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Archive for July 8th, 2008

Leader death report angers Zambia

Posted by African Press International on July 8, 2008

Zambian President Levy Mwanawasa (file photo)South Africa’s president held a minute’s silence for Mr Mwanawasa (left photo)

A Zambian minister has accused South African media of “malice” after they issued reports – later retracted – that Zambia’s president had died.

Information Minister Mike Mulongoti said the reports had caused “panic and damage” for Zambians.

President Levy Mwanawasa, 59, is in intensive care at a hospital in Paris after suffering a stroke at an African Union summit in Egypt last weekend.

Vice-President Rupiah Banda said Mr Mwanawasa’s condition was stable.

On Thursday, South African radio quoted a spokesman who said he was from Zambia’s High Commission as saying Mr Mwanawasa had died.

The doctors attending to (Mr Mwanawasa) are happy with progress he has made so far
Zambia Vice-President Rupiah Banda

Mr Mbeki called for a minute’s silence at a ceremony for those killed in a recent wave of attacks on foreigners in South Africa.

The South African ministry of foreign affairs later issued a clarification, saying Mr Mbeki regretted the “misunderstanding”, and wishing Mr Mwanawasa a speedy recovery.

‘Serious matter’

“It’s extremely unfortunate,” said Mr Mulongoti. “It’s malice.”

“We expect people to be sensitive to issues like that, because the death of the president of a republic is a serious matter, and in so doing they’ve caused a lot of panic and damage in the minds of the Zambian people,” he said.

Zambian officials were upbeat about Mr Mwanawasa’s condition.

“The doctors attending to (Mr Mwanawasa) are happy with progress he has made so far and his condition remains stable,” Mr Banda said in a statement.

“He has continued to receive treatment for hypertension in the intensive care unit and there are no new developments,” he said.

Mr Mwanawasa won a second term in 2006, having campaigned on his economic record which has won him acclaim from Western donors.

His health has always been an issue during his presidency. In April 2006 he suffered a minor stroke four months before general elections.

Mr Mwanawasa has been one of the strongest African critics of Zimbabwe, where President Robert Mugabe won a disputed run-off election last week.

He was taken to hospital during an African Union summit in Egypt that was discussing the Zimbabwean crisis.

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API/ Source: BBC

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Time To Pull The Nuclear Option

