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Wednesday, January 07, 2009

Medieval Politics: Leaflets and Rent-a-Mouth

That the more things change the more they remain the same wouldn’t have been more apt adage in describing the Government’s desperate move to lift itself out of the deep hole it plunged into. Alfred Mutua has re-invented his Turbo-charged mouth in creative leaflets authored to EDUCATE Kenyans on the merits of media censorship.

True, desperate moments calls for desperate measures. But Mutua and his masters must have been blinded by their cheap optimism that Kenyans will buy their gimmick. Granted, the media is not without blemish but no leader ever successfully fought the fourth estate. Only in Kenya can politicians shamelessly re-invent the non-circular wheel and ride on the falsehood. If anything, the global time–tested and tried practice of media self-regulation militates against speedy economic returns.

We are back to political medieval times. What with rent a mouth youths on the ready to congratulate the king on how immaculately he is dressed in his birthday suit. Now we understand that not only here at Kumekucha do we have easily excitable Kenyans. They are in good company ready with oiled lips and joints to dance themselves lame to old lyrics from a broken record.

There are leaders and spineless politicians. Forget the hollow defence from Kibaki’s apologists that he did what he had to do after the MPs handed him the bill. There is leadership and responsibility and above all else having the hindsight to act in tandem with national mood. A responsible parent will not serve a hungry kid poison to calm him down.

Impunity patented
One Lucy must be still be enjoying her sleep after receiving the sweetest and most priceless New Year present from her sweetheart. Her nocturnal escapade at the newsroom has been taken a notch higher and what is more, it is LEGAL. That is a personal war won at the altar of royal expediency. The media must be ruing their antics to paint ogres in all the rainbow colours.

Signing the Communication Bill amounts to institutionalizing our pricey national vice of IMPUNITY. Kenya has her gate keepers and damn the IDP families who are spoiling the party in demanding decent burial to their loved ones. True entrepreneurship includes doing commerce with corpses. And why not expand the virtue if carpenters can do it honestly at the lower end?

But Kenyans must remain realistic and alive to the truism that no progress can come out a leadership singularly defined by deception. Fraud begets only more fraud and its derivatives. We are back to the starting point and the torturous circular journey continues. We better sample the Arabic wisdom in having smart mouths that never invite stinking flies by knowing when to shut up.

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Anonymous said...

Poor Taabu is back with his old whinning rhetoric and molasses worship. ODM hasd the majority in bunge...the bill sailed thru just like the one where MP's said no to taxes,.....Ruto is in charge of agriculture....he supervised fixing of maize prices by himself,...your deity molasses is just bitter that Kibaki didn't have an end year party so that he can showcase his stupidity in mombasa with his fat wife....

on another note, seems you are envious of one Lucy Kibaki but unfortunately she is taken and you are stuck with your cheating wife...i understand in december she was rammed by 3 different men on different occassions....ha ha haaaa.

so are you hired by the media bosses who are keen on ensuring that the reporters continue to be poorly renumerated? the same media bosses who sell news of the highest bidder and ensure they own all news outlets?
coz thats what the real war is all about about this bill.

but i suggest Taabu u stick your nose first to your domestic problems of your phillandearing wife.
o'wise utapata mwana sio wako au kamdudu!!!!

don't say you were not warned.

Anonymous said...

ODM behaves like a cry baby, as if they are not the majority in parliament. They have been worse than PNU all along, from maize flour to MP taxes to voting for media bill

As for leaflets, why not use leaflets if the biased media is not reporting the Govt. side of story? Even now in reporting the passage of the bill the media is still biased against govt., hence use of leaflets and the need for regulation.

Anonymous said...

"Phillandering wife" i wonder if anon 8:01 is subtly revealing who one of the 3 "rammers" was. Is Phillwondering where I am going with this?

Vikii said...

Mr. Taabu, you need to learn "when to shut up" and that is from a dear brother.

I have always believed that the change kenyans need is one that leads them to weigh the merits and demerits of an opinion/issue/a position based on what really speaks to their convictions as opposed to what everybody else thinks. I am looking for those Kenyans willing to step forward and take positions that are free of influence by the media or politicians. President Thomas Jefferson was an individual who has been quoted in this blog by Chris severally. He said that "he who reads nothing is better educated than he who reads nothing but newspapers". I add that he who listens to monkeys before taking a position is better informed than he who listens to politicians.

I am not taking anything away from those who "believe in" (ouch) a free unregulated media. I believe they should regulate themselves. But what is at hand here is a specific piece of legislation. What aspect of it is draconian? What really amounts to 'gagging'? Last year's version of this bill (now law), in my opinion, was a little domineering in as far as it would have thrown into extinction those anonymous whistle blowers. To me, that is what happens in Communist China and such other countries. But what really has caused all the commotion in this new edition of the bill? Please, let's talk specifics here. The media can use all the words in the book but as long as nobody has really graduated from that unintelligent use of those two words (gagging, draconian), as long as nobody states explicitly what aspect of the bill is unhealthy and how, then I am not sold. I think in a society that considers itself progressive, it should take much more than spooky adjectives that cannot be backed by factual explanations to shape opinion.

