By Gathua Miricho
It is a dangerous time to be Kenyan. It is only in Kenya where a citizen can be deported to a foreign country. It is only in Kenya where one can be mugged in broad daylight in the glare of the public. Lastly, it is only in Kenya where one can choose to obey or disobey court summons. Oh, and before I forget, it is only in Kenya where the government can break the very laws it purports to uphold.
Tyrants on the Hill
It is an open secret that we are being ruled by tyrants. The dictionary definition of tyrant is a cruel and oppressive leader. Has the government of the day been cruel and oppressive? I think so. Deporting Kenyans and infringing on media freedoms…
With one of the tyrants being in his last term, we are headed for tough times.
If you are unfamiliar with Kenyan politics, allow me to break it down for you. Here in Kenya, leaders (tribal chieftains) are elected on a tribal basis. The leader (chieftain) that is able to amass the largest following, wins. Our current chieftains (leaders) belong to the two largest tribes in Kenya. How did this come to be?
Back in the 2013 General Elections, the tyrants in question both wanted to take occupancy in the House on the Hill. However, on their own, this could not happen. Despite both coming from two of the largest tribes in Kenya, the numbers were simply not enough. After long deliberations, they found a unique selling point. Both were facing serious charges at The Hague. By appealing to our inner sentiments as a country and crying on stage, they managed to turn The Hague Curse to a blessing. However, there could only be one President.
A deal was signed, one of the chieftains was convinced to put his ambitions on hold. He was promised that his Presidential bid would be fully funded and supported once the wealthier tyrant had completed his term. Moreover, the added time in public service would afford him an opportunity to pillage state resources. A symbiotic working relationship was formed and the hotly contested General Election was won by the two tyrants.
Now, the chickens have come home to roost. The wealthier tyrant has to walk a dangerous tight rope. He has to balance between his legacy and he has to ensure that he helps his lieutenant get hold of the reins of power. How will he do this?
It is no secret that most of the Cabinet Secretaries are political appointees. This is in blatant disregard of the Constitution which stipulates that Cabinet Secretaries should be autocrats and not politicians. Now we have school dropouts being put in charge of a Ministry. How will the said person be able to formulate policy? How will he be able to give sound guidance and leadership? Worse of all, how will he articulate his policies?
From a laypersons point of view, this seems like a misstep, however, this is a brilliant ploy by the tyrants to ensure continuity of government. One of the tyrants needs to be surrounded by people who will not subvert his plans to assume the Presidency.
At the moment, we are lacking a formidable opposition to challenge the government of the day. The ruling party has an overwhelming majority in Parliament. This poses a threat because the Members of Parliament from the ruling party will be enticed with money or whipped to toe the line.
The few Opposition members we have will also be whipped to submission. With a House Speaker whose impartiality is in doubt, it is going to be a tough to provide government oversight.
It is a tough time to be Kenyan. Key opposition leaders will be arrested, The Media will be told how to do its job and Kenyans will be deported. Indeed, tough times lay ahead.