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Archive for October 6th, 2007

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Posted by African Press International on October 6, 2007


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Posted by African Press International on October 6, 2007

By Gakuu MathengePresident Kibaki, the recently dethroned king of opinion polls, takes his campaign to Nakuru the heartland of the Rift Valley with strategic stop over at Naivasha and Gilgil.

He will be embarking on the 160-km journey on a day Orange Democratic Movement will be holding a meeting it dubbed the mother of all rallies at Nairobis Uhuru Park.

The Party of National Unity rally at the Afraha Stadium comes in a week that has seen President Kibaki launch his vision, receive various delegations in Nairobi, and attend two crowd-puller events in Eldoret.

The Presidents crowded diary is a response to the slip in opinion rating, as well as a statement he intends to keep the fire burning until he, hopefully, is re-elected. On his cards are a series of appearances spread across the coming week.

PNU will usher the week of activity, though jolted by the exit of Health minister Mrs Charity Ngilu and her fierce attack on President Kibaki. The party will also be doing some housekeeping.

According to Ford-Kenya chairman, Mr Musikari Kombo, PNU manifesto and constitution were still being worked on. But the coast is not yet clear, the Presidents campaign is still too feeble to stand without his help and guidance.

While his rivals have sorted out their internal problems, Kibakis side is still widely perceived as a one man-show run from the State House. The flipside is the perception the PNU outfit is still missing in action. Also not fully in the ring yet are some of the Presidents experienced allies such as Cabinet minister Prof George Saitoti.

The PNU outfit is yet to craft and unveil its secretariat, administration, mobilisation and other organs that drive a project of the magnitude of a presidential campaign.

Much as it looks like a star-studded-resource rich-outfit from afar, PNU is still too feeble to mount a sustained campaign across the country and outside of the Government machinery.

Lack of clarity

Though Kombo said on Wednesday consultations on PNU have been going for the last nine months, insiders were yet to agree on the definition, shape and form of their party.

During a live television programme on Wednesday night, Kanu chairman Mr Uhuru Kenyatta asserted PNU was an “alliance between Kanu and PNU”. Agriculture minister Mr Kipruto arap Kirwa insisted on the same show; “all parties are distinct.”

“This is the confusion that is yet to be sorted out. When he launched the party, the President did not expressly say all parties will remain distinct and will field their own candidates, said a PNU insider.

The PNU structure is yet to be confirmed and the so-called PNU council has been expanding since Kirwa unveiled a 29-member group two weeks ago.

On Wednesday, Cabinet ministers Dr Mukhisa Kituyi, Mr Soita Shitanda (New Ford-Kenya leader), Ms Martha Karua, and Assistant ministers Mr Danson Mungatana and Mr Kalembe Ndile, were co-opted into the council.

Kituyi and Shitandas inclusion means they had been elevated to same level as Kombo in the Kibaki campaign train. It is therefore almost a foregone conclusion New-Ford-Kenya and Ford-Kenya will be leading two autonomous campaign fronts in Western Kenya.

“None has been left out. There are many structures in the PNU constitution and all will be accommodated. Each of us will find space once the structures and manifesto are completed. This will become clearer soon,” Kombo said.

Some insiders are worried uncertainty was costing the party dearly as some former Kibaki supporters are defecting to the Opposition because of the lack of clarity as to what PNU is at the grassroots.

A day after the Presidents official launch at the Nyayo National Stadium, Nairobi, last Sunday a delegation of Muslim religious and political leaders visited State House. Thereafter the President set up a special committee to address the grievances the Islamic faithful listed.

The Muslims are said to be unhappy with Internal Security minister Mr John Michukis zeal in the war against terror. They accuse Michuki of pandering to the whims of the American governments war on terror, in disregard to constitutional guarantees of citizens rights.

They denounced deportation of their clerics and private citizens. The Opposition has seized on the resentment, making loud protests and promising to protect the Muslim interests should they be elected.

Last month, the President directed the deported spiritual leader, Sheikh Mohamed Osman, be allowed back into the country from Saudi Arabia. The order followed an appeal by political leaders in Wajir.

