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Courts Must Protect Vote Integrity

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In Courts Must Protect Vote Integrity, I make the case voters will do their part in making sure Uhuru and Company are sent packing come August 8 but the Court must be vigilant in making sure there’s no election theft this time around. And now the oped:

US President Donald Trump shocked the world when he won in one of the most bizzare presidential elections in America. He lost the popular vote by almost 2.9 million but was declared the winner by virtue of having won the majority of the Electoral College votes.

The drafters of the US Constitution created the Electoral College system to guard against “cabal, corruption, intrigue, and faction,” which, to some, degree it has.

The proof of the ingenuity of the system is in the fact that only in four instances in the country’s more than 230-year history has the President been elected not having won the popular vote. They also created a checks and balances system such that no single branch of government among the three could overwhelm the others and ride roughshod over the country’s affairs.

President Trump is finding this out first-hand as the courts promptly tossed out his hurriedly issued and unconstitutional executive order banning Muslims from certain countries from entering the US (he claims the ban was not against Muslims but the courts took the view, if it looks like a duck, quacks like a duck and swims like a duck, it’s probably a duck, except in this case, the court said, it was a duck).

Our Constitution is not 230 years old. It’s only only on its seventh year, if you put aside what we had before as not really a constitution, but a manifesto for an efficient dictatorship.
Be that as it may, the drafters of our Constitution did borrow a page from the American Constitution and established our own system of checks and balances. Built underneath that system is, at least on paper, an independent judiciary.

We all recall the fanfare ushering in the new Constitution in 2010 as if we had finally arrived as a country. Unfortunately, that spirit of oneness and purpose was short-lived as we found out in 2013 that the ugly old was with us in the form of rigged elections and a compliant judiciary that turned a blind eye on the glaring evidence of rigging presented before it.

Correction; a compliant Supreme Court which turned a blind eye on the glaring evidence of rigging presented to it only for its then Chief Justice and President, Dr Willy Mutunga, to seal the Court’s fate as the most inconsequential court in as far as the preservation of vote integrity goes, and making laughable the notion of an independent judiciary.

But all is not lost. Mutunga has since left the Bench with hardly any legacy to speak of other than the foregoing and he has been replaced by David Maraga.

With the addition of Lady Justice Philomena Mwilu and Justice Isaac Lenaola as Deputy Chief Justice and Supreme Court judge respectively, one can say we have had a reset of the court, taking us back to just after August 2010, when we prematurely celebrated the liberation of our judiciary from the chokehold she had suffered all those years since Independence in the hands of the President.
It’s a fact that other than in 2002, there has never been an election in Kenya where there was no rigging or outright theft at the presidential level.

Indeed, in all of those elections, we had an impotent judiciary doing the bidding of the riggers but, with this reset, the men and women serving in our highest court of the land may yet again be called upon to rise to the occasion and deliver justice for the country and it’s our collective prayer they will not fail us as their predecessors did.
In other words, as the courts in the US told Trump he can’t tramp on people’s rights at will, so, too, should ours tell President Uhuru Kenyatta and his Jubilee administration loud and clear if they’re to be worth the honour bestowed upon each of them and collectively.
Only then shall we be a free nation and every indication is this is already in the making, namely, saying enough is enough.

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Posted by on February 24, 2017 in Politics

 

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Happy Birthday Retired President Daniel Arap Moi

I doubt there is anyone more hated or resented in Kenya than our former president Daniel Arap Moi and not without reason. The man literally run our country to the ground and we are fortunate people woke up in 2002 and permanently rejected him and his politics.

There are those who were baying for his blood after the Kibaki government was sworn in following the 2002 elections but anyone who knows anything about these things knew then as now there was nothing to be done of any serious measure to hold Moi accountable for his sins, mismanagement and abuse of the country.

In a recent but historic case, Moi was ordered by the court to surrender land he grabbed in Rongai constituency while serving as president.

This is just but a tip of the iceberg.

Assuming a president who is determined to end corruption and impunity is elected in 2013, and further assuming we continue in the progress we are making in judicial reforms, one can anticipate there will be future legal actions to at least try and have some accountability for some of these illegalities we were subjected to as a country during the Moi regime–at least to the extent legally possible.

No one is suggesting and I am certainly not suggesting that Moi should be locked up or held to account for every sin he may have committed as president; just an effort to return to the public some of the loot as we witnessed the other day in the court order regarding the grabbed land in Rongai.

His continued good health is therefore something we all should wish for him so that he may cooperate fully and, on a very sincere and strictly as a fellow human being and mzee we all should and must respect no matter their sins for the Bible tells us we have all fallen short in one way or another, I wish him a happy birthday, long life and good health.

That being said, I would want to believe were Moi to do it all over, he would do it differently and doubt he’ll be as brutal and without compassion for the suffering of our people as he was.

If I were Moi or advising him, I would await the new administration to take office, call up the new president along with the new AG and strike a deal in which he agrees to surrender some of the loot in exchange for being left to enjoy the rest of his retirement and life without being dragged to court to answer to some of these things as he likely would or should–unless lovers and beneficiaries of status quo and impunity grab or maintain power.

