Weekly Newsletter - Issue No 157
16 September - 22 September, 2017


Constitution and laws were made for Kenyans not the other way round

Lately it seems as though we are operating on auto-pilot. And the last few days have been something akin to the Biblical Armageddon. There appears to be no form of accountable leadership. Everyone is doing whatever they think is right in their eyes. Unfortunately the poor masses bear the brunt.

The government under Jubilee has allowed the riot police to have a field day with the National Super Alliance (NASA) protestors. No rules are applied. Demos are quelled by excessive teargas and bullets; it doesn’t matter if we are chocking the lungs of little ones in kindergarten or leaving them with bullet wounds or dropping their fathers’ dead, it’s all about show of force.

NASA demonstrators on the other hand went on a looting spree forcing many businesses to remain shut for fear of vandalism. Like the Jubilee government’s unwillingness to control the riot police, NASA appears unwilling to control their demonstrators. However, the math here is complicated by the infamous Nairobi Business Community which NASA now claims are the ones making their demos chaotic.

If you thought the police threw caution to the wind then you probably didn’t hear about the president’s Chief of Staff and Head of Public Service Joseph Kinyua’s memo to all Principal Secretaries (PSs). He asked each PS to provide a vehicle (preferably an SUV) for the ongoing Jubilee campaigns. This is a high ranking government official ordering others to break the law with impunity.

Everyone is saying follow the rule of law; only no one is interested. To that end business man Jimmy Wanjigi found himself in hot soup after the government laid siege in his home over tramped up charges in complete violation of a court order. The Inspector General of Police and Minister of Interior who were both served by the court order did not care about being in contempt of court.

And while we are still on the Interior minister, he’s reported on the local papers as having asked a militia group in Kisii (Chinkororo) to deal with anyone who tries to interfere with elections scheduled for 26thOctober and that he will ask the police to, “Look the other way!”

It’s unbelievable the stuff leaders in the country are saying. Worse still, even independent bodies that could have helped restore confidence are themselves thrown their oath of office off the window and serving interests of their political masters going by the drama unfolding at the Independent Electoral Boundaries Commission (IEBC).

News of the Week

Chebukati attains his irreducible minimums

In a dramatic presser following senior Commissioner Akombe’s resignation, IEBC Chairman, Wafula Chebukati expressed political interference in the commission claiming he could not guarantee a credible election unless certain conditions were met including meeting the two protagonists. Both NASA’s Raila Odinga and Jubilee’s President Uhuru met the Chairman. Ezra Chiloba the CEO also took a three week leave in what is seen as bowing to the chairman’s demands. In a dramatic twist though, the electoral agency appointed Ms. Consolata Maina deputy national returning officer, a decision NASA has challenged saying such a position does not exist.

IEBC adopts new regulation to avoid another court battle

The Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission (IEBC) has created a new regulation that could see them leave no stone unturned. To prevent being dragged to the court again over any irregularity or illegality, the commission is likely to announce results one week after voting day to give the chairman who is the national returning officer for the presidential polls manually scrutinize all the forms 34As and 34BS before making form 34C and finally announcing winner.

Dramatic withdrawal of case in Court of Appeal gives Jubilee breathing room

The Jubilee party was holding their breath after one, Abraham Kiplagat appealed the decision to have more presidential candidates in this week’s repeat elections. In dramatic court proceeding Mr. Kiplagat changed his lawyer Nelson Havi and instead hired two other lawyers with instructions to withdraw the case. Lawyer Havi has alleged his client was paid Sh. 7million by Jubilee to ensure elections take place as was planned. The case was challenging the admission of Thirdway Alliance into the contest. Also, the case had the potential of changing the game because it would have given weight to withdrawal from polls by NASA’s Raila Odinga.


Quote of the Week

“As the two of us cannot form a quorum, this matter cannot be heard this morning,”

Quote by Chief Justice David Maraga on October 25th, 2017. He was explaining why the Supreme Court couldn't hear case on delay of October 26th polls. 

Read the Hansard

Lest we forget

"When you are put in a position of leadership in this country, you are required to weigh what you say in public. What you say goes a long way in either reconciling the public or polarizing them."

Sentiments by Hon. John Mbadi during the motion to adjourn the House sine die in March 2, 2011.

Read the Hansard

Newsmaker this Week

National Cohesion and Integration Commission (NCIC) Chairman, Francis Ole Kaparo made headlines after opposition represented by ODM Chairman, John Mbadi asked that he quit his position as the commission has been unable to unite the country. NCIC chair called for a presser asking IEBC to hold credible elections to guarantee peace in Kenya.

Mr. Kaparo besides mentioning the current political tension resembled that of the 2007/2008 period also took issue with the demonstrators, asking them to respect their obligation under the constitution to picket without violence. Other than saying the commission had done little to unite the country, ODM lawmakers too issue with his statement on the demonstrators, saying he was partisan as he did not condemn the deaths resulting from excessive use of force by the police.

Kenyans are heading to the scheduled repeat polls on 26th October more divided than ever. In unprecedented move majority opposition zones have vowed not to vote.


Copyright © 2017 All rights reserved.

Mzalendo Trust, Heinrich Boll Foundation,
Prof. Wangari Mathai Road.
P. O. Box 21765 00505 Nairobi, Kenya

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