Monday, December 24, 2012

Political Christmas Theatre.

It has been an exciting two weeks. The manner in which Musalia Mudavadi's career has roller-coastered should be a lesson to those who would dream of trusting the generation change of the TNA/URP Jubilee Coalition. The toing-and-froing of Mama Rainbow has redefined political expediency and short-sightedness. Mrs Ngilu declared in a rather tame event that she was in the race for the presidency and that like all others she was going it alone. Now she has not only abandoned her fellow-travellers in the CORD, she has thrown in her lot with the Uhuru/Ruto ticket, giving up her chance at the brass ring of Kenyan politics and choosing,instead, to settle for the rather dubious position of Majority Leader in the Senate. The catch, of course, is she has to win the Kitui Senate seat either as the main candidate or as the Women Representative. It would be a humiliating comedown for her if she were to lose the election and have to be nominated by the young men of the Jubilee coalition.

Despite Eugene Wamalwa's bombast, his party, his coalition and his connections have proven to be so much dust in the wind. His dreams, if they were realistic that is, have crumbled. Mr Wamalwa will not be Kenya's fourth president bar some catastrophe that eliminates everyone, including James Ole Kiyiapi. Mr Wamalwa's campaign to put his name of the ballot has been marked by short-lived relationships: Simama Kenya, Maina Njenga, G7 and in due time, Cyrus Jirongo. Peter Kenneth and Raphael Tuju have had a good run, but the ex-Starehe Boys' boys have glaring weaknesses. Neither has a following beyond the die-hards every campaign attracts. Mr Tuju, particularly, will be remembered as a high-handed failure at the Foreign Affairs Ministry, especially when he and Moses Wetangula attempted to cut a 'juniour senator' from America down to size. That man now sits in the Oval Office of the White House, the most powerful office in the whole world. Luo Nyanza, especially, will not be forgiving Mr Tuju any time soon for that slight to their most illustrious son. Or, for that matter, for his daring to throw his hat in the ring with Agwambo aka Tinga aka Hammer aka Nyundo when he has no chance of winning; in other words, he is there to spoil for their other favourite son, an argument that has been made against Peter Kenneth's and Martha Karua's presidential ambitions. They stand accused of being the main stumbling blocks to Uhuru Kenyatta's smooth ascent to State House. Especially as both present apparent less polarising identities, though less so for Mrs Karua.

What we are not examining, though, are the down ticket races: Senator, Women Rep, Governor, MP, and County Rep. We still have no idea whom the leading contenders will nominate to the Cabinet or whom they'll wish to appoint as Principal Secretaries. It is not enough that they have outlined, however vaguely, their plans, they still need to tell us whom they trust to see their visions through to the end. Despite Mwai Kibaki's apparent hands-off leadership style, his government has enjoyed the services of some of the ablest public servants the country has to offer. We can only pray that a few of them will stay behind in the transitional period to assist the incoming Executive get its sea legs before it begins to make whole-scale changes in the structure of the government. It is telling that many of CORD's politicians have vast experience, some of it - but not all - of dubious character, in how the Executive and Parliament function. The same cannot be said for Jubilee, which seems to have been packed by some of the greatest swindlers of the Moi and Kibaki Eras. If it is a question of change, then we need to know who the spanner boys will be. If I even see Aden Duale's fingerprints on any national programme, then I will know that Kenya is doomed.

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