Monday, March 9, 2009



By Jerry Okungu
Nairobi, Kenya
March 9, 2009

Jakoyo Midiwo gives the coalition one year; the longest it can survive. He feels very strongly that once a new constitution is in place, Kenyans should return to the ballot box to get rid of the present arrangement. He is a fed up with the coalition just as many ordinary Kenyans are. Never mind that he is the government Chief Whip in Parliament.

George Thuo of Juja is asking the ODM to take a walk if they are not happy in the coalition. He says there was a government before the coalition came into being. In other words, PNU can still run the government without ODM! Really?

Uhuru Kenyatta, Raila Odinga’s deputy is of the same opinion that ODM should get lost if they are not happy with the coalition. In this assertion he has the full backing of a number of PNU affiliate parties including ODM Kenya’s Mutula Kilonzo.
As the war of words raged over the weekend, Uhuru Kenyatta found time to retreat to his Gatundu constituency to ask his villagers to declare him Mt. Kenya’s torchbearer for the 2012. They did just that with a lot of song, dance and a good measure of theatrics.

As this Gatundu was in progress, deep west in Alego, ODM supremos were also beating their drums. James Aggrey Orengo was emphatic that the spirit of the letter of the Grand Coalition had been violated by their partners. On this score he was eloquently supported by his cabinet colleague Sally Kosgey. Professor Ayiecho Olweny of Muhoroni tried to add something to the debate but words failed to come out his mouth probably due to the hot weather.

If my counting is right, Uhuru’s endorsement for the 2012 makes him join the swelling number of PNU hopefuls that want to be our president in four years time. We now have two candidates from Western Province, two from Central Province, one from Rift Valley and one from Eastern.

On the ODM side; if the events of 2007 are anything to go by, Raila Odinga, William Ruto, Musalia Mudavadi, Najib Balala and Joe Nyagah will battle it out again at the primaries if they don’t part ways. The winner will most likely invite his closest rival as the running mate just as it happened in 2007 depending on democracy surviving in the ODM.

What this means is that as the ODM will be voting for their torch bearer, George Saitoti, Uhuru Kenyatta, Martha Karua, Moses Wetangula, Kalonzo Musyoka and Wakoli Bifuoli will be battling it out among PNU affiliate parties if they will still be together. However, chances are that, KANU, NARC Kenya and ODM Kenya may never see the need to remain in PNU. They will probably have their candidates on the ballot box for presidential and parliamentary elections.

Whereas ODM and PNU meetings in Nyanza and Central took very partisan angles; Ruto’s Rift Valley rally was more reconciliatory, opting for the middle ground. His speech was directed at the suffering Kenyans as he urged his colleagues to stop political pettiness and make the coalition work.

Having said that; as much as our political leaders are busy angling for the presidency four years away, are they the leaders Kenyans really want now or in the near future? Will Kenyans want to elect any of these leaders currently in Parliament come the next elections?

As I watched the Gatundu, Eldoret and Alego crowds listen to their leaders making political pronouncements; one thing was quite noticeable; there was no enthusiasm in any of those crowds. It was a sober mood for those politicians sitting on the high table.

The truth is; Kenyans are tired of the current political leadership right from President Kibaki to the lowest Member of Parliament. This country is crying for fresh leadership that has never been elected to Parliament, never been a civil servant and never been a household name. Kenya is crying for a political greenhorn from the private sector who has not been corrupted by the status quo.
They need a leader who has no political debts to pay once in office.

This country is dying for a leader who will be ruthless with corruption, feed Kenyans, make our neighborhoods safe and keep our borders secure! Kenyans are crying for a leader who will be fearless enough to sack non-performing Attorney General, judges and anti- corruption chiefs.

Kenyans need a leader who will run the country with just 15 members of the cabinet recruited from non sitting MPs.

They are crying for a role model and they will search until they get him or her before 2012.