 
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Posted by on September 1, 2012 in Politics

 

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Prof. Makau Mutua Is Wrong In Saying Raila Should Not Accept Moi’s Support

In an article appearing in the Sunday Daily Nation Online, Prof. Makau Mutua argues that Prime Minister Raila Amolo Odinga’s rapprochement with former president, Daniel Toroitich arap Moi is a “very bad idea.”

I disagree with the good professor for the reasons that follow, in addition to those I laid out in my Open Letter to H.E. Retd. President Daniel Toroitich arap Moi, C.G.H.

Makau rhetorically posits the question why is Raila “dancing” with former President Daniel arap Moi and offers a number of reasons he says make his “gut and brains” tell him it’s a “very bad idea.”

The good professor is wrong off the gate; Raila is not asking Moi to dance with him; he merely needs Moi in the same dancing hall!

The hall surely must have enough partners to dance with to ensure Raila dances all the way to State House; it’ll be foolhardy for him to leave miffed or otherwise unhappy dancers outside the hall who may as well block his way to State House!

If this is not good reason enough why Raila must continue with the rapprochement with Moi and why this is a good idea, there is more.

Before getting to those, let me address a couple of preliminary points I also disagree with Makau related to politics in general.

Makau says, “politics is neither rational, nor emotional” and that politics is instead about “expediency” which therefore necessitates doing away with principles and thus the reason “moral and political “purists” never get into the “mud of politics.”

The professor is wrong that politics is neither rational nor emotional for if that were the case, we’ll have madmen and women elected to office and all these emotional and near childlike reactions to Raila’s popularity would not be, were it not expressly not because people often react with emotion and not reason but are irrational at times, even as they are trying to be rational.

I can go into details why I say so but that’s beyond the scope of this piece so let me address the rest of Makau’s thoughts in the above quoted assertion.

Makau says politics is about expediency, true. I agree with that statement completely but disagree with the professor that the expediency is at the expense of rationality and/or emotion.

All three go together, otherwise, you’ll have nothing but chaos and indirection in politics and/or the absence of compassion in whatever leadership manages to eke itself out in such an environment.

Again, expounding on this counter-points is beyond the scope of this article so let me just move on and address the balance of Mutua’s piece I disagree with.

It is true as Mutua argues that “in a democracy, the top priority of politicians is to win elections. That’s why every vote — especially in the opponent’s turf — must be wooed.”

The only question is whether Raila’s wooing Moi is appropriate or not.

Mutua says the mere thought of Raila lying in bed with Moi, “revolts” him and goes on to offer reasons “why—and why not—the PM would be unwise to dine with Mr. Moi.”

Not to split hairs too much, and with all due respect to my friend Prof Mutua, just as going to bed is different from dining with someone in real life, so it is figuratively speaking in the political arena.

I have noted above that Raila need not dance with Moi at all; rather, he just needs Moi in the dancing Hall, rather than outside the hall with others trying to block him from dancing all the way to State House.

Just as much as he doesn’t need to dance with Moi, Raila too need not go to bed with him; rather, having him at the dining table and breaking bread, is good enough so long as the duo are on the same page as to Raila’s pathway to State House.

In other words, there is more Moi can do for Raila’s presidential ambitions strategically speaking short of going to bed or dancing with Raila.

Of course, there is even more Moi could do and, indeed, it would be desirable that he actually does do the ultimate and that is, to simply go to bed with Raila.

As I point out below, I disagree with Mutua and others who argue that Moi is spent force; he is not, and those who think otherwise are mistaken for the reasons I elaborate below.

In his analysis, Mutua first presents the case why Raila should “coddle” with Moi and then offers  in his second part of the analysis, why Raila should not do so.

In offering reasons why Raila should “coddle” Moi, Mutua posits that “Mr Odinga has been outmanoeuvred [sic] by Eldoret North MP William Ruto among the Kalenjin.”

This is at best an unproven assertion.

While it’s true Ruto and others using him lied to Kalenjins about Raila and to some degree succeeded in confusing and misleading the Kalenjin community about Raila and his relations with the communit in efforts to topple Raila as heir apparent to Kibaki, it is clear these efforts have failed because Raila not only remains the man to beat, going by the most recent polling data showing him leading his closet rival Uhuru Kenyatta by more than 22 points, he has in more recent times started to regain the support he lost in RV due to Ruto’s mischief as rationality and reality starts to sink in among many who have hitherto been seating on the sidelines, while emotional overreaction to lies and distortions dissipates.

(For reasons why the Ruto failed to topple Raila, read my blog Who Is William Ruto Part VI and Why The Scheme To Topple Raila Has Failed)

I would therefore not say it’s the case that Ruto has “out-maneuvered Raila in Kaleland; quite the contrary, Raila has outmaneuvered Ruto and will likely continue to do so to the end when he emerges victorious, despite Ruto’s and others’ best efforts to stop him.

Notwithstanding the professor’s false premise that Ruto has outmaneuvered Raila in Kaleland, the professor is also wrong in his other premise that the destiny of Kaleland is in the hands of Ruto and that therefore courting Moi to gain this votes is a bad idea.

