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Monday, December 10, 2007

Kenyans Favour Presidential Debate That Is Unlikely To Happen

ODM Presidential candidate Raila Odinga has challenged PNU’s President Kibaki to a nationally televised debate.

Interestingly a quick SMS survey done by KTN revealed that a staggering 88% would like to see such a debate.

Sadly it is highly unlikely that the debate will ever happen. The reason is probably best illustrated by the comment of one of the respondents in the SMS survey who does not favour such a contest. “It is a trap,” they said and this is how the president’s handlers will most likely see it knowing very well that their man is not half as good in “domo” as the ODM man.

Secondly Raila’s experience with the president during his short stint in government saw him gather numerous unflattering anecdotes that pain the president in poor light. For instance his rejection of a fully sponsored slum upgrading programme that would have seen the face of many Nairobi slums changed forever. Interestingly the American construction organization that had pledged full support for such a programme had already committed the funds and had to hurriedly relocate to Cameroon where the project is set to be a roaring success. Obviously in his own wisdom based on many decades in government, the president knows best why he ended up rejecting such a programme, however he would be hard pressed to explain it on national TV.

And there are many other similar instances meaning that it would be plain political suicide for the president to accept his Raila’s challenge.

The 5 Most Popular Stories in Kumekucha today-10th Nov

1. What this election is really all about

2. Who is this woman called Marianne Briner?

3. Mystery behind Raila's sudden popularity

4. What our Luo brothers need to know

5. Sahel CEO says that Raila is God's choice


Anonymous said...

We all know after president Kibaki was involved in a road accident from Ukambani just before he won the 2002 elections, his health was greatly affected. Anyone can compare his speech and body language prior to 2002 and now and see the huge difference. True to his character, Raila is exploiting that tragedy for his own selfish political ends. I also doubt whether Kenyans will be swayed by the debate anyway. There's no way Raila would sway the central vote or Kibaki sway Nyanza even if their oratory skills were akin to those of Martin Luther King. We are far from there, our politics are not issue based but hinged on narrow ethnic base.

Phil said...

What nonsense!

A public debate offers Kenyans a once in a lifetime chance to engage their prospective president directly, and thereby make an informed decision when casting a vote for any candidate.

Raila is NOT exploiting any tragedy and can we take it to mean that we have a president who is not 100% healthy ? Wonders never cease because if it true that Kibaki is seeing a shrink as he governs Kenya, God forbid!

Today Kibaki has declined Raila's challenge (actually the BBC have been trying to broker a presidential debate to be aired live in East and Central Africa) saying he does not wish to waste his time as his development record speaks for itself. The unfulfilled pre-election pledges, the engagement with Moi and KANU, the betrayal of the NARC dream, the Nation raid, insecurity, corruption, are just but a few issues that are certain to cause problems for Kibaki in a public debate.

I cant just wait for December 27th to join other Kenyans in consigning what was obviously a big mistake to where it belongs!

kalamari said...

The weird rumor that Kibaki was mentally damaged at that fateful accident is false (if not an excuse for his disastrous performance as head of state). Other than the now completely medicated spat of tourettes syndrome (as in kumbafu kila saa), I believe the president is in full control of his faculties. In fact I'm jealously in awe of his brilliance. He is the epitome of intellectuality. So why the fear in facing a 'lowly' candidate in a live debate? Of course no prudent Kenyan voter expects Kibaki to answer questions regarding the day by day statehouse businesses such as Anglo-leasing, IPO's and petty theft of national coffers. No right thinking Kenyan expects answers to matters of national security as designed by our preferred security contractors; the Arturs. You see, these are all in the past and I will in fact be offended if the moderator chooses to cause discomfort to the president by asking such outdated questions.

The only thing I would like him to address is the governments plan to stop the deaths in Molo/Kuresoi (among other far flung areas). Hiyo tuu. The rest we'll let Raila deal with starting the 28th.

PS. In the extremely unlikely event that the weird rumor is accurate, then Kibaki should be jailed for letting down Kenyans by not resigning immediately he began taking psychiatric medications. So says the constitution, right?

Mkenya Damu said...

In that case then Kibaki should honarably step down because he can not perform due to health reasons.

deroo said...

Why a LIVE TV Debate. What do they do in parliament. they should be debating in parliament, not waiting for campaign times to campaign. After all, the campaigns have already been marred with lies, propaganda and childish talks from the wives of the would be presidents that my SCOUNDRELS descritption befits them. Give us a break!

Yvonne said...

'Raila is exploiting that tragedy for his own selfish political ends.' From Anonymous 1, pls read and read first before commenting.... What has Raila got to do with these? He was to be a Panelist the way Kibaki was to be so as Kalonzo and all the other Presidential Candidates, so i am just wondering where he is coming in? And if what you are stating about his health is true, then Mkenya damu has responded. Need i say more. For your information Kalonzo has been televised on the spot so has Raila so what is wrong with Kibaki coming On the spot and articulating PNU manifesto. Ithought somebody said he was an intellectual. Na hii kazi iendelee

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