

Prior to becoming Deputy Prime Minister, Hon.Mudavadi previously served as our country’s Vice President under former President Moi, a position he also holds the dubious record as the shortest serving vice president in Kenya.

Was Mudavadi ready to take over as president, were the need to arise during his short stint as Vice-President?

We’ll never know for sure but can always either speculate or examine what the DPM did as Vice President to have a good idea as to whether he would have been ready and if so, what kind of president he would have become.

On the other hand, we also know even those not ready for the task, some rise to the occasion and you will never know how unprepared they were no matter how long they have been on notice the moment would come while others are incapable of doing so simply because they can’t.

A good case can be made Moi falls in the former category when he not so suddenly found himself president despite all manner of effort and schemes to stop him from succeeding our first president Mzee Jomo Kenyatta.

However, a more plausible case than otherwise can be made but for one Charles Mugane Njonjo, his presidency may not have survived past the initial 90 days guaranteed by the constitution.

The rest, as it’s said, is history.

As noted below, it’s doubtful Mudavadi could have equally succeeded Moi in the manner Moi succeeded Kenyatta for the same reasons that spell doom for his political career ahead.

First, Mudavadi did not become Vice President on merit and by that I mean in the traditional sense where a party leader picks or the party picks a qualified deputy who becomes a running mate and eventually a vice president, if the duo gets the nod from the people at the ballot.

Instead, Mudavadi was merely handpicked by Moi unarguably without any consideration of leadership ability but a blatant effort to implement the Uhuru Project as the pick was naively calculated to bring the Luhya vote on the UK tribal math column but the strategy backfired miserably.

Second, while there is nothing to speak of in terms of accomplishments as VP during his short stint as one, Mudavadi’s accepting the position so late in the game when the writing was on the wall that the Uhuru project was dead on arrival goes to show an inability to read the mood of the people and therefore lacking in an essential element of effective leadership, leave alone the presidency.

Third, prior to his appointment as VP, Mudavadi served as our country’s youngest minister after succeeding his late father and close friend of Moi, Moses Budamba Mudavadi, as the unopposed MP of Sabatia.

Neither appointment screams of leadership ability and more so another reason one would have to be inclined to believe Mudavadi could not have been ready for prime time back in 2002 had it become necessary.

Fourth, Mudavadi has not done anything readily significant or noticeable to demonstrate that he has emerged from the shadow of his past and that of Moi’s even after his political life was resurrected from the dead by none other than the man he now wants to challenge for both the nomination and presidency, PM Raila Amolo Odinga.

Fifth, any objective observer would have to agree even if one gives Mudavadi the benefit of doubt that his quest to challenge Raila for the ODM nomination has been in good faith and strictly as a matter of internal democratization of the party, the manner in which Mudavadi has gone about pursuing this has exposed him as an indecisive and weak leader which cannot be good for him regardless how this ends.

Indecisiveness and inability to mobilize even your own base are incurable leadership flaws that are neither inherited nor learned; they are just who you are and are never good at the top of any leadership.

All this must have people scratching their heads wondering why did Mudavadi even set out to do this?

When being a project of another makes more sense than any reason one can find, one can only but feel sorry for Mudavadi.

Nobody knows for sure how this will end but, a good bet is Mudavadi is in an unenviable position of being politically doomed regardless of the outcome.


Posted by on April 21, 2012 in Politics


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It Is Not True That Raila Presidency “Dream” Now Farther Than Ever Before As A Standard Editor Contends

The Standard carried an article by an unnamed “Senior Editor, Production and Quality” titled “Raila Presidency Dream Now Farther Than Ever Before.”

Whoever penned this piece is a good writer for sure but he has committed a journalistic feat that would earn him or her an F in journalism 101 class and that is, failure to prove his thesis; a no-no one sees journalists commit on a regular basis but you can understand why; headlines sell.

That the writer is an editor, is more so the reason he should be given a double F for the essay, beautifully written as it is.

He has not told us why Raila “presidency dream [is] now farther than ever before.”

He either doesn’t understand the meaning of the Kilkanny cat poem or he does and has failed to properly apply it further justifying the F for his essay.

He doesn’t tell us how or why Raila is a “loser” in his conceived “battle” between Raila and Mudavadi, which doesn’t exist.

Mudavadi is in a battle with himself.

The writer says Raila has so many enemies, which is true but goes on to say “yet he can afford to open other warfronts” which is an internally inconsistent assertion not worth analyzing further other than to say Raila does not get up one morning and say, “hmmmm, which warfront can I afford to open today?”

His borrowing a page from Raila and use football analogy to assert that Raila as captain of the team cannot lift a trophy because key players have deserted the team in a “huff” is nothing but another reason to award an F on the essay because the analogy is misplaced. A team whose key players have deserted it in a huff can nonetheless lift the trophy if replaced with even better players as Raila and ODM are poised to do following the departure of some of these politicians headed to political irrelevance or oblivion.