Ditto for Mutua’s converse argument predicated on another false premise that Raila can only have a prayer in Kaleland if the ICC charges against Ruto are confirmed in which case, according to Mutua, “coddling” Moi would be a good idea.

To his credit, however, Mutua recognizes that the Kalenjin are not a mindless monolith acting only at the direction of Ruto, or anyone for that matter and therein lies the opening for Raila or anyone else.

Raila has to and must continue to make the case in Kaleland as he is and has to in all parts of the country that he is the better qualified of all candidates who have expressed interest in the presidency, or those who actually run.

In other words, Raila has to, and all indication are he will have a 47-County campaign strategy and his motto must be “let’s not leave anyone behind except the most adamant to so remain but must join us ahead, anyway.”

It is therefore baffling why, singling the dynamics in Kaleland, Mutua says of Raila, “Mr Odinga is a “splitist” who is playing on “internal” Kalenjin differences to win a large chunk of their vote.”

This argument is counter-intuitive, even given the professor’s own admission above that the Kalenjins are not a “mindless monolithic’ group which ostensibly therefore should not vote en masse for one or another candidate.

The opposite of not being monolithic and voting en masse, is to have a split vote.

Any politician who seeks to harvest votes in the area must therefore by definition be a “splitist” and thus the reason I am baffled why Mutua is singling out Raila as somehow the only one doing this, which he by implication is arguing, is an aspect of “divide and rule” strategy when it obviously is not by his own analysis.

Mutua argues that Raila wants to “split” the Kalenjin “along the Ruto-Moi rift” and that Raila “believes Mr Moi will work with him to “kill” Mr Ruto’s stranglehold over the Kalenjin.”

This is an argument that is obviously wrong based on my own analysis above.

The Kalenjin are either going to vote as a block or they are not.

As I have been arguing forever, the Kikuyus and Kalenjin must lead in ending tribalism in Kenya and obviously, one way of doing so, is ending this habit of voting as a block by both of these communities, as well as the rest plagued with the disease.

By ending voting as a block, the Kalenjin and all communities for that matter must look for other reasons to vote for a presidential candidate other than that their own or closely related is running.

Which means all communities must by this measure have split votes and it doesn’t matter one bit for me, the basis for that splitting of votes.

If the Kalenjin split their votes along the Moi-Ruto axis, which really does not exist, given one is a mere boy, another a seasoned old giant, loath him or not, then so be it.

I’d rather have that than the entire community voting for Ruto just because they can’t bring themselves to vote for someone else.

Professor poses the question whether “the Kalenjin be put asunder along this divide (Moi-Ruto) and postulates that the “chances are only good if Mr Ruto is bound for trial at The Hague.”

Raila cannot bank on Ruto being bound for trial at the Hague or use that as a basis for his strategy to regain lost ground in the Rift Valley; rather, he has and must continue to engage in those endeavors as if the Hague does not exist.

Mutua argues that “it will be easier to lure away Mr Ruto’s supporters if he’s “sequestered” at The Hague. Mr Moi can then — with Mr Odinga’s charisma — recapture his place as the Kalenjin kingpin.”

This is too simplistic an approach I am surprised Mutua is even suggesting it.

Again, Raila has and must continue to regain lost ground in the Rift Valley as though the ICC does not exist.

This is, obviously, an analytic proposition that has nothing to do with the merits of the ICC case against Ruto, just in case someone mistakes my stating so.

Professor argues that, in the case Ruto is “sequestered,” then Raila has an opening in RV “because there is no other Kalenjin who can take Mr Ruto’s place,” adding that therefore the Kalenjin “might figure that Mr Odinga — who they christened arap Mibei when they were solidly in ODM — is better than the devil they don’t know.”

Mutua is on a very wrong track on this one and is going even further, he should stop and come back to where Raila is and must continue to be, and that is, to continue in his efforts to regain lost ground in RV as though ICC does not exist.

Indeed, even though Ocampo has charged Ruto for essentially hijacking ODM’s grievance with Kibaki based on the belief he stole the presidency from Raila, analytically, Ruto’s position is no different from that of the government and its part of the Ocampo Six, even though Ocampo appears to have more in the form of evidence against the latter 3 but is unlikely to overcome evidentiary and legal hurdles to secure a victory at trial as against the former 3, a case can be made about Ruto and ODM, “we are on your side.” Footing his legal fees, for example, is one way of expressing that sentiment.

This is why banking on confirmation of charges against Ruto as a net-advantage for Raila does not make sense to me.

Mutua then argues that this “plot” will turn out to be a fool’s errand if Mr Ruto beats the confirmation charges at The Hague.

The “plot” Mutua is referring to, is Kalenjins voting for Raila than “the devil they don’t know,” if charges against Ruto are confirmed.

Needless to say, this is not a “plot,” unless the professor is ascribing a new meaning to this word.

Assuming the professor means “strategy” or something less sinister, I have already noted above whether the ICC charges against Ruto are confirmed or not, Raila must continue doing what he is doing to regain lost ground in the Rift Valley and so far, so good, given recent developments there showing progress.

The person who really should be plotting now, is Ruto, on how he gets back to Raila’s fold, especially if things go in the direction they are likely to after confirmation of the ICC charges against him.

