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Friday, August 31, 2007

Kroll Report And Looted Moi Billions Puts Moi On Mobutu Sese Seko Level

This is what citizen journalism is all about. Earlier today somebody left links in this blog about a leaked report by a leading international private investigations organization called Kroll.

By the time I got to the wiki page, somebody had deleted it. That person does not understand the way the web functions and this was an exercise in futility. I am sure another copy will turn up on the web very soon.

The report and extracts copied from it are shocking to say the least.

You can read more HERE (also see the links at the bottom of the page).

Meanwhile more HOT news from Orange House...

The mother of all general elections is now less than 4 months away and things are getting HOT.

There have been all sorts of rumours circulating including one ridiculous one that Raila will step down for Musalia. I asked our ODM specialist Phil and his reply which some of you may have missed almost made me fall off my chair. Read it for yourself below;

Hey Chris,

You are right, that rumour is very true, but in my opinion such an action is premature.

And again, only Raila himself will decide whether to drop his candidature or not. Besides, his commitment is so deep that we know he is running at least three fully fledged campaign secretariats and he has his own personal council of professional advisors.

Though everyone, including Raila, is in agreement that an ODM win overrides all other interests, because no one wants another stint in opposition benches!

I think it would be suicidal to name Mudavadi on Saturday and make him an obvious target for Kibaki and company. (Remember they have all the Goldenberg, NBK and KCB files).....Mudavadi as a politician, a business person and family man cannot fight the government machinery on his own.

Another rumour is that ODM aspirants could all drop their bids at the last minute for another Kikuyu candidate. He may be voted in through the Dagoretti constituency seat. He will appeal to the youth, other tribes as well as donors. His name is John Githongo. And in his first public speech as an ODM candidate, he will unleash the mother of all bombshells - a recorded discussion with the Head of State urging him 'to look the other way'.... Moi,Kibaki Tena crowd or even Derek here will not have an answer to that tsunami.

Am told that Uhuru Kenyatta is having some serious soul searching about recent political developments and is weighing implications of throwing his weight with the ODM, and to a lesser extent ODM-K lot. He may even make an appearance at Kasarani today or tomorrow.

Yes, Chris, I'd say it is a possibility for Raila to drop a bombshell, but not so soon, probably towards end October, early November when the picture will be much clearer....right now it is still a little fuzzy. Let Kibaki declare his party of choice and launch his vision, then you will see fire works.

Remember NO ONE, including our famed NSIS saw the recapture of original ODM party from Lawyer Mugambi Imanyara...could he have been Raila's long term strategic plan?


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ODM-Kenya: What Impact Will Its' Presidential Candidate Now Have?

Stephen Kalonzo Musyoka this afternoon beat his only challenger Prof Julia Ojiambo by garnering 2,835 votes against 791 votes to become the ODM-Kenya presidential candidate. The action was at Kasarani Stadium (some have christened it Kiserani—meaning controversy).

Tomorrow the other Orange party, ODM original, will hold a similar exercise at the same venue to come up with their presidential candidate. They will have a tough act to follow because the ODM-Kenya elections were extremely well organized.

It is expected that Mr Musyoka will seek an alliance with another political party before facing the general elections and he has said so himself several times. It is highly expected that that alliance will either be with the other ODM party, Kanu or even Narc Kenya. The last two choices are more or less the same thing because we now know that Kanu will be working very closely with Narc Kenya and will be supporting Mwai Kibaki's re-election bid.

His wife in a stunning outfit that had lots of orange, the ODM-Kenya color, accompanied Musyoka. This is a very important plus for Musyoka which Kenyans should learn to appreciate. This presidential candidate has one wife and it is sad that most Kenyans have failed to see the link between broken and polygamous families and the rising rate of crime in the country. There is a clear, established link (that is a story for another day) and the person I vote for as president will NOT be a bad example to my son and grand child. I don't want more questions from my grandson that I cannot answer.

There was a very strange, almost fake, atmosphere in this presidential nomination process. Like everybody already knew what the results were going to be. There was no sense of competition and neither of the candidates attempted to make a last minute appeal for votes from the delegates.

More interestingly the whole exercise cost well over a whopping Kshs 20 million. Which leads us to the 20 million shilling question: who financed it? Although ODM-K has a few millionaires, none of them are capable of putting up that kind of money alone. So was it a team effort?

P.S. There were too many people at Kasarani talking in Kikamba accents and wearing the tell-tale Kamba colours. Many of them were even involved in the organization of the delegates conference and presidential elections. Hon. Kalonzo Musyoka is one of the people who has criticized the president for his appointments claiming that they tend to lean too much in the direction of one community. He should therefore set an example and show Kenyans signs of his government to come by reducing the Kamba accents operating close to him and the party office bearers. Even the chairman should NOT be a MKamba.

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2007 General Elections Will Be Held Before Christmas

Several quarters have confirmed that the President has said that he would like Kenyans to enjoy their Christmas holidays this year without any approaching elections over their heads. In other words, he is looking for an election date before Christmas.

Analysts believe that it would have to be shortly after Jamuhuri day (independence day) which falls on December 12th. This makes our countdown a little complicated, (does it not, Bwana Luke?)

Since 1992 and the re-introduction of multi-party politics, the general elections have traditionally been held shortly after Christmas and before the New Year. Incidentally this kind of arrangement allows for maximum participation as most Kenyans are in their rural homes at that time. However holding the elections shortly before Christmas will serve the same purpose because most Kenyans will then take an early holiday to be in their rural homes to vote just before the most widely anticipated holiday in the Kenyan calendar.

MPs have recently expressed fear that the manner in which the government is rushing forward house business in parliament suggests that the president is about to dissolve the house in preparation for the general elections.

The president's rigorous campaign schedule at Mombasa over the last few days that has involved a lot of walking and shaking of hands (two things the president hardly does) would also add credence to the theory of an earlier than expected general election.

However realistically speaking, the earliest the elections can be called for is late November. Folks did you realize that we are already in September (in a few hours time). How this year has flown by!!

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Carjackings have Ended In Nairobi—Mutua

In his weekly press briefing this morning, government spin-doctor, Alfred Mutua said that carjackings were now a thing of the past in Nairobi and no longer exist. What???

While it is true that they have greatly reduced, making such a sweeping statement is surely premature and highly misleading from a government spokes person. More so when we all know that many other types of violent crime (hardly reported in the mainstream media, and we know why) continue just as before.

This is a cheap campaign gimmick.

Another gem from Mr Mutua was when he said at the same briefing that his research has shown that the most favored tribe in government appointments in president Kibaki's administration are the Luhya community.

Oh please sir, don't abuse the intelligence of Kenyans.

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What Is The Police Commissioner Doing In Osaka

Is the police commissioner recruiting speedy would-be officers for the police force in Osaka? Or what is the Maj General Hussein Ali doing with the Kenyan athletes currently in that Japanese city?

Sports Minister Maina Kamanda is with the team in Osaka and was seen on TVs all over the world enthusiastically hugging that young supu who won the 800 metres, gold medal in the ladies event. However at another function where the Minister was addressing/giving a pep talk to the team, the police commissioner was seen seated and listening attentively.

Major General Ali is well known for frequently "not giving dignity to questions by answering them" where he feels that they are not intelligent enough or relevant questions. I have a feeling that a question like "what are you doing in Osaka," would fall under this category.

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President Kibaki: Uncomfortable In The Midst Of Sweat And Bad Breath

I saw something the other day, which did not quite make sense. There was this man (definitely in his 50s) cruising around town in a car that had extra wide tyres, fancy rims and very loud music—too loud for somebody over 20.

The mystery was solved when a friend explained that the man was a well-known Baba Sukari (sugar daddy) who preys on school girls and very young girls in town, young enough to be his grand daughters.

