Wednesday, February 13, 2008

Kenya: A Long, Perilous Year Ahead

I. Kibaki is a Prisioner to PNU Affiliates

There may be no quick agreement between ODM’s Odinga and PNU’s Kibaki because, while the former has shown a willingness to move away from his earlier positions such as “Kibaki must resign,” Kibaki has become a prisioner of the constituent parties which have propped-up his government and for which power is the end and the means. This view is reinforced by what Kalonzo said when he landed from abroad (any deal must be constitutional), and Mr. Poghosio’s announcement that any deal brokered by HE Annan will not affect ODM-K’s power-sharing agreement with the minority PNU government.

II. ODM must go for Executive Prime Minister

The emerging deal is so far in favor of Kibaki– he is the President. ODM should not sacrifice further than it has done. Recognizing Kibaki’s Presidency has been a bitter enough pill for ODM to have swallowed. With this in mind, nothing less than an Executive Prime Minister for ODM (based on BOMAS and executed quickly by Parliamentary legislation) is agreeable. This would ensure that ODM, as the majority party, will be Head of the Government; it would also preserve ODM’s identity as a party for 2012, and multi-party democracy will have won. Mr. Kibaki can remain a ceremonial President in charge of the Defense and State affairs.

III. Ideally, an interim Gov’t must be reasonably short

While the a prolonged Interim Government (six-month one called by ODM has been shot down by negotiators at City Hall) would allow the country to heal and allow the internally displaced persons (IDPs) to resettle, it would prove to be a slow-killing pill that would in the long run neuter ODM, in particular, and multiparty democracy, in general, as the boundary between Opposition and Government becomes blurred in the eyes of the people.

IV. ODM must think long-term

As the Annan negotiations move towards its critical stage, ODM must think long-term because its image of a Movement ended with the 12/27/2007 elections. That is why it should prefer a constitutionally mandated (through parliamentary legislation) and quick Executive Prime Minister Deal to any other form of power-sharing arrangement. Otherwise, it is better to remain in the opposition than be in a long-term, coalition arrangement –a multiparty democracy killer.

V. ODM should not bank on any elections being called before 2012

Fact: As long as the internal refugees are still in the camps in Kibera, Kondele and the Rift Valley, and their plight shamelessly played to every tourist visiting Kenya, Kibaki will not call any election whatever the Annan Deal. The helpless IDPs have become mere pawns in what is emerging as a political sport among the protagonists in Nairobi. I am very pessimistic about Kenya’s future; I am looking at 2012 for the next electoral face-off.

JR Alila


Kenyan Revelations said...

Good t5hought Alila. We are all praying that the misleaders see a picture that is larger than their small minds can offer them. You're welcome to share your thoughts on our multi-contributor blog. We mean well for Kenya. We abhore rigging and corruption. We hate killing and we dread genocide. We blog for justice.

Joseph Ramogi Alila said...

Kenyan Reveletions,
we are in it together; thank you for the encouraging remarks. Blog on; lets home for a better week in the Anna-led talks.

JR Alila

JR Alila said...

On the 28th Feb 2008 just after 4.05 PM (Kenyan Time), President Mwai Kibaki and Hon. Raila Odinga accepted a power-sharing deal in which ODM as the majority party will provide a Prime Minister and one of his two Deputies. Cabinet posts will be share equitably between ODM and PNU and affiliates. A Draft Act of Parliament will append the PM's Post in the Kenyan constituion.