Political & Social Empowerment


I have an admission to make. From the dawn of my consciousness well into the Year of our Lord 2018, I did not ideologically see eye to eye with many leaders from Central Kenya. For the most part, I viewed many of them as of questionable mien, blatantly dishonorable, chameleonistic, avaricious, morally-bereft, hypocritical, opportunistic vermin, pumped up on the flatulence of arrogance borne mostly out of ignorance, dishonest, grabbers, back-stabbers and mostly the weak link in our strife for national cohesion. For them the statement, “It is our time to eat” was the eternal flavour of the day. My sentiments of vehement opprobrium to these specimens of the species Homo Sapiens Sapiens didn’t ring as ignominiously true as it did for the archetype of this malfeasance, one Hon. Moses Kuria – MP for Gatundu South; indeed the home constituency of the current President of Kenya. And he didn’t cover himself in glory either, each time trying to aver the tribal superiority of his ethnic orientation going as far as dishing epithets of tribal contempt about the former Prime Minister and his kinsmen even calling for the forceful circumcision of members of that Ethnic grouping, knowing full well it was against their cultural norms and inexorably coaxed their chagrin. Excrement figuratively hit the fan one day in 2015 when he called for a willing taker to literally ‘whack’ the former Premier as had happened to another high ranking Cabinet Minister affiliated to the Luo nation this same month in 1969, confident in the fact that there would only be a little mourning, some minuscule stone-throwing, disorganized riots and road blocking for a few days culminating in the total amnesia of the memory of the grand old man. In his heart of hearts, he posited that the uncircumcised poltroons from the lakeside were ill-equipped to mount any long-term civil war to avenge their tribal Kingpin’s assassination. Of course, the asininity of these said pronouncements can neither be gainsaid nor overstated here but we have surely come a long way from then as the aforementioned ‘Njamba ya Ruriri’ – an affectionate moniker bequeathed upon Kuria his tribal henchmen, has long lost national political relevance consequent to the handshake between the President and his longtime adversary, the Premier (Emeritus). I was recently streaming an episode of the ‘Bonga Na Jalas’ show on the YouTube Channel called Jalang’o TV where the invited guest was the majorly sequestered but still effervescent Hon. Kuria. He gave an interesting anecdote of a day in January 1995 when he was in attendance during the day of remembrance of the 1st anniversary of Kenya’s Nationalist and seminal Vice-President Hon. Jaramogi Ajuma Oginga Odinga melancholic demise live from ‘Kang’o ka Jaramogi’. Then the nation was under the clutches of a despotic regime that used every excuse contrivable to curtail the civil liberties of the ordinary citizens. At the time, the hackneyed edict was not to have loud, celebratory music no matter the festivities or time of day. The reality is that Jaramogi isn’t just anybody and that directive was not only greeted with flagrant contempt but was flouted wholesale. D.O Misiani in concert with his Shirati Jazz band had been enlisted to perform and was indubitably in full voice, strumming the tools of their trade, doling out the beats of ‘Ohangla’ & ‘Benga’ liberally to all with a functional auditory canal within earshot of that jurisdiction! Much as the winds of autocracy and authoritarianism had minimal sway in Luo-Nyanza, the Provincial authority was in full force. In the twinkle of an eye, the gathering was disrupted by riot police firing teargas canisters dispersing the crowd, but who are our lakeside brothers? They duly obliged to this duel of wills as projectiles of all shapes and sizes, not less some of the still issuing teargas canisters were hurled back in the opposite direction to the bemused and massively overpowered custodians of law and order. The then nimble-footed Moses Kuria and slightly-built Oburu Odinga had to escape the ensuing melee by exercising serpentine agility to crawl under a prickly Kay Apple fence. At least they lived to tell the tale and eschewed the inconvenience of being guests of the state for subversion of lawful authority!

The arena where the war for the 2nd Liberation of Kenya was fought

25 years later, such draconian laws are in our rear-view mirror but still more has to be done for further expansion of our bounds of emancipation as a people. Yesterday, as Kenyans we commemorated the 30th Saba Saba day (7th of July), an unofficial holiday where the Kenyan Second Liberation struggle and eventual attainment of multiparty democracy is celebrated. Of course being unofficial, the day is mostly uneventful & moribund to the Generation Z, many of who were yet to be born when the foregoing that necessitated its existence took place. We may have made great strides as a democratic nation, even bequeathing upon ourselves a progressive constitution in 2010 to safeguard our rights and remind us of our obligations and so would have expected yesterday to be all hale & hearty. But lo and alas; mirroring living memory, the day turned out to be one of running battles with the police, protests, hubbub, a ‘kamukunji’ here, a peppering of teargas there in antipathy to the Constitutional enshrinement in Chapter 4, Articles 33 to 37 that guarantee the Freedom to assemble, Peacefully demonstrate, Present petitions and memoranda to public authorities, have an opinion, Conscience and expression for all Kenyan citizens. Maybe it was just our way of reintegrating back to society after 3 months of lockdown due to the scourge of the novel Coronavirus pandemic. But on the flipside, who is to begrudge the Police their nostalgia about the many a clobbering, foot chases and all-round malevolence their predecessors had laissez-faire to mete upon the citizenry on many other iterations of this day over the three-decade period?

The zeitgeist of the time in the United States of America, spreading like a bushfire the world over is the ‘Black Lives Matter’ Movement. Indeed with the resumption of the English Premier League season, for the past few matches the players have been duking it out with that rallying call emblazoned on the back of their match-day shirts after taking the convivial knee. And why has this movement taken root so deeply at this unprecedented epoch when we are dealing with the existential quagmire that is the Covid-19 pandemic? Despite the decree of emancipation from slavery ostensibly to end the practice signed and proclaimed by the incomparable 16th American President Abraham Lincoln in 1863, the practice seems alive and well even today in the form of systemic oppression against Black People. Prima facie, slavery is no longer in play in America; however, the spectre of inordinate police brutality against the mostly unarmed Negroid demographic has reared a very ugly head. Injustice has in the past been relegated to small items of teletext news running at the bottom of TV screens during the news broadcast mostly to the notice of very few. However, this nefarious practice was brought to the mainstream of international news headlines when a white police officer was captured by an amateur citizen journalist’s mobile phone camera kneeling on the neck of an unarmed black man George Perry Floyd Jr. for 9 minutes straight until the man gave up the ghost! In the intervening period, his professional colleagues nonchalantly stood by, as if such actions were all in a day’s work. The footage was uploaded on social media and sparked worldwide umbrage to all with functional grey matter within their crania. This piqued the collective consciousness of many and forced the hand of the traditionally standoffish American legal justice system on matters pertaining to Afro-American affairs to take action against the four police officers captured in the video playing the role of idle spectators albeit furniture in the face of the ongoing barbarism. For me the most disturbing aspect of the entire ordeal isn’t the unyielding bloodlust of the officer involved Derek Chauvin – aptly named by his parents as foreboding for his racial ‘chauvinism’ during the entire ordeal but the intransigence of his colleagues. This was an unarmed man who had peacefully yielded to his arrest ostensibly for attempting to use a fake 20 dollar bill to buy cigarettes in an endeavour to keep warm in the vagaries of winter that chattel slavery unfairly bestowed upon the genotypically discordant black man whose ancestors had invariably been plucked out of tropical bliss in West Africa. That a grown man had tapped out by Minute 3 and was audibly calling upon his dead mother for intercession by Minute 7:30 out of earshot of the zoned-out brutes in the Minneapolis Police Department on beat that day is savagery to the macabre. Incontrovertible preexisting bad-blood between Officer Chauvin and the late Floyd notwithstanding, a storm has been brewed of far greater virulence than any would have even remotely hypothesized. All symbols of White exceptionalism and the memory of the American Confederacy in the South are going up in flames. Statues as far as in the hallowed halls of the American House of Congress are being brought down as riots and looting are in full swing. The movement has now been picked up by a global audience as the human race opens its eyes to the innocuous but antiquated remnants of the narrative of white superiority that was ripe for debunking. This is in acceptance of empirical wisdom concocted by the black-rights activist of the American Civil Rights Movement Rev. Martin Luther King Jr. opining, Injustice Anywhere is a threat to Justice Everywhere as we are all caught in an inescapable network of mutuality tied to a single garment of destiny.” His recompense for these sentiments of egalitarianism was assassination by the ‘lead’ in 1968.

George Perry Floyd Jr. getting executed by Officer Derek Chauvin of the Minneapolis Police Department

Much as we are all affected by this movement indirectly, it seems perverse and even hypocritical that within our climes, we have men and women vociferously equivocating the Black Lives Matter slogan even posting the picture of darkness in their social media handles. All this in mock solidarity with the winds of the time in antipathy to their own perpetration of injustice to their fellow men within this nation.

Why would the fare-gormandizing bevy purport to feign solicitude with this noble initiative when they show no mercy to the pecuniary welfare of their masculine compatriots?

How many are in government employ and are paid a salary but still have to get their palms greased just to do the very job that they were employed to do? Corruption is a donkey that I have flogged on the pages of my publication so much that I don’t think I can add any more substance but still will. As a people we condone bribe-taking as long as we win that tender, escape culpability when caught on the wrong side of the law and even to get our children favours from scholarly institutions that will boost their egos majorly to the exclusion of their contemporaries. The culture of intellectualism is running on fumes in this nation as men and women bribe institutions of tertiary and quaternary education to get degree classifications and even postgraduate qualifications they have not earned. I have in the past decried the murkiness that has roped in even religious leaders who for a pittance, that is the ‘donation’ of a few million Kenya shillings have their heads turned and collective consciences roiled into zombie broth to trumpet a particular political agenda even one detrimental to the rank and file of the Republic. When you hear celebrants parroting similar refrains to some politicians about “kuna Mungu juu” and other abominable rhetoric in dissonance to well-founded Christian religious doctrine that the Almighty is Omnipresent and Omnipotent when their blackguardly benefactor has been accused of corruption, we know we are in big trouble as a country. When righteousness is a quality to be auctioned to the highest bidder at the court of mass ignorance on matters religious dogma, you can ill-afford to stand up with moral authority and feign solidarity for the #BlackLivesMatter hashtag elsewhere! Faith & Foolishness is a perilous cocktail.

                                                      A Pregnant Teenager

There is a news headline that has been endemic on print and broadcast media in recent times about teenage lasses getting pregnant that definitely riles me to within a sliver of apoplexy. It pains to see minors, some not yet even fully schooled on the nuances of wiping their own noses having parental responsibilities laden onto their flimsy shoulders. Haven’t these little ones the right to protection against an affront on their own dignity inherent in every human being as per the strictures of Chapter 4, Article 28 of our Constitution? In some cases the pregnancies are as a result of biological experimentation gone awry between boys and girls trying to get an inkling on the functionality of the various structures of their anatomy particularly the nether regions! However, in a myriad other cases, it is the result of sexual abuse and coercion by older family members and even supposed familial acquaintances who are more often than not of the age of majority. Aren’t there statutes against Statutory Rape which is engagement of any form of sexual activity with a minor? Some try to atone for these egregious actions using traditional dispute resolution mechanisms like availing a goat to the father of the aggrieved, a handshake to boot and all is forgiven and forgotten. But what about the young lady whose life is ruined, who is now mentally tortured by a man who broke the bond of trust she had with them? If she gets pregnant, what becomes of her schooling and future at large after delivery and induction into motherhood? I feel now is the opportune time to take a stranglehold of affairs as we cannot afford to have so many young mothers whose future prospects of productivity are curtailed especially by sexual predators and paedophiles. Contrition for me is insufficient retribution for such far-reaching acts of aggression against another human being. Criminals need to cool their heels in the slammer! A call has been put out for the introduction of Sex Education, which for the most part is an argument that generates more heat than light. Also, I am forced to enquire about the operability of the Sexual offences bill antecedently tabled by Hon. Njoki Ndung’u and legislated into an Act of Law? In my considered opinion, this law has had the efficacy of a dead rodent on a squirrel cage with regards to deterring such depravity!

The bulge of my ire is reserved for those still engaged in human trafficking and dabbling in modern-day slavery. I read and hear otherworldly tales about men and women who were recruited to work in foreign missions, went through the prerequisites to travel abroad and were carted to foreign climes only for the entire landscape to undergo a tectonic shift. They then had their Passports confiscated at the airport as the nirvana promised turned into an insufferable hell as they were consigned to a life of drudgery and ceaseless suffering in unpaid servitude with neither channels for recourse nor the probability of escape. We hear horror tales from the Middle East and North Africa of our compatriots tortured, subjected to criminally inhumane conditions, some murdered with their memories fading into oblivion which is not something that should be condoned any longer.

Tied to the paragraph above are Economic freedoms that are subjugated in this country that result in the above situation. The nation lacks a proper policy direction on the remuneration of technical skilled labour. There is often a call to the youth for the uptake of marketable and usable skills ultimately with the goal of self-employment. Many heed to these calls but eventually come to the realization that not everybody can be self-employed or competently run a business. Moreover, capital in itself is more often than not a limiting factor. So the young men and women are forced to flock towards employment. Rubber hits the road when it becomes clear that for many jobs, the mismatch between competence and remuneration level is as wide as the Gulf of Aden! Without mentioning specific jobs, we have those that were traditionally associated with the top cadre of students and the cream of the crop. There are those like procurement and business management that were the preserve of the B students. The painful pill to take is that sometimes if you referred to the payment schedule of some many companies the auditors, business managers, HR professionals, procurement officials among a few others are rewarded for their competence at a level far above those actually engaged in the technical side of things inclusive of Engineers. I have seen a company schedule that pays Engineers as low as 20,000 Shillings, their training notwithstanding against a salary of nearly 150K for a position loosely referred to as the Business Development Personnel. I could harp on end about autochthonous skilled labour being the essential cog in the attainment of Vision 2030 and the part of human resource in the actualization of SDGs but apparently as per the observations of George Orwell in his masterpiece; ‘The Animal Farm’ – All Animals were created Equal but some are decidedly more equal than others with regards to remuneration. That may be the reason it is more economically rewarding in Africa to be a Pastor preaching demented doctrine or even a Traditional Healer than the much-vaunted careers of old.

Underremuneration of Skilled Labour is tantamount to an economic crime

Linked closely to the Black Lives Matter furore in the United States is our own homegrown struggle against Police Brutality. In my pragmatic retrospection, a causal link has emerged where apparently if you give a man power and authority, his default setting is usually to abuse that priviledge to oppress the others subject to him. Police brutality bears eerily similar hallmarks in Kenya as in the apparently more civilized occidental climes. When President Uhuru Kenyatta issued the edict on the curfew and regional lockdowns, the police took up the mantle with uncommon gusto. Within the first day of enforcing curfew rules, already scenes of police overzealousness were evident for all to see. A video is doing rounds on the local media of a truck driver who was simply trying to beat the curfew and get home to his family being stopped by the police and flogged like a ‘mburukenge’ as if he committed some heinous crime. Such actions stink of not just pent up aggression within our police force but also a vengeance albeit envy of some sections of the population who the police now take advantage to victimize in this season. Scenes of extrajudicial killings have also been rife with media reports of a homeless man who was felled by a police bullet for failing to get home on time! What home is available to a homeless man? As a sage once put it, “the measure of the civilization of a society is assayed by how she treats her most vulnerable citizens.”

Police Brutality in Kenya

The issue of body shaming is a mercurial glissando which I feel I have insufficient Emotional Quotient to deal with considerately but will soldier on nonetheless. My reason to say this is that it is the quintessence of a double-edged sword or as the overly theatrical aptly put it, “trifling whilst the sword of Damocles dangles over your head!” I would be remiss if I failed to enunciate that the critical mass of indignation over the body-shaming thing is mostly manufactured outrage interspersed with thin skins! Many are the episodes where a young lady has posted a photo of herself in a negligee or bikini on social media seeking approbation and ends up opening a Pandora’s Box of unsolicited opinions and rather acerbic invectives. Don’t get me wrong, I am neither a connoisseur of the dark-art nor do I in any way support body shaming. Indeed, I have been inadvertently forced to play the role of a knight in shining armour in a few social media fora, many a time protecting damsels who brought not just distress but oodles of dishonour upon their own being. The internet may appear interesting and colourful but in actuality its crevices are the preserve of the recluse, quite a few who were not hugged enough as babies, some too shy to approach an actual flesh & blood member of the opposite gender, some full of bitterness about a past rejection, the bulk were insufficiently suckled by their mothers, some just congenitally perverse, some suffering from all sorts of psychotic episodes, others retrenched, some more under the weather with hormonal imbalance among other predicaments.

Rarely is a fully-clothed lady under fire except for the few unsavoury comments disparaging strained hairlines by years of plaiting with foreheads equated to airstrips and the precursory comparison of a lass’s perky bust with the betting odds of ‘Liverpool Kichwa!’ Much as I call for an end to the practice entreating the practitioners of such debauchery to get a life I would also like to beseech young ladies to refrain from posting half-nude photos online merely to chase clout! There is nothing new under the sun my sisters as there are more cerebral ways to earn followership on Social Media!

Body Shaming is a Practice that should be dealt a death knell

In closing remarks, not to disparage the real struggles faced by my own Negroid race out there I would encourage a new rallying call, a hashtag #AllLivesMatter as a way to implore those in authority to put in place safeguards against all forms of discrimination and vile treatment of fellow men. Additionally, let’s be creatures of temperance, civility & tolerance with each other. In the meantime Strategize… Organize… Mobilize… Viva la revolución! Aluta Continua! Boom-aye the down-trodden! An end to the remaining purveyors of cruel oppression.

Political & Social Empowerment


Kenya under the throes of Covid-19

It has been said that the true worth of a General is known on the day of war. As a country we have been beset by many challenges since independence. The first three that come to my mind are Poverty, Illiteracy & Disease. But it hasn’t been all doom and gloom as there are days when we have enjoyed the glory and honour of being word-beaters. When Wilson Kiprugut Chumo won our country her First Medal at the Olympics; a Bronze Medal in the 880 yards race – a precursor to the 800m in 1964, I can assure you there was no dry eye in the house. The tears here being those of joy & triumph! Jubilation was complete 4 years later when Naphtali Temu & Kipchoge Keino beat star-studded casts including the defending Olympic champions to win us our First Gold Medals. When we qualified for our First African Cup of Nations Tournament in 1972, it was a spectacle to behold!

Kenya Afcon team 1972

However, many are the times we have turned our nation into an irreverent mess borne out of strife for resources, dishonesty, mediocrity and tribalism. We have found ourselves fighting our erstwhile brothers just because of elections. But what is the result? We are oft left to bury our kith and kin and work hard to rekindle the relationships we ruined, while the tribal Lords we fought for kiss, make-up, probably have newer relationships so amorous that they become the subject of newer scandals. All this is washed down with expensive whiskey, scotch, tea and ‘mandazi’ worth millions!

Then come 2020 we have been dealt a year so calamitous, there have been few to be replicated by this one in a long time. This is exactly what the Romans characterized as ‘annus horribilis’ – horrible year, one not worthy of recollection with undiluted pleasure in days to come as the current British monarch once postured of 1992! In Kenya, we lost a former Head of State (the longest-serving one) H.E. Daniel Toroitich arap Moi (CGH ) the day immediately after a tragedy that claimed almost two dozen pupils in one of our Kenyan primary schools.