This is a terrible thing to say but I marveled at how he understood his target market so well. No young girl in her right mind would hesitate to be given a lift in such a car and would then fall easy prey to the evil man's other machinations.

President Kibaki and his administration are the very opposite. Every day they display a complete lack of knowledge or understanding of their main target market (the common man with a voting card) and what their aspirations and desires are.

The common man gets upset being preached to about economic growth more so when they cannot put food on the table and yet they used to find it much easier to do so when the said economic growth was in the negatives.

Over the last couple of days President Kibaki has been doing what he has hardly done in his long political career. To mix with ordinary folks and shake their hands. Yep. The ordinary riff raff who will inevitably have bad breadth and to whom the current economic growth has not allowed them to afford a good deodorant or after shave to keep smelly sweat at bay. This is especially true in the Coastal city of Mombasa where temperatures and humidity are usually excessively high.

The president has adjusted well although at times he looks a little uncomfortable and like a fish out of water.

If only it were possible for all those people who have shaken the president's hand over the last few days to pass on their aspirations and wants via a process of osmosis triggered by the handshake. The president would have by now realized just how much a let down he has been despite all his efforts, to the people who elected him so unanimously in December 2002.

Ordinary folks want pretty basic things, like jobs, money in their pocket and affordable basic foodstuff. As it is to date, no single presidential candidate has brought up the issue of skyrocketing prices of basic foodstuff (let's hope they address this issue now, at least two of them read this blog very regularly). They should also come up with viable and practical ideas to bring food prices down. One of the ideas floated has been to abolish or zero rate VAT on basic food items sold in low-income areas and slums.

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English Premiership Soccer And The Ugly Side Of Professionalism

I have been reviewing video clips showing how Manchester Uniteds' Wayne Rooney got his foot fractured and another one showing a crude tackle aimed at Christiano Ronaldo that fortunately missed its' real mark.

I am convinced beyond any shadow of doubt that both incidents illustrate the ugly side of professionalism in what is by far the most competitive soccer league the world has ever seen.

Where there is professionalism and competitiveness, you will always find managers and decision makers who are prepared to do anything. And I mean anything, to be able to get an edge over the competition. A friend the other day was joking trying to imagine what kind of instructions a defender would be given by a manager eager to get ahead;

"Don't worry, we'll take care of you and defend you all the way. Just make sure that you don't miss and that the subject is out for a minimum of 3 months. There's a handsome bonus for you if you end their football career."

My suspicions were raised when while analyzing the leading teams in the premiership in July, we clearly identified Manchester United as a two-players-team. Yes, there are other excellent players but the magic of the team revolves around two exceptional world class players. Christiano Ronaldo and Wayne Rooney. Every manager in the premiership knows this. So what would you do if you had a close friend who can play ball preferably playing for another club? Would you hesitate in offering them big money to "eliminate" two key players who stood between you and winning the premiership title?

The English have a tradition of fair play and sportsmanship that would make many of them cringe at such a suggestion. But the truth is that the premiership is now English only by name and filled with all sorts of characters from all sorts of countries and backgrounds. This is probably why Sir Alex Ferguson, the Manchester United Manager was a sitting duck for such a plot.

For those who do not follow the beautiful game, let me explain what happened to the guys from Old Trafford. They beat Jose Mourinho's multi-million start studded, Chelsea last season and dethroned them for the first time in two years. As this season started, it was clear that Manchester United were firm favorites to retain the title. But somebody somewhere had different plans. Wayne Rooney ended up with a fractured foot from a tackle that video footage shows me was deliberate and intentional with the clear objective of causing a serious injury.

Somebody else tried the same thing on Christian Ronaldo, but he saw it coming and could not contain himself and retaliated. He was promptly red carded. The objective was still somewhat achieved because without the two players Manchester United have slipped badly and it is virtually impossible for them to recover from that slide now to retain their premiership title.

It is also now very clear to me why Jose Mourinho has been so successful. He places a lot of emphasis on utility players who can be fielded virtually anywhere to fill in voids left by injury. Players like Cloud Makelele, Frank Lampard, Joe Cole and Michael Essien among others. With these kind of players, it is easier to deal with injuries which are inevitable in a competitive place like the English premiership. Of course hi other emphasis is on a very strong defense and an exceptional goalkeeper and we have seen that in today's ultra competitive game a goal keeper can make the difference between finishing at the bottom of the league and winning it.

This also explains why Thiery Henry was so happy to move out of the English Premiership because he was always a marked man. In fact in the last few years he has been seen quite frequently jumping very high to avoid crunching tackles whose aim is to cause serious injury. He is now very happy playing in Spain. Even Africa's own Didier Drogba has been a marked man, but thank God that Africans are built of stunner stuff. After street football and soccer ya mtaani, coupled with his physique, Dogba is not an easy player to injure. Still he ends up on the injury list a few times.

FIFA needs to take very quick and strict action by firstly launching investigations and then banning anybody found involved for life. Otherwise, very soon the game to be taken over by injury-inflicting experts.

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Thursday, August 30, 2007

What Moi Will Tell The Kalenjin In Secret To Get Them To Vote Kibaki

Recent surveys have clearly shown that most Kenyans do not believe that Moi's declared support for Kibaki is inconsequential as some of our dear readers and commentators believe.

Others here have said that Rift Valley has changed too much for Moi to have any major impact on what happens in the next few weeks and ultimately in the general elections.

Of course all this is ignoring one of Moi's most effective secret weapons which he has used for years with great success. And this is his uncanny ability to pass on a clear message directly to the electorate that does not pass through the press where we can all read and analyze and ridicule it.

So the question any serious analyst should be asking themselves is what Moi will tell Kalenjin voters. Let us first admit that selling anything Kikuyu in the Rift Valley is a very difficult thing to do, so Moi will need to be very aggressive determined and pull out all stops or checks he may have earlier placed in front of himself in the coming vicious winner takes all battle.

It is not what Moi says in public that will have an impact but what is said in secret away from press coverage.

There is no denying that Moi is still very respected amongst his Kalenjin community and one of the last things the community would like to see is Moi and his son Gideon behind bars. So it goes without saying that he will urge his community to vote for Kibaki so as to guarantee his freedom and that of his son. This is a very effective call that the Kalenjins will respond to much more quickly than any heady rhetroric and promises from the ODM brigade.

It is also quite likely that away from the glare of lights and TV cameras or the ears of any reporter, former President Moi will remind the Kalenjin community of the 1982 coup of which leading ODM presidential contender, Raila Odinga is a self-confessed participator and organizer. He will then urge the people to sober up and consider whether this is the sort of person they would like to be their next president.

But probably the most appealing of the cards that the president will be "playing under the table" is that of a promise of a clear route that will see a Kalenjin in State house once again in 2012. The Kanu party leader who will lead the assault of delivering the majority of Rift Valley votes to president Kibaki will be in line to be appointed Vice president in the next government of national unity (GNU). However since that person is Uhuru Kenyatta who hails from the Kikuyu tribe, we obviously cannot have a president and his vice president from the same tribe. So, the mantle will be passed on to the person next in line which would have been William Ruto. But since Mr Ruto has deserted the heart of Kanu for Raila Odinga's ODM, the next person in line to retain the delicate balance in the party which has a huge percentage of ultra-loyal Kalenjins, can only by the MP for Baringo Central. Yes, Gideon Moi himself. That should give him the chance to consolidate his power and greatly increase his chances (with lots of coaching from dad) of ascending to the presidency in 2012.

Such a secret game plan whispered to voters in the expansive Rift valley province will cause many of them to abandon the orange and vote in a manner that presents the best opportunity for one of their own to end up in State House after the 2012 polls.

