Tuesday, July 29, 2008

Crown Prince Obama

Saturday, July 26, 2008

Prof. Ongeri On School Unrest

Tuesday, July 22, 2008

Tuning Out Kenya

Thursday, July 17, 2008

Broken News

On NTV 9pm news yesterday, 16th July, a report from one Robert Nagila was aired showing a confrontation between National Heritage Minister William Ole Ntimama and Chepalungu MP Isaac Ruto in the presence of Prime Minister Raila Odinga and Agriculture Minister William Ruto. It took place during the Mau stakeholders forum held at the KICC on Tuesday, 15th July. In the report, a clearly agitated Ntimama, seemingly unaware that the cameras were rolling and the mike was on, appeared to be admitting responsibility for the killings of 600-1000 people and even invited the MP to "bring his people" for an all out battle over the Mau.

Today morning I woke up nice and early hoping to catch some more on that confrontation on NTV News This Morning but Lo! and Behold, the clip had disappeared. Neither is it available on the NTV youtube website. There is absolutely no mention of the confrontation in today's Daily Nation either despite the fact that the dispute over the conference is front page news.

Another example of self-censorship in our supposedly free press? Or did someone make a late night phone call to Nation Centre? Anyone know where we can get hold of the clip?


The clip is available at

Hat Tip: Mwalimu Mati

Here it is:

Wednesday, July 16, 2008

Parliament Burns

An eruption of violence at the grounds of Kenya's Parliament triggered by a disputed motion has left at least one person dead and has forced many Cabinet Ministers to seek refuge away from the August House.

Amos Kimunya was cornered and hacked to death on the floor of the House by a gang of machete-wielding back-benchers as horrified cabinet colleagues looked on helplessly. The youths were carrying plackards reading "No Grand Opposition Coalition, No Peace."

In an effort to contain the bloodletting, the government yesterday threatened to ban all live broadcasts of House proceedings.

And with more reports emerging of youths roaming the corridors of Parliament, Government spokesman Alfred Mutua downplayed the violence saying it had only affected 3% of Government Ministries. "Parliament is not burning nor at the throes of any division," he said.

As he spoke, a group of the youths were said to have cornered Immigration Minister Otieno Kajwang and Deputy Prime Minister Uhuru Kenyatta.

Leaflets threatening Motions of Censure against certain Ministers have been circulating in the House and to date many Ministries remained closed for fear of looting of their Budget allocations.

And speaking from the relative safety of the KICC, Vice-President Kalonzo Musyoka appeared to throw more fuel onto the fire when he announced that all MPs were ready and willing to pay tax on their bloated allowances. Mr. Musyoka was still nursing the wounds he suffered during his valiant but ultimately ineffectual attempt to save Mr. Kimunya.

The move to tax the allowances is said to be the real reason why Mr. Kimunya was killed. He was the first to propose the measure and ever since it was rumored that gangs of politicians-for-hire were looking to finish him off. They finally caught up with him at the Grand Regency Hotel, where he was consorting with Libyan bellydancers, frogmarched him to Parliament where they held a show trial in the full glare of TV cameras. Mr. Kimunya was pronounced guilty and sentenced to death after which the youths descended on him.

Friday, July 11, 2008

Brig. Ali Testifies at the Waki Commission

Testifying before the Waki Commission looking into the post-election violence, Commissioner of Police Brigadier Hussein Ali stated his belief that the police never encountered a single peaceful demonstration, denied that they had effectively banned all political gatherings and accused Kenyans of being interested only in rights and not responsibilities. He said his officers had not used unwarranted or excessive force in putting down the riots and demos except for the single "unfortunate" incident in Kisumu where two protesters were shot in cold blood.

Many of us who were not locked up in ivory towers, smoking whatever it is our public officials smoke, will beg to differ. I distinctly remember scenes of bullet-ridden bodies lying in the Nairobi Mortuary, police breaking down doors and beating up innocent residents in Kibera. I recall allegations of rape and wanton murder levelled by people against GSU officers. Pictures of CNN's Zain Verjee being hit by a teargas canister as she reported on the barricading of Uhuru Park to stop ODM rallies remain vivid in my mind as do recollections of the teargassing of attempted peaceful marches by an ODM women's group and another led by Nobel Laureate Prof. Wangari Maathai. Of course, this footage did not make it into his presentation.

Another interesting feature of his testimony was the attempt to downplay the severity of the chaos. According to him, only 600 people were killed and 200,000 displaced. He also seemed to heap praise on his officers for managing to prosecute all of 168 cases related to the violence out of over 13,000 cases investigated. Oh, and he also believes that the violence was a spontaneous reaction to the announcing of the Presidential results and was neither organised nor pre-meditated, which flies in the face of all available evidence and common sense.

At this rate, is it any wonder that impunity is the order of the day in Kenya?

Tuesday, July 08, 2008

Kimunya's Last Stand

Last week was one for the books. Finance Minister Amos Kimunya was censured by Parliament as his PNU cronies, whose dubious win in last year's presidential elections he had defended to the hilt (remember him saying that Koffi Annan was only here for a cup of tea?), hang him out to dry. What goes around, realy does come around. The very man who was high-handedly telling us that the NSE is not a fish market when we objected to the Safcom IPO now finds himself entangled in a very fishy deal. His arrogance and disregard for Kenyans' intelligence has finally caught up with him. I would like nothing better than to see him kicked out of the Cabinet but I am not holding my breath. President Kibaki is not about to go against his governing creed: for every action there is an equal and opposite inaction. And anyway, who wants the bother of a precedent-setting sacking especially at a time when allies in Parliament are few and far between? Such a move would immediately endanger his PNU cronies such as George Saitoti.
KBC is reporting that Kimunya has resigned following consultations with the President. Good riddance to bad rubbish! I'm quite happy for once to be proven wrong.