“The Muslim agenda has been straight forward but we have not received proper hearing in high Government circles. While we appreciate the upgrading of the Thika Islamic College to a fully-fledged university, the Muslim fraternity has been greatly offended by unexplained deportations of spiritual leaders like Sheikh Osman,” says Assistant minister Mr Ali Wario.

Pleading for votes

On Tuesday, political leaders from the Kalenjin community paid Kibaki a visit to State House. They too listed some grievances the community wants the President to address.

The Rift Valley, and in particular the populous Kalenjin community, has been hostile to the Kibaki administration. They made their stand known in the 2005 referendum on the draft constitution.

Led by Cabinet ministers Kirwa and Mr John Koech, and MPs Mr Paul Sang, Mr Anthony Kimeto, and Mr Nick Salat, the leaders spelt out the reasons their people distrusted President Kibaki.

While Kibakis supporters, cite expanded democratic space, revival of the rural agriculture, improved public health services, and rural electrification, he has been unable to make amends with the key voting bloc.

The Kalenjin community found itself on the receiving end of Kibakis Government since early 2003. In an effort to reclaim forested lands and water catchment areas carved out for human settlements by the Kanu regime, the Kibaki administration embarked on a massive eviction of the people. There was no compensation for social economic disruption and damage to family and communal properties destroyed.

Being the face of his government, the Central Rift region comprising the Nandi and Kipsigis communities are yet to forgive him over the traumatic forest evictions of 2004/2005, and the torching of houses without compensation in Kipkurere, Mau Settlement, Embobut, Likia and Mt Elgon areas.

Security forces pushing people out of the Mau catchment pulled down 18 primary schools, seven churches. They made 6,000 children leave school. The then Minister for Lands, Mr Amos Kimunya, issued a statement declaring the title deeds for the “irregularly acquired” lands were “worthless pieces of paper”.

This was worsened by the sacking of senior civil servants from the community. Besides reinstating some sacked civil servants and hiring others, the President is now going flat out, pleading with the Kalenjin to ignore Kimunyas statements.

He told the delegation that visited him on Tuesday his Government still upheld the sanctity of titled deeds and assured them not to fear for their land.

His campaign is anchored onto two-pronged strategies: Lining up Agriculture minister Kirwa as one of the front runners, and engaging the leaders through emissaries.

It is not lost on observers that Kirwa was the only non-party leader who was allowed to speak at the unveiling of the PNU at the KICC three weeks ago, before he emerged as the spokesperson of the PNUs official launch committee two weeks ago.

Efforts to revive Kanu and reposition Kibaki as a serious contender with ODM forces in the Rift Valley have been in top gear, with Kanu chairman Mr Uhuru Kenyatta on the prowl, meeting over 6000 grassroots leaders in Londiani and Nakuru in the last three weeks.

Uhuru has been combing the entire Central Rift region trying to re-invigorate his own networks with the grassroots after former point man and Secretary General, Mr William Ruto, abandoned him for ODM.

Sources said the newly refurbished Kanus high command is engaged in deep consultations with Kirwa, wooing him to join the party at the level of a one of the national vice-chairmen. He also wants an arrangement through which Kanu and PNU share positions at the high table.

Though it could not be confirmed independently, Kibakis visit to Eldoret this week was calculated to provide an opportunity for wider consultations with grassroots leaders over the regions should he win.

A major announcement was also said to in the making at a PNU rally to be staged at either Eldorets 64 Stadium or Kipkatet in the coming weeks.

With over three million votes up for grabs in the Rift Valley, over two million of them shared by Kipsigis and Nandi communities, Eldoret and Kericho towns will be the war front for all the three campaign teams.

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Ngilu: Another jumpy-jumpy Kenyan politician searching for power

Posted by African Press International on October 6, 2007

Mrs Ngilu has a big problem. Her love for power has now taken her to Raila’s ODM thinking Raila may get more votes than Kibaki. She however has decided to remain as Kibaki’s servant in government because of her ambitions and love for the ministerial flag. How can she criticise Kibaki and yet continue to hold ministerial position in the same government? Awkward! Her mind is clouted by hunger for power. She should resign if she has the mind not drunk with power. By API*APN editorial.


Ngilu backs Raila as ODM set for launch Story by JEFF OTIENO

Health minister Charity Ngilu has ended the guessing game over her political future after declaring she would support ODM’s Raila Odinga in the race for State House.