If you want a glimpse of things to come, let me take you to the year 1997 when as President Moi was seeking what was going to be his last term, there was a lot of unrest amongst the kalenjin most of who felt short-changed and openly said that they had not gained as much as the Preisdent's own Turgen community. The generally better educated Nandis were the ones complaining the loudest. Analysing the political situation then, I said that Rify Valley would show a surprisingly good result for the opposition and especially Mwai Kibaki who had campaigned a lot in the region that year. However I alsmot collapsed when the election results started trickling in from the Rift Valley. The guys who had been bitterly complaining dutifully trooped to the poling stations and voted for President Moi almost to a man.

Expect the same this time. Lots of noise in support of ODM, lots of orange-eating all over the Rift Valley, but come voting day, the votes will go to Kanu and Kibaki.

Can this young aspirant turn out to be a giant killer In Cherangany?

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The Political Circus That Is ODM

Guest post by Kinuthia WaMwangi

For almost five years, some leaders have carried on a sustained hate campaign punctuated with vitriol, contempt and fractious politics.

It is not difficult to imagine that this has something to do with breach of trust based on a piece of paper known as the Memorandum of Understanding between individuals who agreed to share power in a certain fashion back in 2002.

It may also be based on a feeling of self-loss after an individual scored an own goal by uttering the phrase "Kibaki Tosha." This quixotic self-deceit that one denied oneself the chance to be in State House undermines the intelligence of voters who overwhelmingly chose the person they wanted to occupy it.

Unfortunately, the deceit was packaged and delivered to Kenyans who swallowed it lock, stock and barrel. It has been used to peddle a regime-change campaign full of vitriol.

FAST BACKWARDS TO EARLY 2003
The media led the way by praising the rational distribution of government posts according to diverse national interests, but this
Was rebutted by the individuals who felt they had lost. They immediately started bad-mouthing the fledgling Government. Lack of goodwill among the leaders ensured the Government lurched from one crisis to another. Some Government ministers ignored collegiate responsibility and openly refused to carry out their mandates, while blaming the Government for not carrying out its electoral promises.

The contest was actualized through the constitutional review process which gave an opportunity to the disputants to remove their velvet gloves and tackle each other with bare knuckles. This was seen as an opportunity to exact revenge. On Monday, August 13, Mr Raila Odinga gave a TV and radio interview in which he defined the Orange Movement as social democracy. He described social democracy as the provision of better infrastructure in the form of roads and railway extensions, conversion of Mombasa into a free port, promotion of private-public partnerships as catalysts of development, free secondary education, improvement of the quality of primary education, and promulgation of laws to facilitate devolution of power and resources to the local levels of government. He also promised to raise economic growth to 10 per cent.

This is a regurgitation of the Kibaki Government's programmes. There is nothing new. The railways system is now in private hands, thus promoting public-private partnerships. The company has undertaken to revamp the railway system in Kenya and Uganda with new extensions. A new railway line is earmarked for southern Sudan.

The Government intends to make Mombasa a free port. It will also connect Kenya to the Southern Sudan through a new port in Lamu. Kisumu will also become a major inland port. There will be free secondary education in 2008. New teachers will be employed to improve the quality of primary education.

The latest projections show that the economy will hit the 10 per cent mark before 2009 under the Kibaki Government. The Draft Constitution, which Mr Odinga dismissed as takataka (rubbish), contained the best devolved government structures. It was also a women's constitution.

Courtesy of Mr Odinga and his Orange Movement, Kenyans threw away
The baby with the bath water. Women lost everything they ever hoped to
gain. Orange is neither a movement nor an ideology but a Trojan horse
used to acquire raw power. It should be seen for what it is.

THE CREATION OF ETHNIC coalitions to isolate and exclude the perceived ruling ethnic cluster achieved by dangling a fake carrot of presidential candidacy from each tribal grouping. Unleashing of propaganda on the failure of Government. Sabotage of Government efforts both inside and outside the country to show that it has failed.

Doublespeak where both consensus and election mean unilateral declaration. The creation of provincial presidential candidates was a Machiavellian design for searching and destroying prospective hopefuls from all regions.

The Orange is a coalition of wedges bound together by an outer skin. Each wedge is a complete entity. The Orange has shed the skin and the wedges are claiming their individual identity one by one. Mr Kalonzo Musyoka has shown the way.

Others will follow. The bubble has burst and what we are witnessing is a Tower of Babel.

Mr Wamwangi is a lawyer and an expert on regional local government.

Can this young aspirant turn out to be a giant killer In Cherangany?

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The Moi You Don't Know

Most Kenyans do not really know Moi and what the man is capable of. A little reminder is in order.

Moi the Liar
Daniel Moi's performance denying any involvement in the murder of former foreign minister Robert Ouko was the kind of performance that would have won a Hollywood oscar.

"My government has absolutely nothing to do with the Ouko murder," he told the nation with a straight face. In fact he looked fairly angry and the one who had been wronged in the whole matter. Clap. Clap. Clap.

The former president still uses the same straight face to tell all sorts of lies.

Moi The Hypocrite
These days Daniel Moi gets very worked up whenever he is talking about ODM. His favourite catchphrase in describing the party—this is nothing more than a tribal party. By extension he also means that Raila Odinga is a tribalist. But hold on a minute sir, Raila has been a student of Moi politics and his machiavellian techniques of consolidating regional support. That is what the regional presidential candidates are all about. So if there is tribalism both are tribalists and Moi cannot point at Raila when most of the fingers in his hand are pointing right back at him (Moi).

This is also the same man who abandoned his wife Lena Moi many years ago and then shed tears at her funeral. The president is human and not a demi-god as some of his cronies wanted Kenyans to believe and trust me, you don't want to know what or who he got involved with through the lonely years at the helm of power and away from his wife.


Vengeful Moi
Moi once looked at a beaming journalist delighted at the restoration of multi-party politics in the country and made a very odd statement. He said in Swahili; Hii multi-party itachoma nyinyi. Kenyans did not have to wait for too long to find out what he meant as houses and property was literally burnt down all over the Rift Valley in the infamous land clashes. Former minister of state in president's office, Burudi Nabwera in a heated exchange with the former president revealed to the public that the former president had imported arrows into the country which had turned up in the clashes.

The former president had accepted multi-party democracy to be restored in Kenya while under intense pressure from the world community and in retrospect would never have survived politically had he continued to stubbornly turn down the idea. But he made sure that people paid for it dearly.

Moi, tolerant and forgiving… to a certain extent.
James Mungai now living in Nyali, Mombasa, is a former powerful provincial police officer incharge of Rift Valley and a close elative of Jomo Kenyatta. This man made then Vice President Moi's life hell.

Once he carried out a crazy search on the former president when he returned from a foreign trip allegedly in search of guns. The search involved the vice president being stripped naked and searched the way naked prisoners are searched.

The fact that Mungai is still alive today is solid proof of Moi's tolerance and capacity to forgive most of the times. I am well aware that this is a contradiction of the vengeful Moi I described earlier, but this is the nature of humans many of them are contradictions.

Still Moi can be ruthless when he feels threatened. The still unsolved Ouko murder proves this beyond any doubt. This decisive ruthlessness was a lesson that he must have learnt in 1982 during the failed coup. Operation Maji machafu was the code name given to the mission that got Moi back to Nairobi from his Kabarak farm on that event ful August 1st day. Although the coup had been crashed, there were still pockets of resistance and the possibilities of a sniper taking out the president were still high. So it is said that he was brought into town inside the bowels of a military tank. On the long uncomfortable trip he must have had plenty of time to make mental notes and corrections to his presidential game plan and true enough it was a very different Moi who emerged after August 1982. Time magazine aptly gave the coup story the headline "Daniel sticks his head into the Lion's den." Well, never again, Moi must have sworn to himself.