Professor argues another reason why Raila should reach out to Moi is “it would be foolhardy for Mr Odinga to sit by idly and concede one of the largest troves of votes. He wants to be the president of all Kenyans.”

This goes without saying, of course, and I totally agree.

Mutua then posits that “you can bet that Mr Odinga knows that Vice-President Kalonzo Musyoka wants Mr Moi and the Kalenjin in his column,” adding that “that’s why Mr Odinga has snatched Mr Moi to deny Mr Musyoka a crucial ally.”

There are several things analytically wrong with this assertion from the professor as well as his conclusion that “you can bet that the man from Tseikuru — Mr Moi’s political pupil — will fight hard to get “daddy” back. My take is that Mr Moi will go with the winner,” but let me not get into each other than to say, unlike his opponents, Raila’s strategy from what we can tell, is based on building relationships, not destroying them. Kalonzo, Ruto and others specialize on the latter but not the former so, if I were Raila, I would not be terribly concerned about them and the little games and shenanigans they are playing alongside a moving train headed to victory down the road.

Another reason Mutua offers for why it’s wise for Raila to work with Moi, is “the  Kalenjin elite” are not used to being out of power as evidenced in their “troubled” behavior during President Mwai Kibaki’s reign.

Mutua explains that this is why the Kalenjins supported Mr Odinga and ODM in 2007, namely, because they believed that “Mr Kibaki’s regime had victimised [sic] them, and that Mr Odinga would bring them out of the political cold.”

According to Mutua, “Mr Ruto turned the Kalenjin against Mr Odinga” but the Kalenjin “may calculate that Mr Odinga could emerge the winner in 2012.”

Mutua concludes that therefore “this could be their chance to partner with Mr Odinga in the inner sanctum of power,” which the professor adds is “a likely scenario if Mr Ruto and Deputy Prime Minister Uhuru Kenyatta are at The Hague.”

I agree in some of the professors conclusions, but disagree with some of his premises.

For one, and as I have argued above, the Hague is and cannot be a major consideration in Raila’s effort to regain lost ground in the Rift Valley but those who have had no reason to abandon Raila since 2007, joined by those who are now or will be convinced that Raila is the likely president, come 2012, will likely combine to give Raila sufficient support in RV and therefore help propel him into the presidency, independent and regardless of what happens at the Hague.

I therefore disagree with Mutua that this scenario (of increased support for Raila in RV) is only likely, if Ruto and UK are at the Hague.

I also disagree with the Professor’s argument that the “Kalenjin elite” are not used to being out of power, only because it’s somewhat misleading.

No community, social group, or party is ever used to being out of power.

Everyone wants to be in power and this is the problem of democracies.

Everyone cannot be in power at the same time.

Each of the major tribes in Kenya, has fielded a presidential candidate.

Why? Because each community wants one of their own to be president.

But there can only be one president at a time and therefore, only one community at a time and more so the reason we must have a president who cares and caters to all communities, equally.

Raila is presenting himself as such a candidate and is, in fact alone at the top as one such candidate.

In his second part of his analysis, Mutua raises a number of reasons why Raila should not “woo” Moi.

The first reason he offers, is that “Mr Moi is passé. He’s not the future.”

Moi may not be the future, but he is certainly the past and present.

When the professor asks the rhetorical question, “why, then, would Mr Odinga, a man who wears the mantle of reformer, reach back to resuscitate Kenya’s last dictator?” the answer I can offer him is, Raila wants Moi to help in ending tribalism.

There are many other answers I can give, but let Raila himself provide those in the course of his campaign and let the people, especially those from the Rift decide whether those are good enough reasons to reward him with a vote, in addition to whatever additional support he gets from reaching out to Moi, to begin with.

When Mutua rhetorically poses, “Should reformers worry that an Odinga administration will be more status quo, and less reformist?” the answer is, “no” based on reasons the very reformers know.

When Mutua rhetorically poses, “shuld we worry that Mr Odinga will be captured by ancient regime elements?” the answer is , “no” and when Mutua wonders, “If so, should reformers leave his side and launch their bid for the State House?” the answer, again, is “no” because those with Raila remain with him and will continue to be with him, because they understand precisely what he is doing, those who may have left him, are having second thoughts and returning and who already left him in the guise of “disagreeing” with him on his reform agenda, have done so for less than honest but opportunistic reasons unrelated to reform and therefore don’t count.

When the good professor poses the question, “If we want to transform Kenya — and break up tribal voting patterns — how can we do so if folks like Mr Odinga strategise along tribal lines?”

The good professor has this upside down; it is not Raila who is strategizing along tribal lines, rather, it is his opponents to the man and woman.

As noted above, Raila has a 47-County campaign strategy, meaning, he’ll court votes in every county of the Republic therefore his is not a strategy “along tribal lines,” not at all.

Finally, when professor asks, “Shouldn’t Mr Odinga reject the tribal calculus and turn the 2012 elections into a contest of issues?” I am sure the answer he would give as he has in as many times he has spoken on this, is yes, he would prefer candidates focus on discussion of national issues but that does not necessarily mean that he, as a reformer, must agree with Moi on any of them.

Agreeing on one, namely, helping in ending tribalism would be good enough.

