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Monday, September 08, 2008

A National Day of Forgiveness Revisited

This is the only subject I'll ever write twice on.

About two weeks ago, I humbly proposed that our leaders, President Mwai Kibaki, Prime Minister Raila Odinga and Vice President Kalonzo Musyoka, call Kenyans to Uhuru Park and lead the nation in a national day of forgiveness. I did so because it's evident that there comes a time when justice just isn't the answer.

Before you attack me for being naive, let me say that I understand the need for the rule of law and justice to be the guiding light in all our national endeavours and interactions. But I also think that at this point we've all sank so deep in a hole that justice can't pull us out of. In the interest of fostering the spirit of forgiveness, I won't drop any names of the people our nation feels have wronged us. I will, however, draw a map of what a bright future would look like if we started off at the point of brotherly embrace.

Why Forgiveness?

Kenyans have stored pain in their hearts. Most of our fellow countrymen were witnesses to the murderous rampage that washed away any of our claim to innocence...after the elections. Children saw their parents killed, brothers saw their fathers kill, mothers cried as their sons failed to return home, and daughters wailed when their husbands' bodies were found in a trench somewhere. The psychological impact of what Kenyans dealt with will never go away just because a couple of boys are tried and locked up or killed. The only way to deal with a matter like this is to call friends and foes together and watch as they embrace in a spirit of forgiveness.

The matters that need to be forgiven are murders, assassinations, corruption, detention without trial, tribalism, and all the wrongs that have been committed against Kenyans by our leaders of the past. But while our leaders own up to their wrongs, we as Kenyans must also own up to the fact that we've failed to be our brother's keeper. Where are the stories of the Luo heroes who saved a Kikuyu friend when Kisumu erupted? Where are the Kikuyu heroes who hid a Luo woman when Limuru went up in plumes? And where are the Kalenjin heroes who pleaded with their fellow warriors not to burn a house of God where helpless people sought shelter? Do we really think mere justice can wash away the pain Kenyans feel?

The answer is no.

Forgiveness is a better way. It will free all of us and give us a chance to start afresh!

IDP Settlement

Once forgiveness is born in our hearts, let the three leaders actively seek a way to settle the IDPs. It's disgraceful that those poor Kenyans are still in the camps. Why does it seem to me like the nation has decided to move on and forget the plight of those people? How can some of our leaders start campaigning earnestly for elections that are four years away when our brothers and sisters sleep in the cold? It's wrong!

A New Constitution

Of course the next pressing matter is the constitution. I'm not an expert in constitution-making, so I won't pretend to know how long it will take to comprehensively deal with this matter. I do know, however, that the longer we wait, the more we lose time. It's in the best interest of the nation that this exercise be started very soon and be done fairly, in the spirit of forgiveness.

Ending the ECK

Finally that matter of the Electoral Commission of Kenya. It's a body that has served Kenya well before, but failed spectacularly last year. In a nation with increasingly polarized politics, it would be supremely unwise to go into another election with this body in place. Let it be disbanded immediately, since it lacks credibility.

That's the map.

If these matters are not handled well before the next elections, I fear that one day those of us left alive will have to meet President Paul Kagame in Kigali to ask him how he put Rwanda back together after unprecedented bloodletting, so we can do the same in Kenya.

Is anybody listening?

It starts with forgiveness.

32 comments:

Anonymous said...

Sam,

Kenyans are Christians, but they do not know what it means to forgive. I long for that day at Uhuru Park.

Anonymous said...

DID KIBAKI AND HIS KIKUYU LAME DUCKS READ THIS??
NA KIBAKI ASHINDWE... TIME UP YOU SENILE OLD MAN......

African Dictators - Kamuzu Banda: The control freak(jUST LIKE EMILIO KIBAKI THE MURDERER OF INNOCENT KENYANS(KIBAKI GAVE THE POLICE ORDERS TO SHOOT AND KILL BABIES, YOUTH AND PREGNANT MOTHERS.. HE DESERVES TO BE 6FT UNDER JUST LIKE OUR DEAR FAMILY MEMBERS WHOSE INNOCENT BLOOD STILL SMELL ON THE STREETS OF NAIROBI, NAIVASHA, NAKURU AND THE REST OF KENYAN.

Published on

By Rashid Suleiman

In the days before the Second Liberation, there were African presidents. Then there was the African president. His name was Kamuzu Banda.

Banda confounded both friend and foe. He blew cold and hot, played saviour and the devil all once. He was considered one of Africa’s most influential leaders in the last 50 years. Yet, he was among the last despots of the last century.

In sartorial elegance, he was more steadfast than Mobutu Sese Seko of Zaire. He was never seen in public without his trademark black three-piece suits, flywhisk, walking stick, homburg hat and handkerchief.

In education, he was as learned as Dr Agostinho Neto of Angola or Ghana’s Kwame Nkrumah.

Banda’s penchant for a flashy life saw him construct a sprawling 300-room palace, with a school and a supermarket.
In brutality, he was matched by Idi Amin Dada of Uganda, Sekou Toure of Guniea-Conakry, Michel Micombero of Burundi, Macias Nguema of Guinea-Malabo, and Mengistu Haile Mariam of Ethiopia.

In effecting a personality cult, he overshadowed accomplished purveyors of the art like Mobutu and Eyadema. He was the personification of eccentricity. He had battalions of women dancers who entertained him wherever he went.