That is the kind of lesson that one never forgets and it is quite likely that this is the way the former president views his current struggle to ensure that Raila Odinga never sees the inside of State House as its' occupant. For him it is a battle for the survival of the Moi dynasty and their vast, mostly ill-gotten wealth.

Can this young aspirant turn out to be a giant killer In Cherangany?

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Wednesday, August 29, 2007

Will Moi's Second Project Work?

The First project, Uhuru Kenyatta failed miserably in 2002. Has the former president and self proclaimed professor of politics learnt anything?

Former President Moi still does things the way he used to do them during the 24 years he ruled Kenya.

For instance we know that he made his mind a long time ago to back President Mwai Kibaki but yesterday he gave the impression that he had thought about the matter long and hard and really agonized before finally reaching a decision.

He however stressed that he would remain in Kanu and that he would be actively campaigning for the party in the run up to the forthcoming general elections. The former president who now walks with a distinct limp (although he has stubbornly refused to use a walking stick, at least in public) moves much more slowly these days and hardly looks like he is up to the task of indulging in a rigorous campaign, even if that campaign will only be within the borders of the expansive Rift Valley Province.

This morning all Kenyans newspapers are analyzing the impact of Moi's declaration of support for the incumbent. I have deliberately avoided reading any of them at least not before I write my own analysis of it. One of the reasons why Kumekucha is so popular is because we DO NOT recycle information from the daily newspapers like many other Kenyan blogs do and always like to give our own independent perspective.

Moi's move now clearly shows us what President Kibaki's game plan is. Although there are those in the opposition who see Kibaki as Moi's game plan and in fact his project in the upcoming elections, just like he had the Uhuru project in the run up to the 2002 elections.

Still, for the first time in the history of presidential elections in Kenya, the incumbent will leave his campaign efforts in certain areas of the country to partnering political parties. It is very clear that the President's campaign in Rift Valley is fully in the hands of Kanu and retired president Moi. At the Coast it will be mainly handled by the Shirikisho party. Narc Kenya and DP (democratic party) will handle it in Central Kenya and Nairobi area. In hostile arts of Eastern province like in Ukambani, it will be handled by DP. The president himself will most likely seek re-election under a new umbrella party to be registered soon that will most likely take on all other political parties supporting his re-election as corporate members.

This is in keeping with the president's so called hands-off administration style that has thrived on delegation. Delegation is not a bad thing except that it can be taken a little too far when we all know where the buck stops and who will be held responsible when things go wrong. You see Kenyans did not elect the individuals who are now so powerful in this country and some of whom have caused great suffering to the ordinary folks by the decisions that they have made. NO. They elected President Kibaki. So it is not acceptable for the president to criticize some of his ministers in public instead of firing them on the spot and getting the kind of people who will help him deliver on his promises to the people.

I think this is campaign delegation thing is a very dangerous strategy that looks very good on paper but could so easily fall flat on its' face out there in the rough and tumble of Kenyan politics and heated campaigns.

Take Rift Valley for instance. There is still a very strong anti-Kikuyu sentiment amongst the Kalenjin community and that is why Mrs Linah Chebii Kilimo in her recent announcement declaring support for President Kibaki clearly said that she will definitely not join Narc Kenya in her re-election bid. That tells you a lot.

The Kikuyu versus Kalenjin tensions and mistrust in the Rift Valley dates back to the time shortly after independence when President Kenyatta allocated himself vast tracts of land in the agricultural rich Rift Valley. Many of those close to him did the same and the result was an "invasion" of Kalenjin land a lot of which was taken forcibly and illegally without proper compensation to the previous owners. An uneasy calm was somehow maintained during most of President Moi's tenure, but when multiparty politics was forced on Moi, he decided that it was time for all Kikuyus (including many of those who had obtained the land legally) to be ejected. What followed were the infamous land clashes of the Rift Valley that started in the early 90s.

That is why to date, selling Narc Kenya in the Rift Valley is an uphill task. This is the reason Moi has carefully made his announcements in a piecemeal fashion. He started by urging the Kalenjins to reject ODM and to remain in Kanu. He then added that he would tell them who to vote for as president at a later date. He did not mention his preferred presidential candidate even when he clearly already knew who that person was.

Politics is a game where one shifts with the wave. Kanu will definitely be the most popular political party amongst the Kalenjin but the masses could easily fall into a wave to support another presidential candidate other than President Kibaki. Again I say the president's battle plan looks neat, too neat on paper. And that is just the sort of plan that could easily get derailed and fall flat on its' face on the ground and in the heat of a moment. When parliamentary candidates start fighting tooth and nail for a win, they will say anything and support anybody whom they think will help take their popularity a notch higher. In the Kalenjin Rift Valley, that candidate will NOT be president Kibaki.


P.S. There is the part of Rift Valley that is pure Narc Kenya, including constituencies like Nakuru town and the environs. Narc Kenya is already pretty active in these Kikuyu area of the Rift Valley and will definitely carry the day.

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3,000 Metres Steeplechase Mystery Deepens

No other sporting event in history has been so dominated by a single nation and Kenya stamped her authority and dominance in this event in Osaka yesterday with a stunning Kenya one, Kenya two, and Kenya three performance in a clean sweep of the gold, silver and bronze medals.

I could not contain my tears as the 3 smiling flag draped athletes did a lap of honor. It was all too much for me and I believe many Kenyans when the national anthem filled the stadium. For that brief magical moment no Kenyan would want to think of tribe or political inclination. Kenya was one nation, delighted and celebrating a stunning victory on a competitive world stage.

What is it with Kenyans and this race? Mention this event anywhere in the world and you will be told that it is the Kenyan race. Several research projects have been undertaken to try and unearth the mystery behind this domiance, but so far, no answers have been forthcoming. Even more puzzling seems to be the fact that immediately athletes abandon their Kenyan citizenship and opt for that of another country, they promptly lose their "magic" over this event.

The 3000 metres steeplechase is a long distant obstacle race, which to me signifies that our beloved nation will always go over all the obstacles before her and emerge victorious whatever the odds.

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First Lady Lucy Forces President Kibaki To Walk 3 Kilometers In The Heat And Humidity Of Mombasa

The president had waved to the crowds at Mwembe Tayari and turned to go back into his presidential limousine. The door had even already been held open for him. Then suddenly first Lady Lucy blocked his path and gestured indicating that they take a walk. That walk in the blistering Mombasa heat and humidity ended up being a 3-kilometer trek to State House Mombasa. At one point, it was clear that the president—heavily dressed in his warm suit—was straining and pushing himself to the limits to keep walking.

First Lady Lucy on the other hand looked like she was enjoying herself immensely.

The problem with the first couple is that prior to the president being elected president the first lady took no interest whatsoever in her husband's political activities. Everybody knew that it was the president's other wife, Mary Wambui who was politically active. But when President Kibaki was swept into power, she suddenly became a domineering presence on the scene and everybody was forced to suddenly adjust drastically to accommodate her. Those who did not adjust quickly enough like one Matere Keriri quickly found themselves thrown very far away from their close proximity to the president. Everybody knows that you do not under any circumstances contradict the first lady.

That is why, although it was not in the president's best health interests to walk in the hot son in a province whose support for him is only lukewarm at best, nobody could dare contradict Lucy's idea.

You see the first lady has really gotten into the mood to campaign and seems to immensely enjoy cheering crowds. At one point she even went in front of the president at the Mwembe Tayari incident and contrary to protocol and acknowledged the cheers of the crowd as if she were the president herself.

It is interesting that the country has never had a properly functioning model first family since independence. President Kenyatta was a polygamist while President Moi was a senior bachelor who had long abandoned his wife. President Kibaki is also a polygamist, albeit one who took the electorate by surprise because very few people knew that he was a polygamist by the time they cast their votes for him. I for one would have greatly hesitated in voting for him had I known then that he had more than one wife.