Health minister Charity Ngilu gestures during a Press conference at Narc headquarters in Nairobi yesterday shortly before announcing that she would support ODM presidential candidate Raila Odinga in the race for State House during the December election. She however said she would not resign from her Cabinet position. Photo/PETERSON GITHAIGA

However, she also said she would continue serving in President Kibaki’s Government but campaign against him ahead of the General Election.

And although she will back Mr Odinga, she will defend her Kitui Central parliamentary seat on a Narc ticket. But, Mr Odinga yesterday said that all parties supporting ODM would be dissolved once the movement becomes stronger.

Oppose President

Since multiparty democracy was introduced in Kenya in 1992, Mrs Ngilu is the first Cabinet minister to publicly oppose the re-election of a sitting president while continuing to serve in the Cabinet.

Speaking at the National Rainbow Coalition headquarters in Nairobi yesterday, the Kitui Central MP said she reached her decision after consulting her family, constituents and supporters.

I am supporting the candidature of Raila Odinga, she said. Narc recognises his commitment to reform, his passion for change and his commitment to social democracy.

This commitment has not changed even when Raila changed parties. I will defend my political seat on a Narc ticket as the party will reserve the right to field parliamentary and civic candidates, said Mrs Ngilu.

Her move was immediately welcomed by ODM leaders. Today, the opposition party is set to hold a public rally at  Uhuru Park in Nairobi to launch Mr Odinga’s presidential campaign and the party’s agenda.

And as this will be going on, President Kibaki will be travelling by road from Nairobi to Nakuru where he is expected to address a rally at the Afraha Stadium.

The director of the Presidential Press Service, Mr Isaiah Kabira, said President Kibaki would make stopovers at Kimende shopping centre and Naivasha and Gilgil towns.

ODM Kenya presidential candidate Kalonzo Musyoka will be attending a funeral in Kangundo while Pastor Pius Muiru who is seeking the presidency on a Kenya People’s Party ticket will address a rally at Ruiru Stadium this morning before launching his presidential campaign at Nairobi Safari Club this evening.

Democratic right

Reacting to Mrs Ngilu’s views, Mr Musyoka said her decision to back Mr Odinga was her democratic right.

I want to wish her well where she has gone, he said as he campaigned in Kipkelion yesterday.

But the Citizen Democratic Party chairman, Mr Francis Karanja, accused the minister of dishonesty and trying to play with the minds of Kenyans.

Why is it that all along she did not the quit the Government which she is now accusing of corruption and deceit? he asked.

Mr Odinga’s running mate, Mr Musalia Mudavadi, said at Narc headquarters that Mrs Ngilu had made the right decision.

Ngilu understands ODM’s position and has decided to partner with us. One of the most important things is that her party will not be fielding a presidential candidate, he said.

Clad in a blue and yellow attire, Mrs Ngilu took the podium minutes after noon and criticised the Kibaki Government of numerous misdeeds — from corruption and tribalism to unequal allocation of resources.

She started off by revisiting her political history over the last 15 years and cited the tribulations she had endured both in the Opposition and in Government. She then gave the reasons why she decided to campaign against President Kibaki.

According to the minister, the President had failed to live up to the Narc dream of fighting corruption. Kenya was still “embroiled in mega corruption scandals some of which have sadly been swept under the carpet, she said.

The minister revisited the President’s promise to Kenyans during his swearing-in in 2003 that corruption would cease to be a way of life in Kenya and that there would be no sacred cows under his Government.

She described the promise as hollow.

The minister said Goldenberg, Anglo Leasing and other scandals had remained unresolved for many years.

What happened to the Bosire Goldenberg report findings? What happened to the Anglo Leasing investigations? What happened to the Kroll report? Why were we throwing away hard earned taxpayers money? Mrs Ngilu asked.

She told party members that Narc was elected on a platform of providing universal healthcare as stated in the Economic Recovery Strategy of 2003 to 2007. But I was disappointed at the denial of universal health care to Kenyans after the failure by the President to assent to the National Social Health Insurance Fund law, citing lack of funds.

