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Tuesday, May 25, 2010

Can the constitution be stopped? Atwoli seeks presidency

Francis Atwoli wants to be president of Kenya

The recent court ruling declaring the Kadhi courts in the current constitution illegal has shocked many. But what I found even more interesting are the rumour mills in Nairobi pointing an accusing fingers at some prominent people on the YES camp as being the ones behind the court ruling.

It would seem that there are some people working around the clock to ensure that finally one of the many spanners they are throwing into the works to stop the train that is called a new constitution will work and bring it to a grinding halt.

First it was the NSIS alterations in the draft at the printing stage. Now comes this bizarre court ruling.

The big question is; will they finally succeed?

I don’t think so. But what worries me most is that the rich and powerful are greatly underestimating the resolve of the Kenyan people to get a new constitution. The last time when Mwai Kibaki underestimated the resolve of the Kenyan people for change, the world saw the repercussions as Kenya exploded. I don’t want to think what would happen if for some reason the constitutional process was stopped on some technicality.

The constitutional court ruling left many legal professionals surprised. To the ordinary Kenyan it was yet another reason why Kenyans don’t trust our courts. Majority of those I surveyed in a quick survey I have done over the last day or so are convinced that money changed hands to influence the strange court verdict.

Meanwhile Francis Atwilo wants to be the next president of Kenya. Who is Atwoli?

Francis Atwoli is a long serving trade unionist who is the current secretary general of the Central Organization of Trade Unions (Kenya). He was elected to the board in 2002 having worked for several years as a member of the Agriculture and Plantation Workers Union. He has consistently presented himself as a vocal advocate for workers rights frequently making his famous animated speeches in events such as Labour Day criticizing politicians on issues such as their refusal to pay taxes on their allowances, and dabbling in corruption. He has also been critical of Non-Governmental bodies interfering with labour disputes, and global institutions including the World Bank and their policies in Kenya.

Since last year Atwoli has been holding meetings all over country (exclusively televised by Citizen TV each time without fail) ostensibly to put pressure on the political class to deliver a new constitution to the people of Kenya. Now it seems that his motives were much deeper than that. He told his latest meeting in Kikuyu (to raise funds for a church) that he will later be going around the country to ask the people for their support for a certain office in the next government. He then told the meeting that he was sure he will be in the next government. There are not many offices you can seek countrywide support for. In fact it is only one, the presidency.

In recent times those close to Atwoli have been insisting that he is going for the presidency. Now a section of the media has recently confirmed this.

Some people think that Atwoli is a big joke and not fit for the office of the presidency. I don’t agree. But what should excite Kenyans is not whether he can win or not, but the new kind of politics he is using to campaign for the office completely devoid of tribalism and tribal pointmen.


Anonymous said...

If Atwoli can aspire to be president, even a monkey can aspire to the same office. He acts delusional.

M. Pesa said...

I think Atwoli is a great guy deep down his heart and he surely does mean well with his aspiration to be the next CEO of this great country. However, Bwana Atwoli should realize that you don't have to to sit and sleep in State house to have influence or serve Kenyans.

One can serve from various positions be it teaching, blogging, etc. But what I find intriguing from Bwana Atwoli is his love of bling bling at such an old age. How can anyone take him serious when he's dripping in jewellery like that rapper called Birdman?

I find this grotesque habit being a tasteless display of wealth especially when is addressing a huge rally comprising of mainly poor and peasant Kenyans most who live under a dollar a day.

About the katiba sabotage, yes I do believe there are faceless power brokers who are scared stiff singing YES during the day but chanting NO at night. I also don't trust Kibaki's sincerity when he says YES but can't even order the arrest of those who mutilated the draft by inserting those two infamous words to completely alter the meaning of the entire draft.

Anonymous said...

Chris, just stop ducking under the darkness and tell us what is on your lips.

You and others want all the credit for the YES campaign to go to Raila Molasses.

The assumption is that that victory will catapult him to state house.

Just imagine how a bunch of morons you guys have become!!

Anonymous said...

