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Wednesday, March 26, 2008

Is PNU Rather Desperate For The Safaricom IPO?

The reaction of government hardliners to the dust ODM has kicked up concerning the Safaricom IPO is really fascinating. As I write this, I am still gaping in wonder.

I had braced myself to see the entire PNU force coming out with both guns blazing. Woi! Nothing of the sort has happened as I write this. Instead what we have seen is a very polite and humble Amos Kimunya speaking with great restraint and respect to the PM emphasizing to the press that he did speak to Raila Odinga about the IPO and Raila Odinga indeed supported it, just last week. The truth is that neither Raila Odinga nor the ODM are on record has having denied Amos Kimunya’s well publicized statement at the time to the effect that they had met and discussed the IPO with the ODM leader. In fact Kimunya added a rider, to the effect that Hon Raila wanted to purchase the shares on the spot, if it were possible. That silence to Kimunya’s significant utterances must now be interpreted as accent on the side of Raila Odinga and ODM. Let us be serious here, folks. Please.

Interestingly in reply to one question today Kimunya said that ODM should be considered separately to the Prime Minister designate. Implying that Raila Odinhga still supports the controversial Safaricom IPO.

The other government bureaucrats quickly fell on this administrations favorite “whipping boy.” They say, the law gives them no power to halt an IPO in progress. That one really made me laugh. I wondered why the same law does not stop the same government from banning matatus from the Central Business district and causing so much chaos as well as suffering to ordinary Kenyans as they blunder around for a solution. Can you imagine Uhuru Kenyatta saying; “The law does not allow me to stop any vehicle from coming into the CBD”? Interestingly, the latest drama in this CBD circus is the fact that although buses are supposed to ferry people from Muthurwa to town it takes ages because Nairobi still has a serious congestion problem in the mornings even without the Matatus. Could it be those multi-vehicle families including that of the Minsiter of local governments? But I digress. Oh I forgot, all his kids go to school abroad (what happened to the Visa ban?)

PNU are saying that they have no way of stopping the IPO from happening even if they wanted to and whose fault is it? Why, the law of course!!

So why is it that that I sense desperation here? Why is it that I even sense fear? Fear that the lucrative (for a few) IPO may actually be halted. Nay I sense panic. And why, I pray to ask, has this Safaricom IPO been speeded up at such breakneck speed? Approvals and hurdles have been cleared in record time and it is scheduled to launch this Friday.

This thing reminds me of my days as an employee when people in the office used to stop everything to help speed up the accounts department and the endless procedures so that the salary cheques could be send out early. This is further evidence even for those who have a terrible cold and have lost their sence of smell, that there is a terrible odor coming out of this Safaricom IPO. All Kenyans of goodwill should stay clear of the thing. Anybody who cares about Kenya and fighting corruption and the fat cats must have nothing to do with that demonic, devilish IPO. And those who end up handling the prospectus on Friday should make sure they wash their hands thoroughly after that. With soap. This thing which has caused ODM to tell lies in broad daylight… na bado. Remember Goldenberg and how it destroyed so many reputations? Just watch what happens with this Safaricom IPO.

Poor Prof Anyang Nyong’o. This unsung brave hero of the struggle was forced to keep quiet all those days as the Safaricom IPO was rushed forward. Now suddenly when PNU and ODM cannot agree on the cabinet, ODM changes its’ mind about the Safaricom IPO. The same IPO Kimunya tells us they were enthusiastic about and nobody challenged his statement then. Please, let us deal with the truth here. It will always set you free.

This is a good time to introduce Prof Nyong’o to all you young Kenyans out there who were toddlers or not even born in the 1980s. That was the time the good professor was a guest of the State at the dreaded Nyayo house dungeons and torture chambers. The man himself admitted once in parliament how his private parts were squeezed using a pair of pliers (ouch), in a vain attempt to make him sing like a bird to the Special Branch about his involvement with the clandestine Mwakenya anti-government movement at the time.

No wonder the good professor causes fear in PNU quarters whenever he calls a press conference. At the time when Nyong’o’s “valuables” were being given “mechanic treatment” at Nyayo House, the then MP for Othaya Mwai Kibaki was busy singing mama na baba songs and saying that the government was a Mugumo tree and those who were opposing it were like some silly man trying to cut a Mugumo tree with a razor blade. Kenyan politics is very funny because as you read this it is not Nyong’o or the other brave Kenyans who suffered untold torture to fight for freedom in this country who are seated in State House. It is in fact the Mugomo tree chap who is there. Wonders of all wonders.

Let me say it again fellow brothers and sisters; stay very far away from the Safaricom IPO folks. Trust me, I beseech you to do that for the love of the motherland. There will be other bigger and better IPOs after we have sorted out this mess, I assure you, even if I have to float Kumekucha shares.

P.S. President Kibaki had to wake up very early yesterday to make it for his meeting at Harambee house with Raila Odinga. The duly elected president usually wakes up at 11am or a little after that. Now many people, me included are usually in a bad mood when we have to wake up earlier than usual. Could this be why these guys who have proved to be great buddies in recent times could not agree?

But what is even more interesting was the body language and close consultation that went on with Prof George Saitoti yesterday. Here’s a tip to ODM if you are planning to ask for Internal security docket, forget it. Too much work has been done there in readiness for what is about to happen. Trust me Saitoti can not be moved from that ministry. Curious as to what work the mathematics professor has been so busy with? Keep your eyes on this space. Or even better get a copy of the Kumekucha Raw Notes

P.S. 2 Joke of the day (I have never laughed so hard in my life). One of the new Ministries being proposed by PNU; Ministry of Implementation of Vision 2030. While they are at it we also need Ministry To Investigate Election Theft, Ministry to investigate the government spokesman.

Meanwhile some civil society folks have recommended a cabinet of 24. NO Way! That’s too large. Germany who currently have a coalition of 3 political parties have a cabinet of 15! I change my position. Let the new grand coalition government have no more than 18 ministers (max) and then one assistant minister in each ministry. No need for assistant ministers in the Prime Ministers and President’s offices. And by the way the 18 should include the PM and his deputies as well as the Vice President.


1 comment:

dmutai said...

May I have your attention please?

I have a suggestion on HOW TO AVOID A BLOATED CABINET of 44+.

ALL MPs should be provided with FLAG FITTED GOVERNMENT CARS.Ministers and MPS will thereby look glamorously similar on the road!
PNU wants to reward all its MPs with cabinet positions, so why not just make all members of parliament be the real Slim Shady

"...I repeat, will the real Slim Shady please stand up?
We're gonna have a problem here.."

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