This piece will not be any sweeter to the ears and eyes of the supporters of Uhuru and Ruto. For I am giving them my scorecard. After a careful analysis of almost five years at the helm of government, I give the Jubilee government a poor D- for their non-efforts in making Kenya a better place.
Uhuruto could easily have gotten grade E, but for a few good things they have done, for which they deserve credit. And because what they have accomplished is what any average leadership should achieve anyway, that is the why I am giving them grade D-.
You ask why?
I still remember that beautiful Nairobi morning when both Uhuru and Ruto held one of their press conferences outside the State House. They were out to announce their picks for cabinet positions. Both were resplendent in white shirts and red ties. The shirts were folded to the elbow, signifying a duo that was ready to go and work for the nation.
And working they did. First agenda of their business was to shake off the sword of Damocles that was hanging on their necks; the ICC. For this major hiccup, both Uhuru and Ruto did not spare a cent. They went the whole hog! They fought tooth and nail, literally. Amina Mohammed, the Foreign Affairs CS, was made the roving ambassador for the duo. She and others traversed the continent of Africa and elsewhere to lobby for her bosses. She was very articulate both at the AU and at UNO for the case of Africa being maligned by the ICC.
You and I will never know how much state money was spent to see Uhuru and Ruto get back their freedom after vanquishing Bensouda at the Hague global court. But I can bet my whole lifetime earnings that the Kenyan state coffers were left with a huge dent after the ICC judges admitted that the evidence provided by Ocampo and Bensouda was not enough to see Uhuru and Ruto cool their heels in a foreign prison.
After the ICC let them off, Uhuru embarked on a global blitzkrieg. He traversed the globe doing this and that; signing this and that loan, mostly from the Chinese. In the thick of his diplotours, Obama and the Pope came calling, giving Uhuru something the pat his back.
As Uhuru was busy hobnobbing with the Chinese, back home, the likes of Ann Mumbi Waiguru and Josephine Kabura were up to no good. They were joined by an aptly named “Sky team” that was said to operate from DP Ruto’s office lead by none other than his personal assistant.
Again nobody will ever know how much went to the dogs between the friends of Uhuru and their colleagues from Ruto’s office. But one thing is clear; the state coffers became a tender-preneurs playground. Anyone who was connected to the presidency had a field day looting and stashing.
Having seen the unabated looting that was happening at the national government, county governments decided to be copycats. The best job in Kenya ended up being that of the otherwise nondescript MCAs. The thieving MCAs and the 47 governors are the newest millionaires in Kenya today. Kenya is today a bandit economy.
I will never forget the day when Uhuru was besieged by corruption and when asked about it he retorted, much like a castrated bull, “Mnataka nifanyeje mimi?” In the meantime, we came to learn that members of his own family were being paid ten million shillings a piece for empty container clinics!
You and I will also never forget the poor pupils of Langata Road Primary school protesting when the hotel next to their playing field had grabbed part of their school land to build a parking lot!
Even as he initially denied owning the hotel, video evidence emerged of the DP inspecting the yet to be completed Weston Hotel. He was to later complain that Raila was just a rubble rouser who was not happy that a hustler had built a hotel in Nairobi.
Having witnessed the evils of corruption and the wishy-washy attitude the Jubilee government has handled it; I dare say again that corruption has become the Achilles tendon of this administration. I therefore have no time for them! It is time for them to go.
On August 8, Kenyans will have another opportunity to elect their leaders who will take on the wheel of the nation for the next five years. And because I personally have no qualms with Raila and Kalonzo, I say, why not give them a chance?
Kenya has more that 40 tribes, each of which has a right to have their own occupy the house in the hill and enjoy the trappings of power. I would be happy if an Elmolo child would grow up with the knowledge that even him or her can rise to the top of the nation’s leadership. Yet 54 years after independence, only two tribes have had the privilege of producing the Commander in Chief.
I am rooting for the marginalized communities. Northern Kenya, Coast, and Luo Nyanza. And because Luo Nyanza has been at the forefront of liberation right from the colonial times, I say let Baba be our 5th President.
I say this with my head held up high. Hear me good. Those who us who have travelled a little bit in Kenya know that the colonial government did not bring any development to Luo Nyanza. The successive independent governments treated the region as an unwanted nagging child. The only time some poor apology of power was felt in the lake region was when Owad ga Akinyi was Prime Minister. Kibaki then started building roads and bringing some semblance of development to the region.
Even though the devolved county governments are getting equity in resource and capital mobilization, some regions in Kenya need intentional and long lasting development injection. Western Kenya and large swaths of the Coast and Northern Kenya are the sleeping giants of our economic prosperity. Open up the regions for business and our economy will grow ten fold. Believe me!
But the ruling elite will hear none of this. To them, Raila is a Kimundu, a cunning and shrewd politician out to disrupt the status quo. Yet that may be precisely what the doctor has ordered.
I end with a hypothesis that the longer the Kikuyu-Kalenjin hegemony continues thinking that they must be represented at State House, the more the likelihood of never having a cohesive nation. Hata akina mama wa makabila mengine wamezaa viongozi!
By Peter Gaitho | firstname.lastname@example.org