Posted by African Press International on July 8, 2008

Fellow Countrymen, (Kenyans)
In the hallowed halls of the United States Senate, the nuclear option is pulled by a side that feels strongly about an issue on which it’s about to lose. In the estimation of the senators whoemploy this tactic, the passage of a certain bill, or confirmation of a man/woman to a position of influence,would so irreparably harm their constituents to the pointwhere they feel it’s absolutelycritical to tie up the Senate’s business until their fears andother pertinentissues are addressed. That’s what the Democrats did to stall the nomination of judges they considered controversial to the United States Supreme Court.
I bring up this concept of the nuclear option because I think we are fast approaching the point where it will need to be pulled in the Kenyan Parliament. It’s indeed encouraging that our Members of Parliament are discovering the enormous power theyretain to slow down the Executive branch. You watched with satisfaction as one of the most powerful members of the Kibaki Cabinet was reminded that the laws of our nation apply to all, not just to the small man. And you’ve watched the increasing assertiveness of that body, especially given the impressive credentials that most members bring to the table. Gone are the days of Chotara, Nassir and Mwenje. These are the days of men and women who understand that there is honor in being principled.
Kenyans are aware that when the coalition government was put together, there was no clause that bound the parties to stick together even in the face of massive corruption and blatant impunity. Indeed, were such a clause to have been slipped in there, we would have been glad to demonstrate our maturity by kicking it out.
At this juncture, we find ourselves at a point where the nuclear option is becoming a relevant tool in dealing with our out-of-touch president, and the men who prop up his administration. In Kenya the way to pull the plug is to marshall enough votes to pass a vote of no confidence in the president, just like it was done with Kimunya. By my count, it’s beginning to look like the votes are there. Many MPs who fought like crazy to keep Kibaki in power are slowly realizing that they made a huge mistake. And they sense that the way to make atonement is to do something dramatic.
That’s where the nuclear option comes in.
What Comes Next?
When this option is pulled, we must all understand that it will mark the end of a presidency. That being the case, I want to count on the fact that our leaders have not been sitting on their laurels, forgetting that the fight to deliver the nation from the shackles of recklessness and impunity has not been won. Luckily, our leaders have not been asleep. Indeed, it is comforting to know that when the nuclear option is pulled, there will be an immediate power structure to fill the vacuum and deal decisively with any elements that may seek to capitalize on the transition period to cause despondency in the country.
The march to push Kenya to the next level of greatnessis ongoing. We have the brains and the wealth to make our nation the leader in medical and technological innovation, we have the capability to push forward the rural electrification program and make clean water available to our mothers and fathers in the villages across Kenya. But as the events of the past six months have amply demonstrated, these noble goals can’t be realized as long as we are embroiled in sorting out the shenanigans of men like Kimunya, Kibaki and the crazies who support them.
Can Kenya Work Together?
You may have heard from pessimists that our nation is hopelessly divided. That we see ourselves as Luo, Kikiyu, Kalenjin, Luhya… If that’s true, it’s because of the retrogressive politics entrenched by the lack of vision of our three presidents. But yes, Kenya can and is ready to work together. The nation is praying for a leader who will transcend the parochialism of tribe and see in the pleading faces of Kenya’s children a desire for effective, fatherly leadership. A leadership that will make Cerelac and milk available to the infants, uniform and booksto theschool-going kids, mentoringprogramsforadolescents and livablewages for men and women across the land.
It’s my firm belief that when the nuclear option is pulled and the Prime Minister is put in charge of ushering in a representative constitution and proper elections held, we will have laid the foundation for a sustainable democracy that won’t need the repeated nudging of external powers. We can’t continue to be the white man’s burden forever, can we? It starts by doing things right.
The first step, the nuclear option.A vote of no confidence.
For Love of Country,
Sam O. Okello
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api

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Polish workers stick around

Posted by African Press International on July 8, 2008

While emigrants from Poland often return home from working stints overseas, those who come to Norway have a tendency to stay, and ultimately arrange for their families to join them. “There’s lots of work and we earn well,” says Leo Finlowski. “Very well.”

Andrusz Kiervicz (left) and Leo Finlowski have their hands full and get paid well for their efforts in Norway.

PHOTO: INGAR HAUG STEINHOLT

“In Germany and England it’s harder times and fewer jobs,” adds Finlowski, who lately has been working on a building site on Ullevlsveien in Oslo. “We see that our younger colleagues bring their partners and children with them and simply move to Norway.”

More than 2 million people have left Poland the last 10 years to work in western Europe or the US. Most who went to Ireland, Great Britain or Germany move home again after a few years, while Norway has never had as much labour immigration from Poland as now. Nearly 52,000 citizens of Poland have obtained work and residence permission in Norway, according to new figures from the immigration agency UDI.

“There are other immigrant groups that are growing, but workers from Poland are in a class of their own,” Karl Erik Sjholt of UDI told newspaper Aftenposten recently.

A growing economy in Poland has prompted government officials there to encourage their workers who have emigrated to move back home. It hasn’t prompted Finlowski or many of his colleagues to heed the call.

“There’s still less work there, and I would rather work in Norway,” said crane operator Edward Kuberski. “But it is getting a bit lonely for my wife back home, especially after our children moved out.”

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Korir (Chief Editor – API) / source: Aftenposteneng

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AU chair to press G8 leaders over pledges to Africa

Posted by African Press International on July 8, 2008

African Union chair and President Jakaya Kikwete of Tanzania arrived Monday in Toyako, a city in the northern Japanese island of Hokkaido, which is hosting this years three-day Group of 8 industrialised summit.

Leading a team of seven African presidents, Kikwete is expected to \”emphasise on the need for the rich nations leaders to deliver on their promises G8 pledges made at Gleneagles, Scotland summit, Kikwetes State House residence said this in a statement made available to APA Monday.

The State House statement hinted that African leaders would remind the G8 leaders of honouring pledges made in Gleneagles, apart from the host country\s three areas of concentration for the African continent.