H.E. Daniel Arap Moi – 2nd President of the Republic of Kenya

Almost in close succession the Chairman of the ruling coalition suffered a serious road crash, coming to within a pig’s whisker of sleeping with the fallen sovereign while rushing to the ceremony to inter the colossus. We have had ceaseless rains, which in their fury have only worked to expose our weak infrastructure and debride our fragile ecosystems. What with landslides, talus creep, rock falls, eroded roads and bridges, gulleys the size of the Great Rift Valley and deleterious soil erosion. Internationally, it’s been open-season for hunting by the grim-reaper. The most tragic of the losses I have had the unenthusiastic sorrow to commiserate was the loss of the great basketball superstar Kobe Bryant – a Hall of Fame shoo-in and former great for the Los Angeles Lakers, a standard-bearer of the impact of tenacity and grit in the attainment of greatness.

The Late Kobe Bryant

Back in Kenya, we lost a preeminent scholar, TV-anchor and proponent of not just the Kiswahili language but intellectualism as a lifestyle that is the great Prof. Kennedy Walibora Waliaula Wafula. This is a man that could have easily decided to live out the rest of his days in foreign climes where his skills, competence and scholarly pursuits have been appreciated by the academic turf in the United States where the rest of his family have set up permanent abode. He decided to come back to his motherland to develop it as any patriotic citizen would yearn to but what was his recompense? He died like a dog after sustaining a cracked jaw, two missing teeth, deep stab wounds and intracranial haemorrhage after an attack by unknown assailants! In his quest for self-preservation he ran onto a busy highway and was knocked almost into orbit by a speeding motor vehicle on Landhies road. That this distinguished and acclaimed personality lay for 14 hours at Kenyatta National hospital, treatment not forthcoming until he lost the battle for his life is macabre to the obscene. The unknown assailants are still at large at the time of me going live on my keyboard!

Ken Walibora Wafula

I’m provoked to muse about the infernal vanity of life while debating whether or not to yank out my own liver, feed it to the village hound and just join the ancestral pool myself! If this could happen to a TV personality we have all watched and revere, what of that anonymous drunk pulled out of the trench in the morning within a sliver of ‘rigour-mortis’ as a direct consequence of alcohol poisoning, what dignity is he to be accorded on the treatment table if his turn actually comes?

Just when the storm seemed to taper into a lull, it actually blew the roof off! This is my characterization of the Novel Corona Virus global pandemic making landfall on our jurisdiction. If our health infrastructure was indisposed then, it should actually go into ICU consequent to this heavy-weight pugilist’s thwack! When reports started doing rounds on social media that there was an unheralded virus, unlike any other known to man decimating the population of Wuhan city in Hubei Province; People’s Republic of China, many dismissed it as someone else’s problem. “That is what they get for eating unholy animals,” a few religious fanatics sneered. “Didn’t your mother tell you not to merely put anything you see in your mouth?” a few others cajoled. We made these biting allegations but did little to curtail travel out of that region to our own. Then it seemed that this was a woe merely reserved to a single nation. Subsequently, the entire thing went mainstream and exploded globally. Ineptitude didn’t manifest much worse than when in New year; the Leader of the Free World and Global Superpower – America, an honour that should never have, but is now bestowed upon the slightly capable hands of the  ‘stable-genius’ that’s Donald Trump received intelligence about this pernicious virus! Then totally distracted, he dismissed this entire thing as an external threat that would never reach ‘our soil.’ Pressed further he dismissed it as a ‘Flu’ that will come and go like many other iterations of the Corona-virus we have seen before. SARS-COV-2 was relegated to the back-burner! Then the more pressing issue was the display of the capabilities of the terminator-drone that was to deliver blood & iron albeit fire & fury upon designated terrorists in Iran. Better options abounded but none more appealing to the Commander-In-Chief than the tour-de-force to pass the message of military might. On the morning of 3rd January 2020, Baghdad International Airport woke up to a fireworks display as an MQ-9 predator drone delivered 4 laser-guided, hellfire missiles that pulverized the vehicle carrying two of Iranian military heavyweights; Maj. Gen. Quassem Soleimani & Abu Mahdi al-Muhandis ‘The Engineer’ into charred debris! ‘The Engineer’ had a long rap sheet but that’s a story for another day.

Quassem Soleimani & Abu Mahdi al-Muhandis

Classified CIA dossiers notwithstanding, the Covid-19 Pandemic has taken the hammer and tongs approach more against U.S.A than anyone would have envisaged. With more than 1.5 Million now infected, slightly more than 301,000 recovered and a gargantuan 93,806 crimped out of the daily-bread rations – as they lie dead, look at where ‘just a flu’ has taken our brothers in the occident! Western Europe and most of Asia; superior healthcare systems notwithstanding, are now bearing the brunt of this pandemic with the entire global economy now in shambles.

Kenya didn’t cover herself in glory either as far as pre-pandemic precautions were concerned when we rolled out the proverbial red carpet for several Chinese Jet-liners, some even from the very epicentre of Wuhan to land at our International airport with the paper-thin caveat to our guests, “just self-quarantine for 14 days” without any mechanism for enforcing this edict. For our indiscretion and erroneous judgement; we have reaped our doom with national infections at the time of authoring this piece topping 1029, exactly 366 have recovered and 50 as we say in Western Kenya, “wametolewa kwa share ya Obusuma!” – They are no longer with us! A culture shock has been the first consequence of the Covid-19 on our lifestyles as we can no longer even communally attend the burial ceremonies of village luminaries deserving of a ‘Shilemba (grandiose interment)!’ Funerals have become an intimate affair attended by close family, Ministry of Health aficionados and the local administration. Look at the low-key affair that was the occasion where former Minority Leader & his brother a legislator no less, had to suffer the ignominy of burying their younger sibling in a hurried ceremony, guys in Hazmat suits as pallbearers and casket draped in air-tight polythene material. Ideally, in Western Kenya this is the sort of funeral that brings minor earth tremors by its sheer attendance. But for this one, even the much-acclaimed ‘Disco-Matanga’ was now deader than the long antecedently extolled Dodo! What a price to pay for being alive in 2020.

The Funeral of Anthony Waswa Wetangula

As in times gone-by, masks were considered the hallmark of disdainful tourists when they visited our country and bandanas on the face associated with youthful revolt; however, today it has become a necessary item of apparel to prevent droplet transmission of the virus.

Everyone in Surgical Masks – The reality of our time

Presently, washing of hands with alcohol-based sanitizer or antiseptic soap is no longer a marker of courtesy but the ‘sine-qua-non’ of accessing any of the remaining public spaces regarded as essential services. Many of the establishments we took for granted are now locked and no longer accessible even by the business owners themselves. Today, social distancing is no longer the preserve of the introvert & hermit but the desideratum to avoiding those potentially carrying the virus. Needless to state, we are all potential carriers unless proven safe by medical tests. We now have a pathological agent that is nonresponsive to any medication we have used for its relatives and whose infestation doesn’t engender immunity after suffering from it as infections have been seen to recur perhaps with a greater vengeance which is quite disconcerting if not downright petrifying. The innocuous action shaking of hands is now confined to the annals of forgotten history, a crying shame. Prior to 2019, ‘Corona’ was a long-cherished Latin word denoting a ‘Crown’ but henceforth will eternally be tainted with nefarious connotations tangent to what we are being dealt presently.

I would be remiss, if I failed at this juncture to delve into the realm of conjecture and proffer my slightly-layman opinion on the origins of the SARS-COV-2 virus. In antipathy to the cross-species transmission theories out there; though some have jocularly been confirmed by our neighbouring country’s President Pombe Magufuli, methinks the virus was actually a synthetic creation either for biological warfare, medical research or a fool’s day prank created by a cohort of virologists and genetic engineers in the lab at the University of Wuhan that escaped their clutches. It has reliably been established that the virus has a spike protein that facilitates the fusion of viral and cellular membranes analogous to the glycoprotein41, indigenous to HIV-1 (The HIV you know from the Local Billboards in the 90’s). Additionally, this virus shares characteristics and virulence concomitant with H1N1 (Swine Flu), A/H1N1 (Spanish flu that wreaked havoc more than a century ago), H5N1 (Avian Influenza), Equine (horses), Bovine (cows), Feline (cats) and Canine (dogs) Corona Influenza. A thread is emerging to confirm my hypothesis. The other Coronaviruses are similar in form & shape but the SARS-CoV-2 appears to have a few features that are phenotypically and genetically dissimilar to the others in the general family of ‘Coronaviridae’. The spike protein seems to have been grafted from HIV and serendipitously took root on COVID-19! My theory, as my basic know-how of virology, ends here.

Blame-game galore has been the logical ramification of all these, as we live in a deeply adversarial society that is more adept at apportioning culpability than exalting excellence in the other man. From one nation sending a Bill of Reparations and invoice for damages wrought upon her national economy to China to others blaming industrial pollution for the mutation of the existing Coronaviruses, we have heard it all. Most ignominious and one that hits home for me has been some academically obtuse and professionally unconversant individuals trying to apportion the blame squarely on the revolutionary and futuristic 5G mobile technology for the pandemic which cannot be further from the truth. The new 5G technology is a game-changing improvement on the existing modes of telecommunication with radiowaves having no medical history of adversely altering the cells of living things or even detrimentally scorching them. If radiation could in itself damage living tissue, then all life on earth would have been extinguished long-ago from all the infrared, visible light and ultraviolet light we get bombarded with from the sun ceaselessly! Notice here, I have put visible light as that from your torch as having a higher frequency than the radiowaves used for telecommunication as far as the Electromagnetic Spectrum is concerned.

The Burning of a Telecommunication Mast ~ The only curse more egregious than the disingenuous proportions of the Instagram model is that of congenital asininity pontificated by the ignoramus as fact to the inerudite multitudes. Just as today he basks in the brilliant conflagration of costly infrastructure, tomorrow he will stew in the gloomy twilight of his obtuseness coaxing a fire in the cold of winter attempting to communicate via smoke signals in no dissimilitude to his neanderthal forebearers ~ Dennis Mukoya (B. Tech. Elec & Telcom Eng.)

In Ireland, some boorish characters have gone as far as razing 5G-Telecommunication masts. Perhaps, self-destructive irascibility is the curse of the Irish or so they say!

For many years Americans joked about a man incompetent enough to bring down a casino – where the house always wins and all, becoming their Head of State until they portentously made it a reality in 2016! Now that circus has become worldwide entertainment. From going off tangent and promoting the efficacy of Hydroxychloroquine as the panacea to the worldwide contagion contrary to the empirical wisdom that can only be delivered by his often red-faced Secretary for Health to a campaign for the ingestion of antiseptic liquid sanitizer and injection with ultra-violet rays, apparently ‘keeping the bull (D. Trump) off the China shop’ is becoming the real job at the Whitehouse!

H.E. Donald Trump – 45th President of the United States of America & a self-styled ‘Stable Genius’

Locally, we are most grateful all the cheap politicking has been reduced to just a murmur. From the unregulated fund-raisers aimed at narrow-gains for a few to the weekly dancing to the beat of the ‘Tsunami’, all this was ground to a halt by the pandemic of our time. It has become apparent that neither the politicians nor the religious leaders have any meaningful answers in the midst of a real crisis. Many are just charlatans, chatter-boxes and professional story-tellers without an iota of dexterity on how leadership should be executed. Just faux-hustlers & hangers-on! However; as the sage opined, “Every crisis is an opportunity.” Ranks have been closed by the rank and file of our political tapestry to engage in national prayer meetings & other meaningful engagements.

National Day of Prayer

Those previously chided as being unqualified even for the gubernatorial seats they hold are now the shining lights to the rest of the nation on the serious measures that are within their purview and which they can build themselves.

H.E. Governor. Ali Hassan Joho shows uncommon stewardship in the face of the novel Corona Virus Pandemic

A governor in Central Kenya has taken the cue and built an ICU facility for his local County Referral Hospital within a record 10 days! Where was all this initiative hiding? The President not to be left behind is taking this juncture to drain the swamp and relieve his regime of all who have been dragging him back for the last 7 years in power. This is a man, seeing the end in sight and nought by means of a legacy is now practically working the guillotine himself to ensure his Big 4 Agenda; by and large, most of his manifesto comes to fruition. Dead-wood is now going under the bus, which for now I must laud as it’s in the best interest of the Republic. Also I feel this pandemic is a great amalgamator as it has proven to be non-discriminative on who it infects. It seems to have a hankering for the more affluent and older demographic just as the hoi-polloi. The aforementioned moneyed Kenyans who had admission to San Tropez, the Maldives and the Cayman Islands at least once every year can no longer even access the ‘Medical-Mecca’ that is India and sometimes Israel as every nation is looking out for the safety of its nationals. You cannot justify the entry of some ‘outsider’ already suffering from the same condition you are actually putting containment measures against. I feel the real opportunity here is that the national Health infrastructure will benefit greatly from this pandemic as all of us are deemed equal in the eyes of Covid-19 and will all be hospitalized and nursed back to health here and nowhere else! The foreign countries have a right to exercise nationalism, even some covert racism against inept and dishonourable rulers who plunder their national healthcare systems because they make zero use of it themselves. Covid-19 is the great equalizer in this regard just as death which will be the dole of the ill-fated.

We have been crying for the funding of youth innovation for an eon but today home-grown talent has made us proud by using locally available materials to build ventilators, respirators, proximity-sensors for temperature and other medical equipment that is usually imported at a premium to the detriment of not just the balance of trade but our need for autochthonous solutions to our problems. Others in our Medical Science Research Laboratories are burning the candle at both ends to be on the leading-edge of inventing the vaccine for this armageddon decimating our current civilization. This is the kind of initiative that oft leaves me with tears of glee welling up in my eyes in full cognizance that innovation and industrialization are the only way that Kenya will ever claim its seat at the table of developing nations in the quest for 1st World Country Status. This works further as conclusive evidence to bolster the well-touted sentiments, “Brilliance is evenly distributed but Opportunity for expression only sparsely.”

Kenyan-built Ventilators

Able Leadership is something else we have gained from this crisis. Mutahi Kagwe has been thrown in at the deep end at the worst epoch in global medical history let alone the Kenyan scenario. Without any medical experience to pontificate, he nevertheless is doing a good job with regards to marshaling his troops; the medical professionals that are our front-line soldiers in this struggle against an unseen combatant. Unconfirmed reports of financial impropriety and weak accountability fly around, but in my considered opinion think that is the embodiment of cheap politicking we need less of during this time of crisis. Hopefully, the ‘Mandazi and tea’ never cost 10M!

It is at this time that I go down on my knees and thank the Almighty for the handshake between President Uhuru Kenyatta & Prime Minister (Emeritus) Rt. Hon. Raila A. Odinga that has brought the much-needed placidity for national development and introspection. I shudder to imagine the situation if in the midst of this pandemic, we would have been receiving information at dichotomy on the Covid-19 pandemic from the Ministry of Health Headquarters from Mutahi Kagwe only to be refuted by the Shadow Minister of Health ostensibly Hon. Dr. Simiyu Eseli Live from Orange House, Lavington – Nairobi!

Mutahi Kagwe – Who has acquired a new moniker ‘The Corona Guy’

There would be minimal clarity and it would be an absolute farce playing out in the public gallery. All the resultant protests, ‘mapambano’, ‘quasi-kamukunjis’ and stone-throwing at odds with the social distancing directive wouldn’t be to anyone’s benefit. I am certain our infection and death-tolls would be off the charts in this undesirable alternate universe. If you think such mediocrity and absolute disregard to magnanimity even in the face of crisis is other-worldly, look at the American situation at present. There is no love lost between the ruling Republicans and Opposition Democrats now taking cheap shots at each other. The national figure of lampoon, their President is busy telling all and sundry how he takes the ‘chloroquine thing’ daily as a precautionary measure while the counterstrike from the Democrat Speaker of the House of Representatives though conciliatory in opening remarks hits back tacitly that the President’s age and “morbid obesity” exist as risk factors that predispose him to sudden death consequent to use of self-prescribed medication for a condition whose cure is yet unknown; in no uncertain terms, even predisposition to the virus itself. We can do less with such absurdity in Kenya!

The environment has been the primary beneficiary from the slow-down of daily pollution by industries and air quality is now so good you can actually see the Pyramids of Giza from Roysambu if the memes are to be taken prima-facie! Maybe not them but Mt. Kenya.

Some instances of fauna that had been almost going extinct, consequent of being too shy to mate now go about doing the business devoid of distractions and nosey humans getting in their grill, so to say.

The Quandary occasioned by social distancing has meant ‘working from Home’ has become the new norm for many. Even learning activities in the ordinary sense have been disrupted and the normal school calendar involving some curricular activities, a dash of music festival here, a sprinkle of sporting there, sandwiching a sliver of the drama festival have all been pilfered to the four winds of the earth! But human ingenuity has meant that use of technology in not just learning but working has been incorporated. Zoom, Skype, Slack VC, Google Hangouts, Microsoft Teams, YouTube Live, Facebook Live among a plethora of other platforms have become the new ‘lingua franca’ with regards to getting work done via Video Conferencing. However; as pertains to the Kenyan situation, these modes are only feasible for the middle-class and the affluent. The mass-market; as is used in corporate parlance to denote the hoi-polloi, has mostly children running about the neighbourhoods or helping their parents in some errand or other in absolute disregard to the continuation of learning elsewhere via the aforementioned futuristic modes. The President a few weeks ago received some flack for launching high-altitude, stratospheric balloons for enhancing wireless connectivity as many bemoaned a lack even of the most basic of devices for the uptake of that same resource. Priorities looked warped for a President that indubitably has displayed a streak of being out of touch with the realities on the ground, many opined plaintively. Though working from home is impractical for many Kenyans whose work is majorly labour-intensive and transportation-based; for those actually fortuitous to able to, it is an onerous opportunity to bond with their children and perhaps that long-suffering spouse who has been neglected for an eon! With bars closed for the foreseeable future, the discerning have taken to Online Courses to gain new skills or polish up on the soft skills they already have.

In this era of Social Distancing, Video Conferencing is the new way to transact most business & convene work-related meetings.

The take-home from this whole fiasco is the enduring resilience we possess as a people. So far, our response has been better than expected and death-tolls lower than what WHO had portended for Kenya and most of the 3rd World. There are no dead bodies on our streets which is admirable. Kudos to our medical practitioners! We are now markedly a cleaner people who though surviving in part by the mercy of God have had to dispense with this unhealthy infatuation with religious leaders laying their mostly decrepit hands on members of the congregation ostensibly to deliver divine healing! We all are aware what Pandora’s Box such actions have unfurled for a renowned evangelist in this nation at the time of my going to press. So rather than complain about bars being closed, missing out on English Football, the camaraderie of fellow drunkards and perhaps the congregation in our respective places of worship; let’s accept that the social distancing rule is all in our best interests and ensuring our survival. This may even be the new normal until a functional vaccine is developed. But for the time being let’s observe the 3S routine of Sanitize, Social Distance and Suit up on your mask. That one of coughing in the elbow is a 50-50 for me!

Political & Social Empowerment



Is there a situation worse in this world than feeling insecure in your own home? From victims of international terrorism, domestic terrorism, crime, the primitive art of cattle rustling, brutalization at the hands of security agents and extrajudicial killings as some of the malfeasance Kenyans still have to grapple with 56 years after independence. At a time when we try our hand at a constitutional democracy, our neighbours are busy beset by despotism, failed states, terrorism, mediocre inter-clan strife, open-sea piracy, needless civil strife for minerals stoked by greedy proxies, a volatile Arabian Gulf projecting their rivalries to the horn of Africa. Some of the nations proximal to us are hell-bent on an insatiable expansionist agenda with a view to impinge on our sovereignty and territorial integrity usurping it both on land and in the high seas. It becomes desperate to attempt to engender civil liberties in the face of hatred, division and subjugation. We therefore as a nation must be vigilant to deter any propaganda or physical attack perpetrated by militant organizations against our constitutional order.

