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Saturday, January 12, 2008

Wanted: -A Jack of All Trades

To say that Chris was right even though he was scorned when he said last months December generals would be the mother of all elections would be to make the understatement of the year, though its hardly begun. sadly in this case there are no prizes to be given out for the winner who says so
Its a mistake to think that we will solve our major political and social problem with just potatoes. Whether deliberate or not,it took alot of time, energy and thought to create the problem that got us into this mess we find ourselves in today. Reverse and apply the same and the logic will hold true.
Its arguable as to whether the brand of politics-made-in-Kenya our politicians practise has ever in its 44 year history solved any of the countrys urgent and pressing problems without creating 10 unique more. Undeniable is the fact that a solution to the current impasse calls for not saying there is no problem. Wanted are jack-of-all-trades who can strike a balance between wasting no time in revealing the truth about what happened on 27th December and pursuing a future where our past sense of shared community, of working together, and of helping each other out will not be lost again under threat of nostalgic architects of past decay, charismatic bullies or handsome cowards


mateso bila chuki said...

Also wanted:
-People who will accept that the 2007 elections were riddled with problems and who will pay more attention to solving these than pushing for a 'business as usual' stance which in the long run just sweeps the issues under the rug.
-People who will read blog articles and either critique them or leave them alone if they are not to their liking, instead of venting out anger and adopting the popular 'internet gangsta' image.

Kips said...

For those who missed it, here is what these Independent Consultants wrote on Kenya's media and it backs Blessed's comments earlier yesterday:

The Media:
Journalists are known to source for information often using the tagline the public has a right to know and we are here to tell them…For this reason, when all had failed, the public expected the Kenyan media to tell them exactly what went wrong. This is also the reason why the first thing the new Kibaki’s government did after hurriedly being sworn into office was to ban all live transmissions and a subsequent threat to media houses against publishing or broadcasting any alarming reports. The excuse John Michuki, the then Minister for Internal Security gave was “in the interest of public security.”

We hereby revisit days before the illegal gag: nearly all media houses had reporters at various key constituencies. Reporters filed results as they were being announced. Even Samuel Kivuitu initially praised the media for being timely in their reports. Let’s re-cap what takes place on a normal polling day.

An electorate would queue for his turn to enter the polling station. Once inside the designated area, he/she would produce his/her voters cards and an Identity Card, the two documents that are used to verify if he/she is the individual he/she claims to be. The voter is then confirmed to be registered to vote at that particular station.

Once all these are authenticated, the voter would be provided with his/her first ballot paper for the local government representative (Councillor) followed by the legislative representative (MP) then finally the presidential candidate. All these take place under the watchful eye of observers, the media, respective parties’ agents and the electoral officials.

At the close of voting, the ballot boxes are respectively emptied and counted. The results are then noted by the Presiding Officer and counter-signed by all agents before being conveyed to the Constituency’s Returning Officer who tally them up, still in the presence of all the above and the agents sign their acceptance or note any disagreements if any. Then the RO would make his announcement to all that are present.

At that point, the reporters would be filing their reports to their respective newsrooms or political desk as the Returning Officers would be seeking means of relaying the same results to the Electoral Commission’s headquarters. Nothing should be altered after the announcement.

To begin with, if there were such huge numbers of voters who just decided to vote for their presidential candidates and not the rest, the observers and the journalists on the ground would not have missed it.

As it was later to transpire, the figures alleged to have reached the ECK’s headquarters from some constituencies (after the alleged disappearances of some Returning Officers) were quite different from those collected by the reporters and observers. Whereas the observers maintained their figures, all media houses, for whatever reasons, agreed to adjust the figures collected by their reporters.

With the senseless killings in Kenya, the local media owes the public, in whose names they’ve always solicited information, an explanation why they never stood by their figures. If their respective reporters got it wrong, then the public has a right to know what else in the past they had got wrong.

This cannot be blamed on any political pressure. The moment the Chairman of the Electoral Commission admitted that he wasn’t sure whether Kibaki had won the elections, the media was under the obligation to tell their audience something like, “according to our respective reporters spread across the country, our tallies showed xxx results while the ECK’s uncertain tallies were yyy.”