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Can A Man Live On Oranges Alone?

Guest post by Michael Too

Living on oranges alone
Yes! Kenya as a nation is back to its highes heats in Politics.
We have President Kibaki in power, struggling to retain leadership. Behind him is a self proclaimed professor of politics, Mr. Moi (Read 24 years in power), emerging strongly and drumming support for an unnamed party and condenming ODM. On the other hand Mr. Raila and his allies are moving swiftly to every part and corner of this great nation trying to pasuade Kenyans with oranges that under his leadership, things will be fine, very fine, finer than before. Unlike during the referamdum, where we got full oranges, this time, we are getting half if not split oranges.

Where did Robert Go?
Kenya lost a big brother named Roba (Hon. Robert Ouko). The only professor in politics will not like this mentioned. It was always na hiyo ni maendeleo even if a cabinet minister goes mising for several days. We lost an inteligent Mboya in almost a similar way Roba left us. Bishop Muge, Mr. Seronei name it-this list is endless. When former Baba wa Taifa goes round telling us to vote so and so and not so and so, in other words, he is reminding us of all unmentionale things that happened during his era Kwa hivyo afyate mdomo wake na aendelee kujienjoy kwa retirement.

Story ya mamluki?
Given a chance, i'm quite sure Mr. Agwambo will vivvidly address this matter perfectly well if he rises to the so called "Top of the hill". Taxpayers money was used to form a commission that loked into this matter , later, a report was given and after that the rest is history.There were other commissions formed but untill n ow now, Kenyans are left wondering what became of them.

Economy
Economically, within five years in power, President Kibaki is seen to be very smart. Yes! we are talking of around 6% of economic growth but do the ordinary wananchi feel this?.If to some Kenyans, putting food on the table is still a nihgtmare, then we have no business talking about economic growth. May be this applies to those in power and re-eyeing for power.

Tribal politics
Ask me about my tribe, i will tell you that i'm a kenyan. If we form an alliance or a coalision if you would put it so, comprising of four or five or six or seven presidencial aspirants and try to convince unsuspecting kenyans to support you, then you are doomed if not mistaken. We have over forty ethnic groups in Kenya and only seven or so are representented in those polical benches then who is representinting the remaining thirty three? Please think of another power acquiring tactic- Kenyans are now awaken and even smart now.

Internal insecuty ministry
We hear of Munkigi, Sabaot land defence force, North eastern raids, Crime in the city name it. A democratically electected government will not condorn this. Precious and innocent lives are lost every day and still no serious action taken. Bwana Karume please do something Sir.

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Amendment of Retirement Benefits Act – Open letter to Hon. Paul Muite

James W. Wang’ondu Nganga
P.O. Box 536
Njoro – 20107
Kenya

28/08/2007

Amendment of Retirement Benefits Act – Open letter to Hon. Paul Muite

Dear Mheshimiwa Paul Muite

This letter serves to remind you about your commitment to move an amendment to the Retirement Benefits Act to enable those of us who retired on or after 1st January 2006 to draw the balance of our pensions, and not therefore have to wait until we reach the age of 55 years.

I am one of several affected by the law enacted by former finance minister David Mwiraria and was therefore very excited to read about your proposal to move for an amendment to the Act because I am in dire straits like many others. Both my matatus are grounded and my wife, two school going sons and myself are now heavily relying on our two daughters based in Denmark.

This is not fair on the two young ladies who are in their early twenties.

I am to blame to a very big extent because of silly investment blunders I made in the middle of last year, and I am desperate to remove the burden we have placed on our two young daughters and move on. Mheshimiwa, I simply cannot afford to wait for another 9 years to draw the balance of my pension, and urge you to press with the amendment to the Act before H.E. the President disbands parliament to pave way for this year’s elections.

Even if President Kibaki assents to the amendment, we would still have to possibly wait until 1st July 2008 to access the funds because the processes are lengthy at both Treasury and the Fund Managers. But this is okay, because we would be able to plan with a 1st July 2008 due date in mind.

Please do not forget our plight Mheshimiwa and please plead with your fellow members of parliament for support, to avoid a situation where the amendment to the act is defeated in the same way that the bill to reserve 50 nominated seats for women MPs was defeated.

We are with you Mheshimiwa Muite. This is a matter affecting many in all the corners of the country. Please do not forget us Mheshimiwa. This is our hour of need.

Yours,

J.W.W. Nganga (from Njoro, Rift Valley Province, Kenya)



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Monday, August 27, 2007

Kenyan's Little Known Sick Criminal World

A while back, somebody sent me a crazy story about a serial rapist/violent robber who specialized in armed robberies at homes in certain Nairobi suburbs. According to this informant this sick thug's "signature" was to rape a man's wife as the husband was forced to watch.

He also said that the man usually wore a mask but always had unprotected sex with his victims and yet he was believed to be HIV positive.

I did not know quite what to make of it, because this was really sick. I had not even heard of it in other parts of the world where there are many sick criminals. Such a story had not even emerged from that rape capital of Africa, namely South Africa. So I ignored the story and did not pursue it nor use it here because I usually like to verify my stories as much as I possibly can.

Now this weekend from a rather unlikely source, I found out that actually such a criminal was gunned down by police early last year. The thug was nicknamed Kauzi and he was a dreaded Mathare gangster who according to the report I read, liked to rape women infront of their husband and was HIV positive.

Actually it is fairly easy to determine the authenticity of a story before even the verification stage. However this tip which I had received from a man who appeared to have been the unfortunate victim of this vicious thug, sounded too bizarre and it was the sort of thing the police would never reveal facts about in their bid to always give a false sense of security to Kenyans and prove to all that they are winning the so-called war on crime.

Mercifully the said thug was gunned down by a dreaded plain clothes cop known to many people simply as "Tyson." who is said to operate like the late Patrick Shaw and has put fear in thugs operating in the Eastliegh Mathare and Huruma area, where he patrols regularly and many of them have even tried unsuccessfully to kill him. The nickname comes from both his appearance and ruthlessness in dealing with thugs.

Actually too little is known about the sick world of criminals operating in areas like Nairobi. It is important that the next government gets rid of this ridiculous old fashioned police policy on information. Information is power and enables the public to better prepared and take the necessary precautions. For instance because of the high incidence of rape in homes in South Africa, many homes are built with extra reinforced and heavily padlocked bedrooms so that even if an intruder breaks into the house, they are not able to gain easy access into the bedrooms.

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The Untold Story Of Mrs Weru And The Karatina Tourist Lodge

What was Mumbi Ngaru, a well-known ODM activist really up to at the now famous Karatina Tourist Lodge when she led the Raila Odinga entourage there? What was she seeking to achieve. Should presidential hopeful Raila Odinga trust people like her in future?

Those are the questions that analysts who know the facts behind the ugly incident are asking.

Investigations by Kumekucha have unearthed a set-up that was engineered by Mumbi Ngaru at the now famous hotel. Or was it just political naivety at work?




The now famous hotel

The whole idea was to get a newspaper headline reading; "Kibaki In-Law Welcomes Raila And ODM To Nyeri." Instead Mrs Lucy Weru, who was alerted of what was going on by somebody in the ODM party (no doubt a traitor or mole) decided that she much preferred the headline; "Raila And ODM Evicted From Nyeri Hotel." Wouldn't you?

Imagine the damage that would have been done to Mrs Weru and her relationship to her powerful in-laws if it had come out that she had welcomed Raila and ODM to Nyeri? The president's own in-law supporting his main rival?

Kenyans have conveniently short memories because it was in Nyeri that Raila was welcomed as Njamba, not too long ago, shorty after the 2002 elections where he had been instrumental in defeating Moi's Kanu after almost 40 years in power. But alas, times change.