Friday, 7th August 1998 Terrorist Attack on the U.S Embassy in Nairobi CBD

Fighting terrorism effectively entails safeguarding the constitutional order from a global enemy opposed to civil liberties, a secular government, religious pluralism and democracy. Corruption among sections of the security apparatus has ensured that our efforts at neutralizing security threats come to naught. Just as in the 1990’s when Organized Crime existing as bank robberies were the order of the day and the likes of Wanugu, Rasta & Wacucu played hide and seek against security dragnets, ably assisted by irredeemably corrupt and avaricious security personnel; today the threat is infinitely greater as security intelligence is peddled to the highest bidder to the detriment of the citizenry.

Kenya’s Most Wanted in the late 90’s Rasta, Wanugu & Wacucu

Entrenched cartels in security procurement have ensured our frontline security agents are denied proper equipment to mount a meaningful challenge against better-armed assailants. The consequence is burying our young men and women in the KDF and National Police Service, their nascent potential crushed under the weight of greed and the asininity of their bosses!

Ethnicity is a stick of dynamite thrown into this powder keg! Our political contests, primarily organized on the fickle tenets of a tribal census ensure that a disproportionate amount of national security effort has to be applied to mostly silence the aggrieved majority and cool down tension among the ranks of the losing side; sometimes even required to douse the exuberant celebrations of the ‘winning’ side, of course with the attendant brute force from people who are better at executing orders first then comprehending them later! Additionally, county boundary disputes should be settled to an amicable and impartial conclusion. Sometimes, adverse weather conditions have a deleterious effect on our water, pasture and food nexus. In the backdrop of lost pasture and livestock as a consequence of unpredictable droughts, communities devoid of climate resilience have been forced into violent restocking initiatives now part and parcel of organized crime.

Sometimes in my musings, I’m left to wonder if deaths as a result of floods on well-documented hotspots like Budalangi, Nyando flood basin, TanaRiver and other trouble spots should any longer be categorized as catastrophes a.k.a acts of God? This is because incidences here have become too predictable especially in this era of information-driven, computer modelling technology coupled with rapid information dissemination! However; tears, pain and regret have eternally become the portion of the ignorant, foolhardy, obstinate and doubting Thomases. Urbanization in Kenya is at a rate unprecedented and incomparable to any other time in history. Poor policy, greed and incompetence of successive governments has ensured urbanization is converse to industrialization. The youth bulge being a direct consequence, manifests in the social ills of joblessness, hunger, drug abuse, despair in the midst of intense energy and restlessness that is the requisite substrate for the proliferation of a militant agenda, terrorist recruitment, radicalization and all-round ‘Thug-life.’ Needless to say, this is at odds with development and prosperity. A secure Kenya is not just a responsibility of security personnel and institutions but every arm of government as well as the citizenry, private sector and civil society.

Mob Justice

The Major recommendations tabled with regard to Safety and Security include:

  1. Every life in Kenya should be deemed sacrosanct and valuable as articulated constitutionally in Chapter 4, Article 26 – The value of life is impacted by violence, insecurity and poor safety standards that are not universal across the country. We have a variance to the consequences of crime depending on your locality. A life lost to murder in the poverty-stricken domain of Loima and Mathare slums is adjudged less deserving of the prevention measures, investigation and prosecutorial attention accorded to a similar life in the affluent suburbs of Muthangari & Kitsuru! Such a revolution requires equal distribution of security and legal resources.
  2. Popular-driven National Security Strategy – Cognizance should be nurtured that security requires a multifaceted approach reflected as a National Security and Safety Strategy (revamped every 2 years & by every incoming president within the First 100 days in Office). This should be people-driven, proactive, preventive and predictive.
  3. Ameliorate vulnerability to resource conflicts, disasters, emergencies and food insecurity – This plan can be put to action by operationalizing a comprehensive National Emergency, Disaster and Crisis Management Strategy that is anchored in law and linked to the county, sub-county and Ward level disaster response plans reviewed periodically.

Link the National Disaster Risk System to the Contingencies Fund (Article 208) in its act of establishment.

Establish preemptive and rapid response strategies to common major disasters such as flooding and drought.

Stratify and develop a hierarchy of the various levels and types of emergencies whose response is to be led by National Government and Counties. These should be linked to the National and County Contingency funds.

Prevent Communal resource conflicts by ensuring that County boundaries are drawn to maximize sharing of water and pasture among other resources.

Protect consumers of Food and Medicine from shadily procured, grown or developed products that are harmful to their health and wellbeing. The Kenya Food and Drugs Administration in concert with the Kenya Bureau of Standards should be more active with regards to enforcement of standards.

  1. Counter-terrorism is a multisectoral initiative that requires multiple tools to address it not just the security apparatus – This will come to fruition only as a fruit of the political, social and cultural defenses against the precursors of terrorism. This will reduce the pool of recruits and ultimately delegitimize the aims of our national nemeses.

Coordinate and mainstream prevention of radicalization and violent extremism initiatives in the Ministries of Health, Education, Youth, Cultural Heritage and Sport.

Defending Kenya against terrorists should be a tactical endeavour, implemented by regulated protective security standards for all sectors and most cautiously among heavily-trafficked properties owned by the private sector.

Victims list of 7th August 1998 Terrorist Attack on the U.S Embassy in Nairobi CBD

Invest in innovation and coordination to strengthen every part of the counterterrorism terrain with a focus on making initiatives geared at defeating it world-class both with regards to equipment and policywise. We should borrow a leaf from the movie sequel ‘Bad Boys for Life’ where as opposed to the long-established and antiquated modus-operandi of policing involving chasing criminals on foot or shootouts in the streets while hanging from the doors of cars; let’s take advantage of modern technology methods like Predictive Analytics, use of Big data and High Performance Computing, Criminal Databases, Forensic Analysis, Ethical Hacking of suspicious sites and use of Drone Technology both for surveillance and neutralising of criminal targets. Terrorism and Crime are strange bedfellows whose evolution is as equally dynamic as global technology.

Our Cybersecurity dexterity ought to be elevated to the next level as our economy is gradually becoming digital and online. The next frontier for the ‘feloniously-inclined’ is ‘white-collar’ crime committed by well-educated, suave, urbane, suited-up technocrats in our offices. Even our much-vaunted IFMIS system has not been spared the vagaries of system vulnerabilities. Tactical nous and technology that has been mentioned in the paragraph above must be implemented not just to safeguard our systems but also create employment for the many graduates in Information Technology that have been painstakingly put through our institutions of higher learning. Otherwise, how are they going to repay their HELB loan? We need a consistent strengthening of national cybersecurity skills, processes, laws and infrastructure. Going forward, we need to see more computer gurus with their thick-framed spectacles strutting the precincts of the local police stations as much as the odd-ball, clueless characters exercising laissez-faire in manning the good, old Occurrence Book!


Operationalization of the Victim Protection Fund to protect those directly aggrieved by ignominious acts of terrorism.

Review diplomatic relations with state sponsors of terrorism, religious extremism, expansionism and irredentism. Diplomacy is often our first line of action as military action is often expensive and has negative implications. Resource the Ministry of Foreign affairs to the same tune as the Ministry of Internal security and The National Intelligence department.

Professionalization and better regulation of private security companies and their guards to deliver better services integrated with State security so that it adheres to the highest standards. The arming of private security personnel will be considered; as more often than not, they find themselves on the frontlines of criminal activity often fighting a lopsided battle which they oft-lose.

Armed Private Security Guards

What chance does a guy holding a wooden club have against gun-toting delinquents? Historical precedence should be considered as during the 1998 terrorist attack on the U.S Embassy in the Nairobi Central Business District, it’s the onerous and intuitive response of the un-armed Basement parking Security attendant that averted a greater disaster should the explosive-rigged trucks have been detonated at basement level!

Private Security Officers were integral in mitigating the impact of the U.S Embassy attack in 1998
  1. Strengthen Police Performance, mental health and wellness of the National Police Service by and large the entire National Security and Defence apparatus – Clarify Key Performance Indicators for Police Commanders from the Inspector General downwards to their charges and link this to national crime and security statistics (based on counties, gender and citizen perceptions). This should be the yardstick for promotion and performance-based incentives.

Henceforth, eliminate corruption in recruitment by instituting heavy penalties for perverting the course of meritocracy in the process. Create a transparent Human Resource system that is digital and with clearly outlined processes for promotion and transfer. This must entail measurable past performance, internal courses, exams and citizen feedback on abuse of office & corruption. Buttress integrity and effectiveness by recognizing and rewarding excellence, dedication and sacrifice by both officers and citizens.

Put in accessible and well-resourced mental health, wellness counselling and treatment for police officers. Take good care of those returning from frontline roles that expose them to extreme physical and psychological trauma. It’s instructive to be aware that Security Agents are human and will definitely be adversely affected by the human suffering and death they see on a daily basis.

  1. Secure Citizens from Personal Threats – First redress boundary conflicts that threaten national and societal security. Establish a commission to address current boundary conflicts.

Institute court proceedings that guarantee protection and safety of whistleblowers, witnesses and informants as they are pivotal in any war against not just crime and terror but ultimately effective prosecution. Crime and terror always fight back!

Every new road in an urban area should have legally enforceable, inbuilt provisions for a sidewalk for pedestrians and specified lanes for cyclists. Signage should be clear.

Cyclist lanes & pedestrian walkways in Gigiri, Nairobi

Improve Citizen Conflict resolution and mediation skills by inculcating these skills in the curriculum throughout the Kenyan Educational life. Add to these negotiation and counseling skills.

Prioritize combatting Gender-based and Sexual Violence.



Nairobi occupies a special place in the geopolitics of the modern world as it’s not only the commercial and administrative capital of Kenya but also the extra-territorial seat of the United Nations. Concomitantly, Nairobi is dissimilar to other Kenyan counties and cannot be relegated to existing as an equal with them. As such, the Commission for Revenue Allocation should consider this special status and accord it slightly more than the others as the resource demands of our national capital are infinitely greater.

On 26th March 1975 discourse between the United Nations & the Government of Kenya ended in an agreement entailing how UN Environment Programme will be located and how that location will affect service provision and amenities to it. The fallout of that decision is in Kenya becoming a diplomatic hub as many nations try to gain a foothold on United Nation Agencies for the benefit of their respective jurisdictions.

The New recommendations in the BBI taskforce report are that Nairobi should be accorded special recognition such that the national government be allowed the discretion to provide the services and facilitation that maintain the clout of Nairobi as both the National Seat of Power and diplomatic hub. While at this, the Rights of the residents to representation at the Ward and Parliamentary level should still be upheld.

A major problem with governance in Kenya is the overlapping of responsibilities between various agencies. This of course, results in inefficiency and exorbitant costs to run government. There are cases when the strictures of a particular Regularory Authority are challenged by a player in the field and their grouse forwarded to an appeal tribunal arbitrating conflicts for that particular authority. Quixotically, this anomaly is replicated for almost all Regulatory Authorities which is costly and creates an avenue for perversion of that system by frivolous claims and malicious players. Another problem is expensive Commissions of Inquiries that more often than not are a drain of national resources more than the panacea to the problem they are created to alleviate. So prestigious has it become to be named to a national commission in Kenya, that my compatriots virtually hold home-coming parties in their ancestral homes and with all the festivities that come with it! Afterwards, delegations are sent to Statehouse from the locality of extraction of the benefactor of this post, bearing gifts of livestock, grain and fruit to proffer unequivocal gratitude and approbation to the Head of State for bestowing this great honour upon their kinsman. Sometimes the circumstances occasioning the Commission of inquest are less than pleasant, as a Cabinet Secretary may have been assassinated in ghastly, macabre yet mysterious circumstances but as the sage opined, ‘One man’s loss is another’s treasure!’ From sitting allowances, out of town allowance, per diems, extraneous allowance, entertainment allowance, lunch allowance to add onto a hefty salary and other emoluments is more than a slap across the face of many citizens living the Third world life of less than a Dollar a day but getting taxed exorbitantly to support such disproportionate expenditure.

With regards to National Commissions, some of the Recommendations made include:

  1. Separating the Obligation to conduct criminal investigations from that to enforce Ethics in public service – Henceforth, the task of reporting on, promoting and enforcing ethical conduct will lie with the proposed Ethics Commission recommended in the Chapter on National Ethos.
  2. Each Independent commission will have internal accountability systems for separation of powers – Appointment and promotion will be out of the purview of the team for censure and interdictions.
  3. Rigorous Audits – This will ensure citizens get value for money as sound principles of public financial management will be upheld in every Arm of Government and Public Institution.
  4. Improve the link between investigation and prosecution – The bromance that has been brewed between the offices of Director of Criminal Investigation and The Director of Public Prosecution has been a breath of fresh air, as the political will to fight hard-core crime and high-profile corruption is now forthcoming. Going forward, more of this will be required as these two act well and in concert with the judiciary incorruptibly. Fund both offices proportionately so that money is not an object in fighting crimes like corruption that most definitely have the muscle to fight back.

    DPP – Noordin Hajj and DCI – George Kinoti
  5. Rationalise the mandates of regulatory bodies and eliminate duplication of duty – This is much needed to ensure transparency, value for money, prompt service for regulatory compliance.
  6. Strengthen the Government Chemist – To enhance their efficiency.
  7. Create a Unified and assertive Food & Drugs Administrative body- This will ensure all Foods and Drugs are tested and regulated before consumption.
  8. Senate & National Assembly review – The checks and balances system in the legislature is need for review to ascertain suitability and remove replication of responsibility.
  9. Harmonious running of Chapter 15 Commissions – This will redress the power struggles in these bodies. Forthwith, Chairpersons will also be Chief Executive officers to eschew the absurdity occasioned by two centres of power that in the past exposed deep-seated rifts. Kenyans are no doubt traumatized after being forced to watch the inadvertent ‘pissing contest’ in the IEBC as Wafula Chebukati and Ezra Chiloba tussled for relevance and authority! No additional allowances will be given for additional responsibilities.
IEBC Chairman Wafula Chebukati & former CEO Ezra Chiloba

I would additionally recommend at least one Commissioner with a qualification in Information Technology to the Independent Elections & Boundaries Commission (IEBC) if that’s the path we have decided to take with future electoral processes. We needn’t have absolute ignorance among the commissioners in case Servers are supposed to be opened to assay the actual results of an election!

  1. Part-time Commissioners – Half of the Commissioners in Chapter 15 Commissions except IEBC should serve on a part-time basis. As Article 249 subsection 3 of the current constitution has been virtually trampled underfoot such that independence of Chapter 15 commissions is compromised, it must be restituted to operation for the benefit of our Republic.

Consolidate Administrative tribunals – Relationships between Regulatory Authorities and their respective appeal tribunals must be harmonized to resolve the uncouth circumstance currently in play where impartial adjudication of disputes between industry players and regulators has become a by-word. The fact that every Regulatory Authority has its tribunal is becoming extortionate on the exchequer. A proposal has been mooted that one National Administrative Appeals tribunal encompassing the various thematic appeal tribunals will be set up. Additionally, even those regulatory bodies themselves will have to be reduced by having an initiative to simplify & harmonize their mandates. We need fewer and better-implemented regulations in efforts to defeat the contagion of corruption among these bodies.

Political & Social Empowerment



Corruption is the biggest impediment to the development of any nation. By its very definition, it bestows an undeserved advantage upon one individual to the detriment of many others. Nothing puts the scissors to the social fabric like the notion that no matter how hard you work there is a ceiling to just how lofty your ambitions are tailored to reach.

The perception of a rigged system is more limpid today than at any other time in history. Now picture this, at least in a way not to cast aspersions on any individuals’ characters. One man; a professional no doubt, secured employment almost immediately after graduation at Coca-Cola East Africa Limited. Shortly after, he resigns and the next day is tapped by Africa Online Group as a Marketing Manager. He soon becomes disenfranchised with the post and leaves in a huff but is promptly picked up by Kenya Breweries Limited as a Sales Operations Manager. Ay pronto, he throws in the towel only to be enlisted by Haco Industries as Managing Director, staying a while longer here before predictably leaping onto the next horse – Vivo Energy, as Country CEO. Gun drama with an errant distributor; notwithstanding, civic duty beckons as he leaves the post for the high calling of Deputy Governor of the County hosting the Capital City – an unequivocally high honour. He throws his toys out of the pram only five months later, when square ideological pegs are deemed impossible to fit into round slots, resigning only to land on the lap of Equity Bank as Chief Commercial Officer, getting promoted to Managing Director in 3 months’ time. This job denies him the intellectual stimulus he yearns for and he lurches back to Vivo Energy where the Executive VP for African sales position was being kept warm for him. So now after the agonizing throes of a seven-figure salary, he’s back at Equity Bank as Chief Commercial Officer again!

Ladies and gentlemen, this may sound like the legendary tale of Simon Makonde but is the true story of one well-heeled professional’s career in Kenya. Though all men were created equal, some are decidedly more equal than others! Within the same period, many a graduate from the same university, with similar credentials have walked their shoes worn without even finding an entry-level position in the first company the aforementioned individual worked in! How are you to convince anybody that the terrain of success is not tilted in favour of a select few to the despondency of many of their contemporaries? Cronyism and Corruption are highly regarded in modern-day Kenya as meritocracy is relegated to the annals of a dipsomaniac’s recollections. This in due course will prove an Achilles-heel in our attainment of cohesion and security.

So audacious is the abuse of public trust in Kenya today, that thieves are exalted and paraded on pedestals, called even at the tabernacles of our Centres for Spiritual Nourishment to share their wisdom with the faithful; all the while, the incorruptible that are in actual sense the prudent ones are lampooned for letting their chance to ‘eat’ pass them by! It’s a crying shame that many of our children now experience the virtue of honesty as an attenuated and diminishing principle of life so that with every succeeding generation smut, grime and mediocrity are raised as the standard-bearer while honour is virtually relegated to pig-swill! Abuse of office by leaders at every level is the prime-mover in the depreciation of the moral conduct of our society. Since the promulgation of our newly-minted constitution in 2010, attempts to enact legislation to the strictures that are enshrined in Chapter 6 of our constitution [Leadership & Integrity] against corruption have come a cropper. The main culprits being the political and business class that seek personal aggrandizement by fiddling with the procedure for public expenditure. The lure of unmerited financial gain through holding public office is so ingrained that it often results in negative ethnicization and militarization of political contests. Partaking in corruption panders to the Lowest Common denominator where the unethical, unscrupulous and unqualified are all adjudged suitable for the task. This ultimately kills any drive towards national prosperity, enterprise, morale and most deleterious; the continuity of our fledgling nation. This flaw is evinced in every sector of life be it political, executive, legislative or even cultural.

The most essential tool to combat corruption is political will. Indeed, H.E. President Uhuru Kenyatta has been within an inch of performing histrionics while issuing firm directives aimed at deterrence and punishment of corruption but inevitably the vice fights back because it has the most potent weapon – Money. Throw lucre at any problem and most likely it disappears. Today for a small pecuniary contribution, even religious leaders have been enlisted as battering rams to defend the corrupt; indeed a great stain on the vestments of these ostensibly ‘men of the cloth.’

An Excerpt of an Unfortunate Tirade attributed to The Provost of All Saints Cathedral – Canon Sammy Wainaina

As per the strictures of Jeremiah 5:31 – “The prophets now prophesy falsely and the priests rule by their own authority. My people love it like this. But what will they do at the end of it all?”

