The only way to prevent PEV and have ethnic harmony in Kenya is to Deal with the “small” issue of electing the president!

Kenyans are ONE, 4 out of every 5 years: They school together, they engage in business,interact at their work places, drink together- heck they even intermarry!

In the course of the four years, we engage in many PEACEFUL  by-elections resulting either from successful petitions against elected officials or from their demise. This should serve as proof enough that elections, per se, aren’t the cause of election violence (pre or post)

The fifth year is exclusively  set aside for every kenyan to go back to their tribal cocoons, and help one of their kinsman/woman to become the president. And if a tribe doesn’t have the requisite numbers to make it to the presidency, the members are “herded” into coalitions that’d make sure that the Kikuyu doesn’t get the presidency (again!). The end result of all this is resentment towards the winning candidate’s tribe,the flawed perception being that “now the whole of that tribe will benefit at the expense of all the others”. This resentment is a powder keg that require just a few comments like “mass action” from some leaders to ignite it into a full blown explosion as was witnessed in the ’07/’08 PEV.

The only way to prevent this resentment from percolating into our social fabric is to eliminate the direct thread that ties an individual, and by extension the tribe, to the determination of the occupant of the house on the hill.

The model I have in mind that would cut this direct link, is the election of the speaker of the national assembly. The speaker of the national assembly (quite a powerful position) is elected by MPs-elect without asking for the electorates’ help. This ensures that the issue of tribe doesn’t feature so prominently as there’s no direct link between the election of the speaker and Wanjiku the voter. I hasten to add here that this whole setup it by default rather than design. The other working model would be China’s National People’s Congress (equivalent of a Parliament) where it elects the president as well as members of the Politburo. This is representative democracy. You elect local leaders to represent your issues at the national level. Let’s stop making the presidency a local issue!

My proposal for severing this direct link between Wanjiku and the presidency is as follows:

1. The voters elect their local officials (county representatives, MPs, senators, women representatives and Governors).

2.The legislators (senators and  MPs) join together and elect the president and his/her running mate from amongst themselves, just the same way they elect the  speaker of the national assembly.

In any case, since the legislators  have the power to fire( read:impeach)  the president, why can’t we give them the power to hire him/her?

The president is supposed to be the president of the whole country. This is the best way to ensure that this theory is in tandem with the practice.     
I recognize the fact that this would require an amendment to the constitution, and as such will only be applicable after the life of the 11th Parliament. I will push for this particular amendment, and I am counting on your support when the time come.




Tags: , , , ,

One Response to “The only way to prevent PEV and have ethnic harmony in Kenya is to Deal with the “small” issue of electing the president!”

  1. luthercrop Says:

    i second this ..problem is we only two Kenyans out of the 40m who think this can work

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: