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Critics see no reason celebrating Raila’s home-coming, saying ministries headed by Luos look like bones with no meat to chew and that ODM cabinet members from other communities got fat ministries.

Posted by African Press International on May 8, 2008

Publisher: Korir,

<Story by Leo Odera Omolo in Kisumu 8th May, 2008
Tentative plans and arrangements are in top gear for the homecoming parties to welcome Prime Minister Raila Amolo Odinga in his birthplace City, Kisumu and in ancestoral home in Bondo.
Kisumuis a wash with behives preparation and activities ahead of the ceremony, which is expected to kick off with a breakfast meeting between the Prime minister and a few invited Luo elders, professionals and church elders at hishouse in Milimani estate, later at a tea party to be followed with discussions at Tom Mboya Labour College not far away from Railas house. This wil be followed by an executive luncheonto be attended byinvited guests.
After the luncheon, the Prime Minister and his entourage will proceed to the Moi Stadium, Kisumu for a public rally. Raila is expected to be received byenthusiastic Luo crowdwho support him. It is also expected that ODM members fromregions outside Nyanza will be in attendance.
On Sunday Raila is expected to attend anotherreception at the Bondo Teachers Training College. But before that, he is expected to call at the home of Mzee Alogo, his only surviving uncle, for a family prayers and blessings. A public rally will take place later in the day in Bondo.
On Monday 12, May, 2008, Raila is expected to be the chief guest at Funyula Market in Busia District for anotherreception to honour the Minister for fisheries development Dr. Paul Otuoma, the man who has since been christened as the giant killer because hetrounced the former Vice President Moody Awori during December 2007 elections. Awori was defending his seat on a PNU ticket, while the Otuomar stood on an ODM ticket.
Railas Luo critics , however, dismissed these eleaborate homecoming parties as inconsequential and uncalled for, arguing that the community came out of the grand coalition with nothing, but a bloated cabinet with nothing worth celebrating.
These critics blame are blaming Raila for not having bargained hard enough for the community. They say the ministries headed by Luos look like bones with no meat to chew, whileODM cabinet members from other communities got fat ministries. They think Mr William Ruto who got the ministery of Agriculture is the one who has the chuicy meat, having so many powerfulparastatal bodies under his ministry. He can distribute plumb positions to his community at will.
One critic, who is a sitting MP gave anexample of Joseph Nyagah co-operative development ministry, which has close to nine parastatals. Another fat ministry is that of the Roads now held by Kipkalya Kones, which is heavily funded by the government, and with a lot of employment opportunities for the youths.
The three ministries, Agriculture, Co-operatives and Roads are the backbone of the country with many jobs to be dished out. Now all of them are in the hands of other communities, leaving the Luos out.
Another ODMs Pentagon member, they argued got the Local government ministry, which has a lot of employment opportunities for skilled and unskilled labour force. It is being held by the deputy Prime Minister Wycl;iff Musalia Mudavadi, And Najib Balala also clinched the fat tourism ministry, while Hon Oparanya got the planning ministry, which is the receiving agent of all the donor funding. Even Mzee William Ntimama is well placed and cannot be compared with any Luo ministers who were only made departmental heads who cannot make any major decision independently without kneeling before other fellow cabinet colleagues and the Head of Civil Service Ambassador Muthaura.
The legislator, who preferred to maintain his anonymity told this writer that the majority of Luo MPs now agree that the community has been short-changed once again. The MP wanted to conceal his identity for fear of possiblereprisal.
The MP compared the ministry given to Dalmas Otieno as rerflectiung senior clerical officer in the OP who should be reporting directly to the head of the civil service before making any important decision on employment of public servants. The Ministry of Lands and and settlement, whose portfolio is held by the Ugenya MP James Aggrey Orengo is an empty shell. There is no land to dish out to the Luos and employment opportunities are not there. And theHealth ministry of prof. Anyang Nyongo is only a departmental section.
Otieno Kajwang is the only well placed Luo Minister, but his important responsibility is only the registration of persons and he can organise the registration of many Luo youths who can be able to identify themsleves and vote in the next elections.This is evident that Luo school leavers, therefore, will have to wait for five good years before they could secure any employment in the government, whereas the minister from mt. Kenya and other regions took away all the fat ministries , which are full of employment opportunities.
It is bad lack for the Luos all the time a new government is formed. The only consolation is that the country is on the way to nomalcy as a result of the negotiations for the restoration of peace and tranquilty.
The players, both international and Kenyans deserve applause for their maturity in giving dialogue a chance.
The common saying, however, is that having half a bread is better than nothing.
Moreover the critics say, Raila Odinga himself ,ended up being made a Prime Minister without Portifollio and therefore the power-sharing arrangement is a trash, and deceitful. It is indeed a sorry state of affairs for the Luo community, a people thathad expected a lot this time around.
African Press International – api

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