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Thursday, May 08, 2008

How Long Can The Grand Coalition Government Survive?

Have you ever fallen in love? Aii. It is some feeling. It happened to me slightly over 20 years ago and no I didn’t end up getting married to her. But I know she reads Kumekucha sometimes and chances are high that she will read this post.

And she will know that I am telling the whole truth and nothing but the truth when I say that the reason why it did not work out was NOT my fault. It took me a long time to get over it. Too long. But I survived. After going through all that, would you want to fall in love again?

By the way, you’re not on the wrong site friend, I am talking in parables kidogo and I am focusing on our grand coalition government “marriage” saga.

Now this is one strange marriage. Both the guy and the chic had sworn that they would share the same bed only as corpses, let alone get duly married as they are now. But life is strange and this guy from Ghana came along and sweet talked the two into a marriage of convenience. Now let me tell you something you might not know about this chap from Ghana. To be Secretary General of the UN, one of the requirements is that you must be able to speak at least two major languages fluently, like English and French. So Kofi Anan is quoted as having replied to a question to do with the second language he speaks thus;

“I know it so well that they tell me these days that I speak English with a French accent.”

Anyway I digress. So this sweet talking guy who can speak both English and French like the natives of those countries, got down to work. The couple was offered all sorts of bribes, if only they could tie the knot. One thing both PNU and ODM friends can agree with me here is that there was no love in this marriage, and actually there has never been. What has always been very visible and evident instead is the intense hatred the two have for each other.

I can authoritatively report that even the sex in this marriage is a disaster. I mean for newly weds, this couple are doing very, very, very badly indeed. Usually at this stage, the parties cannot keep their hands off each other. But with this unique couple they have to make a timetable for sex and many times on mutual agreement they miss their sex dates altogether. Can you believe that? We know that men can do it anywhere but the woman has never come anywhere near… you know what on the few occasions that something has actually happened. And please don’t ask me who the man is and who the woman is in this marriage. The latest is that a special “bonding session: has now been called which will start tomorrow at the Kenya School of Monetary studies and will feature the full coalition cabinet.

Kenyans are a conservative lot so for the sake of all those dear readers of mine who have read this far and are disgusted, let me revert back to the political language they understand best.

It is now clear that the grand coalition government is not going to survive for much longer. And the reason is simple. This couple are just not compatible. Period. Can you believe that they are not even able to steal together in peace?

High on the list of things the two do not agree on is the explosive red hot issue of the resettlement of the IDPs. Now before I give you an illustration of a major point of disagreement between the coalition partners, allow me to digress again a little.

I want to tell you the two most people-sensitive persons in the 10th parliament. They are James Orengo and Musalia Mudavadi. These guys have been out in the cold and very close to the wananchi for 5 long almost unending years. So you can imagine what they feel now that they are back in parliament. There is nothing like being in the cold politically to remind a politician who their real boss really is.

So you cannot blame James Orengo who is the minister for Lands for saying what he did in the Rift Valey over the weekend. I mean even when the President and Prime Minister were in Eldoret during their recent tour, the people were screaming for Orengo to be given a chance to speak to them. So when the guy got hold of the mike last weekend, he told the people exactly what they wanted to hear. He finished by saying that the best way forward was to re-settle the IDPs elsewhere.

Aii. The PNU chaps and especially politicians from Central province could not take that lying down. So far they have just stopped short of asking the president to drop Orengo from the cabinet. If I was Orengo I would really wish for that, because it would put me in poll position for the presidency in 2012 (if we get that far. Personally I have my doubts). But the president can no longer drop ministers like underwear. The constitution now demands that he consult with his partner. But that is a story for another day.

Folks politics in Kenya at the moment may seem very quiet and boring. But under the surface things are simmering and beginning to boil like crazy. In fact I could not help thinking that the Prime Minister’s short holiday in South Africa after he came from Germany was designed to re-strategize so that he knows how best to land back in the boiling pot that is Kenya. Incidentally Raila came back by private jet (in my raw notes this week I reveal who footed the bill for that costly flight). Sorry it is too hot to put here.

So why are things so hot politically? The answer is simple. Politics in Kenya has changed dramatically since last December and we are headed to that place where the masses are very powerful indeed and their voices cannot be silenced (this is exactly how things should have been since 1963). The ODM high command is under considerable pressure to do something to address the serious suffering of ordinary folks in the country caused by spiraling food prices and the colossal number of jobs and livelihoods that were lost as a result of the post-election violence. They are also under even more pressure to halt the re-settlement of IDPs in the Rift Valley. Yesterday special programs minister Naomi Shaban came face to face with the mounting anger of IDPs when she was confronted by some very agitated folks at and IDP camp in Kitale. And remember these guys who are angry are being offered all manner of incentives to go back to their farms (full shocking details of what the government is really telling IDPs are in my raw notes for last week).

On the other hand PNU is under considerable pressure to re-settle and fully compensate IDPs like yesterday. The party is just beginning to realize that I was not joking 3 months ago when I asked what the cost of stealing an election really is. The answer is that nobody knows but you don’t even want to know what it has cost thus far and still counting. By the way prepare yourself for the most broke government in the history of this country despite being the same government that is collecting record figures in taxes.