The table from whence Raila was given his matching orders

Behind this much-talked about incident is the bigger issue of Luo/Kikuyu relations and what brought them to the level of mistrust where they are today. Incidentally it will be interesting to see what kind of welcome will be accorded to Narc Kenya activists and what sort of heavy security detail they will have with them this week when they are expected in Kisumu over the weekend.

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Where Do Musalia Mudavadi's Loyalties Lie?

In 2002, Musalia Mudavadi made a very painful decision which he knew would lose him the elections. He decided to stick with Moi during an hour of need for Kanu and the old man. For that decision he was hurriedly appointed Vice President and went into the record books as the shortest-serving VP in the history of Kenya.

Now Mr Mudavadi is very upset at the rumours doing the rounds that as soon as he loses his bid to be the presidential candidate in ODM, he will head straight back to mama na baba Moi. A visibly angry Mudavadi told the Mombasa people that those rumours were nothing short of ridiculous. But are they?

Would Mudavadi really refuse to give Baba Gidi a helping hand? He did as he was told 5 short years ago, what should stop him doing the same this time round? You see the Mudavadis and the Mois go a long way back. Musalia's dad, Moses Sabstone Mudamba Mudavadi once promoted Daniel Moi to a P3 teacher and Moi never forgot. In fact Misalia and former president Moi are related through marriage.

It is very possible that the so called "leaked story" of Moi's strategy for Rift Valley involving the Luhya community could be pressure on Raila Odinga to say Musalia Tosha. I say this because Moi's strategy has never "leaked" before. Why now? Folks, chances are quite high that the leak was deliberate. Moi knows that Raila is a strategist who hates to lose and the idea was to pressurize him to give up the presidential nomination to Musalia by making that now famous "Tosha" declaration which the son of Kalonzo called Musyoka had waited for and dreamed about for so long.

The truth is that neither of the ODM parties are popular in Western province and if Musalia does not get the ODM nomination, even the parliamentary seat he seeks will be in doubt. More so if Cyrus Jirongo's Kaddu fields a candidate, which they must.

We already know that Kaddu is a sister party to Moi's Kanu, so chances are still pretty high that Musalia will end up on the Kanu side. I am told that Cyrus Jirongo and Mr Mudavadi do not like each other.

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Can The Kenyan With An American Mother End Up In The White House?

Other African countries really envy Kenyans. You see in African customs the father determines the nationality of a person and many Africans see Democratic American presidential hopeful Barrack Obama as a Kenyan.

Ironical really when most blacks in American see him as more of a white candidate than one who can address the issues of the African Americans.

Anyhow I was a little sick of reading so many self-righteous uninformed opinions of Obama's chances in Kenyan blogs declaring early that he stands absolutely no chance,
that I decided to ask a native American friend who has been following elections in
America for close to a half a century now. Her reply astounded me and gave me a rare
glimpse into the political situation in the United States in relation to the next president.

I asked a straight question; does Obama have a fighting chance to win the democratic nomination and the election after that?


Her answer;

Unfortunately, I can't call this one. I personally don't like Hillary, and hope that Obama has a chance. And I'm not the only one who sees Hillary as being an
ambitious opportunist in search of power, rather than someone with deeply-held
ideals of her own.

But she is a real pro and works hard at her job even if she's oddly unlikable, while Obama is still new enough so he sometimes puts his foot in his mouth. (Which I
personally find oddly refreshing, particularly when contrasted to Hillary's skill at emphasizing what's going to sell her to a particular audience).

I fear that in the end Obama's lack of experience in international arenas may make
his candidacy judged to be premature by many, no matter how exciting his positive qualities. (Although I'd be happy to vote for him myself just as he is today, and
would HATE supporting Hillary. I bet he'd be a fast learner.)

Meanwhile, there are no obviously satisfactory candidates on the Republican side at the moment, and I think if Obama does manage to get the nomination he might win. I can actually see more chance of an unexpected post-primary groundswell of support for a young and interesting candidate with vision than for a pro who knows how to play her cards.

Those of us who dislike Hillary are most unlikely to be swept up in any wave of enthusiasm for her.

But actually, it's a horse race. Anything could happen between now and the primaries to tip the balance one way or the other. If the Republicans miraculously find a candidate that appeals to enough people, such a candidate might prevail against EITHER Hillary or Obama.

All that is truly clear is that most Americans are by this time quite glad Bush can't run again!


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Sunday, August 26, 2007

The Site Respectable Kenyans Don’t Want To Be Associated With, But My Oh My, Do They Read it!

Regular readers of this blog must have found today’s Sunday Nation rather interesting and one would be excused for thinking that we are working together.

Nothing of the sort is happening. In fact many respectable Kenyans including those in the media don’t think much of this popular blog and yet stealing an idea or two is no big deal (Tom Alwaka of Citizen, at least you make an attempt to recycle the headlines although the recent one on Raila was a wee-bit too close to the info we produced here).

Kumekucha is a team effort and our commentators here supply a lot of information and plenty of ideas too. Newcomers should ignore the jeers which I’ve learnt to ignore. For instance as recently as a few months ago when I insisted that retired President Moi was going to be a major factor in the upcoming elections, many of the comments were abusive jeers. Now the mainstream press do not want to discuss anything else, because it is true that you cannot be a dictatorial president for 24 years and have no influence.

Over a year ago I carried this post that I have re-pasted below. I re-read it today and enjoyed it immensely and I trust that you will feel the same as you as you read through it.

I have a hot exclusive I am working on for tomorrow, so kindly bear with me, will you?

THURSDAY, JUNE 29, 2006

Why The Next President Of Kenya Needs To Be A Young Person

Management style of Two Most Recent Presidents Of Kenya And Why The Next President Must Be Young, Healthy And An Early Riser

Attention Managers; There's Plenty To Be Learnt From Comparing Moi And Kibaki Management Styles

The management styles of former President Moi and that of President Kibaki as analyzed here are as different as night and day. But what is more important are the lessons they teach which clearly points us to the kind of CEO we need to take over the reins of running Kenya Inc. after the next general elections.

Former President Moi
Former President Moi must thank the Almighty for blessing him with such good health, which allowed him to keep a very punishing schedule, considering his age (84).

The former president would usually be up by 4 am every morning and would start the day just the way he often ended it, with a glass of milk (Moi has always been a teetotaler who doesn't touch alcohol). He would usually start the day by carefully going through the newspapers. The former president is reputed to have been a ferocious and avid reader of newspapers.

Depending on his program for the day, he would usually then start seeing people as early as 6 am. During Moi's administration two sets of diaries were kept. One was with the comptroller and he personally kept the other that was often packed with the many appointments that he gave to many, including ordinary Kenyans as he criss-crossed the country during his long days.

As the city started to wake up he would usually get a security briefing from the intelligence service which allowed him to face the day with the confidence that privileged information always gives to any person. This blogger knows a person that was very close to the former president and it is believed that Moi used the early hours of the day to reflect and make or postpone important decisions. This is usually the best time to make decisions, free of fatigue or the influences or hassles of the day.

By the time early office workers were arriving in their offices AT 8 am, the former president had already been at his workstation for four hours (about a half of a working day for most people).

What would usually follow was a long day of meetings, meeting people, roadside chats and so on. Mercifully the former President would tend to go to bed early. His night cap more often than not would be the legendary glass of warm milk.




The reason as to why such a brilliant man and the most successful finance minister Kenya ever had, has made such a blundering, shaky President, despite under-studying leaders like Jomo Kenyatta is really not a mystery. It rests with the decision making process. This is a very critical aspect of successful management anywhere.