What lack of funds when we ordered for a naval ship worth Sh4.2 billion that is yet to be delivered? What lack of funds when we use over Sh400 million to chase after money stashed outside but cannot find it? Mrs Ngilu asked.
Narc which dethroned Kanu after 24 years in power was elected on a platform of trust, integrity and decency, she said and accused the President of failing to honour the memorandum of understanding (MoU) with Mr Odinga’s then Liberal Democratic Party.

According to her, the MoU was a pact of good faith.

A leadership that so callously betrays the people’s and leaders trust does not deserve to lead, the minister said.

She also accused President Kibaki of failing to deliver a new constitution in 100 days as had been promised by Narc before the 2002 General Election. Once the party was in power it overlooked  the men and women who had fought so hard to put them in leadership, she said.

Wanjiku’s issues like the constitution became a battle ground for egos. We began to disown our own submissions to the Ghai team for selfish reasons. We became revisionists to retain power in its raw, ugly form, she said.

Mrs Ngilu questioned why Kanu MPs who had initially opposed reformists so hard now controlled key areas of reform in Government.

What was the use of winning overwhelming mandate from Kenyans only to co-opt non-reformers to work with us? Of what use is the Kanu leadership including its old guard to the dream of a better, just, equitable and corruption-free Kenya today? she asked referring to the government of national unity (GNU) which was formed after the Banana camp lost in the 2005 referendum on the proposed constitution.

Mrs Ngilu described President Kibaki’s inclusion of Kanu leaders and its old guard in his administration as politics of survival that Kenyans must say no to.

She accused the Narc administration of tribalism, saying it betrayed the reason why leaders came together to form the party and defeat the Moi administration in 2002.

Skewed appointments in the public sector and inequitable allocations of resources that border on tribal affiliations are the order of the day, Mrs Ngilu told the Press.

The minister also said insecurity had reached unprecedented levels with vigilante groups taking over the country, adding that it was women and children who suffered most from the crimes.

Mrs Ngilu criticised the Government for narrowing affirmative action for women to the demand for seats in Parliament and public offices. It was also about opportunities, she continued.

I would work with a team that truly believes in empowering women especially on the economic front, she said.

The minister also accused the Government of abandoning the youth, noting that each year the country lost about 500,000 youths to destitution and hopelessness.

Business opportunities are lacking due to unfriendly policies. Our youth are not for Jua Kali only, she said.

The minister was confident that an ODM administration would address the issues she had raised and carry forward the Narc dream.

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Niger rights groups call for dialogue with rebel movement

Posted by African Press International on October 6, 2007

Niamey (Niger) Six human rights defense organisations of Niger Thursday wrote an open letter tonigerpresident.jpg President Mamadou Tandja calling for a dialogue with the Niger Movement for Justice (MNJ) rebel group and “draw President Tanjas attention to the drifts” caused by the armed conflict in the north of the country,” APA learned from authorised sources.

The group denounces the drifts “related (…) to restrictive measures on freedom of expression and of the press the High Communication Council (CSC) took against the media, (…) to the threats and intimidations uttered by some unidentified people against association officials, journalists or other citizens,” the document noted.

These Niger human rights defense organisations revealed that for some time now leaflets are circulating in the country through the Internet, calling “some association officials and journalists traitors to the nation, calling the Tuareg community names and for its purging to bring lasting peace in Niger”.

According to them, “it is normal that there are diverse opinions on the situation in the north (…) but these ploys aim at silencing human rights defenders in an issue that yet concerns everyone”.

The NGOs also condemn the use of violence, particularly the use of landmines.

The signatory NGOs of the open letter are the Alternative Espaces citoyens, the Niger Association for human rights defense (ANDDH), the Niger right to energy defense group (CODDAE), the Collective of the human rights defense organisations (CODDH) and the Network of journalists for human rights (RJDH).

At the beginning of August, the ANDDH and Alternative Espaces citoyens organized a one-day brainstorming event attended by all political, association, trade-union and university sensitivities to exchange ideas on the conflict in the north.

The outcome was submitted to the Niger head of state, the Parliament and the government in order to “help find the best avenues possible for peace”.

Since February, the northern part of Niger suffers from “regular confrontations between the army and the Tuareg rebels of the Niger Movement for Justice (MNJ).