Food and oil crises, climate change and attainment of the UN-inspired Millennium Development Goals are so far the scheduled agenda for discussions when African and G8 leaders meet Monday.

Meeting in Gleneagles three years ago, G8 leaders promised an additional aid for Africa totalling US$25 billion by 2010, but very little has been achieved so far.

And critics of the G8 summit initiatives are up in arms challenging leaders of Japan, the US, UK, Italy, Russia, Canada, France and Germany for failure to deliver on their promises.

Other African leaders attending the summit are Presidents Thabo Mbeki (South Africa), John Kufuor (Ghana), Umaru Yar\Adua (Nigeria), Abdelaziz Bouteflika (Algeria), Abdoulaye Wade (Senegal) and Ethiopian Prime Minister Meles Zenawi.

African Commission chairperson Jean Ping is also expected to attend the summit.

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API/APA

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GOVERNMENT STATEMENT ON MATTERS RELATING TO THE SALE OF THE GRAND REGENCY HOTEL

Posted by African Press International on July 8, 2008

Kenya Government: The attention of Government has been drawn to media reports about a technical committee of Cabinet having issued a report. Government would like to inform the public that the report has neither reached the Cabinet nor has it received Cabinet attention.

Meanwhile, in view of the enormity of the matter concerning the Grand Regency Hotel, the Government has registered a caveat against the title to protect the property until the Government finalizes on the issues which have arisen in regard to the sale transaction of the property.

The Government will ensure that these issues will not in any way affect our very good relations with the Peoples Libyan Arab Republic.

Dr. Alfred N. Mutua, EBS
GOVERNMENT COMMUNICATIONS SECRETARY &
GOVERNMENT SPOKESPERSON

3 July 2008

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API

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Kenya hold Malawi in friendly match

Posted by African Press International on July 8, 2008

By Standard Reporter Harambee Stars held Malawi to a barren draw during a friendly international match played in Blantyre.

It was a highly balanced match but strikers in both teams were guilty of squandering a number of chances in the tie on Sunday.

Harambee Stars team manager Peter Serry, who spoke to Sportfest on phone from Malawi said his side played well but could not find the back of the Malawi net. Kimanzi had fielded only the local based players for the match that was part of Malawi Independence Day celebrations.

Top stars like Denis Oliech, Robert Mambo, Patrick Oboya and Titus Mulama didnt make the trip to Malawi.

Kimanzi has lost only one match since taking over from Jacob Mulee and would be happy to continue with the good run of form before Stars take on Namibia in a World Cup qualifier in September.

It was a good outing for Stars considering that Malawi have had a string of good results and also because they were playing at home.

Malawi had beaten African champions Egypt in a World Cup/African Cup of Nations qualifier and many expected them to also beat Harambee Stars.

The last time the two sides met, Malawi had demolished Stars 3-0 in a World Cup qualifier in 2005 although it was of no consequence as both teams had already being eliminated from the qualifiers.

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API/Standard.ke

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HIGH FUEL COST PUSHES TAZARA RAILWAY CHARGES UP BY 30 PER CENT.

Posted by African Press International on July 8, 2008

By Leo Odera Omolo.

REPORTS emerging from Dar es Salaam say the Tanzania-Zambia Railway Authority (Tazara) has announced to its customers the decision to adjust upwards the current tariffs.

The upward increase in passenger and parcels rates was to be implemented from July 1st 2008 with travelers being asked to re-confirm their booking for exact fares to avoid any disappointment.

Fares on both the Tanzara Express and Ordinary passenger trains have gone up by 30 % while parcels and luggage rates on the same trains have gone up by 30%.

Passengers traveling from Dar es Salaam to Kapiri Mposhi in Zambia using Tazara Express on first class will now pay Tshs. 72,600 (USD 72) while previously the fare was Tshs. 60,500 (USD 60).

Travelers to Makambuko ( Iringa) from Dar es Salaam used to pay Tshs. 24,200 (USD 24) but they will now pay Tshs. 29,000(USD 29).

