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Thursday, September 20, 2007

Can President Kibaki Survive This Set Back?

In politics, timing is everything and the message is always much more important than the reality on the ground.

Picture this. When the president is busy campaigning in Western province on his second tour of that province in almost as many months, a major Western province presidential candidate and a Western province political party suddenly turn round and pledge their support for the president’s main challenger.

For months I have been saying here that the true feelings of the people of Kenya will be made known when the campaigns start. In fact this is only the beginning of many other embarrassments this president will face in his campaigns anywhere outside Central province. That is a biting statement, I know, but it is true.

A president who has locked himself in State House and avoided meeting the ordinary people of Kenya and a president who has done that immediately after taking over from a previous holder of the office who as corrupt as he was criss crossed the country meeting ordinary people is a candidate asking for trouble.

According to my information there are many presidential advisors who are currently carrying around a smirk on their faces that say; “I told you so.” Their advice has all along been ignored but now they are going to be vindicated big time.

This is politics and no matter how much the people love you, you can only make so many mistakes and still get away with it. In fact if President Kibaki wins re-election he deserves to be carefully studied so that political scientists can throw in the trash all they thought they knew about politics.

In this unique presidency Kenyans have seen much. Tribal clashes break forth in parts of the country and you as chief executive of the country are still cool. A neighboring country literally invades the country and Kenyans are killed while others are injured and you still maintain your cool. Then you go and get your cabinet troops to push forward a bill aimed at controlling the press and you do this not only in an election year but less than 5 months to the polls.

Then as if that is not enough, you hit the campaign trial talking to the people about your development record and a growing economy whose effects are still to trickle down to the ordinary folks. The ordinary folks don’t understand economics but they know that they have not seen you since the campaigns in 2002 and they also know that this is yet another campaign period. So no matter how idiotic and stupid the masses are supposed to be, how do you think they are going to vote?

Those ordinary people may not understand Anglo Leasing but they have heard whispers that some of your cabinet ministers were playing hide and seek with auctioneers shortly before the elections in 2002 but are now amongst the wealthiest people in the world. Some of these characters have been fighting orders to declare and explain their wealth, in court.

Latest polls, deliberately kept away from the public, show that barring the extra-ordinary President Mwai Kibaki is going to receive a resounding defeat in the forthcoming polls. However what shocks me is why anybody who lives in Kenya should be surprised at such a result.

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