The Niamey authorities consider the MNJ as “a group of gangsters and drug traffickers” with whom “no negotiation is possible”.


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Posted by African Press International on October 6, 2007

Lom (Togo) The Togolese Prime Minister Yaovi Agboyibo on Friday forwarded to President Blaise Compaore of Burkina-Faso, also facilitator of the inter-Togolese dialogue, a request of the Independent National Election Commission (CENI) to handle a deadlock on the discussions about the organization of next October 14th legislative elections, official sources told APA.

The Togolese Prime Minister said in a statement that a request of CENI was sent to the facilitator as part of the monitoring of the global political agreement (APG) over an internal debate about the security of ballot papers.

Persistent differences started last week and CENI decided to refer the issue to the monitoring commission, sources disclosed in Lome.

Some political parties, members of CENI, including the Union des Forces du Changement (UFC), main opposition party, want ballot papers to be authenticated by the signatures of two members of the electoral district on the back before voters can use them, while others are opposed to that measure, including the ruling Rally of the Togolese People (RPT).

Jean Pierre Fabre, the Secretary General of UFC, on Thursday told APA that RPT, CCP, PDRE and the Network of African Women Ministers and Parliamentarians (NAWMP-Togo), etc. agreed that the polling district presidents and reporters should not sign the ballot papers.

CENI is referring the case to the monitoring commission that can meet early next week to discuss the issue, a source close to CENI disclosed.

The Togolese people are expected to renew their parliament next October 14th through legislative elections. The candidates on the 395 lists of political parties and independent lists are billed to contend for 81 seats at the National Assembly.

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Madrid urges Kinshasa to negotiate with rebels

Posted by African Press International on October 6, 2007

Madrid (Spain) The Spanish government Friday, urged authorities in the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) to start “direct and sincere” negotiations with rebels operating in the eastern part of the country and in the Kivus in order to reach a political accord, an official source has told APA.

This position was expressed by Spanish Foreign Minister Miguel Angel Moratinos who met with his visiting counterpart of the DRC Antipas Mbusa on Friday in Madrid.

Moratinos “expresses his concern about the situation prevailing in the eastern and Kivu provinces, underscoring the need to reach a political solution through an agreement and direct and sincere dialogue” according to a statement issued by the Foreign ministry copied to APA.

The head of the Spanish diplomacy advised to his DRC counterpart to give priority to the disarmament of militias operating in these regions.

He further said his country was ready to support efforts to ensure peace and stability in the Great Lake region both directly and through its role as member of the European Union and the group of the friendly countries of the region.

Besides, the minister hailed Mbusa for the conduct of the electoral process in the DRC while expressing Madrids interest in following the development of political activities in this African country after these elections.

spaindrc.jpgThe economic co-operation and interest of the Spanish investors for the Congolese market has also been addressed in these talks between Moratinos and the DRCs foreign minister who on Thursday met with Spanish entrepreneurs wishing to invest in this African country.

Moratinos said that his country was supporting such investments in a country with high economic potential like the DRC, stressing however the need to ensure the legal security of the Spanish investments.

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Historical perspective: Buganda was not favoured by the British as claimed

Posted by African Press International on October 6, 2007

By Ham Mukasa (A good muganda):,,

Sir Edward Mutesa II, the late Kabaka of Buganda, whose eightieth birthday was celebrated on November 19, was, until his death, in exile in London in 1969 at the centre of what came to be known as the Buganda problem, which has dogged resolution to this day. The problem which concerns the Buganda agreement traces its immediate cause to the 1955 Buganda agreement under which the colonial government conferred more autonomy and responsibilities on Buganda government and its local governments which were based on its 20 counties.

The agreement also provided that no constitutional changes would take place for the next six years which, in effect, suggested the possibility of self-government for the country as a whole around 1961.This led to agitation by mengo for assurance from Britain that Buaganda would not lose its autonomy in a self-governing Uganda. The agitation for assurances went into high gear towards the end of the 50s and when they were not forthcoming, Buganda tested her position in a constitutional case in which the Legislative council (Legco) proceedings which had just been made by the colonial government was a major constitutional change which breached the 1955 agreement and thereby ended British protection over Buganda.

