Friday, 29 March 2013

The grim reality of what we did on March 4th, 2013

They were not even sworn in before they actively attacked the salaries and remunerations board. MPigs, as they are aptly known on social media are never going to be anything but the same variety of abject, pillaging swine as their nickname implies.

It is of course very understandable that a successful political aspirant would wish to recoup his financial investment in terms of campaigning costs, it is very understandable. However, It is only in Kenya and indeed it may even be an African phenomenon that one goes into government in order to get rich. Everywhere else in the world, if one really desires to enrich oneself they go into the private sector.

Why must I be forced to equivocate this; it is just absurd for us as Kenyans to complain about how MPs are planning to attack the SRC and even invent laws in order to increase their salaries when WE voted using the exact same method of selection as in the last election!

I mean how dumb are we? How is it that we use our tribe and personal interests when voting rather than a truly democratic and inclusive national ideology and then turn around SHOCKED when the hyenas we voted for bray for higher remunerations? “Insanity is doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results”. This is a quote ascribed to Albert Einstein.

How pervasive is our self abuse when it comes to leadership? Well. Look at our constitution. I admit that the average Kenyan may not be educated enough to comprehensively understand the law as presented in the constitution. BUT, no one has stopped you as a citizen from educating yourself on this document. So the collective LAZINESS and lack of cognitive aspiration (a level of plain stupidity)  is what encumbers us as a republic.

How serious is this situation? Well. This past week we were privileged to observe on television the submissions by petitioners and their respondents. Kenyans are so unlearned such that they cheer the lawyer for their preferred party as though it is some sort of football match. We apply no thought, no criticism and no critical thinking to what these lawyers are doing at the Supreme Court. Just like the intellectual juveniles we really are, we applaud people whose legal grasp is kindergarten level just because they consistently use redundancies like “my lord” and “your honor”. 

And then there is the panel of judges of the court. A personal friend and true astute jurist put it best:
"The problem is that many Kenyans cannot discern between "authoritative" and "authoritarian". So, when a body like the Supreme Court TRIES not to appear authoritarian like a bad overbearing primary school principal (although that style, plus a frequent application of 20 of the best, is what virtually all those monkeys masking as "senior counsels" do seriously need), they fall into the other extreme, and lose all judicial authority and direction.
If you have watched the bench, they continuously behave like a gaggle of insecure 13-years-old schoolgirls. Body language, helpless smiles, mindless giggling. And with approximately the same degree of legal knowledge." Alexander Eichener, jurist, Germany.

How deeply rooted our complex problem is then. That we, as the astute electorate are so decidedly ignorant, and yes that WAS a decision we made, such that we cannot tell when an injustice is about to be delivered.

What is indeed our collective dilemma? That fundamentally, our constitution is so weakly ascribing to justice. Take this reality into consideration. That any presidential petition at the Supreme Court is essentially NEVER going to receive even the remotest sort of judicial response it deserves. The most obvious example I can give is this: the time frame given for presidential petitions to be presented and heard. (oh! The saddest part is the indulgence in megalomania that Willy Mutunga did, as he decided arbitrarily and unconstitutionally that petitions presented to the Supreme Court regardless of the time they were presented are deemed as to have been presented on the LAST day thus happily reducing the time for deliberations; yes Sir, you may be the CZAR of Kenya but when you change the constitution as such you have COMPLETELY overstepped your mandate, SIR!) So, the time frame has been constituted as to be so short such that even comprehensive or rather wide affidavits as the CORD lawyers presented were thrown out on the basis that there is NO time to examine those affidavits. Is this justice?  Of course not!

I pity us. How much trust and hope we laid at the feet of these intellectual 13-year-olds. That even Supreme Court Justice Mohammed Ibrahim went as far as to essentially admit in an obiter dictum, that because of the time contraints imposed by the law, there is a near impossibility of any actual juridical response as regards any presidential petition.
We have no REAL jurists in this country, mostly because of a general lack of true fundamental education, but also because we do not extend ourselves as a nation and because we ever so readily accept utter mediocrity. The one (1) internationally acclaimed and widely respected constitutional jurist and scholar that Kenya has, and who offered his help, was purposely excluded by the court, and not even listened to at all: ignoring professor Yash Pal Ghai has underscored our failures.
My final words are these: that regardless of the eventual outcome of the Supreme Court decision, true justice was certainly not served here.