He caused a stir in the early 1980s when he banned American pop group Simon and Garfunkel song Cecilia from the radio. This was at a time when his relationship with his mistress, Cecilia Tamanda Kadzamira, was going through a rocky period, and he clearly did not like the lyrics of the song ("Cecilia/I’m down on my knees/I’m begging you please to come home").

Because of his conservatism, Malawi was one of the last countries to have television, in the 1990s.

In amassing a personal fortune estimated at $320 million, Banda proved that he was as greedy and fabulously wealthy as Mobutu.

Like Houphouet-Boigy or Mobutu he constructed a sprawling 300-room palace, complete with a school and a supermarket.

He was also a man of unprecedented feats. He is the only African who left his country and stayed out for 42 years but returned to lead it to independence and rule it for 33 years. He refused to return home at one time in fear that his newly found financial resources, earned as a doctor in England, would be wiped out by his extended family.

Man of many feats

Banda is the only first generation African president who remained a ‘bachelor’ till death. His lifelong partner Cecilia Tamanda Kadzamira was just a mere live-in official hostess.

Only Algeria’s Houari Boumedienne shared with Banda the dubious distinction of never having appointed a vice-president.

Banda is one of the few African presidents with multiple birthdays. For long, his official birthday was given as May 14, 1906. But when he died in 1997, his death certificate stated that he was 99 years old, meaning he was born in 1898. Oxford University Press record that he was born in 1902.

Banda was the only African president to establish diplomatic ties with apartheid South Africa. In 1972, he became the first foreign potentate to visit apartheid South Africa since King George VI of England in 1947.

Even by the high African standards, Banda was considered a dictator par excellence. Between 1970 and 1971, he declared himself president for life of both Malawi and the ruling Malawi Congress Party. Like Amin, it is said he murdered his enemies and fed their corpses to crocodiles. In a BBC interview in the early 1990s, he threatened that should Malawian exiles calling for introduction of multipartism return home, he will feed them to crocodiles.

At the height of his power, it is said only one person in Malawi rubbed Banda the wrong way and lived to tell the tale. It is still a mystery how Gwanda Chakuamba survived the bloody purges of the dictator. He was jailed for 22-years for treason and was released at the advent of multipartism in the only presidential pardon granted by Banda in his 33-year-rule.

Banda presided over a police state where any form of dissent brought sudden death, torture, exile or deportation.

The former dictator closely monitored and controlled his peoples’ lives. It was compulsory for all adult Malawians to be card carrying members of MCP. The party cards were to be carried at all times because of random police checks. The cards were sold even to unborn children. No picture, poster or clock was hanged higher than Banda’s official portrait that adorned walls of official buildings. He prescribed a dress code for men and women in Malawi and forced foreigners to conform to it.

Women were not allowed to bare their thighs or wear trousers. Men were banned from growing beards or long hair because it signalled dissent.

Male visitors to Malawi could be seized and forced to have a hair cut. Those wishing to get visas to Malawi in the 1970s were met with the following notice: ‘Female passengers will not be permitted to enter the country if wearing short dresses or trouser suit, except in transit or at lake holiday resorts or national parks. Skirts and dresses must cover the knees to conform with government regulations. The entry of hippies and men with long hair and flared trousers is forbidden’.

Control freak

Any foreigner who violated the rules was deported.

Moviegoers had to watch a video of Banda first before the main course. Kissing was not allowed in public and state agents cut out scenes that contained kissing in movies.

All the movies were first viewed and edited by Banda’s censors before they were shown. The same was done to books. The secret police frequently opened private mail for editing. They tapped phone lines and cut off calls when a speaker said a critical word against the government. During Banda’s reign, TV was banned in Malawi.

His censors ripped out pages of publications like Time and Newsweek that they considered offensive to him. History that pre-dated Banda’s rise to power was discouraged and publications on the era were destroyed.

Despite his bad side, Banda is respected in some quarters and ranked with such luminaries like the late Sir Seretse Khama of Botswana, Kenyatta, Kaunda AND Houphouet-Boigny for the prestige they brought to their countries through the sheer force of their personalities and character. He has been hailed as a national and African hero though others denounce him as a despot.

It is said that Malawians will never achieve the unity they had under Banda. He is still remembered as a man who loved and cared for his people. He is credited with developing Malawi’s education, health, infrastructure and agriculture. Under his rule, the country became self-sufficient in food.

He has been hailed as a champion of women’s rights at a time when this was not fashionable in Africa. He founded an organisation to cater for women’s rights and needs. The Chitukuko Cha Amai m’Malawi was tasked with encouraging women to excel in government, education, the community, church and other spheres of life.

Though his date of birth is in dispute, there is little doubt that Banda was born in Kasungu in Nyasaland (the colonial name of Malawi) to Mphonogo Banda and his wife Akupingamnyama Phiri of the Chewa tribe.

In 1905, he was baptised by the Church of Scotland and took the name Hastings. Later he would add the Ngwazi (lion) as part of his name. Either in 1916 or 1917 he left with an uncle, Hanock Msokera Phiri, on foot to then Southern Rhodesia – the modern day Zimbabwe.

Young Banda

In 1917, he trekked from Zimbabwe to Johannesburg where he worked in the mines till 1925 when African Methodist Church Bishop WT Vernon offered to pay for his education so long as he made his way to America. He left for New York the same year and did his high school at Wilberforce Institute, the current Central State University in Ohio.