But far be it from anybody rendering observance to my sermon! The corrupt ultimately form cartels that are merely cabals to safeguard their nefarious interests. Subsequently, a government that can be honest enough to win the trust of the citizens, investors and fair-minded stakeholders is roiled by such characters. The cartels block, distort, redirect service provision, influence policymaking, implementation, budgeting, procurement, regulation and oversight. Our systemic tolerance for gatekeepers and rent-seekers in public service is a major catalyst for corruption.

As opposed to the predictable nous of trailing perpetrators of corruption after the deed is done, we should prioritize measures aimed at prevention. Conscript managers with a sound record of effective and accountable management. We need to build systems that facilitate, promote ethical conduct and responsibility in resource utilization. Deterrence of corruption can be effected by spot-checks or sting operations. The incentive for promotion to higher office must forthwith entail adherence to the rules of professional conduct and ethics among the yardsticks for promotion.

Privatization of some government-owned entities engaged in business can reduce corruption, adding greater efficiency and cost-effectiveness to the enterprises. Kenya’s resources can for now be best protected by shrinking the footprint of government in appreciation of the sentiments captured proverbially as, “Everybody’s business is nobody’s business” which is usually the case in civil service.

Major Recommendations in this regard include:

(a) Freeing Kenya from Cartel Capture – First in the raft of measures is to undertake an intelligence-based review of the hold on critical economic aspects.

Banking executives engaged in money laundering should be given hefty fines to pay or jailed for long periods. Withdrawal of operating licenses should be invoked for repeat-offender institutions or individuals. Additionally, we should punish the co-conspirators in tax-evasion and money laundering in the private sector. We can no longer condone a culture where ill-gotten wealth gets into banks and apparently nobody knows how it happened and who it belongs to in this area of dynamic use of Information Technology and Surveillance.

Sting operations should now be used for anti-corruption targets i.e. lawyers, judges and legislators in difficult to prosecute cases so as to actually get the evidence requisite for prosecution.

A putrid case is now active in our courts of law where the aura of judicial interference cannot be discounted. Here, a defendant accused of a heinous crime is being coached by a highly-ranked Officer of the Court on mechanisms of subverting the course of justice with intercepted correspondence painting a logical perception that the female defendant is paying for these ‘coaching’ services by licentious currency. To add to this quandary, the presiding judge and the defendant’s counsel have connubial ties which raises the spectre of the miscarriage of justice just a notch higher! Apparently Lady Justice as pertains to the Kenyan scene has too many functional neural pathways to her visual cortex to ever be reckoned as blind!

A thorough audit of the negative legal, policy & administrative incentives in public service is much needed. The findings should be crafted into policy initiatives and enforced. Adjunct to custodial sentences, the delinquents engaging in economic crimes should be fined punitively with the proceeds being used for reparation to the aggrieved Kenyans.

Corruption is now the standard-bearer in Kenyan public life

(b) Incentives for Whistleblowing – Material incentives shall henceforth be provided for information leading to the successful seizure and/or prosecution for corruption-related crimes. A 5% share of the recovered proceeds will be the spoils for whistleblowers. This should be done tactically in order not to compromise the safety and survival of our esteemed whistleblower.

Treatment of whistleblowers has been under the spotlight recently after an employee of our national carrier who covertly filmed and shared on Social Media the footage of a plane carrying 239 passengers of Chinese extraction, merely having a red carpet rolled out for them in antipathy to the fact that they evinced from the same country of origin as the novel COVID-19 virus that is ravaging the globe at the present moment. The young man had to all intents and purposes been accorded the distinction of a ‘summary dismissal’ for gross misconduct in appreciation of his act of patriotism and unparalleled valour! Security of safety installations was invoked in his unprocedural suspension, a position bolstered by the Cabinet Secretary for Transport but was mercifully saved when public hue and cry intervened and following litigation, the distinguished Kenyan kept his job. Such an unsightly conundrum is what this constitutional amendment seeks to annihilate.

(c) Prevention and deterrence by widespread ethics awareness and assessment of performance – From a young age we need students tutored on ethics.

Review Cabinet and principal Secretaries’ performance assessment framework to incorporate the anti-corruption initiative.

Contracts for senior appointees should have practical performance benchmarks with rules for layoffs on failure to perform, reviewed biannually. Lay-off all appointees implicated in corruption.

(d) Public Officers have no business engaging in commerce with Government – This will exorcise the phantom of conflict of interest that is rife in Civil service as currently constituted. This is extended to spouses, common-law partners, parents and close family members of the officer currying favour with the respective state office.

Abdication of duty during regular working hours will become antiquated as officers will be required to obtain prior permission from their upline in the Ministry, Department or State Agency.

An Officer will be obliged to submit written notification to their superior of interests external to his employment there, which could potentially constitute conflict of interest. This is extended to those representing the government on Boards of Private companies.

(e) Wealth Declaration Forms will be publicized – This will be done for leadership and senior management cadre including National & County Government Executives. A written narrative on how wealth of above Kshs. 50 million was obtained will be available to the multitudes. These will be filled and made available to the websites of the respective service commissions. This will not be limited to but inclusive of shareholding, remuneration, family & business trusts, real estate, state contracts, directorships, partnerships, liabilities, bonds, investments and savings.

The era of undocumented and nebulous stories of individuals in government ostensibly ‘selling chicken’ while becoming overnight billionaires with enough money to dole out at fundraisings and church gatherings perpetually without exhaustion; as coincidentally, the state loses a third of its revenue earnings to faceless myrmidons annually is drawing to a close.

(f) Resignation – This means taking responsibility for failures, negligence or bog-standard actions that precipitate calamitous consequences by vacating their positions amicably. This will infuse honour back to public service.

(g) Digitization – Kenya will become 100% e-services compliant by digitizing all Government services, processes, payments and record-keeping. Tamper-proof the systems keeping a keen eye on the IFMIS system that is now deemed too vulnerable to misuse and backdoor access to steal our national revenue.

(h) Reduce the moral jeopardy of those mismanaging government-owned entities in anticipation of state bailouts – Strengthen the hand of the Controller of Budget to detect and respond in timely fashion to misappropriation, wastage and malfeasance.

Enact the Parastatal Reform Bill to renew focus on core business.

Rationalize all state-owned enterprises and enact the bill to bring expenditure under control with common-user benchmarks, independent valuations of projects and value for money audits on completed projects.

(i) Increase Public Confidence in the Judiciary – Respect for the principle of separation of powers, independence and accountability to the sovereignty – The People of Kenya.

Special magistrates to deal with high-profile heinous crimes like corruption, narco-preneurship and terrorism.

Empower JSC to discipline judges appropriately concomitant with their errors.

Make the office of the Ombudsman (Commission on Administrative on Justice) more responsive to the public and create civic awareness on its existence.


The Orwellian Representation of Devolution in Kenya

At the heart and soul of devolution is the decentralization of power that results in the facilitation of service delivery across the country. The major devolved unit is the County that is headed by a Governor. The minor units within are called Wards each represented by a Member of the County Assembly. The scorecard from 2010 to now paints a rosy picture as previously underdeveloped regions are now getting opened up and almost each hamlet has an access road. However, devolution is still hampered by a few challenges that if left unaddressed threaten to derail it completely. It is now facing a critical political and economic sustainability conundrum that it must pass. Oversight to forestall the eventuality of revenue loss through corruption is a crucial tenet of these discussions. Transparency, accountability and an appeal system for projects that have been shoddily executed are just but a microcosm of the things Kenyans crave for. Duplication of roles is a major issue that hamstrings the devolved units as it creates confusion when similar roles are performed by both the County and National Government. On issues of planning, public participation and budgeting; many Kenyans want a front-row seat. But a worrying development is the county government falling prey to the same issues that made governance a nightmare when it was centralized. Corruption, Nepotism, favouritism, ethnic antagonism, bigotry, bloated workforces, delays in payment, marginalization of minorities, mismatched priorities, delays in decision making, inefficiency, ineffective modalities of service delivery and skewed resource allocation. The main thread of the public participation taskforce was the fact that County governments asked for their fiscal allocation of the national revenue to be raised from 35% to 50%.

Devolved Government (Courtesy of Daily Nation)

Among the thorny issues presented to the BBI Taskforce on devolution revolved around:

  • Revenue share between the two tiers of Government.
  • Resolving exclusivity and marginalization in the Counties.
  • Improving effectiveness in execution of their mandates.
  • Enhancing economic growth in Counties.

As it currently stands the aggregate minimum transfer of funds to counties is 15% of centrally collected revenues. The 35% figure will have to be increased over time to reach the required 50%.

A worrisome trend that has become a feature of the County government is the exclusion that was previously faced in the national government. Ethnic minorities bear the brunt of this, when those perceived as not part of the winning coalition are often excluded wholesale in antipathy to the strictures of Article 174(e) of the Constitution. Turning a blind eye to merit and inclusivity as opposed to favouritsm when hiring is a slow-puncture on the wheels of devolution. The counties are in need of an independent County Service Board.

There is no option other than enhancing economic growth in our Counties, otherwise the devolution experiment will flounder and even reverse. Counties are urged to be more competitive to attract more investment opportunities from merchants outside their counties. At the core of this is for County Government regulation and revenue collection to promote incentives for investment and innovation. Every county is enthused to develop an Entrepreneurship and Investment code that is predictable and effective. Red tape must be kept to a minimum for improved competitive edge. Procurement of goods must be done in factoring in well laid down procurement Laws and best practices. Local leaders are purveyors of outright impunity plagued by patronage, perpetual self-seeking & nepotism. Also noted was the inability of counties to mobilize their own domestic resources and properly account for those they receive.

Major Recommendations with regards to devolution include:

1.) Retain the 47 Counties and support the voluntary formation of regional economic blocs – This will create better value for money and will be effective in mobilizing funds for shared development and ultimately prosperity. In one way or another, this will enable more funds to be raised for a development kitty all the while leaving aside the little tranche retained for the recurrent expenditure and administrative budget.

2.) Increase the resources to counties from current levels to 35% and eventually 50% of last audited accounts – Money should be assigned respective to actual functions as opposed to just having a lump sum for the county. Costing of National and County functions will be vital in this regard. This should be done with a keen eye on the distances between the County centre and its extremities as opposed to the general size of the county. It should target key areas, some the major economic activity in the ambient like agriculture, healthcare and rapid urbanization. Counties in Kenya vary meteorically in physical size. For instance, Vihiga County is incomparable in land area terms with say Turkana or Isiolo counties. Population is a totally different issue.

State institutions carrying out County functions should be audited and if found wanting, wound up or restructured. This is to be done in synchrony with the completed Parastatal Reform policy.

The allocation of revenue should be simplified for the populace, guided by equality, equity and special needs concurrently.

Have Ward representatives oversight bursary funds only, ensuring their influence does not extend to the CDF.

Revenue bump-up will forthwith be guided by a revenue allocation formula informed by population, urgent needs (health, agriculture), education needs (ECD). Hitherto marginalized regions should be uplifted via an equalization fund for a period.

Commission for Revenue Allocation must assess county collections and factor them into the annual allocation. A County Integrated Development Plan should be linked to a transparent assessment of the development needs of each ward.

Cut taxes in relation to Auditor General Reports. Until at such a time accountability can be guaranteed it will be foolhardy to increase it for the hoi-polloi only to lose it in corruption scams.

3.) Improvements to the County Executive – A major one is to have a running mate of the opposite gender.

To forever seal the loopholes for the propensity of catabasis back to the madness witnessed in Nairobi under Governor Mike Sonko, if a vacancy for any given reason occurs in the Deputy Governor’s office, and the Governor fails to name a replacement within 90 days, one will be nominated by the County Speaker with approval of the Assembly without fail.

For Sonko It’s Nuthin’ but a Gangsta party a.k.a All About The ‘Thug-life’ (Daily Nation)

Merit and inclusivity should once again become the yardstick by which human resource is hired at the County offices. An independent County Public Service Board will be needed for recruitment, setting remuneration, ensuring inclusivity and continuous development of the human resource with regards to skills and capabilities.

4.) The Healthcare Function – Kenyans deserve better healthcare to be prosperous and productive.

A Health Service Commission should be created by the county to recruit medical staff.

Health remains a devolved function with funds following functions. Focus should be put on Preventive and primary care.

NHIF Administrative costs should be pegged at between 5-10% through use of technology to engender integrity. We must live in cognizance that the Hippocratic Oath is not an assurance of morality!

Create a Patients’ Bill of Rights Stating:

  • Patients will not be extorted by taking advantage of their vulnerability.
  • An end to forceful detention.
  • Consequences for a physician who commits misdiagnosis.
  • The obligation of health facilities to stabilize emergency cases.
  • Politeness and consideration from medical practitioners.

5.) County Expenditure – Supervision of spending, investment and recruitment is failing, leading to corruption compromising the benefits contemplated. Assign more funds to development.

Peg ratio of Development spending to Recurrent Expenditure at 70:30.

Insulate County budgetary processes from arbitrary or politically-motivated interference by County Executives.

Limit county employees by providing a nationwide ratio, as a ceiling between no. of employees and the County Population. Fix a maximum number to the Ministries a Governor can create.

Reduce functional duplications between National and County Government. The same goes for tax collection.

End the asininity of abandoning projects mid-stream merely as a result of regime change. A new governor will henceforth be obligated to provide a list of incomplete projects and a plan for completion. Legitimate cause will be demanded from an incoming governor in case he sees no feasibility in continuing an already commenced project.

Extra scrutiny for projects initiated in the final year of an electoral cycle from Controller of Budget, County Assembly, Senate and all bodies tasked with oversight.

Devolution of the Auditor General’s office.

Commission on Revenue Allocation should alter its formula with regards to allocating funds to marginalized regions targeting Wards.

Kenya Bureau of Statistics to provide an objective and localized well-being, human security & environmental sustainability indices to measure relative performances among the Counties, Wards and Nation.

6.) County must bake the economic pie – Focus on competitiveness to attract investment from outside the county and abroad.

Biashara Mashinani initiatives to support local groups to develop business through partnerships. Facilitate the initiation of small businesses so that they navigate regulations and bureaucracy to make eventually produced goods cheaper. An Entrepreneurship and Investment code needed too and it should be productive and efficient.

Reduce Red tape to a bare minimum to generate revenue.

7.) Enhance Cohesion in Counties – Strengthen dialogue and integration of communities within the counties, especially the multi-ethnic ones, creating a space at the table for the minorities.

Enhance transparency by public participation in consort with the Public Rapporteur’s office. One-day forums will be held periodically in this regard.

Make use of elders to strengthen cohesion and mediate conflicts.

Create cultural awareness and program the younger members of society to respect each other.

Integrate the learning process in hosted schools to the ways of the home county.

Engage in shared projects and create fora where dialogues on Truth, Justice and Reconciliation in communities that have had histories of conflict.

Political & Social Empowerment



Diversity; as discussed in the Kenyan perspective, is a wide raft that entails ethnicity, race, culture, religion, gender, age, disability status and socio-economic circumstance in life. Concomitantly, the citizen’s interests, priorities, capabilities and experiences become highly complex. Democracy has the strength of empowering different Kenyans of diverse backgrounds to inject their zeal, passion, skill and intellectual acumen to contribute to progress in Kenya. But to cater for this myriad of interests it has become paramount to now make a call for inclusivity in appreciation of the fact that despite our diversity, none of these parameters marks one Kenyan as superior to the other.

The lack of political inclusivity is rifer within the Executive Arm of government. It’s an open secret that there is a cabal of elite professionals and profiteers who believe with religious conviction that only by having a con-tribal kinsman in the executive will they have ease of access to resources, jobs, state largesse and government procurement. The much-reviled system of patronage has worked to pay credence to that aforementioned sentiment. Ethnic mobilization merely for the sake of attaining political power as the prime rallying call in the Kenyan political life though primitive and reprehensible is unfortunately the reality of the day. Even the current process of change to the constitutional structure still has to jump by this very hurdle. Needless to say, the current effort for reform is geared at dissipating executive authority both as a way of curtailing the propensity for executive overreach and also broadening political leadership for optimum accommodation of diverse interests. A home truth that has to be disseminated to the rank and file of our Republic is that not every ethnic identity can find space at the pinnacle of government either national or county at the same time.

From the many submissions made to the BBI task force, these are the essential qualities of inclusivity:

  • Government appointments must forthwith manifestly represent the face of Kenya.
  • Equality in the ability to vote for all Kenyans of majority age.
  • Decision-making becomes a product of deliberations, debates and participation by all the foremost political players in Kenya.
  • Gender parity in leadership. Measures to comply with the two-thirds gender rule that seeks to level the playing field must not merely be a PR exercise but a reality on the ground.
  • Government should henceforth respond positively and visibly to the concerns of the rank and file of Kenya.
  • Protect the foremost Principle of Democracy where the majority have their way but the minority too have their say.
  • A keen eye on the needs of the most vulnerable groups in society inclusive of the youth, women and people with disabilities. Additionally, the economically vulnerable should also be accorded equal say in the mechanics of government as the prosperous and privileged.
  • Death to this ambiguous entity dubbed the ‘deep-state’ simply explained as individuals or cabals of people wielding heavy economic power, abusing their grandeur to substitute the will of the electorate for their own.
  • Government should respect cultural and religious diversity of all the citizens of our country.

Inclusivity will for the purposes of this process, be deemed the highest degree of responsiveness by decision-makers in Government to the interests of all encompassed within our boundaries. Cognizance must be taken to the fact that historically Kenya has formulated marvelous policies and laws but the crux of the matter is implementation, operationalization and enforcement of these strictures. Public trepidation is at an all-time high and this could adversely affect belief of these current recommendations being operationalized based on the fate of the many action reports that lie fallow in the Office of the President gathering dust and mold not to speak of the many articles of our pristinely promulgated constitution in 2010 that remain unenforced.  State Institutions, Departments & Corporations too have failed Kenyans in not ensuring Article 21 (2) detailing the Bill of Rights elements covered under Article 43 are fully implemented i.e Rights to health, adequate food of acceptable quality, clean water, social security and education.

Citizen awareness too will go a long way in ensuring public officers actually execute their mandates.

Major Recommendations with this regard include:

1.) Political, Economic, Social, Religious, Cultural, age and Gender-based Inclusivity – Political by means of equal power of vote at the ballot box.

Women in Kenyan Leadership

Economic by equality and equity in undertaking development countrywide.

Religious by safeguarding freedom of religious association and protection from fraudsters masquerading as authentic clergy to their unsuspecting congregants. A Public Register of all churches, mosques and temples must exist and subject their finances to an annual independent audit and publicize the results.

An appellate court within the Kadhi court system was requested.

Cultural inclusion by promoting indigenous knowledge, technologies, foods and natural remedies.

2.) The Marginalized must refrain from reciprocating the same gesture – Those bellyaching about marginalization by the national government must not do the same to ethnic minorities within their counties.

3.) Office of the Public Participation Rapporteur – This will enhance transparency, quality and inclusion in public participation processes required by our constitution. The Office will work on behalf of state and non-state entities undertaking policy and operational initiatives calling for Public participation. Their operations must be above board, accurately chronicling their work and be responsive to their relevant partners. Also, Public Interest Litigation should be within their purview in a manner free of influence from those litigated against in a model emulated from India.

4.) Transparency in public procurement and business lobbying – An end to the culture of trawling the offices of State Functionaries with express aim of empowering disproportionately, unelected parties to abuse their economic advantage albeit corruption to parochially influence governance & policymaking. The envisaged Office of the Public Participation Rapporteur will be furnished with legal authority to record all activities of business lobbyists (tenderpreneurs) who seek to interact with officers with the sole aim of influencing legislation, policy, regulation and public procurement favourably to their businesses.