Once again, can we have a debate on this law and any other topical issue without getting a copy of 'The standard' or without listening to the bogus statements our politicians come up with?

Now if we can come back to the Kibaki-this-kibaki-that nonsense, someone will have to answer me why our focus is on Kibaki and not Members of Parliament who passed the bill. Mwai Kibaki is not the ODM chief whip or the leader of government business in Parliament or any other influential person in our legislative process. Why are we not turning the heat on those party leaders now waking up with some ridiculous statements that they were not party to the drafting and tabling of the bill? If it is such an important issue that can even precipitate leaving government, why did they not reject it in parliament? We have even gone to the extent of dragging mentally unstable persons like Mrs. Kibaki who has had absolutely nothing to do with the bill in this, yet we jump at every opportunity to hurl insuts to people who dare question those little gods we worship, yet they are the ones charged with making laws. This is pathetic, gentlemen.

But then once again, this is the beauty of living in a free society. One man's sense is another man's nonsense.

Phil said...

Yes Taabu. Habari ya Mwaka mpya?

Memories are failing. Isnt this the same media that tried to cover up JM's death (that he was on a visit to Zambia?) or the same folks who tried to advance a suicide theory following Robert Ouko's gruesome murder?

No one, not even Chris has come out to openly point out offending clauses in the so called Media Bill. Ask yourself why national Media Ownership is a club for a single tribe, or why senior editors also share a single heritage, and why one Raphael Tuju had to 'give up' his FM licence?

The same media you guys are defending here took sides and vigorously campaigned for the other side and failed to defend Kenyans when elections were stolen. I do not for once blame Kibaki for signing this bill into law.

This is an apt example as to why I keep saying the PNU side is full of idiots, court jesters and political neophytes , to the point they are now reacting too late after the president was (mis)advised to sign the media bill - was he blindfolded then or was the Mombasa humidity too much for his weak heart??


b-carotene said...

Several months ago, KKs Cicero hypothesized on how Taabu (and others) construct their posts for this most authoritative blog :).
It seems to me as though Taabu's current gibberish is a perfect test case for Cicero's hypothesis :(.

Nonetheless, very good points Vikii!

eddlove said...

As much as we would like to blame politicians for everything, the main culprits are the citizens of Kenya. They have participated in elections after every 5years and yet the same problems persist. Its very strange that Kenyans do not take elections seriously and they never learn from past mistakes. This is quiet evident because every election politicians responsible for the mess the country is in usually find their way back to parliament. Politicians jump ship always and then beat the messages Kenyans want to hear. In 2002 and 2007 Kenyans made some mistakes which they shouldnt have done if they were not so entangled in shorterm politics of the politicians

Anonymous said...

The guys who were protesting in support of the new bill were not hired by anyone. They were ICT entrepreneurs who were happy with much of the Act. but our imbalanced media chose to label them "hired goons". The media all along has not highlighted what's good in the bill. It's only hammering on KCA Act section 88 as if thats the only thing in the bill. The media should clean their act or else we will support Poghisio and Ndemo. Infact i enjoy reading politics on Kumekucha than reading in the mainstream media. They cover politicians who have deep pockets leaving crucial matters of national interest with little time /coverage.
Hawa watu ni wale wale tu! thieves, corrupt mongrels and suckers

Anonymous said...


From what I read here at KK, I know you hate kibs as others hate rao. But please try a bit of objectivity beacuse vikii tells us you are educated. The main thing the media is complaining about is section 88 of KCA 1998. This is not part of the bill kibs signed. Do you understand this? The 1998 Act (with section 88) was brought to parliament by then Informatiuon Minister Joe Nyagah. Many of the current ministers (including rao) were ministers in 1998 when KCA was enacted. Am neither PNU nor ODM but I think we need to be objective if we are really serious of what we say here about a new beginning and all that.