And that also, is good enough reason Raila should continue with his rapprochement with Moi and thus why Professor Mutua is wrong in his view to the contrary.

FN1: Note the good professor did not give us a single reason why he is “revolted” by the mere thought of Raila reconciling with Moi and certainly all the reasons he did here could not possibly rise to that level of revolt

FN2 Note also by declaring the battle for RV is between who follows Moi or who follows Ruto, Mutua is saying Prof. Ole Kiyiapi or those not firmly behind or associated with either are irrelevant.

 
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Posted by on October 15, 2011 in Politics

 

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An Open Letter to H.E. Retd. President Daniel Toroitich arap Moi, C.G.H.

An Open Letter To H.E. Retd. President Daniel Toroitich Arap Moi, C.G.H.

Your Excellency:

I am absolutely sure you do not remember this, but you and I have had occasion to meet twice in our life-time, albeit mine being a fraction of yours.

The first time was in June 1982 when I was in High School.

I was walking along State House Road, having alighted from a bus at Uhuru Highway and headed to my brother’s residence nearby where I was spending the holidays that year.

As your limo cruised by me, and I squeezed myself tight to the edge of the road to avoid being run-over by your motorcade, your limo slowed down, you rolled down the window and waved at me and I confusedly waved back in disbelief that you took the time to roll down the window, smile and wave at me.

It didn’t matter how many times you had done this, namely, slowing down your limo to wave at a lone roadside walker on that road or elsewhere but, for a high school chap that only saw you on TV or read about you in the papers, having such a close encounter was thrilling enough.

My brother I was visiting and staying with that summer worked in your administration as a senior Foreign Service official and is now retired.

The next time Your Excellency and I had occasion to meet was in September 2000, in New York City, where you had come to attend the UN Millennium Summit.

Before your coming to New York, one of your handlers or one of their friends (not sure which) contacted me and asked if I could come to New York to attend a meeting of Kenyans to be addressed by you.

I initially declined the invitation for a number of reasons, including scheduling conflicts but agreed to attend the meeting after the individual insisted that I do.

On arrival in New York, I was told that the organizers of the meeting had preselected a handful of individuals, including myself to ask Your Excellency questions during the Q&A session at the meeting for Kenyans.

I told the organizers I could only agree to be used as such only if I decided what questions to ask and not to be spoon-fed what to ask but they insisted on pre-approving the question so I relented and after going through some questions, it was agreed that I ask a question about the large amount of money Kenyans in the Diaspora were remitting home and what Your Excellency intended to do to minimize corruption so that some of these money can be invested in ways that were otherwise impossible due to corruption.

Prior to the meeting getting started, those who were to speak or ask questions at the meeting were ushered to meet you in your hotel suite.

The room was so crowded with people, I could barely reach over for a handshake and when I attempted to say something, I quickly gave up because of the many ears tuned in and up-close to hear even a whisper.

It was clear your handlers did not want us to say anything they did not approve, which is always baffling: Shouldn’t our leader be required to hear the good and the bad about anything affecting our country? What are these handlers always afraid of; that our leader would be told the truth? Isn’t truth better than living in denial?

I know what I had started saying to Your Excellency was asking you whether you had seen a news piece about you in that morning’s New York Times newspaper but I couldn’t even finish asking you that question, due to the over-eager ears leaning over and near shoving atmosphere in the crowded suit so I just abandoned the idea of trying to engage you in any meaningful chat, which was never to be, given that environment.

Anyway, at the end of that brief encounter, we headed to the meeting venue, where I asked the pre-approved question and as soon as I finished posing the question, we all saw you saying something almost frantically to some minister sitting next to you (can’t remember the name) but whatever you told him, which you indicated you had asked him to look into it, in your response, nothing ever come of my question.

Other than these encounters, and perhaps in spite of the first one, I was a very strong supporter of Your Excellency in the early years of your administration and have letters of commendation to that effect from our then Ambassador to the US.

It is with this background in mind that I write to you now more than 10 years since that last meeting in New York.

I am not writing to offer a comment about you or your presidency in particular, other than to say what I have said above and will say below in order to provide context for a request I am about to ask of Your Excellency.

I am writing to you in particular, to urge Your Excellency to support the presidential aspirations of the Rt. Hon. Raila Amolo Odinga, who obviously needs no introduction to you.

I have noted this letter is not really about Your Excellency’s presidency, per se, but, to put my request in perspective, however, I must note three historical facts of relevance:

First, Raila, as he is popularly known, or just Awambo, spent a good part of his life in detention at your behest, where he was not spared the humiliation, pain and torture reserved for detainees like him.

Second, his life having surprisingly been spared, and after his release and unsuccessful presidential run in 1997, Raila surprised many and annoyed some, by deciding to join your administration as a cabinet minister.

Third, when you attempted to install the then young and inexperienced Uhuru Kenyatta as your successor, Raila became instrumental in making sure you did not succeed, which you did not and instead a candidate Raila backed and campaigned for, Mwai Kibaki, was elected as president largely due to Raila’s endorsement of him with his declaration “Kibaki Tosha,” followed by euphoria across the country with the election of a new president to succeed you.