Echoes of the hocus-pocus at the corridors of Harambee House Annex in February 2020 where an unelected official (a disgraced former Cabinet Secretary) engaged in fraudulent business unsanctioned by the national government that ultimately was to deprive the exchequer of revenue still ring ever so loud! Mister Deputy President; the Principal occupant of the office complex, has denied any awareness of such a caper at the moment of my authoring this piece.Henceforth, occupants of his office and all government installations will be ridded of these unscrupulous characters wielding power usurped from the ordinary citizen.

Godfather complex

5.) Employment in Public Service should reflect the Face of Kenya and be rendered corruption-free at recruitment – The worst kept secret about employment in public service is the existence of ‘Godfathers’ who seek bribes to proffer this advantage to the highest bidder and ensuring that the appointee curries favour with them in depriving the citizenry of the requisite social services. Many careers in civil service are initiated by corruption and so it has been difficult for the holders of the office to uphold any quantifiable integrity. In appreciation of the onerous task of restituting professionalism to public service recruitment:

Disciplined forces both Specialists and servicemen will be recruited by a consortium of Private Sector recruitment companies that are internationally reputable to ensure impartiality and be able to reflect both merit & diversity.

Affirmative action will be enlisted in situations where no candidate meets the criteria for qualification and diversity so that minority candidates are facilitated to enhance their chances for the positions.

The Public Service Commission will be required to make public the annual diversity report in the Public Service.


Our very own National Anthem envisaged the dream of prosperity post-independence, in the first stanza last verse in Swahili, “Raha tupate na ustawi” in addition to “tuungane mikono, pamoja kazini” the second last line of the third stanza. Unfortunately, 56 years after independence we find ourselves a discordant lot who have ended up among the Least Developed Countries of the world. I could go on and on about how South Korea and Singapore that were at par with us in terms of development in 1963 are now far over the horizon, but that would be an exercise in futility. We have shot ourselves in the foot with myopic leadership, ethnic balkanization and partisanship just for parochial gain. The same rallying call of fighting against poverty, illiteracy and disease that our forefathers had at independence is tragically now repackaged as a campaign promise by individuals who know only too well they won’t do diddly-squat to improve our lot. Unemployment albeit underemployment is now rife among the youth of this nation. The yawning gap between the have and have-nots notwithstanding, economic prosperity is now only the preserve of the Big-business owners and no trickle down to the man on the ground. Irrational barriers to entry are erected against innovation and growth hence curtailing job creation for the highly-skilled manpower churned out of our tertiary institutions ceaselessly.

I have at one time been advised by one of my principal mentors to endeavour never to antagonize but look for areas of cooperation while partnering with huge corporations when working on innovation to eschew the prospect of being crushed by the larger entity or worse still being bogged-down under a myriad of frivolous litigation, not to mention the manifold rough-hand, arm-twisting and mafia-style hostile takeover tactics available to the dastardly of heart, mercilessly grabbing concepts from the architects of original, unpatented ideas.

Gatekeeping and rent-seeking castigated in the above Chapter is actually a crippling malfeasance in the corridors of power. Brokers have become a national pestilence. No less the President himself is on record putting up his hands in dismay and admitted there is little he can do about these shadowy characters in his very office; but today by political will, he’s weeding them out gradually but not without their deleterious impact on the perception of state as currently exists in the eye of ‘Wanjiku.’

The dream of entrepreneurship in Kenya pitched to millions of the unemployed is nothing short of an invitation to tread water, in dissonance to the case in developed countries where business owners and employers are facilitated, subsidized and even given tax rebates. I invite those who can, to read through Fred Trump and his son Donald Trump’s exemplum chronicling their ascent to the top of corporate America and the enabling factors. In the USA; coincidentally the same year Kenya courted liberty, Martin Luther King Jr. articulated a dream whence his four little children would grow to live and work in a nation where they would be assayed not by the colour of their skin but by the content of their character. Our founding fathers, no doubt followed that epochal speech closely due to our long-standing links with not just the Negritude movement but also solidarity with the Black American Civil-Rights Movement. However, in modern-day Kenya the key determinant of success has become your ethnic extraction, parentage, who you know and where you live. This makes it an exercise in futility trying to make a clean break with your current circumstance without external help. It’s indeed circumvention of Newton’s First Law of Motion! Incoherent and non-existent policy direction puts us in a deeper quandary. No successful nation has ever been built on the substratum of such disparities where exclusion, corruption, poverty, mounting hunger, unemployment and lack of a common national ethos are the flavour of the day. The logical sequel to such a state of affairs is societal ills, criminal activity & ultimately civil unrest. When the poor have nothing to eat they will ultimately gourmandize the rich, an eventuality so macabre it’s gut-wrenching!

I do not even for a second envy the guy working at the state department in charge of national planning. He has to provide a policy direction to the conundrum of how to generate more jobs for all who are old enough to work. New thoroughfares are appreciable, a standard-gauge railway is fabulous. But all these pale into oblivion when looked at from the prism of a man burdened by debt, seeing little economic prospect, hunger gnawing at his innards yet he’s merely given nebulous figures about our burgeoning economic output and present rates of investment. A complete economic revolution & workaround is required to deal with the monster called unemployment linked to underemployment and the arch-nemesis ‘the working poor.’ An enlightened diagnosis is the first step for any treatment regimen to be undertaken. It’s no longer enough to discuss the sharing of the minuscule national cake we presently have but rather how to bake a bigger one that can satisfactorily be shared by all of our 47.6 million-strong population. Individually, I have had the great privilege to live and work in Luanda, Angola and can avow to the fact that Kenyans are regarded as more skilled, aggressive and conceptual thinkers compared to many other Africans. In fact, anybody who displays guile, counter-intuitive thinking & is enterprising in Angola is more often than not panegyrized as working like a Kenyan. Just like in the ’90s when everybody wanted to be like Mike (Michael Jordan) in Angola today everybody wants to be like a Kenyan! But looking at GDP Per Capita figures it becomes galling that Kenya is only a small percentage better off than their Southwesterly African counterparts. Despite all our education and enlightenment at a level more than any of our progenitors, we languish in the nadirs of the global prosperity index concurrently being celebrated for advancement in technology, having a vibrant, mixed economy, newly exporting oil but being bedeviled by many of the same ills that weigh down our African contemporaries.


We need the same level of transformation that occurred in South East Asia where Singapore roared from the same starting point as Kenya to become a First-world economy. The rallying call was a famous maxim by their former Prime Minister, the venerable Lee Kuan Yew who uttered, “No country can become a major economy without becoming an industrial power.” There is no option but delving headlong into manufacturing to become an economically veritable world power. In the late 1980’s and 90’s, we tried Liberalization. This returned a mixed bag, as well run firms reached the mythical ‘el Dorado’ – The Land of Gold, while those criminally mismanaged have been relegated to the backburners of antiquated asininity in the same league as the saline statue of Lot’s wife! The point I try to pass is that as a nation we have failed to gather sufficient thrust and flight to achieve the escape velocity requisite for full-blown transcendence to the next level. Our efforts have been reduced to the realm of necessary yet insufficient to meet the transformative agenda. With exponentially greater access to all the information of how the Asian Tigers gained their status and closed the gap with high per capita income nations of the developed world, it behooves us to copy from best practice. Pick what has worked while discarding the drawbacks.

Critically crucial is the need for a new economic paradigm for job creation and prosperity. Development should not be adjudged as extremely disproportionate in its distribution as this impacts on our unity and peace as a nation. Every section of Kenya contributes its share to the national kitty. For standardization sake it will be quixotic to convince anybody that for instance Runda Estate deserves more social amenities than the adjacent Githogoro slum merely because more tax revenue is gleaned from the earnings of company supremos, embassy staff, political aficionados and senior state functionaries that reside in the former. It becomes a responsibility of state to equalize development and assure equal routes to prosperity for both the privileged and economically disadvantaged. A task of such a magnitude can only be executed through a well-orchestrated, multi-sectoral engagement between the government and the private sector. Fiscally, our economy must be set on a trajectory of continuous growth while the state offers economic relief to those hit by financial shocks. We must depart from the path of peppering over the gaps in our revenue collection and expectation merely by external borrowing. A culture of increasing the domestic national savings must be inculcated, at a rate of at least 25% of our GDP. We have no option but to grow and incentivize labour-intensive manufacturing with our core market being our neighbours as we prepare for political federation. In the circumstance that Kenya aggressively pursues this agenda, we could potentially position ourselves as an important link for trade, investment and manufacturing between East Africa and the Indian Ocean rim benefiting from the ensuing market and capital for more investments. Economic coordination between State and the private sector must be the new mantra as opposed to strait-jacket State Ownership. As the government will never have capacity to employ everyone, we need to exponentially grow the number of entrepreneurs by facilitating ease of doing business for start-ups and small business debunking the withering calamity of many closing shop before their 3rd birthdays! Logic dictates that greater profitability for SMEs will equate to maximized returns for our national Revenue Authority. This will in turn ensure better service delivery and amelioration of the welfare of the citizenry.

It is by now empirical wisdom that the majority revenue earner in Kenya and indeed many of the Least Developed Nations is Agriculture. In Kenya; regrettably, it has been infiltrated by cartels that abuse political patronage to rig processes thereby disenfranchising the main producer, the farmer. Before I forget to remember, in 2018 Kenya was rocked by a maize scandal where 66 fictitious corn-growers ostensibly pocketed a cool sum of 2.1 billion Kenya shillings among themselves! Invariably, the consumer is equally frustrated as he is forced to pay a heavy price despite copious seasonal availability of the product in question. This leads to poverty for both the farmer and consumer as the products are laden with so many mark-ups as to raise their prices to exorbitant levels leading to consumers who have a fixed income having to pay over-the-odds for food. The middleman simply has to go! The epoch of roadside declarations by Agriculture Cabinet Secretaries that are as hollow as their medium of conveyance is over. A National Intelligence Service-led audit is required on the activities of these creepy-crawlers leading to state sanction under the anti-corruption and Government reform Agenda.

Major Recommendations for shared prosperity include:

A.) An Economic Revolution – A 50-year plan is paramount. We need to think Big and long-term to build an economy that can cater for the now and tomorrow.

The plan must be more technocrat driven and milestone-based than political to survive election cycles and regime change.

Promotion of local investments by the Kenyan Diaspora will go a long way in tapping into both the foreign currency and the acquiesced know-how brought in from the more developed nations.

Embracing of Economic coordination as opposed to state ownership will be key in achieving labour-intensive manufacturing for export. This will also multiply the existing entrepreneurs when ease of doing business is achieved.

A Government driven initiative to provide legal and regulatory guidelines to financial organizations to lend part of their portfolio to key market drivers such as the MSMEs, renewable energy, export credit, agriculture (livestock & fishing), manufacturing, health, housing, education, sanitation and waste management. Banks lacking specialization will be empowered to shift the float to a specially designated development bank with relevant capabilities.

The Government must forthwith be the prime mover of industrialization as its narrative. Active incentives like subsidies, waived import duty and tax rebates will be required to foster lower-technology, labour–intensive and entrepreneurship-led cadres of industrialization.

Intellectual Property protection policy and law to be strengthened for Kenyan inventions, genetic resources, folk knowledge and cultural expressions.

Increase Government savings to 25% of G.D.P to drive a diversified economic agenda without inordinate borrowing.

Offer incentives and economic protection to the Kenyan Diaspora so that they can plough back more of their earnings to Kenya.

Employment conferences held in every county to get more views on job creation.

Spend on more on development than bureaucracy. Write into law a target ratio of 70:30 for development versus recurrent expenditure.

National Expenditure should be fair and proportionately distributed. Planning should be guided by a published and updated index from county to county.

Broaden the tax base, simplify the taxation regime and bring fairness in its application to reduce tax fraud. Criminalize tax evasion and punish all its agents.

Regulate online & mobile loan applications that are aggravating the indebtedness of poor Kenyans.

Build the economy from the grassroots. Expand extension services for livestock and agricultural sectors to effectively advise and set clear standards and market linkages.

Empower farmers with retail price information to make a profitable sustenance out of their toil. Strengthen their various cooperative movements to have heightened bargaining power in price determination. Curtail corruption in the agriculture and livestock sectors.

Promote Research and Development as this is the cornerstone of technological development. Trends are transient and dynamic, so to avoid being trapped in a rut you need to move with the times.

B.) Entrench Article 43 on Economic and Social Rights – This should be a pet project of both the national and county governments. The electorate should be vigilant to hold the politicians that come to ask for their votes during the crazy campaign season to account by ensuring the Party Manifestos laid before them consist of this agenda item.

The Kenya National Bureau of Statistics is entrusted to ensure a National Human Development Index domiciling the UN developed version is enforced within our soil. The report must be published annually and put online.

C.) Beware of the predilection of corruption to fight back undermining efforts to attain shared prosperity – Unimpeded, the tentacles of corruption spread far and wide resulting in abuse of economic power by import substitution schemes that will adversely affect quality such that substandard products will be found on the shelves of our shops.

D.) Safeguard future generations from mounting debt and unsustainable environmental degradation – Every generation must endeavor to live within their means and not mortgage our progeny’s future by overloading ourselves with irresponsible borrowing merely for prestige and devoid of value.

Dispense with Private betting firms in their stead set up a national lottery whose proceeds will work to uplift youth activities, sports, culture and social good. The proliferation of unregulated and private betting firms is killing the drive for enterprise in our youth leading to hopelessness and desperation. The proceeds accrued are often carted offshore with little left for developing the host nation. The adage that in gambling, the house (company owners) always wins has never rung ever so true.

E.) Use scarce public resources more for development than bureaucracy – Also to address is the large discrepancy in income by professionals ostensibly in the same Job Group. Eliminate wasteful expenditure on refurbishments and new cars when the old ones are still functional. Important is to note, the need to optimize on the forgotten conference facilities lying idle before enlisting some swanky hotel. Scrap sitting allowance for government aficionados on salaries.

F.) Nurture opportunities for personal initiative, innovation and entrepreneurship from a young age – Aggressively hone entrepreneurship from an early age while minimizing taxation for fledgling enterprises, a tax-holiday if I may opine. Not nurturing the business sense of our children from a young age is akin to condemning them to a death sentence knowing full well that there are minimal opportunities for employment out here.

Support creativity and sports where young Kenyans show enthusiasm, potential and interest. The careers of Macdonald Mariga, Dennis Oliech and Victor Wanyama should be sound validation that there is money to be made in sports.

Identify & invest in special talents and needs at the Early Childhood Development Stage.

Formulate a mentoring, training and support centre chaired by the president and coordinated by the Private sector that engages budding entrepreneurs to mentorship, training and support. Youth Entrepreneurs will be matched with respective Business Development Advisors and a national network of volunteer mentors. Work readiness, entrepreneurship and financial literacy classes are urged from the age of 12 until graduation.

Facilitate the youth to start business by having an open advice desk at every local Huduma Centre manned by a Business Development Expert.

Technical and Vocational training should be freely accessed by all to effect self-employment. Of colossal importance is to dispense with the outmoded mentality that technical work is for the academically challenged. Two parallel but equal paths are needed between academic and technical training with the assurance that both will potentially lead to rewarding careers and meaningful sustenance.

G.) Government Development Action plans should be undertaken in every county – No region should be shortchanged of their own development in the name of project implementation elsewhere. Remedial policies must be implemented for regions that lag behind. An equalization fund must be set up as an affirmative action measure in an initiative dubbed the ‘Kubadili Plan.’ This has at its heart providing all Kenyans with quality services, foundational to the theme of shared prosperity. Build social amenities and security apparatus in marginalized areas to give them a chance of reaching the levels of the better-developed regions within three years of inception of this action plan.

As opposed to the run-of-the-mill, worn-out paradigm about seeing business plans, we entreat the government tiers both national and county to focus on product developmentEach county should henceforth be facilitated to establish Product Development Parks and Innovation Hubs that allow young, entrepreneurial Kenyans to have the benefit of expert know-how on transitioning from having a promising idea to a marketable product.

Political & Social Empowerment



hen our colonial overlords ruled over us, they amalgamated our different ethnic nation-states to become one big entity dubbed Kenya. They drew boundaries arbitrarily which cut across families, clan spheres of influence and even bisecting tribal identities in absolute disregard to these sensibilities. Of course initially, when colonization came it never portrayed these Caucasian seafarers as the run-of-the-mill cackle of hyenas keen to dominate of our lands, waterways, cattle & other factors of production; far from it. The seminal manifestation was when the missionaries and explorers came here; quixotically discovering and naming physical features, that have no doubt been in our purview since the dawn of time, dishing out the names of their monarchs to these newfound edifices. They found us gullible and unrefined taking advantage to purchase our ignorance with silk and paper all the while easing themselves into our spaces and reviling our cultural identities as devil-smut! Then came the industrialists under the Imperial British East African Company. These ones had an actual pecuniary interest in the amalgamation of population tufts as these would come in handy as sources of labour for their ventures and a market for their manufactured goods. What was initially portrayed as an ‘iron snake’ no doubt snaked its way upcountry opening up our hinterlands to the fairer globetrotters.

Kenya is one country that has the propensity to soar to much greater heights but eternally contrives to relegate albeit stifle her ascent to the pantheon of the most successful African Nations. This is partly due to the fact that we are governed by individuals shackled by mediocrity, greed, tribalism and bloated egos. In actual sense, many of these are men and women sentenced by the gods to die a thousand deaths as the consequence of choosing the coward’s avenue by lying low when authentic ‘sons of the soil’ espousing solid credentials came out in full force and gave up their lives for the liberation of their country in both the independence struggle and the 2nd liberation strife for multiparty democracy. They have unfortunately survived to enjoy the heritage reserved for the noble & valiant which to me is tear-jerking.

What is now clear to all after 56 years of self-governance is that despite congregation into a country, there was never envisaged any congenial universal ideals to bond us together. Our shared struggle for independence, the future endeavour to upstage poverty, illiteracy and disease has proven of minuscule value as a cohesive bond, leaving the tribal extraction as the only unifying factor for many of our compatriots.

Herein stands the crux on which Kenya has had to be crucified henceforth; a lack of a national ethos. From the etymology of the word ‘ethos’, it appears to be a much-vaunted Greek ideal that was bequeathed unto Western civilization and cherished as to be propagated into the succeeding Roman Empire’s Latin language to mean the overarching “character” or “aspirations” existing as the guiding beliefs, attitudes or philosophies that characterize a community or entire nation. It is the characteristic spirit that drives any group which every member is expected to subscribe to for continual existence and maintenance of any semblance of unity vital for development. Post-independence, the fledgling union has had to grapple with this lack of shared identity that has for the most part been our greatest undoing. A once-in-a-lifetime opportunity has arisen to define, develop & subscribe to an unyielding collective vision that ultimately leads to a united Kenya that can overcome not just our historical challenges but the many more we will encounter in future. In repurposing the lyrics of a track by the great rapper and music business impresario Shawn Carter a.k.a Jay-Z called 99-problems, “I have 99 problems but a b***** ain’t one”, as Kenyans we have a myriad of hurdles to jump over but let us never allow the absence of the unity of purpose to be one. This national ethos will beholden to appreciate and honour excellence in our civic responsibilities of leadership and not forgetting our consideration of each other. Respect for the divergence in cultural heritage, beliefs and autochthonous religions will be the cornerstone of this new-found ideal. Like any pathological condition, its remedy begins with accepting that you have a problem and desperately require an amelioration for this offending circumstance.