President Kibaki
Due to recent health problems that have dogged the President, many of them triggered by a near fatal road accident in the run up to the last general elections in 2002, The President usually starts his day late morning, sometimes as late as 11 am. Another reason for the late start is that unlike his predecessor, the current president does not go to bed early. He tends to enjoy his night cap, which for him, like for most of his age mates is a nice beer at the right temperature. He usually continues working even as he prepares to end his day. There are unconfirmed reports that sometimes the President's working day ends late into the night.

Early in the Kibaki administration The Economist did a story that claimed that there was often heavy alcohol drinking going on at State House around the President in the evenings. The Narc government was at the time still very popular and the story died as quickly and quietly as it had emerged and is now long forgotten.

One of the advantages the current president has is that unlike Moi, he lives in State House. President Moi would usually retire to his Kabarnet Gardens home, off Ngong Road and just adjacent to the sprawling Kibera suburb, mostly in the evenings between 6 pm and 7pm.

President Kibaki's work day is very different because he does not shuttle all over the country meeting and addressing the people like Moi did. Neither does he spend several days every month receiving delegations from different parts of the country coming in to pledge their loyalty like Moi did. He is mainly an office person apart from the few public functions he attends from time to time. This caused a former Sunday Nation columnist Mutahi Ngunyi (now a close political advisor to the president) to pose an interesting question. What does the president spend most of his day doing considering his preferred laid back administrative approach that relies heavily on delegating a lot of power to his cabinet, he asked? Ngunyi even insinuated in his then well read column that the President actually sits around relaxing most of the time, literally doing nothing more than enjoying his trappings of power.

Even if this were true, recent political developments and the rapidly approaching general elections would not allow for such a lifestyle. In fact the first lady herself, Lucy Kibaki has said in public more than once that there are some politicians who have literally been causing the President sleepless nights. Meaning that the poor man does not get much sleep any more. This rings very true to anybody who has been closely following recent political developments in the country.

It would seem that many of the President's now painful decisions (that is another management truism, the more you delay decisions the more painful they become when you finally have to make them) are made during the agonizing of the night. Or maybe in the middle of the day, in the heat of things. My Dad whose thinking is very similar to that of the President (and he's also from the same generation) makes most of his decisions over his evening Tusker as he reminisces, sometimes with his close buddies. Whatever the case, we can be sure that crucial presidential decisions these days are hardly made at 4 am in the morning.

A Fascinating Comparison
Comparing the two most recent Kenyan presidents is a fascinating study in management styles and techniques and how they are influenced by personalities and character traits rather than educational backgrounds.

Former President Moi never saw the inside of a high school. This is in sharp contrast to Kibaki who was the first African to score a maximum six points (six top distinctions in six subjects) in his O-levels as a student at Mangu High School. He was also one of the first Africans to attend the London School of Economics where he excelled. By the time Kanu was getting him into politics, Tom Mboya had to personally fetch him all the way from the world famous Makerere University in Uganda where he was a lecturer in Economics.

Yet most people grudgingly agree that Moi was clearly the better manager. Moi's street-smart instincts seem to have given him an uncanny ability to make the right decisions at the exact right moment. One example stands out. After fighting multi-partyism vigorously for years, Moi sensed danger and suddenly changed tact announcing his decision in a memorable Kanu meeting in 1991. Hilariously, party pointman Shariff Nassir, stood up twice in the space of a few minutes to strongly support two very divergent views. First he stood up to suggest that multi-partyism would be implemented over his dead body. Then when Moi announced that he had changed his mind, Nassir was the first on his feet again to say that he too had changed his mind and that multipartyism must be re-introduced at all costs. Kanu delegates rubber stamped Moi's decision to scrap the notorious section 2 (a) of the constitution and bring back multi-partyism to Kenya.

Other one-party despots of the time who did not read the winds of change to make the right decision quickly found themselves out of power and dead shortly after. President Mobutu Sese Seko of Congo is one such example. As is Kamuzu Banda, the former strongman of Malawi.

President Kibaki on the other hand unlike Moi, hates to make decisions and more so, the direct confrontation it brings about. So quite often he waits until it is too late to make any decision. By keeping the LDP rebels in government for too long, he created a serious crisis for himself when he finally sacked the entire cabinet (another move that avoided direct confrontation. It would have been more prudent to sack only the culprits). Keeping them gave them time to gain more public sympathy and support for their cause, which in my opinion was simply not practical. The simple question here is, can a memorandum of understanding over-rule a constitution, which the president has taken an oath to protect? In the end because a decision was delayed and no action was taken in good time, it didn't matter who was right and who was wrong and the president emerged as the culprit in the eyes of the people. He has the results of the referendum on the new constitution as proof of this fact.

Ages before President Kibaki ascended to power, political columnist Kwendo Opanga described him as the politician who "never saw any fence he did not want to sit on". Former DP deputy leader Agnes Ndetei said on her return to the country this year, that the main reason she fell out with her then party boss, Mwai Kibaki was because the man would not make decisions ven when they urgently needed to be made. Incidentally it was this very trait that landed Kibaki the presidency because when you avoid confrontation and making decisions, you end up making less enemies. Out of all the front runners for the presidency in 2002, Kibaki is the man who had made the least enemies despite his long political career and was therefore the most acceptable candidate amongst his peers, long before Raila uttered the now famous words, "Kibaki tosha."

The Next President
There are many reasons why it is important that a younger person of the so-called dot com generation should now rule Kenya. To start with none of the immediate former presidents have strong IT or Internet skills. Which puts them and the country at great disadvantage in our very wired world.

One of the reasons behind Bill Clinton's successful presidency was the efficient use of information technology, email in particular was very heavily relied on. There is little doubt that despite the Monica Lewisky sex-scandal, no other president in American history has gotten so much done in such a short space of time.

The time has come in Kenya where we need to move away from that situation where every communication requires a secretary to sit down and type out a letter or even email. We need to graduate to quick emails personally from the head of state and even his key people, which will suffice and get things done a lot quicker. It is a sad fact that there are too many old people in the current administration whose generation are the sort that get intimidated at the mere site of a computer. This is one of the reasons why this administration has been far from efficient and have often been very sloppy and slow in getting anything done.

Kenya has been put many years behind by recent decisions and policies of the previous president and the current one as well. What this means is that the new president will hardly have the time to sleep. He will need to be both an early riser Like Moi and he will also need to work late into the night like President Kibaki, for him to have a fighting chance of making a reasonable impact.

He will also need to find a middle ground of sorts between shuttling around to every corner of the republic like Moi and efficient management both in the office and on the move with the use of laptops and mobile Internet connectivity.

Just another very good reason to prove that it is time the generation of our fathers and grandfathers, now still clinging to power, packed their bags and went home to rest. It is time to pass on the baton of leadership to a new generation whose age is closer to that of the nation.


See Other Features:

* You Too Can Launch A Part Time Business. But Here Is The Big Problem You Need To Overcome

* Kumekucha declares his interest in the Presidency

* Surgeon Catches Limuru Chief In Bed With His Wife

Will This Young Grassroots Campaigner Prove A Giant Killer?

Focus On Cherangany Constituency Parliamentary Seat 2007 General Elections




Interview with young aspirant Jesse Masai

In keeping with the vision and mission statement of the Kumekucha blogs, I continue to profile some of the younger aspirants in the forthcoming mother of all general elections in Kenya. If you're running and are interested in being featured please get in touch using the email address above. Be warned I'll have to check you out first.

Kumekucha: You are facing a political giant in Cherangany, what's your strategy?

Jesse Masai: My way has been to talk to the people on a one-on-one basis and through targeted communication with segmented focus groups. However, I'm yet to hold a single public rally, for tactical reasons. There's much else I'm doing in terms of approach to the campaigns, but obviously won't go into that here.

Kumekucha: Kenyan voters prefer to elect somebody with "a big car and big pot belly who dishes out cash and sugar" which disqualifies many younger candidates. Please comment.