In fact the president cannot even call a full cabinet meeting at the moment because of different expectations from the two marriage partners. Read the full story about this HERE.

So with all these marital problems. How long do you think this marriage will last? My humble view is that it will take a miracle for these two to still be together this time next year.

P.S. Taabu has not communicated with me and his number is Mteja. However two of my impeccable independent intelligence sources tell me that he is alive and well and visiting somewhere and will be back to base very soon.

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Anonymous said...

Ok even I was astonished Hon Orengo comments on the IDK issue.As a lawyer who champion people's right I have no words for him.

Phil said...

Guys, according to the cabinet portfolios Orengo is Minister for Lands. The 'SETTLEMENTS' docket was moved to Special Programmes headed by Naomi Shabaan.

Whereas the repatriation of IDPs is voluntary, many of them have declined to go, and it is now turning out that the govt is using the provincial administation to force back people to their homes. Personally, I see nothing wrong with what Orengo proposed. Why send back helpless peasants to another death trap? Why ignore the historical land issues? In any case, what is YOUR suggestion to permanently re-resettling these internal refugees?

The 2007 bungled elections and the Annan mission has created a chance for this country to correct the many wrongs in society. This is a perfect opportunity to initiate land reforms, constitutional reforms and even governance reforms.

We all know which party is resisting these reforms and why.

Chris, many people land at JKIA on charter flights daily, and I wonder why Raila's should be reserved for your RAW NOTES. Do you really have an idea how much it costs to charter a jet from Jorburg to Nairobi? And is it a crime? I am looking forward to reading your Raw Notes on this.

Anonymous said...

Now our eyes move to 2012 or earlier .It is not a siri ,Ruto is going for the top sit in the land come 201.Raila still has ambition of becoming the president of this country(you thought he is contented with being PM) now comes the war of all wars will Raila agree to support Ruto like he did in 2007 .What about Musalia where is he in all this came plan?

Anonymous said...


Thanks for the info about Taabu i guess Knoppix and company can relax. I said it and i repeat it again for the last time....We should go back to the debe and we have our own president...Yes that one who has been mandated by the people of this country....Hatuwezi kutawalia na lazima


Anonymous said...

Orengo comments about the IDPs clearly tells what kind of majimbo (ugatuzi/ubaguzi) ODM was talking about during campaigns. If ODM is for creating exclusive ethnic zones in Kenya, I don’t think they are going to win any election in Kenya be it free and fair. About 40% of rift valley inhabitants are originally from other provinces, mostly central, western, and Nyanza(Kisii)

It seem the RV politicians thought they would stop the government from resettling IDPs and even the PM has gone quiet on the issue he is supposed to be coordinating/supervising the goverment funtion as his duties dictate. It has now come out clearly that the PNU side of the government is running their show on the matter despite resistance from ODM. The big question is whether the ODM side is capable of implementing their election pledges in a government the civil service is controlled by PNU.

Anonymous said...

ati Taabu ame enda kusaidia Ronaldo kwa problems zake

Mcheku said...

The one huge problem with Kenyans is that they never like to hear the truth. Mr. Orengo was only speaking of what is just common sense, I dont know why people are annoyed with him, but isn's what he said what most Kenyans outside PNU think?

It is common knowledge historical injustices were committed in the Riftvalley and a lot of those people's land was appropriated by colonialists and then Mr Kenyatta did one better and stole that land for himself and his friends. Now Kenyans want to address this PNU does not, obviously for selfish reasons, all I hear from them is the abundance of police posts being built in the Riftvalley and I honestly wonder if they are for real. Settling IDPs there is a myopic solution, those people may be evicted again when some other elections come and we shall be right here again with people sleeping in the cold and rain!

Chris, this ODM-PNU merger will never work, even people who get married for cash or convenience at least try to look married, these ones dont even try! Oh and thanks for the information on Taabu's whereabouts, we are missing him around here.

Anonymous said...

Precisely Mcheku....Truth hurts...If you say the truth you are told you are angry, bitter, sad!!


Anonymous said...

Historic injustices may have been committed. In a civilised society like ours, you don’t solve historic injustice by killing and evicting your neighbours. This is an issue that requires sober approach, most IDPs bought the land the same way Minister Orengo owns house in Runda which was originally Kiambu. He should not preach water and drink wine, if we say land revert to it original owners, Orengo should move to Ugenya as Kiambu is not his ancestral land

Anonymous said...

Anon 5.57... get Mungiki to evict him now!

Anonymous said...

Anon 6:08
I am not saying that he should be evicted by Mungiki,one thing is that I dont support mungiki as they are criminals as the RV warriors. The issue here is that what he thinks about IDPs can well happen to him because he owns property in area that is not his ancestral land.

Anonymous said...

Anon 6:24 Then Maasai wil move to Nairobi...The better

Anonymous said...

Nairobi is a border city, though the name is masai, it has extended to masai land on the ngong side and what was originally in central(kiambu). Athi river is towards ukambani.

Anonymous said...

So Anon 6:49 is central province aka Kiambu also stretching northwards towards Rift Valley

Anonymous said...

current approach to the land issue is currently too emotional.

we all need to step back and think clearly


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