As a result of a lack of shared identity, our nation is poised in some sort of quasi-purgatory state between our traditional heritage and the undeniable worldview touted superior to the former called globalization. Many still have a sensation of disconnect from our pre-colonial societies, the broken historical narratives infused upon us that our way of life is inferior to those of other jurisdictions. Kenyans are a resilient people that have adapted to change each time acquitting ourselves better. A National ethos will further act to expand our circles of brotherhood so that every Kenyan will view his continued membership in this sovereignty, as a thing of pride worthy of commitment and ownership. We will need initiatives to innovatively marry the young, dynamic and urbanizing culture with the enduring folk-wisdom of our diverse cultures. This will ultimately be a bottom-up initiative commencing in the family unit and local community up to local leadership, culminating in the Institutions of State and Executive Authority. Along the way the support from the civil society, private sector, academia, the media among others will be much appreciated. It will most certainly not be a single note from one composer but a multifaceted song; an acapella of sorts, where every note and voice will be sampled individually and weaved in unison to create a melodious harmony. We need a country where virtue is not reviled and ridiculed rather emphasized as a path to prosperity. Hard work, integrity, respectfulness, justice and an unerring predilection to peaceful co-existence should not just be noted and nodded to in appreciation instead promoted and even feted. We need a logical system where he who exerts the most effort is expected to reap maximum return. In building an enduring national ethos let us also be cognizant of previous efforts that resulted in what now corroborates a mixed bag of success. Previously concocted slogans include: Uhuru na Kazi, Harambee & the Nyayo Philosophy of Peace, Love & Unity. In hindsight, the state was more often than not thoroughly at odds with the philosophy it preached with its functionaries sempiternally contradicting sentiments they themselves loudly mouthed off at public rendezvous. The absorption of this national ethos ought not just be a top-down endeavour but also a bottom-up policy interspersed by diverse approaches in respect of our cultural origins but with a keen eye on globalization so that we don’t sacrifice solidarity with the rest of the world; probably a greater ideal, at the altar of nationalism. A balance should be sought.

The Recommendations touted to encapsulate a national ethos among our people include:

  1. Think Big and Long term – Needless to say Elections will oft come and go but Kenya will endure! We need a unique vision that will produce the archetypal Kenyan civilization that must be a product of meaningful, inclusive and multisectoral ideas. We need ideals not slogans that will outlast election cycles and even the party manifestos of the rulers of the day.
  2. Need for an Official and Inclusive History – Rename the Kenya National Archives as the Official Historian & National Archival Service and broaden its mandate to work in consort with Libraries, Universities, Museums and individual historians to research, analyze and present a thorough and definitive Kenyan history. The Institution should be led by an acclaimed scholar of African history or world-class expert on Library science/curating having participation from private curators, artists and elders. Our history should accurately be traced as far as 1000 years back, providing a definitive account of settlement in Kenya. Not to be denigrated in this initiative should be the roles of philosophers, anthropologists, theologians and political scientists. Presentation should be in a form understood by Kenyans from all walks of life.
  3. Finding Comfort in our own African skin – Harmonize the modern Kenyan identity with our diverse cultural heritage to eschew the prospect of living in disparate worlds. Strengthen the Ministry of Culture and promote its initiatives. Devolution of Traditional Knowledge and cultural identity as per Schedule 4 of the Protection of Traditional Knowledge and Cultural Expressions Act of 2016. Replace Boxing Day on 26th December with National Culture Day. Public participation and expert knowledge will be vital in codifying an official pantheon of Kenyan heroes. Officially recognize and enshrine into law the provision of state support to recognized living paragons of national heroism if deemed vulnerable and destitute. Heroes are to be henceforth defined as men & women that selflessly gave themselves up as a fragrant sacrifice in our crusade against colonization, the modern-day strife for democracy & civil liberty and outstanding achievement in human endeavor. These heroes should forthwith, be pictorially displayed in museums and academic curricula.
  4. Development of a sense of responsibility – It behooves us to have the senior ranks of leadership being the prime-movers of this national moment. At every twist and turn, they should preach this gospel but also espouse it in the way they live and interact. Lessons on morality & the sacrosanctity of truth from the domestic level will be valuable. Civic Education must forthwith be an integral part of cultural initiation into adulthood. The 4th Estate should play their keynote role in education, promotion of national identity, lionizing the distinctiveness of every soul and keeping the powerful to account. The virtue of service to humanity should be inculcated from an early age and formalized through the National Volunteer Service. Structured volunteer activities will be enhanced to reflect compassion, cooperation, empathy and responsibility among the youth. Religious leaders should adjunctive to the tenets of their faiths, also preach the inalienable role of a national ethos. This rooted in morality, ethics and integrity must become part of the academic curriculum.
  5. Round the clock focus on ethics – The EACC should not only be tooled to impede economic crimes but also accorded the requisite constitutional protection. The National Cohesion and Integration Commission should be subsumed in the Ethics Commission and have a specified mandate inclusive of monitoring, reporting, advising state, surveying all government entities with regards to adherence to ethics and publicizing the results, conducting civic education on morality and lastly enhance the link between cultural systems of ethics and Kenya’s Constitutional strictures.
  6. Link Cultural values & current norms of Kenyans – Formalize cultural rites of passage and benchmark them with the newly acquired national ethos.
  7. Enforcement of our National Ethos – This is to be reactivated or modeled if non-existent along the lines of Chapter 6 capturing National values and have functional mechanisms for enforcement. Bullying, misinformation, demeaning public office & discrimination should be deemed breaches of our constitutional order and be severely reprimanded if not prosecuted.

We must no doubt understand and be ready to defend the ideal of Kenya being bigger than any of our individual parts and be promoted as even greater than those singular entities that constitute it living in appreciation of a common national ethos.


As has been demonstrated by both empirical and experiential wisdom, democracy is the best system of government though the most expensive as such never delivered to the polity on a silver platter. This is because politics and by extension democracy is run by politicians. Contrary to popular belief, being a Politician and leadership are mutually exclusive entities. James Freeman Clarke, an American Theologian once sagaciously opined, “A politician is subsumed by the worries of the next election while the Statesman mulls about the next generation, as a Statesman seeks to steer the vessel keenly a politician is at home drifting in the current!” Many here in Kenya go into politics uninitiated, seeing this as a rapid conduit to amass riches, personal aggrandizement, create business for their personal enterprises & associates, a clear representation of their selfishness, egoism and vanity as human beings. Historical evidence is clear that even a great leader of the mettle of Julius Caesar continually had creases of worry on his forehead during his period as an elected consul in 59 B.C which vanished when he became Emperor and Dictator for Life. With this in hindsight, a politician may more often than not be forced to even trample on the rights of his electorate for self-preservation. Consequently, vigilance is urged on the part of the plebeians with regards to their Rights, Obligation & Responsibilities because no one else will act on their behalf, not even those constitutionally mandated to do so. Kenyan soldiers brave enemy troops defending our territorial integrity, many making the ultimate sacrifice to protect our liberty. Who is blind to the numerous IED attacks on the policemen patrolling our porous frontier with Somalia in recent times? I have suffered personal loss of good friends but this is definitely no arena for my tears! Many of these sacrifices have not and can never be captured by TV cameras or lauded in the dailies as patriots rise to encourage, heal, rescue and sacrifice it all for the sake of their compatriots.

Despite all these, it’s an appalling statistic how few people are actually aware of their responsibilities as enshrined by law. As a break with tradition, it’s incumbent upon us all to dispense with this outmoded system where we take a back seat and have politicians read important documents of national concern for instance, our own Constitution and now this BBI document on our behalf then dictate to us the position to take. This is dereliction of our hard-earned liberty to exercise our volition at junctures that may never be available to us again. We have deprecated ourselves to those who ask, “What will Kenya do for me?” instead of taking matters into our more than capable hands as our progenitors did and more importantly our future progeny expect us to. We think of there being a caste of ‘wenye nchi’ (Owners of the country) while relegating ourselves to mere spectators – ‘wananchi.’  Consequently, the siren call of corruption and dishonesty compromises public service as the ravenous try to bridge the gap to whence the grass is greener! This has left us vulnerable to insecurity and even disasters.

A walk down memory lane clarifies the fact that in pre-colonial times our individual nation-states used to be egalitarian in nature built on the enlightenment that ‘I am because you are.’ Brotherhood and good neighbourliness was our raison d’etre. Sharing of responsibilities created a system where human rights were inherent and everyone was reliable of the other man such that one provides security against external aggressors while his neighbour works on the farm to grow the food that will feed them all. And for centuries this ensured the continuity of our communities. Taking up these responsibilities was concomitant with adulthood in many jurisdictions. After colonialism, we were westernized and our longstanding socio-economic traditions were lost in the interest of preserving white hegemony upon us. Our indigenous knowledge-base petered out. Post-colonialism we were left in a chasm as we retained a superfluity of our traditional system but felt the predilection to formal legal rights that were promulgated as our Independence Constitution in 1963. This new supreme law failed in its entirety to capture eons of folklore and conventions choosing to majorly ape the systems of our former oppressors. Consequently, today we have a rights-heavy and responsibility-light dispensation with civil society replacing the use of our personal consciences. These missteps have seen us almost stumble into the cauldron of chaos albeit National Armageddon in 2007 and in 2010 a new constitutional order was formulated.

What recommendations does this chapter have on our continued nationhood?


  1. Cognition that Responsibilities and Rights of Kenyans are inherent and promote knowledge & attitudes that enhance responsible citizenship – The spirit of interdependence must become our observance again! Rights exist side by side with responsibilities and prudence dictates that where my fist ends is where your nose begins! This should be knowledge infused as a life-long odyssey as opposed to one or two course units in the curriculum. New systems to fight malfeasance in government will be promoted i.e. a whistleblowing culture or reporting malevolent elements of society to the security apparatus and such efforts forthwith be rewarded. Communication channels for this will be open and manned by personnel espousing integrity. Civic (Citizenship) Education will be prioritized in government policy and initiatives in both the County and National government. The culture of taking responsibility must never again be deemed intuitive but be deliberately inculcated in the Kenyan upbringing. Initiation ceremonies will be integral in edifying the newly-minted adults into a world where responsibility is the key marker of their succeeding stage in life.
  2. The Culture of ‘Skin in the Game’ and ownership in leadership – ‘Skin in the game’ mirrors the age-old adage stating “What is good for the goose is also good for the gander!” There has been a superiority complex in the leadership cadre where national hospitals and schools cater for the proletarians while for our rulers only treatment or tutelage outside our borders in the western world will make muster. If you deem the handiwork of your regime sufficiently good for the ordinary Kenyans then the same must be estimated as functionally effective by you Mr. Politician, your wife and children. Double standards have bred discord as chalk-circles demarcate the respective castes in society. A Ministerial Code and policy statement must have included within an enforceable clause that Ministers are compelled to use the social services under their purview without fail. These principles must also percolate to the Counties.
  3. Teach Effective Parenting – This will be pivotal in raising healthy and enlightened children in the dynamic Kenya of today. Just like marriage counselling in many churches pre-nuptial, efforts should be made to strengthen parenting by means of a generic & simple curriculum. Parents are meant to be their children’s principal role models & mentors.
  4. Entrench ethics awareness, training and accountability in civil service – Integrity and Ethics Charters should be the tapestry of every office.
  5. Life-long Service – This is the best way to inculcate responsibility into all of us. Kenyans should be encouraged to voluntarily give 6 months of service to the republic in early adulthood (18-26 years).
  6. Operationalization of the African Charter on Popular rights to develop civic awareness on responsibilities – Unbeknownst to many, Kenya is actually party to the African Charter on Human & Popular Rights.

As per Article 27: Duty of care must be exercised by every individual towards his family, society, the state, the international community and other legally mandated communities. Rights and Freedoms of each individual will be exercised with due regard to those of others.

Article 28: Mutual Respect and tolerance devoid of discrimination is our way of life.

Article 29: Preservation of the harmonious development of the family, respect for parents and maintenance in times of need.

  • Have yourself at the disposal of state for service.
  • Never compromise the security of your state.
  • Strengthen and preserve national solidarity.
  • Protect territorial integrity and preserve national independence in accordance with existing law.
  • Work to the best of your abilities and remit taxes religiously for state benefit.
  • Help preserve positive African culture emphasizing dialogue, tolerance and consultation for the moral health of society.
  • Promote the attainment of African Unity.
Political & Social Empowerment


How did we get here?

I wrote this on a Previous Blog in May 2018 –

In most of 2017, Kenya mirrored the behavior exemplified by Abunuwas cutting a tree branch he was sitting on. After the January 30th 2018 swearing-in ceremony for the People’s President of The Republic of Kenya, Raila Odinga there seemed to be no way back. The fission looked complete. With two ‘Presidents’ installed in the same country, only fire and brimstone clouded the horizon. The fall-out from eons of neglected historical injustices, the bitterly yet closely contested election in August 2017 and the consequent brutality meted by state players on the opposition, the nullification of that entire process and the farcical fresh election seemed to have pushed us to the edge of the precipice. Battle lines had been drawn and positions entrenched so deeply the tension arising was virtually palpitating. In most households in the opposition strongholds, murmurs of secession were evident and poignant for all to see. And these sentiments were no doubt justified. Hateful rhetoric was spewed from all quarters and the same leaders who we elected as our symbols of unity, morphed to become the very wedge that was splitting asunder the gargantuan woody tree representing what we have learnt to call our motherland, Kenya. Dubious and quite shady characters; some purporting to be members of some ‘business community’, were co-opted on an inexplicable basis to militantly protect the interests of the majorly unpopular but imposed ‘majority’. Polarization was the order of the day and like a living cell that is in the Telophase stage, a seismic split was definitely on the cards. Then the seemingly unexpected happened, an anticlimax of sorts. On the 9th of March 2018, a meeting was secretly concocted at the President’s Office between him and his bitter rival catching both ally and foe speechless. The aftermath of the meeting was an unexpected handshake between the bitter antagonists and a cessation of hostilities.

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This was the beginning of the Building Bridges Initiative which seeks to take advantage of the cooling of existing tensions between the antagonizing fronts to create space for national dialogue and sort out the issues that have eternally threatened to split Kenya into smithereens every time a General Election is called, putting us on a needless warpath with our erstwhile good neighbours. For nearly one and a half years the taskforce for the implementation has been working on developing the problem statements and county to county traversing to ask the citizenry of the major issues that bedevil them seeking for a panacea to the ills that impede our nationhood and the prospect of every citizen avowing pride to be a Kenyan. This document urges Kenyans to make the deliberate jump from merely being a nation united by blood ties to a body that finds concord in aspiring to a set of predefined values and mutually satisfactory ideals. This can only be achieved by amending the injurious sections of the 2010 constitution while adding new elements and call for greater seriousness in enforcing the culture of constitutionalism by the relevant authorities.


A supporter of National Super Alliance (NASA) presidential candidate Raila Odinga.

Diversity is a beautiful thing. The Almighty in his infinite wisdom made every person though similar in form and shape but unique in his/her own way. However, in Kenya diversity has turned out to be our Achilles’ heel. First it begins with innocuous taunts over long-standing ethnic stereotypes, developed over many years of folklore and interaction with neighbouring communities. Unfortunately, this morphs into actual contempt, insults, frayed emotions, injured egos and ultimately outright brawls. When the strife for resources like jobs, prosperity in business, prime residential & commercial real estate, multi-million shilling government tenders becomes a function of belonging to a particular group – either by default or design, then inevitably conflict must result. Political power invariably pours fuel into this powder keg. Diversity is meant to be celebrated and enhanced. If we continue finding sadistic pleasure in spreading hatred then we are merely setting the stage for shared doom. Even the current benefactors of this state of affairs will lose, even to the interminable, transcendental generations after theirs.

Strife for resources and clout are a natural phenomenon. Kenya is consisted of a multiplicity of ancient nations, linguistically diverse, culturally rich with variance in models of governance and dispute resolution. With time these nations learnt to exist side by side and even wrought mechanisms for regulation and solution of cross-border conflict. Unfortunately with the advent of colonialism, came the winner take all system and belief that ‘might is right’ using state machinery as a tool for disenfranchisement and oppression. We inherited this rottenness and sharpened it to brutal levels at the attainment of independence. This is at variance with our traditional consensus-led model for political and social dispute resolution. Politics here has consequently mutated to an ethnic census where the winner takes all in absolute disdain to our cultures of yore. We are denied capable stewards with a strong, national vision to rally us to shared prosperity. The result is pettiness, insincerity and leaders keen to create dog-whistles that only work to resonate to our primal instincts, pitting ‘us’ against ‘them’. The result of all this is seldom peace and prosperity. Group antagonism due to the tribe, family ties, religion, familiarity, friendship, clans, race among other considerations is ultimately to the bane of us all. Regional Integration with our neighbouring countries is one means to escape this insidious descent into anarchy. Political Federation into the East African Community will stop in its tracks this phantom of tribalism as the parochial ethnic politics of today will find no space in a greater community as the tribes become only a minority stirred into our soup of the East African Community. Sovereignty will only be short-lived before we join each other legally, policy-wise and administratively.

The Recommendations reached to end our needless ethnic antagonism include:

  1. Build & Enhance ties that bind us as opposed to rifts – From a young age everyone will be incentivized to respect ethnic and religious diversity. This principle will have its physical manifestation in public service constitutionally stipulated. School curriculums will be enthralled to feature compulsory courses on history, cultural & religious diversity as these attributes’ interlink with the practice of constitutionalism. Additionally, public boarding secondary schools will be compelled to have not less than 50% of the student body from outside counties. The National Museum Society will forthwith be compelled to showcase without diminishing importance, the cultural diversity of Kenya. Cultural Centres will henceforth become a feature of every county.
  2. Scrap forthwith the ‘winner-take-all’ model for Presidency, opting instead for a more consociational (power-sharing) model that thrives for ethnically-divided societies – Many a hopeless romantic have regaled their damsels with tales of giving them the moon, in absolute disregard to the obvious reservations with what then will illuminate the path for the rest of us at night! Madness that is quintessential of romance notwithstanding, this is the same question that Kenyans have asked for eon – If the winner takes all, what becomes of the loser? Going forward, we are urged to be more consensus-oriented as opposed to appealing to our ethnicities as our primary mode of political competition. This will sound a death-knell to the archetypal do-or-die style of politics that is endemic of our societies today. The Executive (Cabinet) should reflect the face of Kenya highlighting the political will of the nation and not lean heavily on the President’s region of extraction in the guise of coaxing loyalty merely by aboriginal association.
  3. Resource distribution should be fair with this impartiality trickling down to the grassroots – All Kenyans should be deemed equal in resource allocation. The per capita share of national resources inclusive of healthcare provision, agricultural dividends, social services, natural resources and access to livelihood opportunities has to be equitable and guaranteed to every citizen of the Republic of Kenya. An Equalization fund should be set up to ensure those previously or currently being marginalized are given extra support to come up to speed with the rest of the nation. Institutions mandated with resource distribution should report their work clearly, periodically, without withholding information or erasure to all Kenyans.
  4. Committee of Elder Statesmen (Baraza la Washauri) – In cognizance of the President as our national symbol of unity, he should benefit from the advice of eminent, experienced and venerable citizens serving in a Council of Advisors as pro-bono consultants.
  5. Accelerate Regional Integration – a means to escape the diabolically interminable cycle of ethnic political competition by federation with our neighbouring countries. To the uninitiated, The East African Community Treaty is already part of our Laws and Government. Political and economic federation is the ultimate aim of EAC. Federation will result in the major tribal groupings of Kenya merely being reduced to minorities within a Federated nation which is much welcome.
  6. Institutionalization of Agenda-based politics by National Political Parties – All Political parties will be compelled to reflect the Face of Kenya in Ethnic, religious, regional and most importantly gender terms. A dearth in the level of refereeing; the term referee here alluding to the Registrar of Political parties, has resulted in the chaos we now witness in the name of democracy. Going forward, we seek a financially and ethically strong, assertive, independent and proactive Office with regard to political party registration. It’s appalling that since the establishment of this ostensibly august office in 2007, it has lacked a substantive Registrar in absolute breach of not just our constitutional order but also the Political Parties Act. As a deserving gift to an audacious new Kenya, we need to recruit and appoint a substantive registrar; in so doing maintaining the position in future with a keen eye on the stipulations of Functions of the Chairperson of a Chapter 15 commission. A new office empowered to monitor the implementation of the Political Parties’ Code of Conduct and sanctioning those who flout it.