Jesse Masai: Campaigns for this seat were devoid of money issues for well close to a year (I began working on it early last year). Towards the end of last year, however, some politicians in the area monetarized it. Where previously one would address audiences without them asking to be paid, grave issues were now overlooked and comparisons made over who had what. We had a sad situation developing in the process, where discussions on the issues that mattered were becoming rather muted. In the main, however, my campaign has been encouraged by the increasingly informed and decisive Cherangany voter who comes up to me to say kula ni kwa nani, lakini kura ni kwako. In a sense, therefore, we are glad others are burning their cash on our behalf - one of them is spending an estimated Kshs. 200,000 on hand-outs and fund-raisers on a rather regular basis. We want to hope the voters will have it in their heart to keep their heads at the end of the day.

Kumekucha: Is election violence an issue in your constituency and if so, how do you propose to deal with it?


Jesse Masai: There has been nothing serious thus far to write home about in that respect, though my sense of things is that some aspirants have that as a possible tool for political mobilization and demobilization. My approach has been to be mindful about my own security (a serious concern by the day), be informed on the security situation in the constituency and the country as well and preach peace in my public and private communications. I am a warrior for non-violence. I will not kill to ascend to power. And I will not kill to maintain power. Deep within me is the belief that we are all made in the image of God - the Imago Dei - and that nothing, not even politics, should motivate me to acquiesce to violence as a tool for political mobilization. If that happens, our road to Rwanda will be very short indeed. I have lived in several conflict areas in this nation to have had a very intimate knowledge of the ramifications of violence on a people. I won't allow it in Cherangany.

Kumekucha: Give us a brief summary of your background including professional qualifications.

Jesse Masai: I was born on February 27th, 1980 to a clergyman and a housewife. I attended Sinyereri Primary School, Cherangany High School, Messiah College (USA) and Daystar University (Kenya). My first degree had me studying public relations, media culture, print and electronic journalism. I'm currently pursuing an MA in Media and Development at Daystar University. I have had stints as a journalist in the mainstream media as well as in the NGO world. I have also, as a volunteer, taught languages, history and government in some parts of this country. I should also mention that my background is peasant and was rather difficult much of the time, - I have come this far purely by God's grace and mercies each bit of the way. I have God to thank for what I am today.

Kumekucha: Which presidential candidate do you support currently and why?

Ha! Ha! Ha! Why not wait for polling day?


What do you plan to do if you lose the elections?

I'll cross that bridge when I come to it. You can be sure, though, that I have some things in the oven.

What in your view is the single biggest problem facing your constituents?

It's tempting to list the usual suspects, but my sense of things - and indeed the inspiration for my candidacy - is that there exists a need for leadership on issues that matter in Cherangany. Leadership with a vision, a vision to lead people with passion, creativity and imagination.


How do you plan to deal with this problem?

I am seeking the people's mandate to serve them in the next life of our country's Parliament. I desire to exert a redeeming influence on people, ideas and structures in Cherangany and our country.

What are the land issues that have caused so many problems in the neighboring Mount Elgon area and who is funding the violence?

I suspect those who wield power, authority and influence in today's Kenya (both in government and the opposition) could give you a better answer to that.

What do you think of the possible candidature for the presidency of John Githongo, former ethics PS?

Interesting.


Any other comments.

I invite us all to take courage as a nation to make the necessary, right decisions come polling day. Our best days are ahead of us. I also invite us all to seek to make our lives a daily, responsible answer to the question of God's call on our lives in our generation. This will mean seeking God, finding of whom will be finding ourselves. Our souls will remain restless till we find our rest in Him. Finally, at a personal level, I covet your prayers and material support for the task I have applied myself to, - I still need cars and finances for that final push. If you are a voter in Cherangany, I need your vote, - as indeed those of your friends and relatives. More information about me and how you may be involved in the campaign can be found at my official campaign website.


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Saturday, August 25, 2007

Most Complex Presidential Elections Ever, Coming Up

I have learnt in life that the best policy is to keep things as simple. This is true in everything you handle in this life.

The way things stand, this year's presidential election is going to be the most complex ever.

For instance the current MP for Marakwet East, Mrs Linah Chebii Kilimo in her defection announcement this week only announced a defection in the presidential candidate she is going to support. She did not indicate which party she would use to seek re-election. However she ruled out Narc Kenya.

There is a very high possibility that Narc Kenya will probably not even bother to market itself in most of the Rift Valley and will instead leave its' allies like Kanu to sort out things in the expansive province.

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But my main point is that the old semi illiterate voter stuck in that booth in Marakwey East on that late December day will have to vote for instance the councilor from a party like ODM using one ballot paper, then of he wishes to re-elect Mrs Kilimo will have to find her and the party she will be running under possibly Kaddu or Kanu in yet another very crowded piece of paper. And then for president, they will have to find Mwai Kibaki and whatever coalition he will be running under. And all this is a maze of at least 50 or so political parties listed in the ballot paper. This is the kind of exercise that would be an intellectual challenge even for some voters in the United States, let alone that semi illiterate farm laborer somewhere Marakwet East.

It is really no accident that since the re-introduction of multiparty democracy in 1992, the vast majority of Kenyans have tended to vote what is wide referred to as the 3-piece-suit. That means the same party for councilor (most voters are hardly interested in that one), MP and president. This is the simplest of things to do quickly.

The electoral commission may just have to explore the possibility of having the local authority and parliamentary elections on one day and then the presidential on the following day or a day or two later. Or alternatively start with the presidential and move on to the lesser ones. And they might just have to liaise with the president on this one because I can see the confusion and long delays that may result at polling stations as voters try and find their preferred candidates in the maze of numerous candidates.

It would have been much easier if we had gone into these elections in the same way we went into the 2002 polls where there were just two major parties, Kanu and the opposition. But alas, it is already clear that this time around, that will never definitely not be the case.

Then there is the question of whether this was the best strategy for President Kibaki's handlers to opt for. That is seeking alliances with parties to support only the president. That is a very complex question and there are some that would just brush it aside pointing to the fact that it is the best way to get the president re-elected. In my book it is a very risky strategy because MPs could easily change their minds on the ground when the wind changes. This is usually much more difficult to do when one is in the same party as the president.

However it is definitely not the best thing for Kenya and this insistence by politicians to deliberately pursue a balkanization policy and approach for Kenya with tribal grouping and tribal chiefs and headmen ruling the day is something that is in fact very harmful to democracy and the future of the country. It may just end up backfiring very badly with a record number of spoilt votes and long delays at the polling stations as voters try and figure out the complex quiz that will be the ballot papers his time.

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Kumekucha's Impossible Job

In the stories I carried yesterday analyzing what motivation Moi may have in fighting tooth and nail to make sure that Raila does not see the inside of State House, I mentioned that the former president's aides believe that they are averting bloodshed because some radical but influential presidential advisors have sworn that they will hand over power to anybody else but Raila.

Many of my dear readers including a very close friend interpreted the story as evidence that I am supporting Raila and the revelation was probably supposed to draw sympathy for the ODM presidential hopeful. It is no secret that members of the house of Mumbi are extremely sensitive to any criticism on one of their own (I have noted the trend since I launched this blog), but what I want us all to investigate is why most of them tend to feel this way.

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Please, I do not want condemnation, which will get us nowhere; instead I want to understand this feeling and exactly where it came from. I am sure many of you would like the same.

By the way that particular fact about what Moi and his aides are saying is accurate because I have two impeccable but different sources confirming it. Of course there is the possibility that Moi and his men are lying to Kenyans or to themselves.

Incidentally the other day I was informed that there are rumours that this blog is financed by President Kibaki. Wow!!

Folks, that is how challenging my job here is.

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Why married women cheat

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