Friday, 22 March 2013

# Someone tell NCIC that Kenyans on Twitter (KOT) are ready to battle but not ready to kill

Dear Mzalendo Kibunjia, it’s called blowing off steam. The fact that a person can go online and just post what’s on their mind does not necessarily mean that they intend to act upon their thoughts. Of all the so called tribal and hate speech that NCIC is overly concerning themselves with online, not a single person has even been injured ever since the first Kenyan got online.

Let’s call a spade a spade. It’s just plain cowardice to go after minnows when the sharks are busy propagating and inciting folk in public and in broad daylight. Are you telling us that NCIC is oblivious to the fact that long after elections were done certain parties were intent on rabble rousing in this great country of ours? Wow. Deaf, dumb (with emphasis) and gleefully blind.

Perhaps the problem is rooted in the fact that Mzalendo Kibunjia and his team do not understand comprehensively or even superficially the legal ramifications, thresholds and parameters of hate speech. 100% of their accusations and charges are dismissed in court! While NCIC inconveniences the little people and embarrasses those they can, the real hate mongers, the real criminals’ blast propaganda and mobilize thugs so as to disrupt the fragile peace we have.

Just like the complicit Office of the Prosecutor (OTP) at the International Criminal Court usurped justice for the victims of PEV with a total lack of investigation, the NCIC usurp justice by refusing to even define what hate speech really is. NCIC refuse to even lightly caution politicians, they refuse to even politely tell them to shut up. Instead, they choose to make a mockery of constitutional rights by infringing on the freedom of expression on social media.

Yes, complicit. If there would be a wave of propaganda that leads to any single death then NCIC is guilty of that death as if they actually slashed that person with a machete. When you are in a position of influence even if not real power and you do not use that little influence to stem the tide of negativity that threatens to tear our society apart you are as guilty of every single death that occurs just as if you were a mastermind of the conflict.

Is NCIC really an outfit that was created to be a facebook prefect or monitor twitter? How ludicrous! In a 24 hour period from Thursday 21st march to Friday 22nd March, Kenyans on Twitter generated over 15,000 tweets in a hash tag battle with Nigerians, an international social media war that became international news because of how widespread the battle reached. So tell us, Mzalendo, does NCIC have the resources to monitor over 15,000 tweets and counter tweets covering the entire continent of Africa and reaching as far as Asia in just 24 hours? No, of course not. 

Maybe NCIC needed to find a way to justify what appears to be a social media addiction. I hear that an addiction to social media generates the same neurological responses as a cocaine addiction. Poor NCIC, they may need rehab it seems.

Let’s face the facts. There are, individuals who are very mentally ill, who post stuff online that indicate that they will eventually become violent. But to find entire communities of strangers, some of whom go by names like “Mkenyalito”, who are capable of not just talking trash about other ethnicities but to go so far as to act out their violent words is nearly impossible. Yes, some of it is indeed hate speech, but I doubt you can do anything with an anonymous profile user. It’s an effort in futility; I suppose NCIC want to justify their undeserved salaries. In my view they should actually pay Kenyans back whatever they have earned so far, with interest seeing as the sum total of their results is nil.

Freedom of expression may take an ugly turn, but it is a freedom which, on social media, cannot be curbed. You cannot stop people from expressing what’s on their mind even if you do not agree with it. It could be, that the so called “Arab spring” that was fanned by social media is what is really worrying the NCIC. They are worried, that if Kenyans keep expressing themselves online, they might, just might find that commonality, that one burden that they all share. NCIC must be petrified that Kenyans on Twitter will one day unite to fight voraciously not just the Nigerians, but the very politicians that NCIC protects by refusing to prosecute.