He graduated in 1928 and started earning money through public lectures organised by a Ghanaian educationist he had met in South Africa. During one of the lecturers, he met a Dr Herald who helped him enrol as a premedical student at Indian University. He transferred to University of Chicago and graduated with a B Phil, majoring in history, in 1931.

He studied medicine at Meharry Medical College and qualified as a doctor in 1937. He was forced to get a second medical degree to qualify to practise in the British Empire. He got the degree from the University of Edinburgh in 1941. He practised medicine in Newcastle and London but in 1946, he was prevailed upon to represent Nyasaland African Congress at the 5th Pan Africanist Congress. That marked his entry into politics.

While in England, he was fiercely opposed to the proposed federation of Southern Rhodesia (Zimbabwe), Northern Rhodesia (Zambia) and Nyasaland (Malawi) that became a reality in 1953. Two years earlier, he had been expected to return home but he chose to move to Ghana after a scandal in which he was accused of adultery with his receptionist. He moved together with the receptionist to Ghana.

After pleas from prominent Malawi politicians, Banda returned home in 1958 – 42 years after he left – to take up the leadership of the independence struggle and Nyasaland African Congress - the forerunner to Malawi Congress Party.

Strangely, he could not speak his mother tongue Chichewa and needed an interpreter. The job first fell to John Msonthi and later John Tembo, who became his strongman till death.

After stirring trouble in the colony, Banda and several of his colleagues were arrested in 1959 and jailed in Gweru in modern day Zimbabwe. He was released in 1960 and shipped to Britain for talks leading to independence. He became Prime Minister in 1963 and led the country to independence a year later.

Fall from grace

Right from the start of his political career, Banda made no secret that he was dictator. When a number of his ministers presented him with suggestions on how to reduce his powers a month after independence, he responded with tough action. He sacked four of them while two others resigned. All ‘ ‘detractors’ fled to exile.

In 1966, a new constitution made the country a one party republic with Banda as first president. He proceeded to rule the country as an unchallenged despot till the wind of change swept him out of power in the 1990s.

First, a special assembly stripped him of his powers in 1993 before Bakili Muluzi of the United Democratic Front (UDF) in the country’s first multiparty polls gave him a comprehensive whitewash the following year. He passed away in South Africa in 1997.

In his will, he instructed his long time companion, Cecilia Kadzamira, known throughout his rule as the "official hostess" to turn part of his home in his hometown of Kasungu, into a museum.

Anonymous said...

Sam Okello,

Can you admit your role in antagonising the other communities against Kikuyus....and can the likes of molasses fanatic Phil and the other morons who supported execution of Kikuyus do the same. can ODM which rode to pseudo power through violence also admit its propaganda and violence orchestration. stop preaching water while you are stinking of local brew. walk the talk and then we will listen...


Kumekucha Prefect

Phil said...

Sam, I will ask you again. How can there be forgiveness without justice?

You tragically seem to forget that this country suffers from what is normally referred to as HISTORICAL INJUSTICES.

What happened in January was an explosion of what had been bubbling underneath. These injustices did not start and end with the last general elections. Infact they started when white colonialist came to Kenya and when they left, handed the reigns to black colonialists who continued to rule with a slave-driver mentality assisted by a draconian constitution.

Certainly, forgiveness alone will not eliminate these historical injustices which continue to disturb our society.

As macharia gaitho said, peace does not just mean the absence of war. Indeed, each individual needs inner peace if they are to 'love their neighbour' as the bible tells us.

But how will you love your neighbour if man-made barriers to opportunities exist? How will you love your neighbour in the face of skewed national resource allocation that denies you and you children access to health, education and sanitation? How will you love you neighbour if some civil servants are buying and flying choppers while you cannot even afford a wheelbarrow? How will you love your neighbour if leaders impose themselves and their wives on us with impunity?

This national day of forgiveness will never work until we get a constitutional order that ensures equality. I can bet you my last shilling on that.

Anonymous said...

Raila proposes his two sisters for high commissioner jobs.....

woiiiiiiiiiii

na bado mapambano morons..

Anonymous said...

kumekucha prefect in seeking forgiveness, both sides admit that they wronged the other. don't think your people are innocent, if we start the blame game then we know where the most blame lays.

Taabu said...

Sam said:
....Once forgiveness is born in our hearts, let the three leaders actively seek a way to settle the IDPs......

Nice sermon Sam except you are preaching to animalists with no interest in the gospel. Kenya is awash of little devils not because of lack of charismatic and foaming prelates-they are a plenty. We simply opt for cheaper options in the face of challenges. Religion is often a sweet excuse albeit dishonest and expensive in the long run.

Look around you and what do you see? Charismatic sects preying on people's fears and insecurities. Is that what we want to nationalize at Uhuru Park? There are better things to do with free time in our hands and cheating God is definitely not one of them.

But again preachers need calamities to remain relevant. Otherwise their previous escapades wouldn't find a vent as alloyed wisdom. We live in interesting time where we shamelessly mock God and thumb our chest that we are religious. Watch out what you wish lest God call us bluff.

Anonymous said...

Yeah right! Forgiveness my arse!

Anonymous said...