Proceeding on this faulty reasoning and misapplication of football analogies, the writer tells us that “a captain perpetually at loggerheads with star players is a liability to the team.” There are several reasons why this is factually and analytically another reason to give this essay an F but let me just put forth one and that is, a handful of players leaving a team with an excellent coach because of selfish reasons and inability to be team-players is no reflection of the coach and neither can the coach be deemed to be a liability for the team under those circumstances not matter how many or how many times such selfish players lacking the spirit of teamwork leave the team.

In fact, it’s better they leave so the coach can replace them with better players who can help the team meet its objective and that is, winning.

While acknowledging Raila’s unquestionable lead in the polls and popularity, the writer nonetheless dismisses the same as only relevant if Raila faces a divided opposition and looking at his crystal ball, concludes that “the stars are not aligned for the premier, [to be reelected as president], contrary to what his minders and hangers on want him to hear” which is another assertion that provides yet another reason to give this essay an F because we don’t elect leaders by alignment of stars but Raila and ODM shall make a compelling case why they should assume power from the top on down and the people, not the stars, or the masters of impunity who naively believe they will again, but the people themselves will decide.

The writer notes the following,“Agwambo requires honest advice of a child or a mad man – like Kamukuywa’s Okhwa Majani – to tell him some home truth. Without twisting the mouth, he should tell him: “Jakom, you’re assassinating yourself politically if you allow your list of enemies to expand every day.”

The counsel is misplaced because it assumes a fact that doesn’t exist.

Awambo does not “allow [his] list of enemies to expand every day.”

Rather, people chose to become his enemies for reasons he has nothing to do with Raila but everything to do with their own selfish and misguided ambitions, which they are entitled to pursue.

The measure of Raila as a leader is not his ability to stop people intent on committing political suicide but one of making sure our country realizes the ideals embodied in our National Anthem, which has eluded us for decades since independence.

That’s been Raila’s focus since entering politics, through his years of fighting and paying dearly for the reforms now underway and to the end of his political career he sees no reason why Kenyans cannot once again give him the nod notwithstanding the breathless efforts by those against his reformist agenda to “stop” him from being reelected again as president as he was but not sworn in 2007.

The writer says to Raila, “You deal your grand ambition a fatal blow if you let a cabal of hometown mafia surround you as the rest of the country deserts you.

This is a true proposition that applies to any politician but begs the question whether its true in the case of Raila.

It is obviously not true as the writer implies that the “rest of the country” has or is deserting Raila because of the “cabal of hometown mafia” but the savvy politician and master strategist he is, Raila obviously must have this in mind as he prepares to mount his campaign and Exhibit A is his recent appointments to the ODM Secretariat with more to come.

The writer further contends to Raila “You cannot dare everyone to a fight and always expect to win the war.”

True but Raila has never dared anyone; people have dared him and lost each time.

Closing on this faulty line of thought, the writer declares, “In politics, you rather have your enemy closer to you rather than always wave a dismissive hand arrogantly when things don’t work your way.”

Raila has said ODM is the party to take us to the future as a country and its vision and ideals are no different than what every Kenyan wants there is no reason anyone should leave the party unless they are driven by ambitions detached from the party’s mission in which case he says fare thee well; it’s been a good journey together while you shared our party’s ideals.

That’s neither dismissive nor arrogant as the writer contends; its a mark of a confident and assured leader in his abilities.

It’s obviously not killing oneself as the writer further contends.


Posted by on April 21, 2012 in Politics


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DPM Musalia Mudavadi Will Be Unwise To Ignore All The Counsel He Is Getting, Including From His Own Backyard

According to Daily Nation, 13 MPs from Western Kenya have advised Deputy Prime minister Musalia Mudavadi not to quit ODM but should instead fight it out with Prime Minister Raila Odinga for the party’s presidential ticket.

Addressing a news conference in Parliament buildings today, the MPs said they had already spoken to Prime Minister and his deputy, and that their counsel, was a call to dialogue.

“We are convinced that moving to any other political party will certainly not be in his best interests or beneficial to the people of Western,” said Cabinet minister Wycliffe Oparanya, who read the joint statement.

“We’re making all efforts to ensure that we stay together.”

This is welcome development.

Most of us have been saying the same thing for days and weeks but apparently all has been falling on deaf ears, given how things have fast progressed or deteriorated, depending on who is doing the evaluation.

However, now that these MPs have reiterated the same counsel, one can only hope Mudavadi finally listens and does the right thing and that is, simply remain put in ODM and fight for the nomination he seeks and accept whatever outcome that comes of the fight much as Raila has said he will.

That’s what democracy is all about not these shenanigans and side-shows that only serve to distract from the pursuing a winning agenda that ODM must pursue and attain.

As Mudavadi weighs all this, what he should not lose sight of is, no matter which way he decides to go, ODM shall move on to victory because the party is not about one man, or one tribe or a combination of tribes but about Kenya and ideals Kenyans have been clamoring for which the party represents and is the only one that can deliver on them.

Mudavadi’s staying put in ODM will simply prevent the party from wasting time and expending unnecessary energy and resources to deal with repairing the minor puncture on one of its wheels for the reaching the destination is just around the corner she can even walk there.

Peace and ODM Unity


Posted by on April 19, 2012 in Politics


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