Oh my. What a glorious battle that will be; why I do believe that the day that unification of Kenyans occurs online, both facebook and twitter servers will be overwhelmed with the hash tag battle posts. “# someone tell Kenyan Politicians” will be the mother of all wars and I assure you that not a single one of these politicians that Mzalendo protects with his complicit silence will survive. Not a single one. That day is coming NCIC, and there is nothing you can do to stop it from happening. Nothing.


Friday, 15 March 2013

Not Democracy but Kenyan Wallets on Trial

We should just delete the word democracy from the Kenyan narrative. Kenyans have no way of truly expressing and experiencing democratic values or space unless it is within the confines of their ethnicity. To a Kenyan, democracy is the ability to vote, and vote for your ethnic kingpin, as 93% of the voters demonstrated on March 4th.

Well, yes, to a certain extent, it is indeed democratic to have the right to vote and exercise it, even the right to vote ethnically. However, true democracy should be rooted in values that carry weight for ALL citizens, and not values of exclusivity. It is this “winner takes all” mentality that has the country more socially fragmented than ever before. 50.07% of the votes cast went to the now president-elect. That makes only half of the country satisfied with their choice of president, leaving the other half entirely displeased with the outcome of the elections because this was not their choice. 

Kenyans are funny, we vote for a president and then when our preferred candidate wins, we act like we won, and when he loses we act like we lost. In an election, the voter doesn’t win or lose anything! Take these elections for example. We now have proudly and gallantly participated in creating the most expensive, bloated government we have ever had, one that will be expensive to run and expensive to maintain, and yet we are STILL a third world country. Yet somehow, people are celebrating a candidate’s win? It’s ridiculous.

What Kenyans need to do is to hunker down and get ready to work 5 times as hard for a third of their current wages, and receive next to no social amenities. After all, the purpose of the county governments is to make services more readily available to the people. But if the actions of the transitional government are anything to go by, then we can expect the very worst out of the incoming government. For starters, no one made the transitional authority god, such that they can decide to waste tax payers’ money in looking for lavish offices for the governors. It was a terrible start, and a clear sign that the backward mentality of according to public servants excesses at the expense of the citizen is truly entrenched and will always be a part of the system of government no matter how “decentralized” the government claims to be.

That “big man” syndrome is really at the heart of the problem in Kenya. It’s the African on African version of the collaborating Negro subservience to colonial masters. The “bwana Mkubwa” is always someone you voted for, who you believe can help you get out of your poverty, and so you worship him. It never occurs to the Kenyan that voting for Uhuru Kenyatta or Raila Odinga or any of the other presidential candidates was meant to be a hiring process for servants, not lords. 

Here is the greatest irony of these past elections. We spent 7 hours in the sun in order to vote in some of the richest people in our country so that we can then struggle under a great tax burden in order to pay them a hefty salary. Where in this process is our poverty deviated?

True democracy does not result in rich people getting richer off the backs of poor people; that is called SLAVERY. Yes. Slaves. Each one of us, slaves to the indignity and harm of ethnic politics and “winner takes all” mentality and worst of all, slaves to a process of endorsement that masquerades as an election.

Actually, perhaps we are worse off than mere slaves. After all, we worship our “masters”, rather than harbor a latent resentment and desire for freedom. Our slave worship is so bad we even have a defunct commission like the National Cohesion and Integration Commission to stand as a sort of speech prefect to track down hate mongers. Incidentally, not only is the NCIC completely incompetent as far as being able to even understand what hate speech is, they are also completely blind, choosing to threaten idle unemployed Kenyan youth on social media rather than institute charges against the true propagandists and peddlers of hate speech. Mzalendo Kibujia’s abject lack of sense results in prominent politicians clearly inciting their supporters to violence. 

Our democracy is not on trial, we don’t practice democracy anyway. It is our wallets that are on trial. We choose to enrich already rich, nay wealthy people by giving them top jobs while amongst ourselves we remain unemployed and indigent. Mark you, in 2017, we shall all come out in our millions and bake under the hot sun to do this; because, we worship the big man, and we practice ethnic politics and mainly because we are not just slaves, but dumb as rocks as well.