It’s an open secret that Kenya’s glaring failure is understood even internationally to be in her governance and the poor leaders that our weak system churns out. Conflict is the hue that colours our political contests every 5 years interrupting almost every facet of life. We have a crude, adversarial system devoid of any middle-ground as it’s ‘us’ versus ‘them’, albeit Angels versus Demons tags to our contests. This is worse for the Presidential race, whose contestation more often than not is the major source of these destabilizing elections. This current status quo ensures that every five-year period we morph into gladiators for our ethnic identities, fighting it out with our good neighbours for no other reason than our candidate versus yours. The desire for inclusivity fuels this quandary as access to resources has for eon been primitively attached at the hip to whoever gets the presidency. The perception of personal gain from being the clients of a successful political leader means that as a populace we become ready to pull all stops for a victory. This is in antipathy to us being 7 years into the era of devolution, where resource allocation was supposed to be decentralized. Consequently, as other nations seek to bake bigger cakes, Kenya is trapped in the loop of trying to share the little that is available. Going forward, we need an election that guarantees peace, economic stability, personal security and an opportunity to fete meritocracy. This can only be secured by an end to the winner-takes-all system of leadership to stop the exclusion of other taxpayers from state largesse. As we have seen with the 7 years of Jubilee Party, even where the winner appoints members of other tribes to his own Cabinet including the losing side; more often than not, tokenism is the only thing in play rather than meaningful expressions of genuine goodwill.

In the past, before the promulgation of the 2010 constitution, we elected our Presidents through a plurality system in which a winning candidate had to secure a simple majority in universal suffrage with at least 25% of the mandate from 5 of our 8 former provinces. This yardstick obviously did not pass muster with instances like the 1992 election where despite the benefit of government machinery consequent to incumbency, Daniel T. Arap Moi still managed a paltry 36.6% of the national vote. The current system raised the threshold to 50%+1 with a provision for a run-off if the leading candidate during the first election does not meet this exceedingly high threshold. This has only whet universal appetite for greater representation of their political interests in the executive. Not just that, but Kenyans have demanded for greater social and political accountability from their leaders at the high table of both county and national government. A do-or-die dimension to our presidential contests have seen extreme skepticism and mistrust of the electoral process. It is no secret that the quest for victory in the national elections has seen the major players even resorting to uncouth tactics like outright rigging of the polls and sometimes even the rejection of credible results. There are seldom winners’ medals for the Electoral body no matter how good a job they do as the opposing side will always cry foul in such highly charged contests.

Prima-facie, the Kenyan Government purports to have equality and equity in governance and distribution of national resources. While the law attempts to deliver oversight necessary to achieve this, high-level corruption suggests that officeholders still exercise a level of discretion that is vulnerable to abuse and ostracism of other Kenyans. Moreover, Kenyans have noted that few communities have ever had a chance to have their kinsman at Statehouse as Presidential Elections in Kenya are oft an ethnic census. The BBI puts great emphasis on strong, multi-ethnic and nationwide parties that permit leaders of stature to grow no matter their tribal inclination. The desire for greater inclusivity, equality, fairness, equity and accountability was observed among most Kenyans. It has proven a stumbling block for a political class that owes oodles to tribalism as a rallying call for them to turn round and cultivate the political will to downgrade its importance. Certainly, this can be only achieved by concerted efforts by enlightened and determined leadership able to shift this paradigm, by so doing, lay the foundations for stable, ideology-based politics for future generations. In the antiquated dispensation, size & inefficiency of government contributed to this current debate. Equally useful to bear in mind, a model that works for Kenya must entail a cohesive and strong leadership cadre that assures of decisiveness at critical times without the paralysis induced by bureaucratic sibling rivalry courtesy of ill-defined constitutional parameters open to double-entendre style misinterpretation by diverse opinion holders.

The recommendations to sort out this conundrum include:

i) An autochthonous (homegrown) National Executive – Since independence, we have experimented with the three major Western models to the Executive. Circa 1963-64, we had a pure Parliamentary system; moving onto the Hybrid semi-presidential system between 1964 – 2007 which was an abject failure. Between 2008 -2013 we tried Hybrid Cohabitation that proved a slight improvement but ballooned the government wage bill. After 2013, we have experimented with the Pure Presidential system that has been abysmal to put it generously and an utter farce as far as the actual state of affairs is concerned. A homegrown inclusive system is now sought as we had in pre-colonial times. Kenyans want a system to guarantee not just a strong President for decisive leadership, but also an accountable Parliament. Not in the least, a strong opposition is needed to offer checks and balances to the government of the day.

-The President will continue being elected under the strictures of the 2010 constitution. He remains as Head of State, Government and Commander-in-Chief. He will Chair a Cabinet consisting of the Deputy President, Prime Minister and Cabinet Ministers. He retains the 2 term limit.

-A new feature of this pristine system is the reintroduction of the Prime Minister. Within a stipulated period after an election, the President shall appoint a PM. He will be an elected Member of the National Assembly from a party with a majority of members and will be forced to canvass for the seat among his colleagues to gain the support of an absolute majority of them. Parliamentary approval will be mandatory in an absolute vote.

Afterwards, his roles will include:

  • Authority over control, supervision and execution of the day to day functions of Government.
  • Leader of government business in the National Assembly.
  • Chair of Cabinet sub-committees on presidential prodding.

He/she will earn a normal MPs salary with none additional to his role. Additionally, this appointee may be dismissed in case of a vote of no confidence.

-The Seat of Leader of Official Opposition will make a comeback, this person being the runner-up of the Presidential Election. He will be an ex-officio Member of Parliament. The holder of this position will have no presence in government by being a coalition member with the winning party or individually. This individual shall have his shadow cabinet. During a prescribed Question time, the opposition will play a key role in putting a PM and Government Ministers to task over their dockets.

-Principal Secretaries will be free from parliamentary approval as their accountability will be strictly administrative and technical.

ii) A Mixed Cabinet – It’s still up for decision whether to go the American way: With technocrats or Our old British way: with MPs. The Members will be appointed in consultation with the PM. They will be a mix of technocrats & Politicians. A Minister of State will be tasked with shepherding the political and parliamentary accountability side of things. The Position of Cabinet Administrative Secretary to be scrapped.

iii) Popular Representation – It is to be upheld through free, fair & transparent systems. The principle of equalization of representation shall reign supreme as the Gender rule and other measures of inclusion are enforced. All 290 constituencies will be retained. We will have 360 members each elected by registered voters from both the 290 constituencies and 70 more from single & multiple-member constituencies. We will have a Senate with 94 members, a man and woman nominated from each county.

Independent candidates will continue to contest. Devolution of political parties will be urged to the counties with political fora to hold elected leaders accountable throughout their term. Nomination lists will be completed transparently overseen by the Registrar of Political Parties and IEBC.

iv) The Referee Body – Leaders of Political Parties will have a say on the recruitment of the Head of Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission and their fellow commissioners. Non-partisanship is greatly encouraged, with a sound record of accomplishment and integrity. Known political activists and supporters of political parties will be shunned. All IEBC staff henceforth should be appointed on 3-year contracts renewable only once for good performance. This will end the culture of error propagation to the next team. Returning Officers are to be hired through a competitive process and basis for appointments be available explicitly, handling only one election.

Any person with at least 15 years of management experience is urged to throw his/her hat into the ring for appointment as Chairman of IEBC. It should no longer be the preserve of ‘learned friends’! However, at least one commissioner should be a Lawyer. The composition of Electoral Commission must reflect the face of Kenya. Provisions enshrined under Article 86 of the current Constitution regarding simplicity, security, accountability and transparency of the voting process still remain.

Political & Social Empowerment


Political & Social Empowerment


KENYA-COURT-POLITICS-DEMOAccording to the Biblical book of Revelations Chapter 21:8 – The fearful, faithless, abominable, murderers, whore-mongers (pimps), sorcerers, adulterers, idolaters and  liars will meritoriously have their part in the lake that burns with fire and brimstone. Adding From Luke 13:28-29 – People will appear from all directions to recline at the table in the Kingdom of God. Many that enjoyed themselves during their short sojourn on earth reveling in their perversion but will find themselves weeping and gnashing their teeth, when they will see Abraham, Isaac, Jacob and all the prophets in heavenly glory and comfort but themselves cast out! But I digress. Many Kenyans, even those apparently strong in faith will read these passages in the Bible and ask themselves if there is really any other hell worse than their current predicament!

But this suffering all seems well deserved. Allow me to indulge you. None put it better than the American Ben Carson, the World-renowned neurosurgeon and author turned politician during his visit to Kenya when he uttered, “Choices have consequences.” This was an indirect jibe in relation to the wildly unpopular election victory, more like state capture by then ICC-indicted duo of Uhuru Kenyatta and his deputy William Ruto; this undisguisable millstone around their necks, notwithstanding. Quick on his feet, the new national supremo; Uhuru Kenyatta, fired back opining that the challenges facing his partner-in-government and himself were personal and wouldn’t in any way affect their service delivery or mandate to the adoring throngs that ‘elected’ them overwhelmingly. Those who didn’t elect this duo knew better but as democratic tenets dictate, ‘the majority have their way, the minority their say.’ Then, among the supporters of this duopoly was great dancing and cheer. However, I enthuse you to now show me but one honest person celebrating their good fortune consequent to tragedy that has been the Jubilee Party in government.

Allow me to paint a little background. In early 2008, Kenya was engulfed in the throes of post-election violence sparked off by a bungled election where a clear leader in the early poll results had surprisingly and narrowly lost the election by a flurry of ‘late’ albeit disproportionately favourable entries from strongholds of the early trailer that apparently had more voters than the total population of those regions! A hurried swearing-in ceremony was set-up at dusk and the incumbent H.E. Mwai Kibaki was sworn-in, in retrospect comically holding the Bible upside down! Feeling a clear sense of injustice and with a blocked avenue to legal recourse, the opposition strongholds erupted into a spontaneous frenzy of mass action by setting up fiery roadblocks in the middle of highways and creating all sorts of pandemonium. State machinery hit back to quell the riots but used inordinate force by opening fire on unarmed civilians in the opposition leaning areas. The situation was tense countrywide. In the defunct Rift valley province things went, for lack of a better word ‘ape!’ One tribe that had eternally arrogated themselves the title of natives of the region took up their bows, machetes, arrows and spears, going on a spree of evicting all other communities from their spheres of interest more so, the one of Mr. Mwai Kibaki’s ethnic stock. We all know of Newton’s 3rd Law of Motion – For Every Action is an equal and opposite reaction. Retaliatory attacks were forthcoming and in the aftermath of this all, a suspected figure of more than 1200 people lay lifeless while 500,000 more were internally displaced. Later a unity Government was formed between Kibaki and his begrudged foe Raila Odinga and from a collapsing economy Kenya picked itself up and back onto the horse of an economic surge akin to that it had enjoyed for most of the former’s first term. Wrangles abounded in the coalition government but for most part these always ended up getting smoothed over by the principals to the best interests of the Republic.

There was no audacity of hope that wafted from the two characters that contested the Presidency under the Jubilee coalition come 2013. These erstwhile foes who had worked together before found themselves in the same boat again buoyed by similar existential interests. Consequently, they had no other endearing quality to their populace other than remonstration against the International Criminal Courts by their respective ethnic groupings and creating a narrative of being singled out for needless persecution, coercion out of politics and possible neo-colonialization of their masses. Two tribes ganged behind their sons and willed them on to high office merely to pervert the course of justice for the internally displaced, tortured, murdered and raped. A bromance was brewed between two guys previously at opposite sides of the spectrum that had a rapt following of their kinsmen willing them on. The World seemed to be going crazy and all strictures of logic were ostensibly thrown out of the window. But behind the scenes another group with sinister motives was forming. This was a group of schemers and connivers who knew what nobody else had an inkling of! They were sure that despite the massive following enjoyed by the then Prime Minister, these two upstarts would upstage him and take office by whatever means possible. So they worried themselves not. They simply went through the motions tirelessly behind the shadows paying fealty, fund-raising and creating a massive-propaganda campaign to get the aptly named ‘team-fresh’ elected. They knew beyond the shadow of a doubt that their pay-day was coming by cashing in on the green-horns of statecraft that was to be the incoming sprightly leadership. Against the will of the majority and to the great chagrin of many Kenyans, this seemingly wide-eyed duo usurped national leadership at the First Round of Voting with a suspicious 50%+8000. The winner took it all!

After this twosome had taken their respective Oaths of Office as the 4th President and First Deputy President of the Republic of Kenya, it was time to literally divide the spoils of war among those who had been loyal to the cause of TNA and URP. This was done in absolute disregard to the ethnic composition of Kenya and majorly favoured the two tribes where the President and his Deputy hailed. The remaining offal was distributed disproportionately among what for the lack of a better phrase will describe as the ‘scum of Kenya’ from among the opposition-leaning tribes that had elected to betray their kinsmen in support of Jubilee. The discord this created in the national psyche in addition to the ‘twins’ at statehouse choosing to honour their respective dates at the ICC at great inconvenience to the nation resulted in an economy in turmoil. But if there is something that I can pay adulation to the Jubilee government is being adroit at the use of the Public Relation machine at their disposal. They eternally worked in concord with state aficionados to create a rosy outlook of the initiatives of the government of the day in absolute variance to the reality on the ground.

The wheeler-dealers aforementioned who now worked as Principal Secretaries and Chairmen of State departments took advantage of the naivety and incompetence at the top to virtually loot the statutory bodies they were mandated to oversee. A dearth in accountability occasioned first, by State officials neither being answerable to anybody in particular nor filling-in wealth declaration forms prior to taking up office and secondly making a norm out of invoking the name of the opposition leader for blame and possible ‘circumcision’ each time they were caught in the throes of anguish pertaining to fingers firmly stuck in the cookie jar! Flexing of their newly-acquired muscle of state became the new sport as mismanagement gained prominence as the by-word in most institutions where embezzlement and mismatching of skills due to favouritism, were the temple at which they all worshipped. Tribalism was exalted, all the while veiled to create an impression of a leader only innocently keen to hire those he could trust but malevolently punishing the tribes that didn’t vote for him. Corruption and weak payroll management systems yielded ghost-workers giving rise to a new financial elite of civil servants who benefited from double payment cashing in on unaccounted dead colleagues in the payroll. Irreverence knows no limits. The injudicious culture of expending borrowed money based on expected future earnings to supplant it, has become engrained among the government elite. When government spends more than it earns through taxation it is only emblematic of an attitude of minimal prudence in financial management. The state was regressing from the gains made in the two decades of multiparty politics in Kenya, but who could possibly dare tell that to two autocrats who rode roughshod into statehouse on the back of injustice and coercion of state machinery?

Ultimately all that is done in darkness must come to light, all that is hidden must in due course become manifest to multitudes. After Uhuru Kenyatta secured his 2nd Term and sought to grab the opportunity to build a legacy he had lost in his first term he took a hardline stance against graft. After making peace with the People’s President; Raila Odinga, thereby earning back the legitimacy to run state, there was nowhere to hide for the guilty and ploys to distract popular attention away from their misdeeds were all foiled. It has now come to light that Kenya is in dire straits economically. Taking loans for infrastructural development devoid of a Kenyan-led feasibility study and plans for consequent Return on Investment are now biting hard on our economy. In the early days of the Jubilee regime, Kenya floated a facility in the temperate climes known as Eurobond that on maturity was supposed to be used as a supplementary tool for bolstering our economic prospects and government spending. Evidence is clear that on maturity, the impact of that sovereign bond acquired on behalf of the sovereignty; which is the People of Kenya, has been stolen and deposited in the private bank accounts of the well-to-do in the higher echelons of state. It has also become poignant that the erstwhile blue-eyed boy of the Jubilee Government that had for six years survived as Cabinet Secretary for Finance, Mr. Henry Rotich was in concert with his Principal secretary and in a small way the entirely vestigial Cabinet Administrative Secretary engaging in the practice of ‘Creative Accounting’ derogatorily referred to as ‘cooking the books’. This is creation of parallel books of accounts for budgeting purposes. One bears the authentic picture of the state of the economy while the other one is used merely to hoodwink the public, a vacuous PR entry! As this was done, behind the scenes was a vermin-like frenzy of eating by those state officers that has worked to eviscerate the state of whatever was left of the Kenyan economic prospects. The public may be ignorant enough to be fooled by sideshows but how do you explain the state not being able to pay its suppliers for goods and services for months on end? How do you explain the forced austerity measures by none other than the Head of State himself in contravention to the previously panegyrized healthy run of the national economy? Can you really wish away late salaries for civil servants with just an excuse of minor aberrations in the computer systems used in the disbursement of funds at treasury? How do you substantiate on the presidential directive to freeze all state projects despite our new economic boon borne out of the revenue from the SGR railway?

Even blind Bartimeus can perceive the economy is no longer liquid! You cannot gloss away cash-flow in a state of ebb. It is not lost on anyone, the closure of many businesses that have previously been thriving in Kenya partly or wholly dependent on doing business with government. Small and Medium Enterprises that were propping up the economy are now closing by the droves. Foreign investment is almost drying up as those that were initially attracted by the investment-friendly economic climate this side of the Sahara now find themselves without prompting being edged out of the market and are now in a life-death battle to stay afloat. They invariably are taking their businesses to fiscally friendlier African nations at our expense. Our economic prospects are abysmal to put it mildly. Don’t even mention companies retrenching and offering redundancy statements to their employees. Now it’s becoming apparent you cannot expect beans from an orchard! Lack of fiscal discipline symptomized by unrestrained borrowing and minimal frugality on expenditure once the funds have been obtained is now Kenya’s achilles heel. The monumental national friction created by UhuRuto’s ascent to power against the ‘vox-populi’ meant that they had to hire more politicians to the executive for fire-fighting purposes as opposed to prudent practice of head-hunting the requisite technocrat economists or professionals from other cadres to steady their ship. Immoral as it is, failed politicians now ask ordinary citizens to pick up the tab for their malfeasance, no doubt a case study in kakistocracy. Not to forget the interest rate caps on financial institutions like banks that has seen these creditors become risk averse, denying entrepreneurs the much needed lucre to remain afloat. Even before these new pressures, it was already hard enough to own a start-up business in Kenya as statistics clearly show that 90% of them fold before their 3rd birthday!