One can therefore say, yours and Raila’s has been a peculiar personal and political relationship, to say the least,  and certainly, one can assume setting aside the 1990s, you cannot be happy with Raila and his successful efforts to defeat your Uhuru Project, let alone in his successful efforts along with President Kibaki to repel your opposition to the passage of the new Constitution.

However, everything considered, you still owe Raila and the nation, one, Your Excellency.

Some would say you owe Raila a public apology for having him detained all those years and for whatever else happened to him then.

Given your age, your stature and our history, however, I highly doubt this is even an appropriate expectation Your Excellency.

Your Excellency, can,  however, do something history will favorably record and that is, even in spite of all what has happened in the past between you and Raila, Your Excellency, you can bring everything full circle by supporting Raila for president.

I and others believe and have stated elsewhere, including in communication to President Kibaki himself that the Kikuyus and Kalenjins must lead the nation in ending  tribalism and negative ethnicity in Kenya by not voting as a bloc, in the case of the Kalenjin and by voting for someone other than “their own” and not voting as bloc, too, in the case of Kikuyus.

Your Exellency, the ugly animal of tribalism will be slain with no resurrection possible, were this to happen in 2012.

Unfortunately, Your Exellency, your former protégé, the Hon. William Ruto, is going around the Rift Valley, spreading lies about how bad Raila is for the region and that Kalenjins should not vote for him.

This is not only a malicious campaign, if successful, it would only serve to entrench tribalism, which we all must reject.

It would certainly do nothing to advance the interests of the Kelenjin people, Your Excellency, and more so the reason you should thwart these efforts.

You can thwart Ruto’s efforts by preaching the message of peace and unity for the country via the election of Raila.

There are four ways Your Exellency can offer your support for Raila:

First, as suggested above, you can simply do what you can to thwart Rutos tribalistic antics in the Rift Valley.

Second, you can actively campaign for the election of Raila.

Third, you can simply do your own version of “Raila Tosha” either by express and direct endorsement of Raila or some form of endorsement.

Fourth, if you can’t bring yourself to do any of the above, Your Excellency, then you should at least quietly offer your support for Raila or at least not publicly or privately seek to “block” Raila as the likes of Ruto have sworn to do as their sole mission in line in this electoral political circle.

Mzee, you do any of these, you can be assured Kenyans will ultimately be thankful and the gesture of good will for this purpose alone will go a long way in painting your legacy more favorably than otherwise would be the case and the simple act alone will certainly cast in a more positive light, the history as it relates to you, Raila and other political detainees.

Of course, I can only urge you do so.

The ultimate decision is yours.

But I am confident the president I saw slow down, roll down the window and wave with a smile at this young chap walking along State House Road more than 29 years ago, surely would have the compassion and enough temerity to honor the request.

It is my prayer that you do so and that whatever decision you reach, if you do, it is the right decision for the good of the country for I am sure you’ll agree our country should and must come first.

Sincerely,

/s

Samuel N. Omwenga, Esq.

 
7 Comments

Posted by on August 15, 2011 in Politics

 

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My Response To A Kalenjin Still In Denial About the Truth Regarding Raila and Rift Valley Politics

The following is my comprehensive response to a Kalenjin netter who raises the same old false claims about Raila and Rift Valley, and specifically, that Raila has no chance in getting votes in the Rift Valley, when ever indication is, Raila will do just fine and is making every effort, as he should, to make sure this is, indeed, the case in the end.

My response:

Before I respond to your harangue below, or even before you read mine, you should first go to my blog and read what I have written about Ruto. I know what I have written about him is a lot, so just read Who Is William Ruto Part V and you’ll see that I have done a thorough legal analysis of the case against him, Kosgey and Sang, and concluded all 3 men will not be convicted either at the Hague or in Kenya for the legal reasons I state in the blog.

You will notice that I have provided objective, legal reasons, not the the emotional banter you offer below, why Ruto should not be charged as he is, let alone tried or convicted.

You say, “Folks, I am forced to respond to the current discussion in the sense that there seems to be total idiots in this forum who spout their hatred for Mr. William Rutto.

If you have perused my blog as I suggested, you have therefore readily noted that I am the opposite of those “idiots” who “spout their hatred for Mr. William Ruto.”

In fact, not uncharacteristic of me, I have shown and continue to show nothing but love and kindness for Ruto not because I have to, but because I have no reason not to.

You’ll notice in my blogs about him that I have analyzed and concluded he is a selfish schemer but so are many a politician.

I recently hinted here and elsewhere that I am about to post my last blog about him, and last plea to him to wake up and make amends with Raila, thereafter I’ll wash my hands of him and wait to tell him, I told you so, if he still remains stone deaf to my counsel.

BTW, I have several questions for you: Does someone have to be an idiot in order to “spout their hatred for Mr. William Ruto?”

Or put it differently, is there a correlation between hate and intellect?

Is an idiot more prone to hate for no reason than a genius?

Conversely, is a genius more prone to love than hate for any reason?

I am not a psychologist but I know enough to tell you hate is driven by neither stupidity nor intelligence but by emotion, so labeling people as idiots, just because they express hate, if they do, is simply misplaced and unnecessary verbiage; just stick to telling us what it is they have said that is hateful of Ruto.

