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Saturday, May 22, 2010

Kumekucha weekend special: The book everybody is talking about

If you love surprises, you will love this weekend. My weekend book special today and tomorrow features sections from the book everybody is talking about; Dark secrets of the Kenyan presidency.

In this post I start with the book jacket, dedication page and introduction. Later today I will post more mouth-watering sections of this book many have told me is ground-breaking. ENJOY!!!!

Book Jacket

Dark secrets of the Kenyan presidency explores the office
the presidency through some rarely-told (and some
never-before-told) incidences surrounding this bigger than
life office created by Jomo Kenyatta and the founders of the
Kenyan nation. “This thing” they created grew and became
an enormous un-tameable beast that has caused untold distress,
suffering and death to Kenyans.

Kumekucha’s account is mostly angry and dissects this
subject ruthlessly without fear or favour. The tone is very much
that one of his blog which has received worldwide attention
sometimes in praise and at other times in condemnation but is
certainly a blog that cannot be ignored. The result here is a
thought-provoking account that will forever change your
views about this all powerful office which has the kind of
powers under the constitution Kenyans have lived with for
decades that would be the envy of any god.

The Kumekucha blog was launched in May 2005 by a blogger
who only reveals his first name, Chris. The site continues to
shape political opinion for many Kenyans locally and spread
all over the world. This is the first in a series of books that
will be published from information researched and written
by the blogger known to his adoring readers and sharp critics
alike as Chris Kumekucha.

Book Dedication

To all my very dear readers of Kumekucha especially the very early ones who left comments and helped me continue on the journey to discover that I could actually write politics in my own unique way. Folks like Taabu, Phil, Vee, Luke, Vicky, Kenya one and all the others whose names I cannot remember. But also am indebted to those who came later like Beth, Mugo (M.G.), Mrembo wa ODM, Wanjiku Unlimited, tnk, Sam Okello, Mwarangethe etc.

Special mention to JG my biggest fan and supporter.

This book is to you and all Kumekucha readers. Read it proudly knowing that without you it would never have happened.


Introduction.........................................................................Pg 7

Chapter one: The old man who stopped drinking..........Pg 11

Chapter two: The early bloody years..............................Pg 23

Chapter three: Suffering Moi..... ......................................Pg 43

Chapter four: Without a president for 12 hours....................................................................................Pg 62

Chapter five: A brand new Moi is born..........................Pg 70

Chapter six: Professor Kimya..........................................Pg 82

Chapter seven: Proud Makerere Don.............................Pg 89

Chapter eight: Who is Mwai Kibaki?...............................Pg 108

Chapter nine: Raising cash for a presidential
campaign.............................................................................Pg 126

No Conclusion..................................................................Pg 154

I cannot quite remember how old I was when it happened (but I was not yet 7).
And yet the memory is still so vivid on my mind. Very telling because I have forgotten so many other things from my childhood but this little incident.

My dad had come from work at the end of a long hard day and was changing from his imposing police uniform to casual wear so that he could go our for his usual drink. I questioned him persistently over something that had been disturbing me for a number of days.

I wanted to know how many steps he was in the hierarchy away from the presidency. He tried to explain that the president was not a policeman (he was an assistant commissioner of police then) but I insisted that he give me a number which he finally did. Many years later I learnt that the number took into account the parliamentarians and the policemen above him in rank but was given more out of desperation so that I give him peace. It was the kind of answer that you give a child when the question they ask is too complex for their young immature minds to grasp.

Still the point is, like many Kenyans, even at 7 years old I was awe-struck by the Kenyan presidency. I had watched many times on TV as the president arrived for various functions. Complete with a motorcade with numerous motorcycles and vehicles. I watched as the military parade stood to attention and the smart respectful salutes. Even as a naive youngster it blew my mind away. There and then I decided that I wanted my dad to be president of Kenya and then I would take over as president myself from him when I grew up.

Although the presidency was has always been an elective office at the beginning, many African presidents modelled it after royalty in a kingdom and did everything to surround the office with mystique and grandeur. As well as spilling plenty of blood to ensure that they remained in office until death snatched them away. They succeeded big time and quickly became life presidents and gods who straddled the entire way of life of their countries. To this day too many Kenyans still look at the office of the president with awe and will be quick to remind you that not anybody can be president. If the second coming were to happen today it would be found that most Kenyans fear the presidency more than they fear their creator God almighty. Very sad but true. As a result numerous things remain hidden about the presidency past and present.

In writing this book I hope to begin a journey of discovery for Kenyans. More so in discovering how we have suffered and been held in bondage by some mystique created for mostly selfish reasons.