Uhuru Kenyatta has now adopted an anachronistic policy of hiring antiquated men and women, veterans of eons past, most of them the actual home guards who were the principal beneficiaries of our strife for independence. This in my view is pedantic at best but escapist and diversionary at worst. It is just a refusal to admit the obvious that anybody who had any concern for the best interest of Kenya and is anthemically patriotic could never in a million years think of supporting the Jubilee party. This directly means that if the President had a sagacious team around him, they would have enlightened him on the virtues of magnanimity. This loosely translates to against all odds, extending an olive-branch to the section of the populace which bitterly opposed his candidature and eventual ascent into office. I mean the youth in the informal settlements that were on-call to engage in running battles with the police day and night merely for the noble ideal that is democracy. Many of them as is with the rank and file of the Kenyan population are highly-skilled, educated and intelligent and so would easily have run these state departments in the way that glorifies our heritage of splendour. The result of his peccadillo is evident for all to see. Young men and women equally highly educated and edified on their respective areas of expertise but severely lacking in integrity, professional ethics, patriotism, nobility, temperance, any scintilla of self-control and pay homage to the god of privilege. This is clear from a former governor, now graduated to a well-connected state functionary that goes around boasting smug satisfaction of being, “ the perceptive fly that drowns in a glass of milk while the other daft ones die entombed in a mound of feacal matter invoking the bally-hoo of patriotism.” The thieving brigade of young-turks have ended up greatly embarrassing the President to such an extent that his pandering to the youth agenda appears to be dead in the water. Look at an institution like N.H.I.F where the youth got a chance to serve as C.E.O at the dawn of the Jubilee government. But these cretins have mucked it up for the rest by allowing funds that are painfully truncated every month from the meagre salaries of the hoi-polloi to end up being pilfered to building castles for junior officials some up to 200 million shillings in value! I will not engage in the activity of underscoring the importance of health insurance to the human resource that builds Kenya, for I may end up in a hissy fit and to no one’s benefit! The conflux of our political leadership are professional con-artists cavorting as pastors, drug-mules, snake-oil salesmen, pathological gamblers, ‘reformed criminals’, louts, touts, the aforementioned whore-mongers in paragraph 1, concubines of major party leaders and the tapestry that consists the grime of this world. Kenya’s pointer to being a nation in economic recession is the fact that you can call a rally in midweek which is decently attended pointing to crunching unemployment, economic disenfranchisement, deleterious hopelessness and the reality of the working poor.

But you would ask me what options remain for the down-trodden who have suffered the brunt of Kenya’s economic downturn:

  • For those who can afford it, time is ripe to start exploring opportunities outside our borders. Many youth find themselves bound by the shackles of unemployment, lack the tools for self-actualization and capital deficiency that make their dire fortunes increasingly miserable. For those who can, get the much vaunted ‘Green Card’ to the United States, alternatively move to Australia or England as either expatriates or even execute tasks the natives of those countries refuse to perform because someone has to do it, where your skill-set and competence will be rewarded at a premium as opposed to Kenya where your youthfulness is only misused as canon-fodder for inordinate violence that only adds peril to your survival.
  • Hope that the newly launched BBI will entail an economic stimulus package for the vulnerable in society. Investment in sports, culture and basically just entry-level job creation for the youth will do wonders to ameliorate our economic prospects.
  • Historically, during Franklin Delano Roosevelt’s first 100 days in office in the midst of a crippling recession in the United States of America, his administration passed legislation that aimed to stabilize industrial and agricultural production, create jobs and stimulate recovery. That is self-explanatory. As Kenyans we should be keen to support our President’s Big 4 Agenda for Kenyan prosperity.
  • Going forward, elect leaders not out of personal vendetta, youthful appearance or will to teach some nebulous dynasty somewhere a lesson! Instead take your time to read someone’s party manifesto and be keen to what ideology they espouse. Most importantly check-out your potential leader’s track record. You cannot re-elect men who escaped from prison and were fugitives until they bought freedom, have made wealth on the fringes of darkness or have stood on the docks on corruption charges and expect integrity and effective governance will be imbued unto them merely by your prayers. Let’s embrace the wisdom of learning from history so that we are not doomed to repeat it. The empirical definition of madness that also applies to foolishness is quixotically doing the same thing twice in similar fashion and expecting different results.
  • In the advent of the Great Depression, USA was the only industrialized country in the globe that did not boast some form of unemployment insurance or social security. Come 1935, Congress played its hand and passed the Social Security Act, which provided Americans with unemployment and disability security not forgetting pension for the aged. This could work for Kenya as African lives matter too!
  • There has never been a better time to abandon tribal-based politics and personality cults for ideological based stewardship. When Kibaki was elected in 2002, Kenyans were ranked among the most hopeful people in the world. This is because of the intrepidity of the future promised by a man who excelled in both academia and as a Finance minister winning the presidency. How is it that these same Kenyans turned to clueless individuals only selling the face of youth, new money and nothing else?
  • Wealth declaration and accountability in government is needed back.

In concluding remarks, all is not lost. Where there is a will there is a way. Just as long as you can find it and use it.

Political & Social Empowerment


Africa The day was Tuesday, 27th July 2010. The African Union had convened for the 13th AU summit in Kampala, Uganda. The rotational Chairman for the year was longtime brother leader of the Libyan Arab Jamahiriya, the supremo Col. Muammar Abu Minyar Gaddafi (معمر محمد أبو منيار القذافي‎). When he stood up to speak of course there were murmurs but his charisma that has eternally enamoured him to a great section of that audience ensured they lent him an ear. He spoke about the need for a United States of Africa. Some thought that it was just a digression from his topic for the day but on he rumbled. As a political theorist, he had run the scenario through his mind several times and was convinced of its practicability. Not just that. He had personally commissioned a study of the government structures, the needs of the populace there and basically a feasibility study on the practicalities of a United African State. He spoke passionately as only he could on an ideal so dear to his heart. Listening to that speech almost a decade later prompts the question: Is a United African State practicable or was Muammar Gaddafi still the nice but terribly naïve boy as described in 1969 by his political hero and mentor – Gamal Abdel Nasser, Former President of Egypt? Were these just the rantings and ravings of a madman whose credibility as a statesman was slowly being eroded? Maybe! Naïveté was excusable in the autumn of 1969 as he was only a 27-year-old Bedouin lad of humble extraction, newly graduated from the Libyan Royal Military Academy in Benghazi with hardly a few years’ experience under his belt when he usurped power. Achievability is in conjecture but the need for United African State is without a shadow of a doubt.

Col. (Rtd) Muammar Muhammad Abu Minyar al-Gaddafi – Brotherly Guide & Leader of the Revolution of Libyan Arab Jamahiriya

Besides, he was merely echoing the sentiments of great leaders of the negritude movement in years gone by Léopold Sédar Senghor, Marcus Garvey and Kwame Nkrumah. Though humble and unassuming, these men only sought to search for some appreciation for the black man whose boundless energy and unbridled wit had been the cornerstone of many a civilization. Looking at the Pyramids of Egypt, the temple at Aksum, the University at Timbuktu and no doubt the enlistment of our slave labour at the peak of the European industrial revolution, you can never doubt the Blackman’s contribution to global civilization. But the question here is: where does the black race rank among the shareholders for this great initiative? The black race was enlisted as labour when the white men ‘discovered’ new lands and conquered the natives, of course after weakening them with previously unheralded infections like yellow fever and bubonic plague they were ill-accustomed to recuperate from. The point Gaddafi was hammering home was that as Africans, we could form mutually associative states headed by one president. This is because we all share a common heritage of strife against soul-sapping slavery, bone-crushing colonization and the expropriationate regime of political and pecuniary uncertainty birthed by the post-colonial epoch. This all stems from the need to right all wrongs and make up for the lost time, natural resources and basically stand toe to toe with the rest of humanity with regards to what we have been taught to be civilization. Precolonial Africa had no boundaries, where travel, intermarriage, trade and pilgrimage was conducted across open borders. The incursion of European powers playing their divide-and-rule game muddled up our equation for unity and for their benefit. Not only were artificial frontiers drawn up to demarcate the particular European power’s spheres of influence as nation-states but ethnic divisions were also made rife by the introduction of capitalism as opposed to our traditional way of life.

Though already resisted by many of the so-called African ‘strongmen’ who cite issues of sovereignty as their major remonstration with a united African front. However, most of these are the same characters who run to European and Southern Asian powers with begging bowls to fund projects without feasibility studies, after which they are left with white elephants having been ‘blessed’ with kickbacks from the same. That an African president has the audacity to wear crocodile-skin shoes worth $100,000 when his populace majorly consists of starving women and children, people using logs as bridges across rivers, unemployment is rife and men are drowning in the flash-floods immediately after a famine-inducing drought speaks volumes about a leader that has lost not just credibility but the commonsensical nous to still be taken seriously when they voice any reservations. Some had been the principal benefactors of the instability in their countries and as expected will want that situation to continue ad-infinitum. What is sovereignty, when that only means allowing grown men to kill each other over livestock in the 21st Century?

But to see the benefits of an intercontinental concord you only need to cast your eyes across the ocean to the United States of America. Needless to say, the United States achieved modern-day superpower status on the back of its states’ unity. This status was not achieved by happenstance, hell no! It is a consequence of concerted and deliberate action towards unanimity of purpose that is now bearing fruit. Before the unilateral declaration of independence in 1776; the USA was just an ordinary conglomeration of colonies, an inadvertent victim of white greed and their supremacist agenda. Britain, Spain, France and to a small extent the Netherlands had taken up spheres of interest in the region. The settlers who had made the long trip from Western Europe no doubt spoke different languages. But the descendants of these initial settlers gradually began feeling disenfranchised by the selfish agenda birthed in Europe that not only failed to resonate with their best interests but also sucked the rhetorical udders of ‘Mother North America’ dry with nothing in return. They decided to wage a war of independence against their kinsmen from across the big pond. After successfully driving out European powers, they found themselves a group of 50 odd, disparate regions straddling their continental landmass. The Northern states were the first to see the need for unity and formed a confederation. The Southern states that were previously viewed as backward, conservative and rural were initially reluctant. But ultimately the need for unity was backed by the merits of it and ultimately it was attained. Other states were actually coerced into the union as a consequence of defeat in the American Civil War and purchases of other territories from Spain and France but that may be a story for another day.

Additionally, the States of America united as they tapped into their collective identities. Harsh winters are definitely at a premium and the annual hurricanes are still a fixture in no dissimilitude to then as they wreaked havoc intermittently onto continental North America, even then in the 19th Century. Woe on you if you are a coastal community! Assuming that those states devastated by hurricanes annually stood as independent nations, it is beyond a shadow of doubt they would inimically have suffered financial ruin to add to the crippling loss of human life and morale. In the absence of the cushion that is the unified federal government, they would each individually have had to face the vicissitudes of their circumstances.

Looking at G.D.P figures of the individual states, some fare worse than many African countries! Collect your jaws from the floor as I am also equally stupefied. Some of these states are largely rural communities that depend entirely on agriculture for revenue and hewing lumber for building material and fuel. It is then no surprise that whole houses are usually uprooted by the vagaries of foul weather! The State of California has arguably the biggest G.D.P of the United States that is 14.5% of the national total. This is incomparable with the trailing states like Wyoming, Mississippi and Vermont. In 2018 these less capitalized states had an annual contribution to the US economy; according to the United States Bureau of Economic Analysis of 39 billion, 115 billion and 34 billion US dollars respectively. These compare almost favourably with middle-income African countries like Kenya who according to the Kenya Bureau of Statistics had just under 75 Billion USD. This means that if for instance lowly Kenya was part of the confederation as an individual state, we would have ranked at a slightly impressive position 45 out of the 55 States considered as territories of USA. Not to be underestimated in the absence of their concinnity, would have been the potential shortfall in revenue generation required to fund an individual American state and probably its attendant burgeoning numbers of state officers. The overarching lesson from this is that America has benefited from the divergent contribution of its individual states to enjoy a total G.D.P of 21 Trillion USD. This is a valuable pointer as to the great value Africa would glean from unity.

This stratification according to states has enabled the USA to have states that specialize in the various facets of life i.e there are those with the best institution of Higher learning like Massachusetts that hosts both the ivy-league M.I.T & Harvard Universities.  Others have the best Medical institutions, the biggest oilfields, gold mines and resource-specific zoning. Consequently, U.S.A has primed itself to become the most advanced individual nation on earth to the extent of even playing the prefect role over others. Their strength in numbers not only affords the U.S a greater purchasing power but the propensity for influence over other nations. The United States currently boasts arguably the strongest army of any nation ever on earth. Diabolically, this power has been used to disproportionately hold countries to ransom, arm-twisting them and even enforcing embargoes that have proven crushing to regimes that are majorly dependent on the might of the Stars and Stripes.

But the question here remains, what benefits could Africa actually glean from a United Confederation of African States:

  • Perhaps the greatest benefit of an African Federation would be dealing a death knell to the culture of dependence on hand-outs and conditional grants that has consistently impoverished Africa. Despite bringing Christianity, cloth and rum to us, the European is not by any measure of the word a ‘good man’. It is a tragedy that the Continent of the proud and the strong is held in so much subservience and derision in foreign missions as merely one of connoisseurs in holding the beggar’s bowl then fritter the collections in vain shows of ostentatiousness. We have also laid ourselves vulnerable to acts of malicious sabotage. It should not be lost on anyone, the retribution that France inflicted upon Haiti consequent to Toussaint Louverture’s & J.J. Desalline’s embarrassing victory over the French and slavery leading to subsequent emancipation of the black population on that Island. Emperor Napoleon in a murderous rage swore vengeance upon Haiti and cut off commercial ties with the nation. He also broadcasted his malevolent propaganda against them to everyone else, so that the whole world virtually shunned the small island-nation. As a direct consequence, what was once the epicentre of the world sugar trade crumbled into nothingness such that Haiti is now more renowned as a dust-pan than a once-upon-a-time theatre of the biggest triumph that any slave community in the world has won against their master! This story is poignant to Africa as Haiti is more or less an African nation in the diaspora wholly consisted of populations that were extracted from the plains of Senegal, Mali, Guinea, Congo and Niger into a life of hardship and servitude in the cane plantations of a region formerly referred to as San Domingue. The fear of similar treatment; i.e victimization has for an eon coerced former colonial territories of European powers into MOUs and trade deals that only benefit our neocolonialist Caucasian overlords.
  • For many years our relationship with our trading partners abroad has been majorly exploitative. They avail us some financial bail-out funds but in return cart away our pristine and valuable natural resources including precious minerals namely gold, diamonds, iron, rubies, copper, uranium, oil and Coltan among others. We also lose our natural forests, marine life, fresh-water lakes and ancestral land for virtually a song! In recent years the old colonial masters are slowly being replaced by the Chinese who glean our fields bare after availing loans ostensibly for infrastructural development. The loans are quite stringent and the uninitiated and greedy leaders often find themselves in a deer-in-headlights situation where they end up defaulting on loan repayments and ultimately have to handover their national amenities like ports, railway tracks and other important infrastructure. What if we did not take exploitative loans from the Chinese but instead mobilized funds from our respective appendages? Gaddafi had the idea of abandoning the strictures of international trade using dollars and sterling pounds and instead trade in Gold! Yes, Gold. How about that to cripple capitalism that is dealt to the vulnerable without a human face? Such a closing of ranks will help secure our sister, the Democratic Republic of Congo from the utter farce that has been her lopsided relationship with Belgium and France cavorting as international cooperation. DRC on its own merits has the potential to be by far the richest nation on Earth and even generate energy that can sustain all of Africa were its resources harnessed by a congenial consortium of African nations who understand the practicalities of being here. Indeed; for those not in the loop, the Uranium-235 used to develop the atomic bombs that were dropped on Nagasaki & Hiroshima to bring the Second world war to a halt was obtained from the Shinkolobwe mines in Haut-Katanga Province on the Eastern frontier of then Belgian Congo (today’s DRC). All the Coltan that is irregularly spirited out of Congo by scummy connivers to Samsung, Nokia, Apple, Sony, Ideos and other phone manufacturers is enough to be a massive boon to our collective economy, if only the revenue acquired was repatriated back to our coffers. I will not belabor how much is made in mobile telephony and its penetration worldwide in spite of my professional expression as a Telecommunications professional. An African Federation will fix the DRC crisis once and for all. DRC has a resource potential to power and enrich all of Africa if only its compatriot states helped shield it from external, exploitative interference. We must open our eyes to the possibilities of what a bright future awaits us if only we could throw down the age-old shackles on our wrists, ankles & minds by taking up intercontinental trade on a massive scale. Imagine what we can do!
The Congo River slicing through the Congo Tropical Rainforest
  • A Pan-African System for Justice and Constitutional affairs will ultimately be one of the fruits of this union. In the words of current Kenyan President; Uhuru Kenyatta, “never again must a son of our soil be taken to foreign climes for trial by agents of neocolonialism and malice.” This was an overkill on his part but a Pan-African Centre for Judicial adjudication that takes into account our cultural heritage and traditional dispute resolution mechanisms will actually be a panacea to many of the ills that bedevil Africa. Africans have over the years not covered themselves in any sort of glory, portraying themselves to the world albeit incongruously as barbaric and blood-thirsty brutes. Methinks African unity will clean up this narrative as united, we will have the power to push an agenda that casts us all in positive light. Truth, Justice and Reconciliation commissions make reports on systemic abuse in many an African country but the results of these processes usually come a cropper, sacrificed at the altar of preserving the status-quo with national legal systems inexplicably explicating themselves from having the jurisdiction to deal with matters within the purview of their territorial boundaries. This quiescence in the face of evil will be forestalled by our autochthonous Pan-African Tribunal for Judicial adjudication.
  • In the backdrop of colonialism, many of the disparate African Nation-States began viewing each other with unwarranted suspicion. A melting of national boundaries will surely sort out this conundrum. Also the primitive culture in many nations that promotes discrimination in the form of nepotism, clannism, favouritism and tribalism will be buried and in its place sown the seeds of meritocracy, professionalism, ethical practice and progressive singularity of thought.
  • An African Confederation will safeguard homegrown investments and industries. Moreover, it will enhance effective use of shared resources, infrastructure and technology. It is deemed more feasible to engage a greater entity for trade rather than the small outfits that many of the current individual African republics are. For the risk of denigration, I will not mention any names instead reiterating that as a bigger body we will effectively harness our lines of supply and also have that market to make trade a worthwhile venture for us all. Additionally, discrimination will be a thing of the past as the youth will no longer have to journey across the algid, choppy waters of the Atlantic to get to Europe or travel abroad for menial labour dubbed as the ‘American-dream’ as within the borders of our tropical climes will be availed our very own African nirvana. We have witnessed incidences of companies with majority foreign ownership like SportPesa just on a whim deciding to pack up and leave in absolute disregard to the quagmire they leave behind. How is homegrown enterprise to ever take root if eternally we will be treated to imported goods and services?

  • Unity will realize a stronger GDP per Capita and enhance the cost of living for the citizens of Africa. Nigeria and South Africa individually enjoy much better GDPs of $444 Billion and $371 billion respectively but with South Africa enjoying a better GDP per Capita ratio. As aforementioned, many of the discrete states of the U.S.A are economically feeble. Infact, in echoing the derogatory parlance of greatly revered American comedian Eddie Griffins, “Many of these singular states are on their own merits broker than a mother-fxxxxx! People don’t live in Woodstock houses for nothing.” That is the reality. This will unfortunately continue to be our collective fate as African countries if we fail to forge this joint front.

This initiative will no doubt run into headwinds. One of those is goodwill to allow for a unified currency. Also we must eternally strive to avoid a ‘Tower of Babel’ situation where lack of a common language prevents us from a noble endeavour. The leader of the federation will need a judicious mind to be fair, situationally-aware and altruistic which is a foreign concept to many of our longtime strongmen. However, this is one concept that if properly handled will improve African bargaining power at the table of the big boys of the world power structure. Unity is strength. And the Americans will be none the wiser as they already think Africa is a Country anyway!