Monday, April 18, 2005

Nothing Actually Really Changed

I have moved to, and i have also migrated all posts and comments. YOU SHOULD NOT BE HERE SO CHANGE YOUR BOOKMARLS/BLOGROLLS ACCORDINGLY!!!!
Recent events, chiefly comments by some leading NARC luminaries, as well as the forced resignation of TI boss Gladwell Otieno and the arrest of Reuben Ndolo have left a particularly bitter taste in my mouth.

Call me cynic, but I have never been one for rhetoric. Anyone can talk. Anyone can give stirring speeches. Anyone can write policy papers, memoranda, manifestos and strategic plans. But it is one thing to talk, but quite another to walk the talk.

The NARC Government is one such entity, long on talk and wanting decidedly on walk. When they came into power hope swept this nation, but as every day passes it becomes more and more apparent that the more things change, the more they remain the same.

Maybe its the nature of my work, or my own nature, or combination thereof, but I don't really care for talk. Show me results. Results are what matter. Talk is cheap. You cannot eat promises and visions. You cannot make money from promises and visions. You cannot prosper fuelled entirely by speeches and conferences.

Granted they have some achievements, but then again I contend it is laughable for me to commend you for doing exactly what you are supposed to be doing. Government's function is to attend to the education, health and security needs of its populate, and I fail to see why they should be congratulated for doing exactly what they are supposed to do. Whether or not the KANU Government delivered the goods is a moot point, so any defences that start with "At least...." hold no water. You are judged against what you are supposed to do, now what the people before you did.

What They Say What We See
"We believe in the rule of law, and people are presumed innocent until proven guilty" Funny how the Judges what were purged were never availed this facility. Funny how different yardsticks are used depending on circumstances
"We have already arrested and prosecuted people" The zest with which people from KANU were chased was impressive - Chepkonga, Oguk, Meme. Conveniently, NARC does not seem to have any dishonesty in their blood
"We have spent our time setting up institutions to fight corruption" True. They were 14 at last count. However what have these institutions netted, besides small fry? Results, not institutions. Results
"We are deeply committed to fighting corruption" Minister Kiraitu Murungi told us that the Office of Ethics And Governance (Githingo's old office) is being downsized
"Like it or not Mwai Kibaki will be president until 2012" Lucy Kibaki, just last week and Kiraitu Murungi, about a year and a half ago "Like it or not " cannot appear in the same sentence as democracy, never mind the fact that it was Kibaki's own pledge that he would be a one term president. Shades of Oloo Aringo and JJ Kamotho, and indeed Kibaki himself with his famous 'cutting down a Mugumo tree with a razor blade' statement
"KANU run down this country and destroyed it" There are KANU ministers in the present Government, KANU members who were deeply involved in the said mismanagement. Nicholas Biwott appears headed for Government.
"The Government cannot control Transparency International" Joe Wanjui, who sits on the TI board is one of Kibaki's close confidants. This has not been lost on many observers
"(Gladwell Otieno) was too critical of NARC's anti-corruption campaign" Of all the reasons to 'sack' her, this is the LAST one that should be used. This is precisely a reason to keep her on!
"We have allowed freedom of expression, and you can say anything" Do not forget Martha Karua's campaigns against cartoonists and radio stations. And most recently do not forget Reuben Ndolo was arrested for singing a song critical of the President. Who's next?
"KANU mismanaged and misused this country's resources" The opulence of this current Government has to be seen to be believed. Kibaki's convoy is composed almost entirely of Mercedes Benzes, including the chase cars! And the convoy is not small. All 30 odd ministers drive 15 million shilling cars, paid for by the tax payers. And the Government had problems raising money to send the Olympic team to Athens!
"The country is more secure" Laughable. Clashes abound in Kwanza, Trans Nzoia, etc, Ngong is under siege, we are being car-jacked, stabbed, mugged, pick pocketed and defiled right left and centre
"We are doing everything to revitalize agriculture" Writing off debts left right and centre is NOT the way to do this. We have lost count of the number of debts that Kirwa and Ndwiga have written off, forgetting that there is no such thing as writing off -- someone (me) has to foot these bills!
"There is no wrangling" Mwai Kibaki, as recently as last week, and Moody Awori, pretty much for as long as he has been in Government Nothing need be said
"The Kikuyu, Embu and Meru should reunite politically." Njenga Karume yesterday, mooting for the reactivation of GEMA Speechless with amazement that in this day and age we are marching right back to tribal enclaves and politics!
"Constitution in 100 days" We're closing in on 1,000
"I will not put my face on the money" It takes an exceptional man to break a promise that he could keep by doing precisely nothing
"Zero Tolerance on corruption" Nothing need be said
"Government's stand is to facilitate business in the private sector" With Government sticking its beaky nose and frustrating the Kenya Meat Commission, Kenya Cooperative Creameries, Tiomin, EPZ and most recently Econet wireless, the message foreign investors are getting cannot be a positive one
"The Era of psychophancy is over" You just need to listen to the Kiraitus and Murungarus and Viscount Kimathis to shoot that down. Plus in Rariedasongs of praise were commissioned for Kibaki and his wife!

Take a look at this and decide for yourself whether there is any truth in the allegations that NARC stands for Nothing Actually Really Changed

The bottom line is that we need a complete purge of these people in the next elections. Completely fresh blood, with no baggage and visions of the future, not of tomorrow. For only then will we make strides in rising from being just another poorly manages third world country

I'm polishing up photos from my Uganda trip (removing errant thumbs, window frames etc). Ought to be done soon. Also Cabinet Tales 2, the successor to Cabinet Tales is getting warm....

Shania Twain - Ka-Ching