The Yes Camp has got many NO pple hiding in their midst, just like the 'Church' they have than no real reason of saying no other fear. They are scared to death just thinking about a new Katiba. However bado tunavote YES....wajipange

Anonymous said...

In addition ....Atwoli has a right to vie for any seat, he is Kenyan, above 18 and its his constitutional right. If the short curl kit fellow can declare his intentions why not Atwoli. We wish him well..

Mwarang'ethe said...

The issue of Kadhi court is becoming a bit "tricky." To full appreciate the matter, a serious study will have to be undertaken.

Having said this, those telling Kenyans that, this case has nothing to do with the Draft constitution are living in denial.

Just sample this statement:

"Counsel also argued that no provision of the Constitution is superior to the other. With respect we do not agree with that submission. For instance the Bill of Rights, which are also referred to as UNIVERSAL, INHERENT and NATURAL RIGHTS, CANNOT be taken away by the State. In addition we also hold that the courts have the jurisdiction to declare conflict or inconsistency in the constitutional provisions, or to declare whether or not the provisions are in conflict with ANY VALUES, PRINCIPLES or PURPOSES of a democratic constitution such as ours."

Translated, the Kenyan courts shall not be bound by whatever is or will be in the NEW Constitution.

They will be guided and bound only by the NATURAL RIGHTs of man, VALUES and PRINCIPLES that are the cornerstone of a democractic society.

The idea that, our laws should be in conformity with NATURAL LAW and NATURAL RIGHTS of man which state or the people cannot take away, is very very welcome development.

This opens the door to challenge any and all laws that are drafted in ignorance of NATURAL RIGHTS. For this development, we saluate the court.

If Kenyan lawyers can be a bit creative, this is a nice opening.

Philip said...

On abortion clause:

I would wish that everybody reads this story in Daily Nation and make their judgements. I will also wish that doctors and socialogists, and not only lawyers, are involved.

On Kadhis court: already a pandoras box has been opened. Muslims are claiming that if it's removed then we need to scrap CRE in schools, we also need to remove Christian chaplains in the armed forces, who are paid by government using our taxes, taxes from both Christian and Muslims. If Christians argue that Muslims can also introduce Muslim clerics in armed forces then Muslims can also argue that Christian can introduce their courts which deals with Christian matters.

Maybe an atheist will also have a reason to say that we need to change our National Anthem because of it's recognition of God! Maybe an Evolution scientist will also have a reason to say that we need to change our National Anthem because it starts with "Oh God of ALL CREATION...". Compromise and tolerance becomes very important in this situation.

That's why I say the reason I can support my fellow Christians on issues of Kadhis court is only when I make a presumption that "Christianity is superior to other religions".

Philip said...

Sorry the link of the story is here:

Anonymous said...


Imagine if the muslims were the majority like in Saudi Arabia etc...

We would all be bound by sharia law and thieves would be losing arms daily while idolators would be getting stoned in Uhuru park every weekend. Thank God christians are more accomodating.

Anonymous said...

Imagine if the muslims were the majority like in Saudi Arabia etc...

We would all be bound by sharia law and thieves would be losing arms daily while idolators would be getting stoned in Uhuru park every weekend.

meanwhile AIDS HIV theft and infidelity would be at an all time low. Morality and ethics would overcome corruption and greed....

think about it!

Maishinski said...

Law was made for man. Not the other way round. Justice is served when the PRINCIPLE behind laws is upheld during application.

1. From a purely technical viewpoint, they Judges are right (like it or not). The ACT of Parliament extending Kadhi courts jurisdiction beyond the 10 mile strip is UNLAWFUL and unconstitutional. It doesnt mean the Kadhi courts are unconstitutional, just their extended jurisdiction.

2. However, the SPIRIT of the law has been flouted by this ruling because here the process of delivering Justice (which is CONTEXT and PRINCIPLE BASED) has been abused.

a. The ruling was kept in limbo for years and there's no credible explanation for the delay.

b. At this point in time, the Parties should have disqualified themselves on basis of their "Religion". Adherents of Traiditional religions, Hindu judges or atheists could have been called in.

c. Judges are perceived to be among the beneficiaries of any derailment of the proposed constitution.