No forgiveness till we burn parliament which is full of pre-evolution creature who think they own kenya. I think federalism is the way forward if we want to make sense of our broken country, i'm tired of mediocre politics fronted by these silly pot-bellied sons of yesteryears leaders, i hate raila,uhuru & mudavadi this lot have been lording over us since independence.

Sam Okello said...

Phil,

You and I agree that historical injustices have plagued our land. They've been perpetrated by different administrations and different segments of society, including corporate and church leadership. Are you saying that we can go back to the sixties, seventies and eighties with a prosecutorial hammer and right those wrongs? Pragmatism tells me that that's looking for diamonds at the far end of a brilliant rainbow. The more realistic approach is to give the nation a fresh start. Let the past be buried so we can get new, more effective governance systems going. How do we do it?

1. Forgiveness
2. Settling the IDPs
3. A representative constitution
4. Disbandment of the ECK

If we go down this path, we'll advance the nation in ways unimaginable. The alternative is the continued bitterness that will lead us down a place we don't want to go.

Sam Okello said...

Taabu,

Do you need a lesson in how to distinguish a sermon from...let's say a call to pragmatism? And just what makes you think forgiveness is a word that only belongs in the religious realm?

Yours is a curious position.

Wicked Whispers said...

all of you preaching forgiveness have not endured the losses that the Kikuyu have at the hands of the Kalenjin and now ODM. For forgiveness to take place, there must be confessions, contrition, restitutions and amends undertaken by the person or group of people who seek forgiveness. This eases the heart and mind of the person who is to offer the foriveness. I haven't seen any overtures of that nature from the Kalenjin.. in fact, it's been the opposite. Threats of further torture and pogroms if they are not fogiven unconditionally.

The bitterness will fester for a very long time.

Phil said...

Sam Okello said

....Are you saying that we can go back to the sixties, seventies and eighties with a prosecutorial hammer and right those wrongs?....

That is not what I am saying Sam.

What will stop a future president of Kenya, say, Uhuru Kenyatta, committing even more atrocities than his own dad?

Let us first hear them confessing to their sins and those of their fathers. For instance, it is grossly immoral for one family to actually purport to OWN prime agricultural land the size of the entire Nyanza province yet they did not pay a single cent for it, and we continue to have millions of our countrymen living as squatters!

After the confessions and requests for forgiveness, let them give back what they grabbed from us. Then, and only then, we can start talking forgiveness (or what they like to call amnesty).

It is wrong to let these people get away with mass murder (Wagalla & Kisumu massacres) just because they control state security.

Lets do the comprehensive reforms that will prevent any one individual from ever committing these crimes against Kenyans.

Lastly Sam, let us respect the right of any one from any tribe to seeking an elective office. (You know what I mean here, dont you?)

Anonymous said...

Moi should repent for inhumanities Kenyans suffered under his rule!

By George Nyongesa
Bunge La Mwananchi


I take great exception to the article by Mr. Nathaniel Otum from Migori, titled “Moi ageing graciously” in one of our dailies dated September 7, 2008 praising Moi’s enviable public charity in relinquishing power, his wise counsel to the public and even going further to associate him with icon leaders like Nelson Mandela. These assertions, especially comparing Moi to Mandela, exemplify lack of understanding and disrespect to historical facts and are highly misplaced.

I would like to inform Mr. Otum that for 24 years, former President Moi’s government besides running our economy down and preaching tribalism in reverse; he presided over massive human indignities and loss of life. The precursor to 2007 election related violence were experimented during Moi’s rule as evidenced with 1992 Rift Valley tribal clashes, Likoni clashes and Wagalla massacres.

Extra judicial killings were perfected under Moi’s reign where security personnel spelled insecurity to their innocent citizens. Remember how many Kenyans died in the clamor for multi-partyism? It was during Moi’s watch that the country lost progressive leaders like Foreign Minister, Robert ouko, Archibishop Alexander Muge and Father Kaiser simply they had dissenting voice.

During Moi’s rule discussions on social injustices was punishable by Kidnapping and enforced disappearance or life sentences. How many journalists were tortured, maimed or killed for practicing truth telling?

Moi has never repented over the Nyayo house torture chambers and the crimes against humanity perpetrated under his government orders. That Moi celebrated his 85th birthday only makes me wonder how many of those who died or those they left behind would have equally wanted a long life. During his rule Kenyans were oppressed, kidnapped, tortured and detained without trial. Does Mr. Otum have any idea how many became widows, orphans or mentally ill during Moi’s rule? Moi’s sporadic appearance and public commentaries are actions of a man who is in the cold and misses the public limelight.

There is a lot that Mandela loses if he is compared to Moi. Moi rightly belongs to the company of former presidents Kamuzu Banda, Mobutu Sesseko or Idi Amin. I am of the opinion if Moi’s claim that he is a Christian be true, he should publicly confess to and repent for the inhumanities he put this country especially to families who lost their loved ones and spend his retirement reciting over his rosary for God’s forgiveness over having misused his power.


George Nyongesa
Bunge la Mwananchi

Anonymous said...

phill what is wrong is when 1 person is mandated to fill 7 positions and he sees it fit to fill two of them with his own immediate family this is after he claims to be a democrat, claims to be a moderniser, but proves he is no different it is disgusting are there no other qualified people who supported raila other than his own family this is sick sick sick the man has lost touch with those that put him there he is as selfish as the rest even worse because he gave us hope he made us believe he would be different but in actual fact he is just the same

pesa tu said...

