Mode: Recap ‘09
Same idea as last Monday’s post but this time I loaded my mp3 player with RnB and decided to focus more on events that made local news here in Kenya as opposed to regional or international news. Here goes:
Karua’s resignation: Alicia Keys – “A Woman’s Worth”
A tumultuous year for this Honourable MP to say the least. Prior to her resignation, Karua’s loyalty to the President and her party allegiance were beyond question, she was one of the President’s men, so to speak. Therefore it was only fitting that Kibaki would reward her with the powerful Justice, Constitutional Affairs and National Cohesion docket after taking office (pun intended) in 2007. Fast forward to this year when the Iron Lady of Kenyan Politics came out and openly declared her intention to bid for the 2012 Presidency (A tad premature? Hmm). What followed were attacks and criticism from all quarters of government most notably from her fellow lawyer Amos Wako. She reportedly complained to the President on numerous occasions that her work was being undermined, sabotaged and disrupted by Wako and others. The President clearly wasn’t listening to his loyal servant and the final straw came when several High Court judges were appointed with Karua, as the Justice Minister, not even being consulted! Karua, feeling dejected and almost betrayed by the man she had so diligently served, decided enough was enough and quit.
The Migingo saga: Brandy ft. Monica – “The Boy is Mine”
Unless you’ve living under a rock (pun intended), I know you heard about the diplomatic row that erupted over the 1 acre island known as Migingo. A classic case of Kenya’s leadership being caught snoozing as Uganda stepped in to claim territorial sovereignty over Migingo even going as far as hoisting their flag over it! Although it was clear that the real dispute wasn’t really over the rock but the fish-filled waters surrounding it, the media made a meal of this story and our rowdy MPs jumped in some even calling for Kenya to use military force to regain control over the island and its waters. To date, I’m not really sure how the Migingo issue ended, all I’m hoping is that if Al-Shabaab decided to declared parts of Northern Kenya as its own, our government will step in promptly and diplomatically show those cattle-rustling bastards what’s what.
Helen Sambili & Drama Galore: Missy Elliot – “All In My Grill”
I would think that running the Ministry of Youth Affairs and Sports would be a fulfilling and pressure-free job especially since it is perceived as being far from the wrangles and stress of main-stream politics. But Prof. Sambili proved me wrong. Or maybe it’s her no one seems to like? This year, She’s been constantly embroiled in public debacles and confrontations for all corners and it seems that everyone wanted a piece of her. Her own assistant Minister complained to President about her while continuing to publicly undermine her authority and hurl insults at her every opportunity he got. Her fitness to run the ministry was called into question by everyone from Athletics Kenya, KFF, and most recently by the Youth Development Association members, who all quit in protest. Well, kudos to Sambili for continuing to weather the storm despite the harsh opposition unlike some people (*cough* Karua *cough*)
G10 and the Sex Boycott: Faith Evans – “You Gets No Love”
Sometime in mid 2009, we all were getting a little sick and tired of seeing our top two government leaders namely Koala and Tinga unable to agree on a single thing while the country recovers from an unprecedented period of violence and disaccord. But it was the women of Kenya who found the most unique way of venting out their frustrations over the existing political impasse. Urged by a national coalition of women calling themselves the G10, all women went on a one-week long sex strike. In hindsight, I think it would be fair to say that although their motives were understandable, the sex strike was probably not the most effective means of attracting the right kind of publicity on an issue that was of significant concern to the entire country.
Raila Odinga: Of Circumcision and Baptism: John Legend – “Lets Get Lifted”
Just when I thought that political leaders couldn’t make 2009 any more ‘memorable’, Baba Fidel pulled a hat-trick on us. Earlier this year, Agwambo himself urged men from his ethnic Luo community to go and get circumcised. The response to this call was overwhelming especially since we all know that aside from the hygienic merits of “being cut”, there is also the direct correlation between HIV/AIDS infection and male circumcision which is now common knowledge. At last a positive message to come from a politician. But Raila wasn’t done with us. In a bid to declare that he has truly turned over a leaf, Tinga was baptized Kamlesh Pattni-style dressed a full white suit in a swimming pool. (remember this?)
Ringera and KACC: Madonna – “The Power of Goodbye”
In hindsight, Ringera’s resignation may as well have been the closest KACC will ever get to capturing a “big fish”. This was a man who was earning about 2 million shillings per month (more than the President!) for sitting on his ass and running a toothless government institution whose very existence was more for purposes of political expediency than enforcement of the law. But I guess Ringera was used to sitting on his ass and doing nothing especially since most of our High Court Justices don’t seem to do much else on the Bench anyways. With all the external pressure on the Executive to prove that it was serious about reforms, Ringera must have known that he would be sacrificed for the “greater good”. If this wasn’t clear to him then surely he noticed the overwhelming vote of no-confidence from both the public at large and blood thirsty MPs. Still, Aaron refused to budge, hoping Baba Jimmy would miraculously come to his rescue or had forgotten that his position to not tenured like that of his fellow Judges on the bench? So in the end, we said goodbye to Justice Ringera.
Amos Wako’s Never Ending Tenure: Craig David – “Slicker Than Your Average”
When you’ve been the State’s top lawyer for two decades non-stop, I guess you’ve earned a spot in the country’s history books, good or bad. But negative publicity is something the smiling A-G had not bargained for as he was publicly slapped with a USA travel ban recently. Kipepeo told me that the track by Ruff Endz – “No More” seemed appropriate and I agree somewhat. The only clarification I would make is that this travel ban wont necessarily be enough to keep the smiling Wako from showing his teeth especially since it is reported that he does most of his shopping and banking in Europe anyways.
Now playing: Erykah Badu – “Didn’t Cha Know”