UrXlnc said...

wanted to address the part about whether clause 88 is contentious or not and amounts to gagging or draconnian. not loosing sight of the fact that the ICT bill in whole was about far reaching ICT policy formulation.

yes media, MPs and other "stakeholders" had ample time (from 1998 till 2009) to address this and so cannot blame anyone for this slipping through the cracks. Notably this very bill has passed through Mudavadi, Kalonzo, Tuju at some point in time when they handled that docket. However the fact that it was there previously alone is not sufficient reason to allow a potentially flawed law/act to continue to exist. we need to evaluate correectly whether continued use of clause 88 would contribute to eroded media "freedoms"

first i make the hypothetical statement that i would like to assume Michuki is an angel compared to all others. will come back to that.

my understanding of gagging in this context is any process that inhibits free flow of speech/information (it is immaterial whether it is highly informed and factual or utter propaganda/rubbish). this includes the gutter press, jacaranda free speech zones as well as formal media and lately such as these blogs where we continue to be bombarded by untruths and hallucinations as well as factual educated content.

i can therefore safely make the (sensational) statement to head the next posting "Vikii (attempts) to gag kk blog contributions on ICT bill". somewhere in that post i will mention that said blogger, specifically denying other bloggers the opportunity to quote one of the media houses. (this is a drab joke, however perhaps if vikii was min. of internal security, perhaps there exists a chance that any blogger quoting EAS will find himself facing hooded chaps with AK47s) but i digress

now there is talk of media regulation particularly with airing inappropriate matter unsuitable for certain audiences. I absolutely agree but we are mixing way too many issues in the same pot and i think the regulation on programming appropriate content is adequately covered elsewhere. am however hard pressed especially as clause 88 stands i.e Min of Internal Security yadda yadda state of emergency yadda yadda, can use this clause to raid a station ostensibly to stop the station from broadcasting say porn. i cant imagine kibaki or whomever signing a state of emergence so that a raid to confiscate porn is executed. so clearly clause 88 is there for a different purpose. further regulatory framework is meant provide meaningful standards as a guide and more stringent in monopolies or limited players and more or less subject to market forces as more players enter the fray. therefore the best form of regulation would be more licensing of operators providing quality broadcasts ensuring that public (subscription) indirectly regulate content. I certainly agree media self regulating is not sufficient.

so lets recap on where possibly clause 88 has been (ab)used (am totally speculating here) march 2006 and in case we forget related incidences

and of course dec 07 /january 08 (am trying real hard to comply with no EAS reporting). now here is the thing, i do not remember reading or seeing the said certificate published by the min as stipulated demonstrating the "state of emergency" either in the press or parliament perhaps someone has seen it in the Kenya Gazette. i know for sure no state of emergency was declared in either instance, so the argument that this clause is used only in such instances is not entirely correct.

in both cases it involved Min of Internal affairs who happened to in both instances be Hon Michuki and of course under duly elected.

now back to my point of hon. michuki being an angel compared to all others. hypothetical of course, but lets assume that as vikii and one or two others has suggested here time and again that ODM MPs are over-board reckless and therefore our angel in comparison is everything elegant and proper. if such an angel can in the period of 2 years when he was min of internal security (dec 2005 - Jan 2008 ) use clause 88 twice and without a state of emergency declared, what can we possible expect or infer of other less elegant/proper MPs and perhaps a reckless president?

i would think it maybe necessary to regulate the media, but certainly start toning down some of the aspects in clause 88 to provide more accountability or perhaps a wider consultative process even if just between the executive and/or parliament and/or ??

Anonymous said...

Taabu, welcome back. It's nice to have your objective interpretation of events in this our crazy country.

Anonymous said...


excellent argument and points

Anonymous said...

Welcome back from your circumcision break. Now that you have become a man, we expect you to stop whining and Raila worship.

Happy new year and hate less!

Anonymous said...

Whining + gibberish = TAABU

Anonymous said...

dear all,
there are some aspects of the ICT bill that are irritant. What was that clause on ringtones and passwords again? amazing people! What was the drafters intention if I may ask? can someone enlighten me?

Chris said...

It is with great sadness that Kumekucha has to announce that it is withdrawing from the internet with immediate effect.

In these difficult financial times it has become impossible to justify this blog's continued presence in what has always been a very expensive arena of competition. Kumekucha has always found taking part in the internet to be a powerful and authoritive voice to reckon with, but, in the current economic climate, we have realised that this is essentially nonsense and it's time to stop spunking money away on embarrassing failure in the public eye.

Once again thank you for your support.


Joe the choma man said...

who are you accussing of being medieval in their politics?

Taabu said...

HNY lil bro. I hear you loud and clear only worried whether you have ever heard of the Jewish folklore on SCAPEGOAT or better still fattening cow? Just doing my job but spare your limbs till the real dance starts, will you?

clemo said...

Ati the youths were "rented" for 500bob to heckle around city streets.kweli kenyans will never just wondering how one of them would answer if confronted to explain the real reason for the demo.then tell him kibaki is having second thoughts over his actions.ndio utajionea fala wa mwisho!

clemo said...

ati the cops allowed the demo to proceed coz ati those are good people according to instructions from high up!and they started off at mutua's h/q.did i read right?somebody correct me

Anonymous said...

Ruto donates land in eldoret for the mass burial of the kiambaa massacre victims!!! shame on the collusion of thiefs!!

Anonymous said...

God must love stupid people; He made so many in the name of ODMorons !
There are alive only because it's illegal to kill them.

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