Although Buganda lost the case, she continues to pursue her cause and around this time, her minister of finance, Amos Sempa, visited the United states on a tour sponsored by the state department to study the workings of the federal government there and on his return via Switzerland he announced at a press conference that a federal system would be the best government for independent Uganda. He noted that some cantons in Switzerland were smaller that our districts. In the end, in what appeared to be a partial concession to Bugandas demands in April, 1960, the colonial Secretary wrote a letter to the Kabaka on the eve of a review of Bugandas future in which he confirmed that the development of the kingdom increasingly responsible for the conduct of its own affairs but integrated nonetheless into Uganda as a whole required considerable local thought thereby officially the door for Bugandas demand for a federal status in an independent Uganda. Bugandas position on the constitutional developments of the country received a rebuff from the leader of the Uganda Peoples congress, Dr Apollo Milton Obote, who announced at a rally at Walukuba, Jinja, on August 15, 1960, that the UPC has no connection with the kabaka, let alone a tacit arrangement with him. Above all, the party is opposed to the views of the Kabakas government and does not visualise any reconciliation between the two forces.

Concurrently with the demand for a federal status, Buganda started to demand that the Kabaka should be the first President of Uganda, a move which did not please the other kingdoms and the rest of the country and a young Chango Macho, one of the Presidential Advisers today, in a letter to the Uganda Argus showed a lot of prescience when he argued appropriately that the best policy would be to divorce hereditary rulers from national politics and no one would interfere with the status quo as long as their respective subjects still want them.

Later in August 1960, the Buganda Lukiiko escalated the stakes when I declared Bugandas independence from Britain as from December 31, 1960, although as expected, this came to naught. A statement by a spokesman for the Mengo government explained that the move was taken in order to counter moves by those who favoured a unitary form of government and that Buganda would always fight for the recognition of her institutions. At the independence constitutional conference which was held in London in 1961 in an apparent change of heart, UPC decided to support Bugandas demands in exchange for being given all the 21 MPs from Buganda who were to be indirectly elected by the Lukiiko, a move which ensured it of winning the elections. Bugandas seed of destruction may have been planted at this point because UPC, as later events showed, may not have genuinely dropped its antipathy to Bugandas position as expressed by its president at the rally in Jinja just months earlier.After independence in 1964, UPC got Mutesa elected as the first President but two years later Obote deposed him and ordered an attack on his palace by the army in search of a cache of arms Mutesa was alleged to have intended to use in a coup to overthrow the government. Although no arms were found which suggests Mutesas innocence he was forced into exile in London where he died in 1969 two years after his kingdom and government had been abolished under Obotes 1967 constitution. As we consider reconciliation in the country as proposed by president Yoweri Museveni, it is incumbent upon us to first review our perceptions of the causes of the countrys problems especially since there is evidence that Buganda never committed the offences which she has been accused of by our leaders for the last 40 years remembering in particular that: The attack on the Kabakas palace was unnecessary since he had not stocked there a cache of arms as had been alleged.

The Buganda Lukiiko never passed a resolution ordering the government of Uganda to leave Buganda land and that when the motion was introduced on may 26, 1966, the entire Mengo cabinet opposed it before the speaker threw it out as being illegal. Accordingly, the abolition of Bugandas federal government a year later was baseless. Buganda was not favoured by the British as is claimed by our new politicians. It negotiated its constitutional status through agreements with Britain and it cannot be blamed if others did not do so. Federo was not based on the rantings of traditionalists as is commonly alleged. It is a viable alternative to a unitary system and has nothing to do with kings. Buganda saw it as the solution to our problems after a careful study and under international conventions including the African charter on human and Peoples rights which was signed in Banjul in 1981, she is entitled to be governed under a federal status if its people desire it.

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Posted by African Press International on October 6, 2007

ikunda1.jpg<By our correspondent, Harrison Mwirigi Ikunda,

API*APN in Nairobi: Campaigns especially on the presidential level are increasingly and obviously becoming personal! As the clock ticks the players will use all the tricks possible to gain an advantage. And just as happens elsewhere the game onwards will become very personal and vicious.