The Tazara railway (previously christened UHURU railway line. It was constructed with Chinese funding during the UDI government of rebellious white settlers in the then Rhodesia (now Zimbabwe.) At the time of UDI government headed by the white Prime minister, the late Ian Smith, it was meant to assist the landlocked Zambia to export its copper and other farm products.

It crosses through Makambuko, Mbeya and Tunduma on the border of Tanzania and Zambia to the final station at Kapiri Mposhi in Zambia.

The railway provides services mainly on one line that runs from Dar es Salaam in Tanzania to Kambrili in Zambia.

Managing Director of Tazara Mr. Clement Subulwa Mwinga was recently quoted as saying that the upward fare adjustment was normal and in line with the company policy through which they have an annual review of the corporations tariffs.

He said the rates were still competitive despite the high operational costs that the Company has been experiencing. The increase, he added, was meant to sustain services provided above cost especially the wage bill, which he said was as a big domestic cost that they had to factor in.

According to the MD, the current high global fuel prices had partly led to the increase in fares considering that Tazara trains use Diesel which is currently selling at USD 143m per barrel.

In addition, Mr. Mwiya said, the weakening of the American Dollar has impacted negatively on Tazaras operations. The corporation is currently rehabilitating 18 main locomotives, doing track maintenance and improving equipment with support from its annual budget in order to offer quality and efficient service.

we operate with both the dollar and shilling and the exchange rate has fallen since last year from Tshs. 1,270 (USD 1.27) to Tshs. 1,150 (USD 1.15). Since the wages bill is in local currency, we need more dollars to keep up with current expenditure, said the MD.

He further revealed that Tazara was also upgrading its facilities at a cost of USD 10 million to improve customer service.

Ends

leooderaomolo@yahoo,com.

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API

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BAN ON SUGAR IMPORT MOST WELCOMED BY SUGARCANE FARMERS BUT GRAFT STLL HURT THE INDUSTRY.

Posted by African Press International on July 8, 2008

By Leo Odera Omolo

THE stern measure taken by the government in conceling the licenses of sugar importers and exporters has been hailed as a bold and appropriate step in the right direction aimed at resuscitating the hailing sugar industry.

Farmers in the Nyanza Sugar Belt have also appealed to the Minister for Agriculture William Ruto to instruct the Kenya Sugar Board to establish one Central Procurement Board that will handle all the procurement matters for the public owned Sugar companies

Public owned Sugar companies are Nzoia, Muhoroni, Miwani, Chemelil and SONY sugar Company Limited based at Awendo in Rongo district.

This measure, according to the stakeholders, will minimize corruption and massivelooting of the resources in the various factories. It will also bring to an end the various scams involving procurement related businesses.

Sugarcane farmers wanted the business of procurement of machineries and spares fracture every other heavy earth moving machinery to be placed under one board appointed by the KSB.

Millions of shillings are known to have been lost by factories by rogue CEOs working in cohort within scrupulous suppliers. These people, according to a source in the industry have been minting millions of shillings especially during the annual maintenance of the cane crushing mills. In some cases, the already purchase spares are known to being recycled after being hidden, repainted and re-sold to the same factories it was stolen as a new one.

Expansions of the cane crushing machines is another area which is full of deceitful business transactions in the sugar industry. It is used as conduit for siphoning money from the sugar factories by unpatriotic CEOs and their accomplices.

The Ministry has also been challenged to launch a thorough investigation to claims and allegations that a top manager working in cohort with some unscrupulous traders in Kisii town were recently allegedly suspected to have been involved in the scam of printing gunny bags and packaging packets of SONY sugar Company, This cartel is said to have used the SONY packaging materials and the illegally printed packets and bug for the purpose of re=packaging counterfeit sugar, These people are alleged to have been using such materials in packaging White Sugar obtained from foreign sources[r the consignments on transist to other African countries.

A source within the Awendo based factory indicated that the alleged scam had already been reported to the government and the Kenya Revenue Authority for investigations..

The dreadful rumors goes that a popular store in Kisii town is alleged to have been involved in the scam which also involved the illegal printing of the same packaging materials, which suspected to have been filled with imported sugar on transit destined to other African countries.