Thus DESPITE being technically "correct", the ruling is repugnant in its timing, context and perceived motives.

Benefits to NO team:
1. Church gets basis for more noise.
2. Ruto & co. can ride the wave. NO is NO. RED is RED. Doesnt matter the reason.

Benefits to YES team:
1. The Muslim vote for YES is now assured. Before they had nothing to lose. Now, they know if NO wins its doesnt necessarily mean "status quo".
2. Yes benefits. YES is YES. GREEN is GREEN. Moe votes.

Judges "verdict" is upuzi mtupu. Kicks of a dying horse. When you want to drain water from a pond, you don't ask frogs for their opinion.

Nothing has changed. Both sides benefit. Zero effect.

Read the katiba. I think it is good for Kenyans. It is certainly FAR MUCH BETTER than the current one.


Maishinski said...

...However the verdict, though repugnant, should still be respected in the interests of upholding the SUPREMACY of LAW.

It should be challenged in the same court system - not in the streets or from the media rooftops.

Even when judges are themselves a problem; and the system is itself flawed, we must make all attempts possible to exhaust the laid down system mechanics before even *thinking* of other options.

Those calling for people to ignore the verdict are reacting prematurely and not thinking "far ahead". There should be no doubt about respect and belief in the RULE OF LAW and the JUSTICE PROCESS.

Thus, in my view, Wako's move to appeal the verdict is the best response so far.

Those are very sound arguments. I wish Kenyans debated the way you debated here.

If the church wants to make the constitutional completely secular, a complete upheaval of the entire document would be needed.

Concept of morality; the meaning of "Right" and "Wrong" would have to be defined first. Many things we take for granted (like Monogamy) originate from religion.

For example, whether stealing from public funds is right or wrong depends on who is debating:

- Is it the victim?
- Is it the spectator (and what are the spectator's interests)?
- OR, Is it the Thief?

All will have their own views on the matter - driven by their motives.

Kenyans, don't wait to be "convinced". Read the document and decide independently!!!!

Katiba Sasa. YES!

commes said...

I have never been in the hands of a Pirate but being Kenyan gives me a remote feeling of what it is like.

I recall Moi’s era. At some point people would whisper and avoid being seen in groups. We were robbed off our freedom, courtesy of the current constitution that has been patched as we go along. Many were detained, maimed and even killed.

We have witnessed billions of our money vanish in schemes like aglo-leasing and Goldenburg. The unmitigated looting continues through loans that the Government is paying without knowing who and what is being paid for.

These Old Pirates wish to continue abusing our rights, molesting us at every corner. They have hijacked the courts as witnessed in the recent past and their elements had a hand at the Government Printers.

These Pirates don’t wish to sink the ship. They almost did in 2007. They wish for a status quo, to capture Kenyans through propaganda, mental slavery and fear.

The new draft constitution will stop them dead in their tracks, and expose their tyranny and ill acquired wealth. They will do all that is in their power to stop us.

We need to stop them before they stop us. Ndio, Katiba sasa!

Philip said...


I also agree with you. You have told the truth as it is.

Philip said...

On a side note, I've read Nation Newspaper, Safaricom has made Kshs 20 billion profit.

Someone gave this comment that I liked so much:

"I have nothing to celebrate. when kenyans wanted to buy all the shares from safaricom so that they can share these profits, they were told that its not possible and a huge chunk was given to so called foreign invstors who never consume safaricom products and hence zero contribute to the profits. We kenyans who have build the profits with our hard earned cash will have to share with the others relaxing on the beaches of the Northern Hemisphere, Its not fair"

deroo said...

Atwoli??? We have moved away from heckler presidents, illiterates and academic dwarfism. Atwoli fits in that group and should not and never get close to power. He leads an organisation that carries with it stone throwers, hecklers and idler associates. He has never done anything for the Kenyan worker, Kenyan workers dig roads without protective clothing and should I say more...his own tribe, COOKS and WATCHMEN earn a pittance in Westlands and Parklands.

On the current rumpus about the constitution, tell me who led to the miscarriage of the attempts in 1966 and 2005.