President Kibaki, the gentleman of Kenya politics has so far shown no inclination towards that but his regional lieutenants have already shown willingness to do spade work for that. But the force of propaganda, scheming and mudslinging is more likely to be given more impetus by ODM. ODM- Kenya may not be up to enjoying the stakes the likes of PNU and ODM are riding on. Indeed it is more likely that the strategy with ODM Kenya is now left to securing the Kamba constituency which will be used as a bargaining platform.

After the official campaign launches are over, Kenya is set to a
period of political lies, propaganda, likely vote buying and violence to opponents, mudslinging, buying of lethal brews and of course you cant rule out consultation of religious leaders for blessings and the other forms of practices and consultations such as witchcraft, sorcerers, seers and all manner of ways to gain political edge.

What Kenyans politicians, presidential and parliamentary and their supporters and strategists should be warned on is that the economic policies are part of top priorities and are not negotiable! Kenya cannot afford mediocre or ‘voodoo’ kind of economic thinking, planning or policies. The presidential aspirants apart from populist’s stories to woo voters should be also rolling out and fine tuning and selling their economic blue print to the voters.

Kenya is a nation with a great potential. Tourism, business processes outsourcing, the dairy sub-sector, manufacturing, flower farming, labour export and horticulture among others are showing very strong signs of growth. The leaders should be telling Kenyans how they will enhance growth and collect relevant resources in terms of taxes to provide services and goods meant for common good. Otherwise insults and populist promises will only endear them to voters but when reality
checks after the elections voters will have so much to agonise for.

The good thing is Kenya has made tremendous growth in terms of democracy despite the so many handicaps. However the political circumstances are far from near perfection!


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We have continued to close our eyes and watch leaders give us bows and arrows to fight our fellow country-men

Posted by African Press International on October 6, 2007

Commentary by: Wang Namn

Great thoughts!
How ever, Kenyans know just too well what we areKenyans. We do not despise our tribes and I just think it is quite in order for the likes of Nyachae to stop asking Kenyans to open their mouths so he can pee on them for a drink. Of course there is no water in most parts of the greater Nyanza (Right at the shores of the great fresh, dirty water lake, Victoria)
We have continued to close our eyes and watch leaders give us bows and arrows to fight our fellow country-men.
It is not lost in the minds of Kenyans that since Independence, the Sabaots still rule the Mt. Elgon region; killing people with impunity. Who do our Presidents swear to protect? their families and cronies.
We can not forget the kind of security the Athur brothers had, while romancing a Kenyan girl and defrauding this nation.
Our current cabinet: Michuki / Mutahi Kagwe, Kibaki / Munyao, Nyachae and his Mt. Kenya relations, Murungaru and Lucy relations and history as a Kibaki campaigner, Murungi, etal
It is an open secret.

Well these goons are able but what is this ability that can not be spread accross the Country? We have fish processing factories in Thika, Coffee and tea is processed within the farms.
Can it be possible for once, for Kenyans to stop thinking tribes and vote for persons who will lift this nation to a different level from where it has been for these 40+ years?

In 2002, a Nyachae led group, literally whipped NARC campaigners in Gussii land, two weeks ago Nyachae himself told Kenyans to open theirs mouths and drink his urine. Pee on u! He told Kenyans. Can the Presidential candidates unveil their Party’s Manifestos for Kenyans to see.

ODM is a party of individuals, PNU is a party of parties (Which manifesto will they implement?) Kenyans would like to know.
ODM-K is a straight party without many complications though with little follow up.

Last week end KANU paid ‘delegates’ to go to Kasarani to endose their participation in the PANUA coalition. The following day, sunday the 29th, it was a shame as youths were handed PANU red T-shirts &amp; Ksh. 300 so they could go to President Kibaki’s rally.

While appealing to those who attended the rally, the President in his brand way had this to say “If you can not vote because you do not have the instruments of voting (being under age etc) go and convince someone to vote for me.
What does that mean? Majority of us at Nyayo were under age.
And why would we pay the NUABIANS in Kibera 2000/= to attend a rally.
Fellow Kenyans, it is time we knew we have this Country for ourselves, let us vote wisely, without abusing one another and as it were “without prejudice’

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Is Raila Odinga more deadly than Simeon Nyachae?