The scam involved taking of documents and the printing of packaging materials without the knowledge nor the authority of the company. And now the farmers want the top officials who us alleged to have been involved in the scam removed from the services of the management of the Company.

KSB is also advised to device the new way of ensuring the department of weight and measures in the Ministry of Trade and Commerce makes regular inspection of weight bridges attached to the sugar factories. where farmers are allegedly being fleeced of millions of shillings through rackets in which the factories are using defective weighbridges.

Rumors persist that some factories are fleecing farmers by way of cheating through faulty weigh and measures. The load of 8 tones or raw cane at times end up recording only 4 tonnes or that his cane weighed only 6 tones. In this way farmers are known to be losing millions of shillings to the corrupt factory bosses, who are minting millions of shillings by using defective weight bridges. Such scam was reportedly discovered in SONY sugar Company some years ago. But the situation was only rectified after the cane out growers had already lost close to 200 millions to unpatriotic traders who had hatched the scam.

In this kind of scam, some collaborating farmers had their harvested cane given extra tones of cane which was stolen from unsuspecting farmers and the clerks at the weight bridges shared the loot with the locals and few accomplices.wheeler-dealers . Some unsuspecting people earned more money than the amount they were expecting to be paid by the company, but they later got rude shock when they were confronted by thieving clerks demanding for their share of the loot.

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API

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AFRICAN YOUTH AND DEMOCRACY IN THE CONTINENT

Posted by African Press International on July 8, 2008

<Posted by Harrison Mwirigi Ikunda

BACKGROUND

Post- independence leaders turned into despots

Hanged onto power

Told youths that they are leaders of tomorrow

Many years after independence and the gray haired still telling youth that they are leaders of tomorrow

Youth plans to carry out the banner of democracy in Kenya

They have been used by corrupt leaders for the last two decades since the advent of multi-party democracy

How they intend to bring real change in the coming years

Their experiences and participation in elections

Post election violence that followed a disputed presidential election

The dilemma they are in

How the old guard are holding them back

Well researched

Attack the old guard Kibaki , Mugabe, Bongo , Mubarak etc

They have hanged onto power at the expense of young blood in Kenya and Africa

How they area danger to our nascent democracy

Justify why youth should be educated about democracy to bring change.

Call to African Kenyan youth to share a more democratic and humane future.

Post independent Africa has failed completely to live to her billing as a new dawn to a new progressive world full of opportunities. Instead the African leadership has simply been very disappointing, directionless, confused, and hollow in thinking and just made the population largely hopeless. Colonialism was a great blot to Africa with its leadership evil, selfish, greedy, myopic and outright stupid. In essence colonialism though billed to have a had a social dynamism impetus on African society it was largely self serving to the benefit of the colonial masters.

Come the nationalists who heralded and spearheaded the African independence. With the goodwill they had after leading their countries after attaining independence they felt and behaved as if they are deities enthroned to feed and leech on the vast wealth in Africa and from the donors pulse exclusively, selfishly and to the detriment of the entire populace. Their misguided policies and their playing obedient to phoney vested foreign interests have left Africa heavily scarred.

Other than exceptional cases as in Botswana the rest of Africa has been largely an epitome of failed leadership. But there have been exceptional leaders from Africa like the iconic Nelson Mandela of South Africa, Kitumire Masire and Mogae of Botswana, Julius Kabarage Nyerere of Tanzania who uncustomary called it quit in Africa leadership. These and other probable technocrats and politicians can be said to have provided exceptional leadership in a continent infamous for coup-detat, civil wars, assassinations, pestilence and hunger and in a continent heavily endowed with natural resources.

A case study of Kenya would be like a mirror or probably even posit an image better than most of the African states. In essence as much as the situation in Kenya is painfully disappointing most of the African states fare much worse with some in civil war, more fragile governments, led by myopic despots, not even a pretence of democracy and generally not inspiring any hope at all. Kenya is thus a good dichotomy of the diverse but un-inspiring state of democracy and governance in Africa.

