Monday, July 20, 2009
Kibaki, Raila And The Hague: Can You Take The Terrible Truth?
In some ways, I cannot help sympathizing with the Kenyan government just now because they are really between a rock and a hard place where the Hague issue is concerned.
There is immense pressure on the government of Kenya to form a local tribunal to try post-election violence suspects and this push is coming mainly from the International community, especially the United States and Britain. (As I said in an earlier post the main architect behind this move is the president of the United States, Barack Obama).
However Kenyans have absolutely no faith in their own judicial system and want all the criminals (especially the big boys) to go to the Hague and face justice there. Even if it takes two or three years for this to happen.
Now the Kenyan government cannot form a local tribunal because any such legislation to make this possible will have to pass through parliament. And you and I know for a fact that there is no way the current parliament will pass any such bill (with or without instructions from party leaders).
So the only logical solution is to call for fresh elections.
I can hear you groaning and I can also hear you complaining about how the country is not ready for a general election and will NOT be ready for a while. I myself can fill this page with 100 reasons why there should never be any general elections in Kenya for the next 20 or even 100 years. However what is the alternative? What is the alternative to an election?
Incidentally there was an interesting statement made by Raila Odinga over the weekend. The Prime Minister has castigated the Kenya Human Rights Commission for releasing the list of suspects (upon which Kofi Anan based his list). Raila has also said (almost with the same breath) that the Hague should release it’s list of suspects too.
Very confusing statements those, don’t you think?
But let me help you see through the smoke screens. You must bear in mind that what politicians say and what they really want are always two very different things. The late Vice President Wamalwa Kijana put it very eloquently when he said that some politicians play their cards on the table while hiding the really dangerous ones under the table. That’s how the game of politics is played everywhere in the world.
Let me tell you a story to cement my point here. There is this guy who keeps on telling this woman that he loves her very much. The woman naturally drinks in this, but fate puts a terrible test before him. Just before their wedding, they decide to go for an HIV test. The Man comes out negative but the woman is HIV positive. Now in my book if the man really loves the woman as he has been constantly saying, and if it is true that he cannot do without her, then he ought to marry her, HIV or no HIV. Right?
In my story the man was naturally doing what most men do to women—telling her a pack of lies. And so when they come out of the VCT centre the man is lost for words even as his woman is devastated. He cannot even offer words of consolation. His mind is simply racing trying to find the quickest way out of all this… and yet the wedding cards have already been printed and the bride’s gown has been made.
So it is in politics. The truth of the matter is that both sides of the current political leadership funded and incited the chaos we saw in January 2008. ODM did it strategically to stop the stolen elections from being allowed to stand. The long term strategy was to make the country unmanageable until the elections were either repeated or the presidency given to the rightful winner. PNU did it mostly in retaliation for the blood bath that went on in the Rift Valley where the main victims were supporters of the party. So in essence before anybody else is put on trial for the blood bath, common sense demands that the leaders of ODM and PNU face justice first for what they sanctioned—the buck stops at their tables. If the courts find them innocent then it is okay as long as it is not the kind of courts Kenyan have seen in these shores since independence. The kind that they do NOT want the post election suspects to be tried in.
And that is why I have been suggesting for a long time now that the only solution for Kenya is that we find a way to go back to the polls as soon as possible. You don’t need to have any brains to realize that as long as the current government is in power you will NEVER get Raila and Kibaki to face justice. In fact the longer they remain in power the harder it will be to take those two gentlemen anywhere. For the politically naïve, let me explain further. Those two gentlemen this very minute do NOT have anything higher in their agenda than staying out of jail after they leave power and we are just giving them more time to destroy evidence, kill witnesses etc.
And by the way the minimal reforms people are talking about before the next elections is a pipe dream as long as Raila and Kibaki are in power. Do you honestly think that these two gentlemen and their advisors will allow reforms that will come back to haunt them? Please!!!!
That is the brutal truth. Sorry for saying such nasty things (especially about characters who are worshipped by some avid readers of this blog. Please remember that the good book says you shall NOT worship anybody else BUT THE TRUE AND LIVING GOD). Admittedly, the truth is often pretty nasty and unpalatable and usually requires quite a “strong stomach” to take.
P.S. I have recently been doing some fascinating e-interviews with various Kenyans from all walks of life. I will be publishing them here in Kumekucha and today I have started with THIS ONE about a Kenyan who claims he is making a lot of money from the web whilst based in Nairobi.
Posted by Chris at 8:47 AM