Friday, 8 March 2013

Politicians MUST respect the IEBC

It’s a shady and oafish sportsman who enters a competition and complains about the rules and the officials of the race all the while having not yet received his score. If these elections were a shooting contest I am sure that the “comedy of numbers” would cause these politicians to raise their guns to their heads in a final salute. But oh! what wishful thinking that is. I doubt these politicians are selfless enough to rid us of their presence via suicide.

The veracity of attacks on the IEBC in the public forum is just the tip of the iceberg I am sure. Behind the scenes, the hostility towards IEBC commissioners is possibly enough to give one nightmares. As a republic we have to thank Issack Hassan for his selfless resolve to see this process to the end. Issack Hassan has more integrity and tenacity in his baby finger than all these evil politicians and their zombie supporters put together.

In an election there is a reality that the vanity of these politicians stops them from absorbing and accepting. You. Can. Lose. It’s that simple. Your chances of losing are multiplied by the number of contestants in that election. Only the completely irrational go into an election not just believing they CAN or MIGHT win, but intending not to accept defeat at all!

Long before the elections, the attacks on the IEBC had already begun, driven in the media with the sole intention of discrediting the IEBC such that the legitimacy of any election they conducted nationally is easier to challenge.

But here is the thing. It is not just the integrity of the commission that is under attack but the very essence of our democracy. It certainly is very undemocratic for political aspirants to go into an election with the sole intention of SEIZING power at all costs. We have undeserving rulers who do not respect the will of the people, and theirs is a theft not just of powerful positions but a violent robbery of the fundamentals of our republic.

Every jab is directed at the process, one that already has been determined by observers to have been conducted in a commendable manner, given the circumstances. The crudest sorts of people want to rule this nation by force it seems. In their mildest form, they attacked the IEBC through the media, and in their wildest form, they physically stormed IEBC offices in some places and distributed leaflets that intimidated and threaten members of rival communities.

When you think of what lengths these politicians will go to, to gain power, you have to ask yourself just how lucrative is that post. How much is there to gain, such that bloodshed, fear and violence are necessary? “I would kill for that job.” And they literally would kill for that job!

When I lined up on 4th March, like every other Kenyan in that hot sun, I did not do it to elect a RULER. I did not do it to elect a KILLER. I did it, so that we can have LEADERS. I believe every other Kenyan had the same hope and intention that I did. No one in their right minds would spend 7 hours baking under the sun so that they can pick an oppressor!

Yet we are being oppressed. It is our right, it is the law, it is the mandate of the IEBC to conduct elections in a free and fair manner, free from intimidation, negative propaganda and violence. We cannot afford to trust anything these politicians claim against the IEBC while the tallying process is ongoing because their intention is to interfere with the process so as to seize what does not belong to them. Even if the IEBC needs to conduct an audit of how their systems and procedures work, so as to have a smoother electoral process, even if there were election irregularities, its still does not validate alarmist claims against Issack Hassan and his team.

This is a repeat of the 2007 elections where the now defunct ECK suffered greatly under the bombardment of the politicians. I believe strongly that it is the IEBC that stands to protect us from them, as a shield to our democracy. There is no justice in what the politicians did and will continue to do during elections.

The forked tongues of the rabid politician will call for “peace” while violently attacking the republic of Kenya and her democracy. Well, there is no peace without justice and there can be no justice if the poll loser takes to the streets and to the media rather than take their grievances to the courts. We, as Kenyans deserve better, and we did our part, we voted for the leaders we felt we deserve. We certainly do not deserve to be cheated out of that leadership, to be saddled with evil rulers and oppressors.

We need to have peace and justice in this country and the fastest way we can gain this is to demand, as a citizenry, that these politicians follow due process and respect the law. Also, it would greatly help if the media give these politicians a media blackout until the tallying process is complete. I dare say switching off the camera when the politician takes the microphone should even become the norm in Kenya.