Kazi iendelee...

deroo said...

Just before I go, who was asking people to boycott Safaricom in 2008 during the tribally-inspired bloodbath with its epicentre in Rift Valley? I have forgotten. Can someone remind me please?

Maishinski said...

@Philip, that same person complaining about Safaricom probably did not buy when the REAL IPO kicked in at KSH 2.80 (Feb 09).

Sometimes the difference between success and failure is "attitude". In sports, a loser will always blame the referee, the soccer, the weather, the uniform etc. Forgetting that the winners faced the exact same challenges - just that they chose to see them as "Opportunities".


Anonymous said...

@Deroo, sasa ukabila ya nini? Can we keep it civil?

Travel kidogo and you will see there's no link between profession and ethnicity/origin. Cooks, Watchmen, Construction Workers etc have important duties that contribute to the Economy (e.g. Security and Tourism). Many earn significantly higher salaries than you and I.

Dismissing such workers is a quick way to expose your own ignorance.

Secondly, using Tribe to advance an "ad-hominem argument" makes you look primitive and narrow minded.

Finally, the world is more closely connected than you think (really!). The world recognizes only Nations. Tribal bickering is primitive in this day and age. Primitive people are weak and easy to exploit.

By pushing a tribal agenda, you invite foreign "hyenas in sheepskins", who will not hesitate to milk the entire Nation (irrspective of tribe) until it is comletely barren.

Ever wondered why Africa is poor?

Our diversity should be a source of PRIDE and UNITY. We just need to change wour attitude!

Times are changing. If you chose to remain behind... shauri yako. Just don't blame anyone for "shida" and "bei ya unga".


Anonymous said...

For 20 years we have fought for a new constitution that would wipe out tyranny. At last it is here and what is it? A poorly drafted document! I cannot in all honesty vote for something so mediocre as this document. There are just too many things wrong with it.

Anonymous said...

You are typical Kenyan stuck in gear 1. Why come here to spew all the village tribal stereotypes ati cook and watchmen? You gloating of kazi indelee leaves you looking so primitive. I wonder how old you are NUMSKULL.

Anonymous said...

Nile River Treaty.

just saw this which is very good.

Egyptians thought RAO would bulge.

ut in Nairobi, Foreign Affairs minister Moses Wetang’ula denied that the North African country was attempting to entice Kenya and other upstream states to drop the CFA treaty and return to the 1929 and 1959 agreements.

Mr Wetang’ula reiterated calls to Egypt and Sudan to come on board and sign the CFA.

He echoed Mr Odinga’s remarks when he met Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak in Cairo on Sunday that Kenya would not compromise the security of countries that use the Nile.

A Kenyan expert said Egypt should be made to pay for the water it has been drawing from the Nile.

Dr Philip Raburu, a university lecturer and hydro-biologist said that Egypt’s offer to help in the conservation of Kenya’s water towers was a right, not a favour"

Anonymous said...

Has anyone noticed that those who are clamouring for the NO vote are against other people enjoying their fundamental rights and liberties??

Where were the likes of Ruto, Jirongo, Bishop Sulumeti and company when civil rights activist were detained and maimed by the Moi government. Where were they when bishop Timothy Njoya was being clobbered infront of Basilicca?

For God's sake being against the Kadhi courts will deny Muslims their right to marriage, inheritence and succession.

Why does Ruto and company give the impression that only Kalenjins in Rift Valley own land in Kenya?

Bill Gates is a multi-billionaire but how much land does he own?

We are moving into the 21st century and we need to seriously rethink about our conservative mindsets and think universally.

Anonymous said...

@ Anon 5/26/10 4:51 AM

meanwhile AIDS HIV theft and infidelity would be at an all time low. Morality and ethics would overcome corruption and greed....
That's why morality and ethics is the guiding principle in Sudan where the muslim north believe its perfectly moral to impoverish kill and marginalise the non -muslim south and thats its ethical to rape and kill fellow muslims in Darfur just because they are a shade darker.....

Corruption and greed as been wiped out in northern sudan and Saudi arabia where sharia is practised Right?
What hypocrisy!!!