Yet to date, as this report was being filed, no media house, apart from some few online sites, have been bold enough to do so. As things stand now, ECK has no results and the media houses have decided to keep their figures under lock and key. Should these lots be relied upon to report any truth?

It’s professionally unacceptable for Kenyan media to blame the government for the gag while they have voluntarily ignored their responsibility to keep the public informed objectively without fear or favour. This culpability should not be allowed in whatever environment. It is fraud in the part of the media.

Anonymous said...

Kumekucha, do you know from credible sources whether or not the Ugandan army is being deployed in Kenya? There's a story that appeared on Standard today and even though Grace Kaindi dismissed it as propaganda, I find it hard to believe her denial since she's the very same person that denied that police had shot anyone in Kisume, only for reporters to unleash the photos.

If at all these claims are true that the Ugandan army is in Kenya, what does that mean for our country? If you have any credible information, please post it here.

Thanks for your bravery in reporting stories that the local media is unwilling to report.

Anonymous said...

The world is still watching even though the blogs may be quiet.

Hope and pray positive developments have taken place this weekend. It is obviously a very difficult time for many many families. Prayers for forbearance and peace.

If any good will come out of this eventually, it is that Kenyans will now never take their previous relative peace for granted.

Anonymous said...

Only Justice can bring peace.

Its time pple knew that pple didnt started fighting for the hell of it.

Anonymous said...

What a shame, that we Kenyans as proud as we are, need foreign people to assist us in finding a political solution after the coup de tat.

Foreign army is in Nyanza and Western Province. Be careful Kenyans: Uganda claims the Kenyan territory upto Naivasha.

Kenyan mediators should be active now. Who can they be?

Anonymous said...

Kisumu police boss Grace Kaindi should be arrested and tried for murder!

Kenyan police defiant over city bloodbath
The Sunday Times
January 13, 2008

THE police chief was unapologetic about the number of people her force had shot dead in Kisumu, western Kenya, to quell looting in the violent aftermath of last month's disputed presidential elections.

"They don't know another language except the gun," said Deputy Police Commissioner Grace Kaindi, glancing up from her desk with pursed lips. A Kenyan police motto, "Keepers of the peace, defenders of the innocent", hung on her office wall.

In the darkness of the mortuary a few hundred yards away, her force's handiwork lay on the floor of three sweltering rooms: some 50 bodies under strips of crimson cloth with their feet poking out, waiting for families to collect them.

But that was not happening. The families of the dead were poor and could not afford funeral expenses. Others had still not been identified. A cloth strip across their foreheads said: "Unknown African".

The police ferried the bodies of the men they had shot to the mortuary. In the chaos, they brought some in alive, mixing them up with the dead, a priest said. Their suffering as they were left to die amid the corpses is unimaginable.

One after another, relatives filed in last week to check whether their loved ones were among those killed. "Yes, my son, your father is dead," sobbed Christine Awino, 20, to her young son Joseph. The boy was waiting outside the main entrance, his aunt comforting him and telling him not to cry.

Waving goodbye to the dead, another woman walked through the rooms where they lay in rows, crying out: "We will be back to avenge you."

Anonymous said...

Who is going to investigate atrocities committed by the police in Kisumu?

Anonymous said...

Kip's and Blessed's contributions in this blog have been very enlightening, especially considering that they are both journalists in wide-circulation papers in this country. What I don't understand is-
1. What kinds of threats have the editors got that cannot allow them to speak the truth?
2. If the paper editors have fool-proof information about the frauds in the presidential elections, what is hindering them from releasing it?
3. The Nation released the Kroll report and The Standard released the Anglo Leasing dossier. Why are they now not courageous enough to release the true presidential results?
4. Does it not amount to " withholding information about a crime" by the newspapers? Are they not guilty of collusion and therefore partly responsible for the deaths, destruction and losses in Kenya resulting from post-election anger by Kenyans?
5. Does it matter to the newspaper owners that they are losing credibility (and consequently, readership) by publishing half truths and withholding information which is in the public domain anyway?
6. Someone from ECK recently published the fake presidential results in the newspapers using Kivuitu's name. In today's Sunday Standard some PNU die-hards have published more data with their justifications. Surely, isn't there anyone out there (including ODM, independent observers etc) who can also publish the real results for Kenyans to compare and contrast? A lie repeated many times begins to look like truth and this is the strategy PNU is employing.
7. It is true that some journalists with the real information are fearing to release information for the sake of keeping their jobs. But why can't they give them to independent and credible media either in or out of Kenya to "spill the beans?"
PLEASE Kenya is burning. People are living in fear and uncertainty. We depend on people putting the Govt on sustained pressure with the truth and hard facts. (I am personally against mass protests as a method of applying pressure, but I fully support lobby pressure).