In other words, labeling people as idiots does not make them less or more haters and neither does it make them good or bad haters, assuming, as one must, that you mean being an “idiot” hater is worse than an intelligent hater.

Makes no sense to me and thus my effort to point out to you, in debate or any other discourse for that matter, avoid labeling people names; just make your case and let your reader or listener come to conclusions as to who is an idiot or whatever you are trying to describe, you, or those you describe as such: the determining factor is the content of your debate or discourse.

You say, “I bet some of these retards doesn’t even know the man other than what the so called Kenyan National Commission on Human Rights (read Omar Hassan) espouses!!!

Someone can say you are a retard by your incorrect use of English grammar in your sentence calling others retards; who is right? My point is the same, just avoid calling people names as it neither makes nor advances whatever point you are trying to make and, even more importantly, they, too, can call you the same thing so where does that leave the discourse?

Nowhere other than downward spiraling.

You say, “Despite  being a Kalenjin, I haven’t necessarily been a vocal supporter of Mr. Rutto. I have nothing against the man. My main beef ( which a lot of my tribesmen vilified me for), was the fact that he supported Mr. Raila Odinga in 2007. I had vigorously told the said folks that Raila was not a man to be TRUSTED.”

Question for you: Who did you tell these “folks” was to be trusted in 2007 in lieu of Raila?

I can ask you to tell us what reasons you told these “folks” why Raila could not be trusted in 2007 but that would be unhelpful.

You say, “All of them now tell me that I was right all along in my analysis.”

Well, congratulations on this staggering feat.

You say, “And to reiterate again, I have nothing against Mr.Raila.My opinion has always been that he is not cut to be the President of Kenya.

In the new Kenya, leaders must be elected, based not on opinion and innuendo, which can easily be manipulated, but based on provable and demonstrable facts and information that establish one’s qualification to be elected president.

Just as your claim that you advised your fellow Kalenjins that Raila was not to be trusted in 2007, your assertion that you have always held an opinion that Raila is “not cut” to be president of Kenya is equally devoid of any substance upon which either can can be evaluated and therefore both must be dismissed as nothing but hyperbole.

You say, “Who knows, may be I am just biased since he one tried to overthrow a legitimately elected government of the Republic of Kenya.”

I, too, am with you on this bias. I have actually never understood to this day why people bother to liberate their fellow country men and women from “legitimately elected” but oppressive governments. My view is, these governments should and ought to be allowed to continue oppressing their people with impunity and if people have an issue with that, they should wait until the next elections and vote these oppressive governments out. If these oppressive governments have put in place mechanisms to ensure that they “legitimately” remain in power, then this is a fact we all must learn to live with rather than trying other means to remove them from from power so I agree with you, Raila’s admitted involvement in efforts to remove the oppressive government of Moi from power is nothing he should be proud of and nobody should ever give him any credit for his gallant and sacrificial efforts to liberate the people of Kenya for which he ended up paying dearly.

You say, “And it has nothing to do with a Kalenjin being the president then.”

I am with you here, too; why should it make a difference which tribal leader is oppressing his people. The key thing is, if it is a “legitimately” elected government, it should ought to be allowed to oppress its people at will and without any recourse for those who feel compelled to do something about it.

You say, “Call me naive if you want, I just don’t believe and TRUST those folks who want power EVEN TRHOUGH THE BARREL OF A GUN.

Again, I could not agree with you more; people like Nelson Mandela should never, ever be trusted and I don’t even understand why Mandela was ever elected president of South Africa, having previously resorted to armed struggle to liberate black and colored South Africans. Rather than resorting to armed struggle, the best thing Mandela and ANC could have done in fighting apartheid and the oppressive regime of South Africa should have been simply look the other way, while their people were being oppressed.
Ditto for Raila; rather than resorting to other means to remove the oppressive Moi from power, the best thing he should have done is to simply look the other way, while Kenyans continued to be oppressed.

Never mind that Raila’s efforts and sacrifices and those of others led to the Second Liberation and now the Third Liberation with the promulgation of the new constitution. As you say, these people cannot be trusted for putting their lives on the line for the sake of liberating the people of Kenya.

You say, “I know Raila’s die-hards are hyperventilating at this juncture.”

This is one die-hard Railaist who’ll never hyperventilate over anything he reads here or anywhere else for that matter.

You say, “Just calm down and read on!

Again, no “hyperventilation” here, but I am reading on.

You say, “I have nothing against Tinga alias Arap Mibei. He just happens to be a radical. Well, nothing wrong being a radical.

I assume you have already identified your own contradiction, if not hypocrisy in this assertion, viz what you have said above?

Actually, I am one on some level since my undergrad major is political science.”

Pursuing an undergraduate degree in political science makes you a radical? What am I missing here?

You say, “But being a radical and being a Statesman are two different things.

Not necessarily, but what’s your point?

You say, “Raila has never has the fortitude to be one[Statesman].

Raila is, in fact, a statesman and has been for a very long time; at least since 2008 when he took the high road and agreed to share power with Kibaki, who he had defeated at the polls.

You say, “Raila is no Nelson Mandela or Dr. M L King Jr.