I have been to State House Nairobi. Once.

It is such an anticlimax this revered house on the hill. The sacrifices, the murders, the killings and all the crazy things Kenyans have done in the name of wanting to live at this address (or remain there definitely); you would have thought that it would be a much grander place than what you end up seeing. Alas the red carpet is clean and well maintained but it is rather old. In fact the whole place looks like it needs an interior designer badly.

In the 46 years that Kenya has been independent only three men have called this place their official residence and held the office of President of the republic of Kenya. Johnstone Kamau (aka Jomo Kenyatta) for 15 years, Daniel Toroitich arap Moi for 24 years and the rest of the years to date, Emilio Stanley Mwai Kibaki. Interestingly whatever happens Kibaki will be the man who has occupied that office for the shortest time and yet history will record that his presidency has caused the most damage. His supporters will be quick to argue that Kibaki was only a victim in that he bore the brunt of all the cumulative evils of the presidency before him that boiled over during his watch. Others including this writer will think otherwise.

But even more fascinating is the fact that these three men have all been very ordinary simple good men who were transformed into something very different shortly after taking office. Kenyatta was a humble teetotaller after publicly promising church elders in the 1920s that he would never touch alcohol again in his life. 30 years later there was evidence that Kenyatta not only kept his vow to the church but detested alcohol and strongly believed that the drinking of beer was hindering the coming of Uhuru. Moi grew up walking extremely long distances to school and developed into a strong patient and tolerant man who could forgive almost anything. Emilio Stanley Mwai Kibaki was a staunch Catholic and brilliant economist who attracted the attention of the young Kanu party because of his educational background at a time when it was very rare for an African to have a high school education let alone be a university lecturer. This prompted Tom Mboya to drive from Nairobi all the way to Makerere University in Kampala, Uganda in an air cooled VW beetle to persuade Kibaki that his country needed him more than Makerere University did. Mboya is said to have come back with Kibaki in the VW. Always the reluctant politician and determined to retain his dignity and stick to his principals, Kibaki became a very different person when he entered State House. Kenyans got a glimpse of his other side when the post election crisis of December 2007 and January 2008 unfolded. A friend of mine was so shocked that he just kept on muttering under his breath… This is not Kibaki, this is not Kibaki, over and over again.

In this book we shall try to understand these three men intimately and the magical transformations they underwent better. Because in understanding this we will understand our beloved country and the institution of the presidency completely. Trust me on that and hold me to account for it when we finish our journey right at the end of this book. We shall dig into the true characters of these men and reveal many never-told-before secrets in their lives.
This book is deliberately written to be a quick entertaining read. It is my hope that this will provoke huge readership amongst Kenyans and get all of us thinking very deeply, more so as we prepare to usher in a new constitution which despite our best efforts still has a powerful presidency. It is my sincere prayer that later somebody will be inspired by my work to do a much more detailed thesis.

Go to Part 2

Dark secrets of the Kenyan presidency currently retails at Kshs 1,350. Email me right NOW to get instant payment instructions.

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Part 1

Part 2

Part 3

Part 4


M. Pesa said...

I have some very beautiful and memorable photos of myself taken outside The White House in Washington DC, at the gates of No. 10 Downing St and even right next to the famous Buckingham palace where queen Elizabeth occasionally pops out of the window to wave at the people out there. I shudder to think what would happen to me if I tried to have a snap taken outside the gates of State House Nairobi where there are menacing warnings all over prohibiting the over taxed wananchi against any sort of photography anywhere near the big house on the hill. You can imagine those trigger happy GSU manning the gates emptying their machine guns on you if not worse... And what for? I think it's about time that state house was demystified. Let's have it opened up to young school kids on bus tours who should be encouraged aim higher and live them despite their backgrounds. It happens in many other greater nations, so why not in Kenya?

Chris said...

I couldn't agree with you more M.Pesa.

Maybe the first step is for Kenyans to ask former occupants of the office to take responsibility for some of the crimes they committed against the Kenyan people. Some of these ex-presidents are still running around the countryside cheating Kenyans about the contents of the draft constitution.

As it is too many Kenyans still think that only supernatural beings can live in State house.


Taabu said...

Ati you wanted your dad to be prezzo so that you could INHERIT/succeed him? LOL.

You meant at that tender age of about 80 months old you had figured that dynasty thing! Man you were a genius. But don't give up, you can stil be what you want/dream to be.

As they say fortune only befalls prepared minds, are you? Ama wewe ni faint heart.

Kumekucha said...


Thank you for speaking a good Taboo over my life Mr Taboo. It helps.


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