Please Kip and Blessed, feed us with more unspoken truths.

Anonymous said...

Anon above, Who owns the newspapers?


Anonymous said...

We have been told that Moi has majority shares in Standard, Nation is largely owned by Aga Khan plus shareholders from NSE, Kenya Times is a KANU mouthpiece, People is Matiba's etc. Why have you asked that question, Derek?

Anonymous said...

Can you read the answer in the list that you have just given me. Take a very close look at the successful newspapers in the country. Now read that Moi owns Standard which owns KTN. The Nation is owners by the Aga Khan, yes. Majority of the local shareholders are from??? Then look at Kenya Times and The deathbed that the People is.

Who are the major advertisers in the newspapers? Government, parastatals (who is the chairman of Kenya Power and Lighting and Kenya Airports Authority); Commercial bank of Africa (who owns majority shares there?).

Would you love to lose advertisers or live to come to work the next day. there goes my answer.


Anonymous said...

Chris pole sana,
I know Raila had promised you a job as the head of his presidential press service. Please look for another job as kenyans are tired of your propaganda. i understand your bitterness but thats life.

Anonymous said...

Anon, sorry for the typo. I meant Nation is owned by the Aga Khan. Sorry for that.


Anonymous said...

Anon, sorry for the typo. I meant Nation is owned by the Aga Khan. Sorry for that.


Anonymous said...

Sawa, but you see the adverts you are talking about need to be read. Those who read the adverts also read about other things (I cannot buy a paper just to read a Safaricom advert). I buy to read the features and information that attract me to the paper. At the moment it is about the presidential fiasco. By the way, I am more busy than ever on the internet reading from BBC, CNN, Times,Guardian etc about events in Kenya. I am not happy about this, but then what should I do when our very own are giving us very skewed, censored and half-truth info. I buy 2 newspapers daily. From January 1, I have not bought any, but I've used the money to browse the internet. So, have I read their adverts which to them are more important than truthful, relevant news?
Success of a newspaper, Radio station, TV station depends entirely on readership, "listenership" and "viewership". Even the advertizers will not waste their money in a media with few clients (unless of course they are coaxed). So the first thing is to get clients hooked to you and then pass on adverts to them. You get the point?

Anonymous said...

The adverts keep the newspapers going and the massive salaries that we read here the other day.

The People Daily suffers from its lack of competition with the rest of the dailies. During Moi days, it was branded as an opposition outfit and in a bid to nip the flower in the bud, they stopped the main financiers of the media to advertise there. It was one way of getting at Kenneth Matiba and the threat it possed to the Moi outfit.

By all accounts, it can perform better than some of the leading two. Their problem is the adverts. Quite different, in Kenya Times, they could not do better even with the goodwill that the Kanu government or parastatals gave it. Infact, they enjoyed more during the dawn years of the Moi era than the others, but never utilised all that to make it better.

The readership is neglible and that is why, you find it struggling. Words/Rumour has it that some GUTTER and even Kumekucha gets more readership than The People and Kenya Times combined have in a a week. Note the difference.

Adverts propel media organisations around the world, apart from BBC and some of the better funded Public Service Broadcasting (PSBs) aroudn the world.


Anonymous said...

Does this remind you of the two death row convicts who escaped from jail just before elections . This one escaped too. Let me Guess who will be blamed fo thier murders aka refugee deaths. Its funny when such people are apprehended giving the governments a water tight case to prove thier side of the story they seem to escape quite easily. I am afraid there will be a big incident soon to distract attention to ANNAN talks. Our "4th Estate" will have it all over the place and guess who the GoK will blame, yes you are right. The monitor is quite a good source for the goings on between our borders. Some might call it Help.

mugambis said...

here is a petition to the vatican to revoke cardinal njue's appointment please read.

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