Immediately after independence Jomo Kenyatta the founding president of the new republic of Kenya moved on to abuse the constitution the country had inherited and negotiated with the former colonial master Britain. The constitution had its major imperfections but the Kenyatta regime made it worse by subsequent amendments and modifications all aimed at consolidating power and driving the country to dictatorship. Kenyatta and his allies in power perpetuated their self interests exclusively by ensuring their stranglehold to instruments of governance and violence by sanitizing them through the constitution.

After the failed further constitution amendment to bar then Vice-President Moi from automatic ascendancy to power upon the demise of founding president Jomo Kenyatta, Moi came in as popular president and with populist tendencies till he was able to buy enough quantity of goodwill from the public. After the failed and often controversial 1982 coup Moi took full advantage and continued with the familiar constitution amendments aimed at consolidating power further and setting the country on the spiral down to absolute authoritarian rule and dictatorship. First came in the enactment of section 2a in the constitution which made Kenyan a de jure (one party) state.It in effect outlawed political competition. Moi word on anything was to become law.

Perceived dissidents and real dissidents were to be consigned to both emotional and physical torment and politically annihilated. In effect Kenya retrogressed to a real dictatorship whose effects were soon to catch up on the economy. By 1988 all the systems of governance were overwhelmingly under total control of Mois authoritarian rule and were completely abused to even blatantly and ashamingly rig the 1988 general election. This set the country to one of the most painful period in post-independence history. Corruption became rampant and Mois cronies became law onto themselves. Mysterious killings or rather political assassinations which have never been resolved to date continued to rear its ugly head, as was the case during the Jomo Kenyatta’s rule. The economy started getting hard knocks and off went the job and employment opportunities as both local and international investors found it hard to invest or do business in Kenya. The level of corruption made the cost of initiating, investing or doing business in Kenya quite high.

KANU the ruling party became the father and mother of everything in terms of appointing, disappointing and in allocation of resources. In effect the biggest business in Kenya became KANU. Moi and KANU were everything about Kenya. Disillusioned young professionals and youth took the government head on led by reform minded politicians. This culminated in the 1990 Saba Saba showdown of 07.07.1990 which came shortly after the assassination of then foreign minister Robert Ouko. The riots were so immense and the government reacted swiftly and a good number of youth and people were killed plus the leading reforms lights then Messrs Kenneth Matiba and Charles Rubia were detained without trial.

These and subsequent events agitating for political pluralism led to the hasty repeal of section 2 a of the constitution in December 1991 and the subsequent release of Kenneth Matiba and Charles Rubia. Matiba left detention an ailing man and had to be rushed to a London hospital as the opposition starting enveloping around the doyen of opposition politics the late Jaramogi Odinga and a host of young and upcoming politicians who included his own son Raila Odinga, Paul Muite, Gitobu Imanyara, Kiraitu Murungi, Martha Karua, Mukhisa Kituyi, Japheth Shamalla, George Nthenge, Ahmed Bahmariz, Martin Shikuku, Koigi Wamwere, George Anyona, among others. The current president Mwai Kibaki also resigned from Mois government to launch his own party after Jaramogi led the FORD party. When Matiba returned from hospital the opposition fragmented further leading to a split that saw Jaramogi leading FORD Kenya, Matiba FORD Asili and Kibaki DP. The fragmented opposition lost the poll to Moi and KANU in the 1992 general election.

Kenya was not out of the wood as yet. KANU was back and the hasty repealing of the section2aof the constitution left the apparatus and instruments of governance consolidated in the presidency which was once again in the hands of Moi and KANU. Major political and economic scandals erupted in Kenya with the infamous Goldenberg gold export scam costing the tax payer a whooping and approximately 160 billion Kenyan shillings. (approx 3 Billion US $). This has remained to rock Kenya to date. The scandal wrought the Kenyan economy almost to its knees with skyrocketing inflation and the cost of basic commodities services and decent housing out of reach of most of the population. This coupled with KANUs caress spending and irrational money supply during the 1992 presidential campaigns set the Kenyan economy to a further and huge downward spiral.