Anonymous said...

Deroo you are a SCAMBUG. So what if Atwoli comes from the luhyia community. That is no reason to go with the stereotype of COOKS and WATCHMEN. You wax lyrical here as if you are the next political scientist godsend to Kenya yet betray so much ignorance in so doing. If we are to go tribal then every tribe will have it's fair share of stereotyping but what justice will we be doing to Kenya in so doing?

Anonymous said...

You are a disgrace to Kenya's Diaspora. You always don that fake aura of authenticity that is shamefully betrayed by your shallowness.

So in you exported bigotry Luhyas are cooks and watchmen. So what? And don't come screaming that you are only repeating what Kamotho said.

At least it appears Atwoli will temporarily replace Raila, your hitherto singular object of snide/hate. Your misplaced tears for Kibaki won't entice to the poweres that be nor reward you with anything.

You are an empty shell gloating online peddling stereotypes. Typical AIRHEAD.

Anonymous said...

Chris wewe ni mkora sana with your MANNERLESS accusations

ati KM has spanners he throws at trains while changing money in his handst night? WAPI

and why picture Francis on phone ATI flossing and on CTV?THE PHONE party my foot, show some respect YES?

Taabu said...

You better watch what you post lest .......

BTW do you know who is the CEO of Atwoli secretariat/hqs? None other than Luka, you have been warned.

deroo said...

Sorry, it is late. I did not say it. Joseph Kamotho, former Kanu Secretary and Minister or EDUCATION said it. The anon above has just said it right. It is a PARODY that I should not have used.

Okay, his own tribesmen from Kenya earn a pittance in Westlands and Parklands, if that makes their lowly wages increase. Thanx for correcting me.


Anonymous said...

And is COTU made up of "his own tribesmen" only'? Come on bwana. He is supposed to work for all kenyan workers. Not only his tribesmen are suffering. And some of his tribesmen are doing very well, just like all other tribes have well to do people and others not foing very well.

This ukabila stupidity it seems will never end. It's not rocket science really, look at all the politicians we have and we have had, then tell me if their "tribesmen" are as rich as they are. They only run to them to ask for votes or when they want some dirty work done. Let us wake up and stop this stupidity.

By the way Atwoli is better than most politicians we have in office, some car thiefs or thugs or drug dealers or anglo leasers and goldenbergers cannot really be better than him. All clowns. It would have been funny if Kenyans lives and livelihoods are not being destroyed by the day while some idiots keep singing "own tribesmen" and all the BS that comes with it.

PS: Im NOT the same anonymous as above.

Philip said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Anonymous said...

Atwoli's mother Union represents farmers and plantation workers. Exposed to dangers, weather and exploitation. The Naivasha flowerbelt, Kericho tea belt, the Nyanza Sugar belt and the widely spread coffee pickers. Are they any better than the COOKS and WATCHMEN?

Philip said...


Welcome once again however I need to tell you that you are using the wrong language which was long time discarded in Kumekucha.

Yes, there are still abuses but this has turned to abuse towards individuals like Raila, Kalonzo e.t.c. You have come here with the old disdain towards particular tribes and I see your writings to be so odd, a writing that for a long period I haven't seen in Kumekucha.

People are now looking at constitution which has made Kibaki and Raila to join hands, or if you don't understand then let me tell you in your own language, "where a LUO and a KIKUYU have joined hands".

The fight has turned to be a Kalonzo vs Raila, Raila vs Ruto, Muslims and some Christians on one side vs Fundamental christians on the other side, the rich vs the poor e.t.c You will notice that I haven't mention about Luos vs Kikuyus, Kalenjins vs Luos e.t.c since it's non-existence in this constitution that's why no leaflets has been distributed anywhere to threaten any tribe.

So welcome once again but know that indecent people in Kumekucha have also graduated to start abusing individuals and not tribe.

Anonymous said...


You have no authority and imagined nuances to offer me anything like a lecture. None. NADA! Stop your chest-thumping and conform to your own IDOLATRY stances. I have not used any of the tribal connotations you are trying to pass and authentic. You are simply exposing your perceived (NON)intelligence to offer me gibberish advice. Keep them man.I dont need them. FOXTROT OSCAR.