Posted by African Press International on October 6, 2007

An East African perspective

Posted by Ham Mukasa

That crowd was big, bigger than most crowds seen at rallies in recent times.

The police put the head count at between forty to fifty-five thousand people seated and standing. That is a lot of people by any standards.

The last time that number was surpassed was in August 1996 when this writer packed the same Nyayo Stadium with 60,000 people. That Sunday, almost 10 years ago, all ordinary fun-loving Kenyans needed to do was to buy a packet of House of Manji biscuits and a copy of Taifa Jumapili to gain entrance to the venue. In return for their efforts, the fans had 12 top singers from all corners of Kenya waiting for them. It was different
from last Sunday’s crowd that came to listen to Kibaki launch the Party of National Unity. It was a very different crowd, mixed and quite diverse.

Ordinary Kenyans trekked from all corners of Nairobi within reach of the stadium. They came in their thousands just to see the galaxy of Kenyan artistes that were gathered to entertain them. When they did, they were not disappointed. They got their efforts’ worth. They danced their fill.

The PNU function was the best show that the Kibaki team has put up to date. Yet, a few politicians obsessed with Raila Odinga turned it into a Raila rally! Let us face it; the moment Raila’s political adversaries focus on him as the main target; he steals the show in absentia. This is what happened on Sunday.

Human beings have the habit of beginning to doubt you if every time you open your month, all you do is to rant at the same person until the cows come home. At the PNU launch there were close to 20 speakers before President Kibaki stood up to launch his vehicle for re-election.

However, the preceding speeches went on for so long that the most important guest didn’t have time to read his prepared masterpiece, another first in this kind of function. To say the truth, utterances by speakers Ali Makwere, Simeon Nyachae, Chebii Kilimo, Musikari Kombo and Taib bin Taib had so embarrassed the President that he decided to put out the fires
lit by his so-called supporters who I would like to brand his true enemies from within.

Ali Makwere’s war cry of “kamata kamata adui” was ominous enough. In ordinary terms, Makwere called for ‘the enemy to be caught’! What happens when you chase and catch the enemy? In the streets of Nairobi, we are familiar with mob justice. We have seen irate street walkers mete out instant justice after chasing their victims allover the city!

Listening to Ali Makwere, it was not lost on observers who his enemies were. They were Raila Odinga and his ODM group. These are the people the man from the coast wants to catch and deal with!

One wonders then if violence is still the monopoly of one dangerous man (read ODM) that Musikari Kombo fears should not be trusted with the leadership of this country. Simeon Nyachae was as defiant as he was violent in Kisii the week before. He swore by his late father and all his ancestors that he was ready for more violence if only to defend his territory and President Kibaki. He told the Minister for Internal Security, John Michuki sitting pensively behind him that things were going to get worse before they got better. He was addressing the man who a week earlier had promised to investigate the Kisii incident where Simeon Nyachae’s militia attacked and injured two ODM legislators for attending Nyachae’s function.

Looking at the choice of speakers on that day, one could miss the authoritative presence of people like George Saitoti, Martha Karua, Kiraitu Murungi and moderate voices like those of Njenga Karume who should have been allowed to speak.

These voices would have complimented Joseph Munyao much better than activists of Taib Taib’s calibre. In a wonderful function with that mammoth crowd, it was a shame to see recent defectors like Chebii Kilimo throwing decorum to the wind and start talking of women’s breasts! And as if talking about women’s breasts and linking them to the President was not bad enough, Taib Taib went a little further with his hair-splitting different meanings of hair on the human body.

As he explored the anatomy of the human body, starting from the head through the chin, chest and below the belly button, we held our breath! When he stopped, the rest was obvious that he was heading for the forbidden part of the human anatomy!

This election should not be about Raila as an issue for the PNU. Let the President’s men not spoil for him by dwelling on the fear factor in this election. Raila may be an enigma in Kenyan politics; Raila may be the most dangerous Kenyan alive but remember; it is time Kenyans were allowed to judge between Raila and Nyachae who in their opinion is more dangerous

The one thing that the PNU team must deal with firmly if they want to win this election is to exorcise the ghost of Raila’ shadow that seems to hover over their heads at every rally. Right now as things stand, Raila’s ghost seems to be setting the agenda for the PNU meetings.

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