Archive for February, 2012

Replicate 2002 elections & we won’t need #kenya28feb placebos!

February 27, 2012

For those of us with short memories,or worse,selective amnesia, I’m referring to a point in time when I was really really proud to be a Kenyan!

The campaigns were fun: no tribal tags, one took money from rich (read: corrupt politicians) and voted for his/her leader of choice, nobody got threats from neighbors because they considered them  “outsiders”. There was no PEV  I recall that “Christmas election” with nostalgia!

One factor which many Kenyans refuse to credit with this peaceful and blissful ’02 elections is that THE TWO MAIN CANDIDATES WERE FROM A SINGLE TRIBE! Kenyans were, therefore, forced to rise above “tribe”  as a qualification for the presidency. We were able to argue on party policies, academic qualifications, age, experience etc of the candidates.

After the elections were announced there was actually a spirited effort by Kenyans to “straighten things out” without “tunaomba  serikali iingilie Kati” crap. A case in point was the people actually arresting bribe taking policemen!

If we could replicate this ’02 election scenario Kenyans can rise above tribal politics and embark on making Kenya an African tiger by 2030.

I’m proposing a revolving presidency as the way forward. Each tribe gets a shot at having one of their own as the president without interfering with the day to day kenyans’ activities of eking out a living, like it happened during ’07/’08 PEV. Unless of course there’s a tribe which doesn’t have the capacity to produce leaders…

I understand this is not exactly  the “democracy” you read in all them big books, probably written by suckers with half your intelligence, but it’s the only way forward for Kenya to rise above tribe and prevent PEV.

Imagine a situation where we have Raila and Tuju in the runoff. Tuju would win hands down!   
           

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Me thinks the “#nyeri women” stereotyping %&$# is political! @Martha_w_karua

February 26, 2012

As they say, if a dog bites you it’s not news, but if you bite a dog, then, that’s news! Women have been battered in Kenya, and indeed all over the world  for centuries and it’s taken as “normal”. A few men are battered in nyeri and it trends, not only on social  media, but also on mainstream media in kenya.

I’m not condoning Domestic violence, irrespective of the perpetrators and victims, but the hype created over the whole “nyeri women” saga smacks of a hidden agenda.

This stereotype on how “nyeri women” sit on their husbands has been there for as long as “Wangu wa makeri” myth. The myth is that long long ago in the Kikuyu culture women used to rule, and that they were cruel towards men. The myth goes on to single out a particularly cruel leader(queen) who to literally sat on men’s backs! Her name was wangu wa makeri.

This myth became so popular within Kenya during the first term of president kibaki when his wife was deemed “too aggressive” through her decision to be actively involved in the issues of the day instead of being a mere flower in kibaki’s presidency. This “wangu wa makeri” was hyped up so much to the extent that it was common practice for Kenyans to routinely state that they are ruled by a woman, yet they elected her husband!

The current “nyeri women” stereotype is rearing it’s ugly head now when a constitutional  amendment  to settle the issue of women inclusion in politics is before Parliament. It is also interesting times considering that there is a strong woman, in the name of one Martha Karua,  contesting for the presidency.

My take on this “nyeri  women” hype is that it’s purposely being pushed by some people  to poison men’s minds against women in leadership.

Thanks to the prevailing idea that leader means man, women and men in Kenya voted for men who now populate the Parliament in which the amendments to accommodate women in politics will be done. Many of those men will be hard pressed to do something in favour of women.

Given that women politicians are actually voted in by men (women vote for men), Martha Karua will have her core constituency (men) fleeing in droves. Being a kerinyaga, considered by many part of the Kikuyu  (nyeri women are Kikuyu) complicates her presidential quest in more ways than ten.
          
Only Kikuyu tribe want another Kikuyu presidency after Kibaki. The rest of the Kenyan tribes feel that the Kikuyu has monopolized the presidency for so long, and to quote a certain Havard graduate, one Kiraitu, they would “vote in a dog” from any other tribe other than a kikuyu.

As a Kikuyu myself, I believe the Kikuyu would thrive better without the yoke of the presidency on our necks. I’ll say this ad infinitum: the shortcut to preventing another bout of post election violence in Kenya, and it’s attendant social resentment, is for the Kikuyu to stop this obsessive quest for the presidency for at least one term, and support a person  from another tribe for the presidency.

The counter-arguments are that the Kikuyu have the Democrat rights to run for the presidency and that we deserve to rule this country by virtue of the role the Kikuyu played in the emancipation of the country from colonialism.

In light of the social implications of a Kikuyu presidency to the Kikuyu as a tribe, these arguments are like sieves: they don’t hold much water.

Unless women in Kenya somehow change and decide to vote for women, The odds are so staked against Martha Karua that she doesn’t have a snowball’s chance in hell of making it to the presidency!          
 

My take on singing of the national anthem on #kenya28feb.

February 25, 2012

For starters, the national anthem is sang in all schools in Kenya (high-school, primary, public / private) twice a week & it’s sang at the start of every  other official function.

Don’t even get me started on how we got forced to stand at attention to sing the damned song + the loyalty pledge during Moi’s…

If singing the national anthem had the power of uniting Kenyans we’d be fused by now!

Secondly I have an issue with Kenyans buying crap from NGOs about shouting & carrying placards for five minutes and thinking that they’ve  changed the world; confusing activity with achievement!

I’m convinced that all those who’ll sing the national anthem on Feb 28th have no idea what caused the 07/08 PEV, or at worst, want a rerun of the PEV by lulling Kenyans into a false belief of “problem solved”!

Go sing the “e mungu nguvu yetu…” and lets see how the country will change  on the 29th!    

Why it’s now non-sensical 4 a #Kenyan to vote for a person from his/her tribe

February 13, 2012

In the old constitutional dispensation, the presidency in Kenya was so powerful that it literally held the power of life and death of its citizens (in case of doubt, ask the late  Robert  Ouko or JM Kariuki).

The president had the power to determine the allocation and distribution of the country’s resources. He/she could decide to develop some areas and neglect others. Appointments to plum jobs in the country invariably went to the president’s and his buddies’ relatives and tribe, and there was nothing  Kenyans could do about it!

This created the perception that if a person has to succeed in life, the president has to be a person from his/her tribe.

Under the new constitution,however, all those presidential powers have been removed and scattered or distributed to other institutions, mainly Parliament and the judiciary.

Next time you vote for a person from your tribe hoping that the gravy train will head your way,shock on you! The president will need permission from Parliament to even see you, and if the meeting is approved, a judge will be found  to put an injunction to that meeting!

The upshot: Go right ahead and vote for your tribesman/ woman and lets see him/ her helping you and your tribe…                   

To all women

February 10, 2012

image

If the answer is yes,vote for women

Presidency in the Kenyan constitution: Of silver linings and dark clouds

February 5, 2012

One thing that the new Kenyan constitution managed to do was literally kill the presidency. According to the good books killing is bad, but this is one of those exceptions to the rule.

By killing the presidency, I mean the COE took all the powers of the presidency and scattered them all over the other institutions of governance.

Given that the real causes of negative ethnicity is the perceived benefits of the  presidency to a tribe, and the benefits were possible ostensibly as a result of the power of the presidency, this perception may ebb.

I’ve always maintained that the new constitution is rotten through and through. However, like all dark clouds, this is one silver lining that we, intellectual  Kenyans, can use to prevent another bout of PEV.    

The major problem is that very few people know of this and the few that do have vested interests in maintaining the perception…

I’m just hoping that Kenyans realize this before they start butchering each other, a la ’07’08 PEV, for a president who can’t even give their tribe a sufuria!