Anonymous said...


Can the lecturer, professor or whatever in you mention a word against a TRIBE that I used? Please let me know and I will email Xris to delete it now. Tribe, which one against which? You SMUCK! You, in your typical tribal HERDING tendency join in a bashing without any grounds and reason. Where are the tribal pings that I post?


Anonymous said...

Matter of Security - In Vernacular.

Security of THE NATION is going to be discussed in Vernacular. What is wrong with this picture? People have been discussing that there is an Invisible hand that wants to derail the new constitution. In CRIME we talk about MOTIVE AND OPPORTUNITY - Check out this paragraph from THE STANDARD.

"The meeting was first scheduled for Tuesday at the Office of the PRESIDENT, but according to the sources it was pushed to today to allow the SECURITY CHIEFS "to gauge the mood of the country".

"You know what it means to touch on the Kadhi courts in this country and especially at this time of constitution-making. It is a SECURITY ISSUE," said a senior Government official.

Among those expected at today’s MEETING are Internal Security PS Francis KIMEMIA, Commissioner of Police Mathew ITEERE, Director of National Security Intelligence Service Maj-Gen Michael GICHANGI and Vice-Chief of General Staff Gen Julius KARANGI.

SAITOTI, who is the Internal Security Minister, is also expected. The officials are EXPECTED TO REVIEW THE SECURITY SITUATION and brief the President" - THE STANDARD – might they also by any chance discuss the inserted words in the constitution?
“Your guess is as good as mine” - those are not my words but the AGs responding to who mutilated the Katiba at the printers.

Justices Nyamu, Wendoh and Emukule can rest assured that they will not have a place in the bench after Katiba is passed, in the meantime watch and marvel at who are out fighting in defence of their indefensible defence - like the unconstitutional constitution verdict they passed , it’s the epitome of absurdity.

You will continue to see very funny things happening that will confuse the nation even further and to make it even more hilarious will be flimsy explanation why the funny things are happening, without any consequences. The ghosts will continue to cause havoc without paying the prize – IMPUNITY ANYONE? Somebody should write a serious piece about this new fault line that is being developed - its EXPLOSIVE and will be EXPLOITED with deadly consequences to maintain the STATUS QUO to the detriment of the whole NATION.

With hindsight and past experience, - Kenya should be for everybody and matters touching on National Security should be discussed with the whole nation in mind, the decisions reached should be representative of all regions and not hinged on perpetuation of regional legacies.
The fact is mathematically, culturally, religiously or agnostically a wrong can never and will never be equal to a right no matter how you turn, spin or twist it. We need to start seeing serious “repentance and atonement” borrowing from the GOOD BOOK of the NO REGIME - before we can believe rhetoric about change and conversion to a new dispensation.

History tells us that playing politics with religion thinking you can control it is like using grenades for tennis balls, it will explode IN YOUR FACE.

– Now you SEE IT, now you don’t.

Anonymous said...

haya haya.. Dero aliteleza. he is our brother. Kuteleza sio kuanguka. Let us give him guidance and love so that he can cross over to the Modern Kenya.

Dero, I too was offended by your comment but I forgive you! I have also made similar mistakes of careless/thoughtless words and I hope other Kenyans can forgive me.

It is a new dawn. Kenya will be united once again - and thanks to the KATIBA, this time our unity will be far much deeper than in 2002.

Wakenya wenzangu, it doesn't matter if you vote YES or NO, you are still my brothers & sisters. I urge you to vote YES - but if you decide to vote no, I will respect your decision because it is your choice and your RIGHT.

One Kenya. One Love.

Soma katiba. Amua mwenyewe.

Anonymous said...

Deroo said,

......You are simply exposing your perceived (NON)intelligence to offer me gibberish advice. Keep them man.I dont need them. FOXTROT OSCAR.

Quicy Timberlake anyone?

Heal Kenya said...

We love you deroo.. Cross over to 21st century and we shall welcome you with joy and hugs.

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