@kumekucha:Ha..ha i see u r still rehashing the daily news and rumors.when will u ever to a post supported by facts.
Quit sensationalizing news just to drive traffic to your website

Daniel Waweru said...

That is not what I am saying Sam.
What will stop a future president of Kenya, say, Uhuru Kenyatta, committing even more atrocities than his own dad?
Let us first hear them confessing to their sins and those of their fathers. For instance, it is grossly immoral for one family to actually purport to OWN prime agricultural land the size of the entire Nyanza province yet they did not pay a single cent for it, and we continue to have millions of our countrymen living as squatters!
After the confessions and requests for forgiveness, let them give back what they grabbed from us. Then, and only then, we can start talking forgiveness (or what they like to call amnesty).


Ah, Whataboutery: Phil's characteristic form of argument. Unfortunately, it’s stupid and self-refuting.

(1) Note the difference: Uhuru is being asked to confess his father’s sins. He isn’t responsible for them, so it’s unclear what reason there is to ask him to apologise for them, whereas Ruto and Ntimama, for example, are personally responsible for organising and paying for mass murder and ethnic cleansing - if the KNCHR report is correct. That’s the stupid part.
(Of course, if, as the report suggests, Uhuru is responsible for funding revenge attacks, the he too ought to be prosecuted.)

(2) If Phil’s correct, ODMers should apologise and accept liability for their planning participation in mass murder and ethnic cleansing only when their opponents have admitted their liability for what they done. But likewise for their opponents – they too should only admit liability when ODMers admit their liability. Since everybody should wait until the other admits liability before admitting theirs, no one ever will. Assuming that Phil is serious about admitting liability, his argument is self-refuting. If we assume, which is more likely, that this is merely a manoeuvre to justify ODMers in denying liability, we gain a a much clearer picture of Phil’s - and assorted ODMers' - motivations.

(3) What’s worth pointing out is Phil’s moral imbecility: if you belong to ODM (RVP branch) it’s OK to murder and rape your neighbours – and to keep doing so – because of past injustices committed elsewhere which had nothing to do with them and which you did not suffer.

kenyaone said...

Hey sam

I agree with the drift. there reaches a stage where kenyans will no longer be able to live with each other as the beginning of this year showed. But To forgive is not to forget. One cannot forgive people who admit to no wrong? What then are we forgiving? The impunity that has charecterised Kenyan leadership can only be forgiven once those leaders realise and accept it? To simply say all is forgiven lets move on will never work for the simple reason that the perpetrators of injustice have only learnt that they can get away with it and taught others the same. Without an adequate threat of retribution in one form or another I can promise you they will never acknowledge their wrongdoing. I can forgive if i can accuse. But neither you (nor anyone one else for that matter) can ask any Kenyan to forgive 'anonymous' injustices. The injustices must be pointed out and an accusation made. Now whether the guilty acknowledge their guilt is another matter. Even when jesus said 'father forgive them for they do not know what they do' he was reffering to his immediate tormentors (whom he knew and could point out) as well as humanity at large since we are all sinners. But how do we forgive those who will not acknowledge their sin? Some are murderers and masquarade today as church leaders....you know whom I am talking about Sam. But i do believe there must be closure for kenya to move ahead. Ultimately it will call for forgiveness but there must be more before that can happen. Remember that the perpetrators of the injustices that your speaking about will still today in their hearts and minds justify their actions just as the rampaging gangs that killed and burnt homes earlier this year feel their actions were justified. If i am convinced that I will be forgiven, whats to stop me from taking life into my own hands and justifying anything I do? But a brave attempt. At least your looking for a proper long term solution for this country and it will take the kind of exploratory exposition you have put forth, to find it.

Anonymous said...

A microcosmic view of how Kenya can come out of the doldrums

I believe that if we ever want to come out of this blame game and smear tribal hulabaloo, the foolwing needs to be addressed

It should be recognised that despite numerous government papers that have been adopted by parliamentary act or in some cases commissions no meaningful impact has been achieved in the ground by the people that they may be obtusely serving. This transformation can only be felt if and when the contribution of Voluntary Service, many frontline organisations have access and support that is required. The sector and government share a mutual interest in building capacity of community organisations and communities at large.

A clear strategic framework for development of voluntary community infrastructure in Kenya needs to be put in place. In particular, it should be designed to guide decisions on investment in infrastructure from national, regional, local levels in order to influence appropriate and respective roles that they may play in this arena. The direction for this change would only be possible if driven by:-
• Communication , collaboration and networking
• Promoting understanding between the public sector and other stakeholders
• Quality local level support
• Making investment sustainable
• Embedding ethnic relations/Equality
• Ensuring rurality proofing
• Initiating Local Area Agreements to influence Local Strategic Plans that could be cascaded across
This strategic priorities could only be achieved if the government develops a robust and clear performance improvement plans (not performance contracts!!!), workforce development (with Investor in People policy), Information Communication Technology and governance