Yet this also the period when a huge portion of the post independence babies had grown up and were ready to be released to the job market or were already out. The honey moon was clearly over for Kenya and Kenyans. Desperation set in and most youth turned into crime or became easy pawns for the greedy politicians as instruments for fighting tribal and supremacy wars. KANU and President Moi were to hang to power after successfully defending the presidency during the 1997 general election. Since 1991 and throughout KANUs reign subsequently, the country was also rocked by tribal clashes particularly in Rift Valley and other parts of the country aimed at driving unwanted tribal groups.

Then came in the NARC revolution of 2002 during which KANU and Mois self appointed heir Uhuru Kenyatta were defeated during the general election. NARC under the leadership Mwai Kibaki romped home to victory. During the campaigns they had promised to be creating and providing at least 500,000 jobs annually to the growing number of unemployed youths and the many others maturing for employment and graduating from various institutions of learning. This also turned to be another mirage.

The NARC revolution also turned to be a major disappointment. Corruption continued to thrive and the reliance of old guards in positions of power in politics and governance conntinued.Meanwhile frustrated youths who had grown in poverty and hopelessness due to mis-governance had already graduated full scale to potent criminal outfits. In came vicious and dreaded groups like Mungiki. This has been a waking nightmare to the security in the country to date

Come 2007 general election and NARC was no more. The main protagonist this time round was ODM led by Mr. Raila Odinga who was formerly in NARC and PNU led by President Kibaki. The election was seriously bungled by the Electoral Commission of Kenya that the presidential results came to be heavily disputed. The country erupted. The frustrated youth were in the fore front once again fighting, killing, maiming, torching houses, cars and other property and were over demonstrating and each defending the camps they belonged to. The nation almost went asunder. Even after the world led by USA, European Union, Britain, UN and African Union forced the protagonists to share power in a coalition government this just dissipated the chaos. The strata forming Kenya remains fragile. Kenya simply needs a constitutional review and reform and major reforms in its institutions of governance.

The youth have remained losers all through. They are continuously reminded that they are leaders of tomorrow while the myopic old guards continue to drive the country to abyss. The youthful leaders who have joined government look all ready to sit pretty to share the spoils with the old guard who are too ready to entice them with the available sweet goodies.

The change can only come with mass education of the youth to take charge of their destiny and stop being pawns to old entrenched power wielders who do not have their interests in their heart. The old guard incidentally has the necessary with withal to buy the support of the youth to cause mayhem and to do their bidding at critical times. During the voting cycle critical points such as during the campaign periods the old guard and their cohorts dish part of their loot plus other monies earned in at largely un-explainable circumstances to gullible youth and populace and with hefty promises to boot. Fighting is the order of the day. Once the objective is achieved the power men quickly ditch them to enjoy their achieved status un-interrupted and un-deterred.

This has perpetuated the culture of poverty and exploitation of the masses leading to retrogressive economy not only in Kenya but to many other African states. The people in power have used crafty means to sustain their cling to power and their cronies have unfailingly did their bidding by corrupting the youth who unleash violence when called to, yet it is the same youth who end up the main losers. If you examine the regimes of Robert Mugabe of Zimbabwe, Omar Bongo of Gabon, Hosni Mubarak of Egypt, Kaguta Museveni of Uganda, Omar Bashir of Sudan and others from across Africa the same techniques are ruthlessly and selfishly employed. They use violence and intimidation to sustain their leadership plus skewed, crafty and outdated constitutional governance sanitize their evil schemes. Kenya as earlier mentioned is just but a micro-cosm of a continent heavily misgoverned and with fragile constitutional order.

Educating the youth on democracy would set the pace to opening their eyes to a world of good possibilities. What is good in America and the Western world in general is good for Africa. Whatever good is possible in America and the Western world is also possible in Africa. African rulers or rather dictators claim of sovereignty and unique culture is just very hollow and stupid and should not be entertained.

Educating youth on democracy will inevitably change voting patterns, change governance styles and enhance accountability. Once youths are shown on possibilities of restoring hope and dynamic governance they will take charge of the revolution. The inertia existing is that the youth have been craftily manipulated by the potentates into a state of despondency and hopelessness. However it is possible to change this evil direction. The youth must be educated on democracy if we have to change politics in Africa. Without sorting the political misfeasance it is not possible to sort the economic quagmire and malaise already existing in the continent.

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API

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