Wednesday, January 19, 2011



By Jerry Okungu

Nairobi, Kenya

January 17, 2011

What is Kalonzo Musyoka up to? Is he out to mess up the case for Francis Muthaura and General Ali at The Hague as he erodes Kenyan sympathies for them? Why can’t he let these people prepare for their defense in peace? Is this a case of the outsider who bereaves more than the bereaved? What is this lone ranger tactics all over the continent all about? Does he have the clout to derail the ICC process single handedly as he has promised? Is the Vice President out to cause disunity in the Coalition government? Why would the Leader of Government Business engage himself in hate speech all over the country while masquerading as a Christian?

For the first time I sincerely thanked God that Kalonzo Musyoka was not my president. I thanked God that Kalonzo Musyoka convincingly lost the 2007 elections because had he won, this country would have gone to the dogs a long time ago.

Now I know why the 2007 loser was busy negotiating his slot in the Kibaki government at a time the country was burning. Mutula Kilonzo must surely be regretting why he got involved with him in the first place. The man has embarrassed every Kenyan that might have nursed any hopes of him one day being the president of this republic.

He is a man who will never miss an opportunity to remind us that he is a good God fearing Christian yet, he will not lose sleep teaming up with tribalists and hate mongers to malign his political opponents. The more he does this, the more becomes repulsive to so many Kenyans even in his Ukambani home. I do hope he realizes this.

I have this eerie feeling that even though the Vice President studied law; it would appear like he went into politics prematurely before he mastered his profession. This was evident when he waded into the debate on whether to foot the bills of two ICC suspects or not. Pitted against Mutula Kilonzo, the VP was left with eggs all over his face. His arguments were hollow. In fact the more he talked, the more he began to sound like the government spokesman.

Kalonzo Musyoka believes that public funds should be spent defending two of the six Kenyans named as suspects in the impending Hague trials. There is nothing fundamentally unfair with his argument had he put it into context. Indeed if finally the Police Commissioner and Head of Service are determined to have a case to answer at The Hague, it will be obvious that while they committed the alleged crimes they were indeed on duty serving the government of the day. However, what Kalonzo must tell us is whether someone in authority that hired them ordered them to commit those crimes with the assurance that should they be caught, that same authority would take responsibility.

The two people at the center of controversy were and are still indeed public or civil servants. By that definition alone, they are meant to serve the society or members of the public and at all times they must act in the interest of the public not an individual in government.

And if indeed they acted at the behest of an individual then that individual should pay their Hague expenses not the public they are alleged to have committed crimes against.

An even better illustration is the economic crime case that is facing Henry Kosgey. Kosgey is accused of using his discretion to give a waiver to a number of Kenyans allowing them to import cars beyond 8 years old in violation of a government regulation barring importation of such motor vehicles. Indeed Kosgey did not give such waivers in his private capacity. He did it in his capacity as Minister for Industrialization of the Republic of Kenya. He signed such orders in that capacity in his office on a government letterhead. Should the government pay Kosgey’s legal fees even after taking him to court?

The Hague Six are heading to the Netherlands because Kenyan judicial system failed us. They are heading there because our law enforcement agencies, prosecutors and judges have failed us for the last fifty years. Because of this consistent failure of our governance system, the Kenyan public lost faith in our local system a long time ago. We came to believe that the only thing that worked on our land was the animal called impunity. We came to believe that with money and political power, we could commit any crime and get away with it because the entire judicial system was on sale.

In civilized societies, when crimes such as rape, mass murders, arson and forced evictions are committed by individuals or groups of persons against individuals, families or communities, those crimes are committed against the state and the state prosecutes those criminals. What The Hague is doing is to help us achieve what we failed to achieve through our local courts. The charge therefore will be William Ruto Vs the Republic of Kenya, Francis Muthaura Vs the Republic of Kenya or Uhuru Kenyatta vs. The Republic of Kenya and so on. Under the circumstances, it would be illogical to expect the complainant to foot the costs of its accused. Kalonzo’s argument therefore turns logic on its head.