Raila has never said he is a Nelson Mandela nor has he ever claimed he is a Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.

However, if you must go there, let me state the obvious that Raila has a lot in common with the two great men than any presidential candidate in Kenya today and for a long time to come.

To illustrate, close your eyes and think pick any of the candidates other than Raila and try to compare any with these great men; see anything in common with them?

Nothing.

Now do the same thing with Raila; see anything in common?

If you don’t see at least 5, you need to hit those political science books a little harder.

You say, “[Raila] never knew and still doesn’t know how to be a REAL LEADER!

You are so acerbically alone in this view, there is no need to comment on it any further.

You say, “Like I was telling my folks, Raila came to “bite the hand that fed him“.

I assume you are here trying to say something about Kale’s voting for Raila only to have him “bite” them?

This is such a tired lie first put forth by Ruto and now you and others.

Raila never has and never will do anything to “bite” anyone’s hand that feeds him; his enemies and distractors relish on telling lies to the contrary but in the end, they shall all come to pass with no effect.

You say, “And folks, we are entitled to our own opinions, but what we are not entitled to, is our own sets of facts! Never!

Of course; unless it serves our own purposes and propaganda.

You say, “The truth of the matter is that Raila owes the position of PM to the electorate of Rift Valley(read kalenjins). Thats a fact that Railalets don’t even want to fathom or acknowledge! Too bad coz you can’t argue with facts.

Please heed to your own counsel, with my caveat: you are entitled to your own opinion but not your own set of facts.

You have here manufactured your own set of “facts” and now wish that I or anyone argue with them?

No way.

You say, “Raila has lost the Kalenjin vote

No; he has not. He may have lost some votes of the likes of you and a few others Ruto has managed to misinform and mislead but by every indication is, Raila will harvest a good chunk of votes in the Rift Valley, if not sweep it altogether.

You say, “As to why Mr. Raila has lost the Kalenjin vote and why, is a story for another day.

Very clever. You have nothing to say about something, better not say anything at all.

You cannot articulate a single reason why Raila has “lost” the Kalenjin vote other than Ruto’s lies and distortions.

Note one.

You say, “But it is suffice to say that Tinga doesn’t have any clear path to State House other than Nyanza proper and his Langata domicile.”

You are so acerbically alone in this view, there is no need to comment on it any further.

You say, “Anyone wishing to win the presidency has to go through Kalenjin land.

You missed the memo.

The message we are preaching now is ending tribalism as a determinative factor in presidential elections.

With Raila’s win in 2012, the big, fat, ugly animal of tribalism would be slain and never to be heard of again.

So, get with the program and start preaching the same message.

No one has to go through Kalenjin land, or Kikuyu land, or Kisii land, or whatever people’s land to win the presidency; they just need to be elected on the strength of their qualifications and their vision for the country.

This is what Raila is running on and, as I have repeatedly stated, he wins, the whole country wins, he loses, tribalism prevails much to the jubilation of the likes of you, which shall be sad, indeed, for the country.

You say, “Those are the realities of politics in Kenya as of today. Anyone saying different is just bwoggable or has been drinking a lot of kool-aid!

I am saying what you say is not the reality of politics in Kenya as of today and no, I am not “bwoggable” and neither have I been drinking any kool-aid.

In fact, I am sipping fine Kenyan tea, as I am penning this response to you.

You say, “Now the Kalenjin mood has shifted again and things have become elephant in Tingas ODM. Tinga has lost control and things in ODM are nolonger at ease!!!

I suggest you read my two blogs in which I have thoroughly analyzed the Rift Valley “issue” and concluded Raila will do just fine there and these are, My Response to Those In Denial About Raila’s Successful Moves In RV, and The News About Rift Valley ODM MPs Getting Set To Regain Ground Is Good News for the Country.

Everything you have said about Ruto is emotional blather I need not respond to.

As I suggested above, you should have read my blog on what I have said about PEV, Ruto and ICC, which is what you are trying to say in your emotional, and sometimes angry blather but all you need to say, I have already said in my blog, which I suggest you read, if you have not already for what types of arguments you should be making instead of what you have here.

BTW, I know this is so difficult for the likes of you, but can you try to make your arguments without dragging Raila into every argument you try to make, even where there is clearly no connection?

The last time I checked, there were only six suspects charged with PEV.

Yet, you have spent breathless moments here in futile efforts to make Raila the seventh suspect.

I can tell you are good at making up facts as in when you claim that Kalenjin’s made Raila PM, but no amount of creativity in the manufacture of facts can lead to you or anyone creating any, even for purposes of propaganda, that could even remotely link the Right Hon. Prime Minister Raila Amolo Odinga to PEV.

You can’t do that and neither can anyone else among all of you who refuse to accept facts and reality when it comes to RAO.

You say, “But my bet is on Kalonzo Musyoka as the man to beat next year.”

Please go to my blog A Conversation With Kalonzo Musyoka for my take on the man.

I have elsewhere said, if Kalonzo were to somehow be elected president, I would have to move to a neighboring country and live there until I fully recover from the shock.

Peace, Love and Unity

Samuel N. Omwenga, Esq.

[Unedited]

 
2 Comments

Posted by on July 27, 2011 in Politics

 

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