The overall development of this plan should be guided by a stakeholder group interest with detailed planning and specific tasks undertaken through a strategy sub group with full support of the government. A cross sectoral and inclusive review and planning is paramount and should whole heartedly be embraced all sundry with lead partners drawn from infrastructure ministries/departments, faith based groups, NGO’s (service not compromised preferably complementary) and private sector. This can only be achieved if they are created within the local hubs closer to communities of interest underpinning infrastructure delivery generalist and appropriate specialist functions.
The core principles that would guide a successful input should revolve round:-
• sub regional consortia at provincial level whose main and core mechanisms would be planning and coordinating the development of infrastructure services;
• Infrastructure services be provided at this levels regardless of inaccessibility to achieve economies of scale piggy backing on existing groups; DDCs ,CDF would fit this
• The infrastructure must address the diverse needs of diverse groups, communities who should be fully engaged in planning , development and delivery processes;
• Needs of marginalised communities, specific groups, should be given priority to attain independent and accountable structures serving them; be recognised as cognisant to stimulating development , supported and coordinated with mainstream provision;
• Improve coordination of infrastructure provision within N.E,Coast, Eastern,parts of Rift Valley, Nyanza and Western provinces
• Long term government investment should be given priority in planning, development of infrastructure at all levels

The key priority areas mentioned above should underpin communication, networking and collaboration to:-
• Bring people together who provide same or specific services or work in specialist areas, or who provide services to same communities or client base
• Support organisations to explore ways that would increase collaboration to enhance service delivery and efficiency
• Provide mechanisms and embed a culture of information sharing to improve , rationalise and coordinate information and communication that cross cuts public sector and organisations to avoid duplications but maximise quality;
• Encourage liaison and collaboration with infrastructure ministries, service delivery ministries to access optimum benefit s across the regions.

Secondly, to promote and understand the infrastructure provision and services deliveries, effective marketing of distinctiveness of the sector (tourism is a good example) put in place to increase advocacy to investors and policy makers as they apply to strategic areas.

This can only be achieved by developing clearer marketing strategies supported by sustainable streams to enhance the counties potential to develop improved strategic thinking and advocacy capabilities; it will also help achieve optimum resource use and extend service delivery.

It is paramount that sustainability be made the core component in successful implementation of projects hitherto planning and development process for meaningful change to occur. Historically, the government has delved in and achieved high propensity to long term plans driven by politics not local priorities. This can only be phased out by:-
1. investing in the sector of provision of specific needs led services including; loans; contracts and Service Level Agreements; income generation opportunities(through informal sectors like ‘Jua kali) and equity finance as well as traditional public funding
2. encourage cultural shift both from government seeing itself as business like while donors see it as a business that requires investment in order to achieve social, environmental, economic and central goals

If these are to be attained the infrastructure ministries, the NGOs and groups should see themselves as integral to development of infrastructure , leading to strengthen partnership work for high quality services. It is in this realm that meaningful change would be achieved when advocacy for marginalised and disadvantage communities including the sick, those with disabilities, children, women and vulnerable members of the community is the main priority. Support for all should be inclusive, embraced in appropriate way for those who need it most whilst targeting interventions to meet the needs in the process imparting leadership, representational skills and developing social enterprise approaches.


We should endeavour to establish and improve mechanisms of service delivery to small, under represented groups and communities of interest; forums and networks for nomadic communities, namely the Maasai, Turkana Pokot etc should be addressed.

The operating environment for urban areas is totally different from rural ones, therefore issues that might impact on dispersed nature of rural communities and the high cost of delivery might be different. This reinforces the need to ‘rural proof’ the operational service delivery strategies so that those people who are demographically excluded participate in mainstream activities. This can only be achieved by:-
• Embed ‘rural proofing’ strategies and operations to enable critical issues identified for service delivery , leading to development of solutions;
• Collaboration with other partners to improve service provision for rural communities.

In conclusion, for performance to improve promote and increase awareness of value performance improvement for the country’s development. The government has the sole responsibility of supporting infrastructure partners, namely NGOs, development partners on best practice and performance improvement tools to enable effective delivery to communities not coercing public servants with performance contracts which may be motivational orientated

Specific actions would be to invest in skilled advisors drawn locally armed with improvement methods, ensure that investors and delivers understand resource and capacity implications. In addition, put mechanisms that would ensure appropriate levels of service to small groups, organisations and under represented groups.
I am open to criticism and flamboyant intution

Taabu said...

Sam, I hear you LOUD and clear. But no thanks I don't need a lesson on sermons becauseI know one when I see it and can smell collar cloth miles away.

You know what Bw Okello? Your cause is very noble but you would find it usuful to try any audience outside the choir, ama?

Don't assume anything bro. Sermons are not EXCLUSIVELY linked to religion and to insinuate otherwise is to assume big time. It wasn't me.

Phil said...

True to form, Daniel Waweru is missing the point again! Nowhere have I defended murderers and rapists. Infact, Your choice of words (if, assume, etc) betrays your judgement that is based on guesswork rather than facts!

If my dad stole public property and I inherit that property, does it erase the fact that it is STOLEN PUBLIC PROPERTY? Uhuru is educated and well aware of historical facts.

As you rightly point out Daniel, why is it that the law is being applied selectively? Why should ODM youth who participated in lawful civil disobedience called by the ODM to protest stolen elections continue to be held in remand prisons, while Uhuru and his Mungiki colleagues continue to enjoy ministerial perks yet they financed and organised revenge attacks that also ended the lives of many? How about the fact that the same dubious KNHRC report you quote alludes to a large percentage - close to 50% - of deaths being caused by police bullets, yet the police commanders continue to occupy stately office at our account. What shameless hypocrisy is this?

