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Monday, August 06, 2007

How Kibaki Strategists Are Going To Use All The Political Parties That Are Claiming Allegiance To Him

Make no mistake about it; there is absolutely no confusion over this issue of which political party President Kibaki is going to use to seek re-election. It is in fact part of some very well laid plans.

To put it simply, all the parties that have been associated with the president's re-election bid will not field presidential candidates but will instead all have strong candidates for parliament. The clever strategy here is to ensure that during the crucial parliamentary candidates nomination exercise strong supporters of President's camp standing for MP will not cross over to any of the opposition political parties.

All indications are that the president will keep his choice secret until the very last possible minute. If possible after the usually messy, parliamentary seats nomination process, although this may be technically impossible.

This is a strategy that has the chances of working very well assuming that everything remains as it is now until the December polls, which is virtually impossible. And that is one of the greatest weaknesses of the Kibaki think tank. Their plans and strategic moves on the chess board of politics are all "too neat" and "too text book." The reality of politics is very different. Text book plans like these rarely work.

For instance it is now clear that one thing the president's re-election campaign will do is list his achievements and by their sheer volume overwhelm any opposition candidate. Some of these achievements as we are reminded here by mainly paid hands too often are;

1) An improved economy
2) Free primary school education
3) CDF (Constituency Development Funds)
4) Youth Fund etc.

The reality in politics is that people usually vote with their hearts rather than their heads. That is why even the best laid plans usually fail because at the end of the day human beings are the most emotional animals and will cast their vote based on emotions rather than facts. This is why the president's political advisors quite often shock me and many other seasoned political analysts who wonder if they really know what they are doing.

The President's advisors will do well to talk to one retired General Jackson Mulinge, and take plenty of notes while they are at it. Gen Mulinge is a former Chief of General Staff for many years and also a former legislator for Kathiani constituency in Machakos. He once came face to face with his constituents and confidently started pointing out his many unprecedented achievements in the otherwise poverty-stricken constituency. They included roads, employment opportunities etc. As he mentioned each achievement, his constituents replied loudly in unison and in the Kamba dialect "Osa!" Meaning take it back with you. And indeed their loudest "Osa" was at the ballot box where they handed the general a resounding defeat in the hands of a political minnow whom nobody had ever heard of before. One Peter Kaindi Kyalo, the current MP for Kathiani who has now been in the august for two consecutive terms.

Many people have testified how predictions made in this blog always seem to always come true. Here's one for you. Watch what happens when the campaigns get into high gear and the president's supporters start telling the long suffering people of Kenya that the economy has improved and about all the other "rosy" achievements of this administration. Even in Central province, what people will remember most will be the brutal Mungiki beheadings of innocent people.

This is one of the reasons why the candidate for president that the President's men fear most is former PS for ethics and governance. One John Githongo.

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