Now, if Ntimama , Ruto and the ODMers likes are really guilty of these atrocities you accuse them of, who is supposed to institute charges in court? Is it PHIL or is it your duly elected government?

If you got the gist of my previous comments, the injustices did not just begin and end with the 2007 elections. There are people in this country who are on constant look-out for marauding killers who visit them week-in, week out, yet we proclaim to have an elected government! Who will speak for these people who are every other day killed, kidnapped, raped and their property stolen right under the noses of government chiefs DOs and DCs?

I guess some are more equal than others Daniel, heh?

papa plus said...

Sam,
repeating your earlier post will not make it any more appealing. You failed to acknowledge any of the questions possed to you regarding justice.

I ask you again, would you have signed on for tea and biscuit, hugs and kisses back in 1963 as we fought and died for independence?

The problem here I think is that many of us have gone soft and yellow on the underside of our bellies. There is no abuse too great for us not to forgive and simply brush under the rug, be it corruption, be it gangster like brothers weilding guns at our airports, be it tourists sexing our youth down at the coast, be it election officials earning millions of shillings for a shoddy job...the list is endless.

To these issues, Sam proposes high sounding rhetoric of forgiveness. Kiraitu was absolutely spot on when he discibed folks like Sam as "like raping a willing woman" because clearly, kenyans don't mind being screwed over. They can always read the bible and turn the other cheek and when those are raw, they can always turn their butt cheeks...

Sam, get real. Seriously, get real!

Daniel Waweru said...

True to form, Daniel Waweru is missing the point again! Nowhere have I defended murderers and rapists. Infact, Your choice of words (if, assume, etc) betrays your judgement that is based on guesswork rather than facts!

Let’s try this again then. (the relevant part of) Your argument is as follows:

What will stop a future president of Kenya, say, Uhuru Kenyatta, committing even more atrocities than his own dad?...Let us first hear them confessing to their sins and those of their fathers.

The question before us, remember, is how to secure justice for victims of post-election violence in 2007. We decent evidence that the upper reaches of ODM planned, financed and directed the recent round of mass murder and ethnic cleansing. You argue that they shouldn’t be held liable for their crimes unless others are also held liable for their past crimes. The difficulty? Your principle applies generally. If ODMers shouldn’t be held responsible for what they did until everyone else is held responsible for what they did – ignoring the fact that Uhuru is not responsible for his father’s free actions, and can’t therefore be held liable for them – then it follows that no one can be held responsible for their crimes until everyone else is held responsible for their past crimes. It follows that ODM’s opponents cannot be held liable for their crimes until ODMers are held responsible for theirs. Since, by your argument, ODMers can’t be held responsible for their crimes until everyone else is held responsible for their crimes, no one can be held responsible for their crimes – a quite predictable result. The stalemate is an entirely unsurprising consequence of your argument; its effect is to exclude ODMers from facing justice for their crimes. It is entirely obvious that you are defending rapists and murderers.

As you rightly point out Daniel, why is it that the law is being applied selectively? Why should ODM youth who participated in lawful civil disobedience called by the ODM to protest stolen elections continue to be held in remand prisons, while Uhuru and his Mungiki colleagues continue to enjoy ministerial perks yet they financed and organised revenge attacks that also ended the lives of many? How about the fact that the same dubious KNHRC report you quote alludes to a large percentage - close to 50% - of deaths being caused by police bullets, yet the police commanders continue to occupy stately office at our account. What shameless hypocrisy is this?

(1) The law, at least in this case, isn’t being applied at all – it follows that it isn’t being applied selectively.

(2)
(a) ODMers didn’t only engage in civil disobedience: a large proportion engaged in petty criminal activity, and some graduated to ethnically-motivated violence – much of which was planned and paid for beforehand, and some of which, as the KNCHR report found, amounts to crimes against humanity.

(b) Further, the recent resolution at the ODM convention was that all ODMers arrested in connection with the violence should be released. If we do them the favour of taking them at their word, it is clear that the members of ODM, or those empowered to speak in their name, don’t distinguish degrees of liability and wish to evade all liability for their part in the post-election violence. Yes, that does amount to supporting rapists and murderers.

(3) Rather large numbers of Mungiki have been arrested.

(4) Your drivel about the KNCHR report is just plain dumb.

(a) The claim that the police – and therefore the government at the time – are responsible for half the fatalities only follows if you make two additional assumptions (i) that only the police (or, more likely, disciplined forces) had guns and used them, and (ii) that all those police who had guns used them on the orders of commanding officers who were loyal to the government at the time. Both assumptions are false – and worse, stupid. We know that ODM-sympathising members of the disciplined forces (and other parts of the government apparatus) were quite happy to direct ethnically-motivated violence against unarmed civilians. There’ve been confirmed reports that ODMers in the RVP had guns, and there is at least one confirmed case in the RVP of ODM-sympathising prison guards shooting unarmed civilians.

(b) The claim is also inconsistent with the pre-election evidence – given on an earlier thread, so I won’t repeat it – that ODMers were significantly more likely to proffer threats and violence, and that ODMers, especially in the RVP, had remarkably high levels of ethnic hate-speech. Your argument, such as it is, doesn’t square with either commonsense or the facts.

Anonymous said...

No forgiveness unless Kikuyu's leave Masaai and Kalenjin land. No forgiveness untill the Mt. Kenya Mafia is ousted from power.

Anonymous said...

Kenyan to operate an Airlne?

Reliable sources indicate that this is a hoax
Mabel is a show off. Currently, the lady is in serious finacial crises- with much bills unpaid to Landlords (she doenst own any of the properties that she sings about!)
The other issue is about the monies that she has taken from Kenyans through Woken investments.
Her partner, who was meant to make the planes available is very disgruntled-she is the daughter of http://www.globalba.com/

Why do Kenyans write things they have not confirmed, just because they are paid.Baillifs have become her partners on a daily basis
A very nice story on this on the way. Very factual

Lukaine said...

If Mandela could forgive and live with the whites why are we pretending to be so wronged by what took place...first let us forgive the British followed; swiftly by forgiving the fathers of the nation for putting us in this mess...and let the forgiveness flow forward until 2007/08

Anonymous said...

There will be no forgiveness, and no mercy. what is there to forgive. Land looters must give up their land. Corrupt politicians must face the law and Majimbo must be implemented or this country will burn to ashes.

Ecosmackenya said...

We have the most uncaring government and as things stand I think a number of our so called leaders are going home in the next election cycle.

The economy is not growing,jobs not being created the IDPS question still not addressed,reconcilliation issue put in the back burner.Education in a pathetic situation roads lok like the surface of the moon.

What happened to the constitutional talk.All we hear is forming a grand coalition,witch hunting and skyrocketing cost of living.Stand up Kenyans we deserve better.We need a new deal and must demand it now.

Back to the IDPS issue,the government appealed to the diaspora to reach out to their friends at home and abroad.We did and here in Japan friends cam to help by donating clothes and foodThey sent the stuff to Mombasa and guess what the same government asked us to pay for duty.Is this government working for you or against you?Yes duty is paid and the ask for out of this world amount for storage.Common give me asence of fairness here when in the first place this was not a situation of the IDPS' own making.

Is this government fooling us? Cn we believe it when it promises anything.I am made to beleive thay things are more of the same-to quote the sanator Obama's campaign slogan.

papa plus said...

Oh Mandela forgave, Jesus forgave...

Why are we merely glossing over the reality? Mandela forgave but De Klerk took ownership of atrocities under Aparthied. It is not a one way street. And guess what, no more aparthied in SA. Contrast that to kenya where we still face the same problems year in year out. The law is selective as hell. Pro ODM youth are in jail when it has been established that ODM leaders funded skirmishes and incited people. It has also been established that PNU leaders incited and funded skirmishes.

Why aren't these leaders in jail? Why haven't they come out to ask for forgiveness?

As usual Amos Wako is straddling the fence on the issue, claiming as does every government official, that his office does not have the power to investigate or direct investigations into anything. Why the fukc are we paying these people for then?

So please stop with the canvassing of serious issues by offering simple solutions like forgiveness. Until the people have faith in the law to be applied to all equally, then what is the sense of forgiveness? Until people figure out that the police are there to serve them and not the GK, then what is the sense of forgiveness?

Like I said before, this issue is a tip of a very large iceburg and it is only a matter of time before the shit hits the fun. Folks can day dream about Raila, kalonzo, etc but some guy is going to come out of left field and garb power just like Museveni did and we shall not know what hit us.

Anonymous said...

We need Kikuyus, Luos and Kalenjins to own up to their ills and then forgiveness will naturally come. The way things are, there's no such thing as forgiveness.

Anonymous said...

We need Kikuyus, Luos and Kalenjins to own up to their ills and then forgiveness will naturally come. The way things are, there's no such thing as forgiveness.

Anonymous said...

Christians in Kenyan, like many of their counterparts around the globe, are Sunday Christians instead of true Christians at heart. Their deeds speak volumes than any creeds they profess.

The worst offenders when it comes to forgiveness are majority of the clergy and political types (Christians) that are associated with inner church circles of power.

They have elephant memories and they will never ever forgive anyone who crosses on the wrong side of their so called theological-cum-political paths. Or anyone with good intentions who happens to rub their alter egos the wrong way for whatever reasons.

Religious institutions in Africa have become corporate mines for minting financial income and dividends for their respective leaders.

I hate to remind some of you that, the worst enemy you will encounter in life is not a fellow Kenyan from the "other church or enemy tribe", but it's delusional clergy from your church and community.

Most of these prophets for profit, have lost their sense of mission and have resorted to self-dealing in the name of the 'financial gods' and 'political gods'that they represent within their religious kingdoms.

'Happy are those who find business and make a profit in the name of the Lord.'

Their actions speak volumes, however, the only consolation for most people is that, "there will be no popes, prelates, primates, bishops, pastors, priests,and clergy of kind in heaven." None what-so-ever.

These men of the cloth will all be so shocked to discover that the real Creator of the Universe does belong or subscribe to any of the religions, theologies and institutions that have been fabricated by human beings since the first century.

In the meantime, FORGIVENESS is a very rare commodity within the so called religious circles or among religious people. Believe it or not, sixty barrels of crude oil are cheaper than an ounce of forgiveness from the religious people.

Their ACTIONS SPEAK LOUDER THAN their WORDS and their professed sense of FORGIVENESS.

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