Normally politics is not our cup of tea here. On a good Monday we advise visitors not to put on political tees here. Because well, the same politics that makes us, divides us. But have you followed Facebook conversations lately and if keen enough noted the two brigades that mushroom? It’s like day and night wide apart. Pause, those independent chaps, who supports them? Does it mean their fans are not on social media yet? Are they reading? Can one of them make it agenda number one to mobilize online fans?
Here we are, we squeeze our eyes closed to let politics pass only to open eyes to the harsh reality that politics rule this side of the world! Ahem. We join the band wagon and decide to talk about politics not from a noisy position but from the perspective of what’s our brand of politics? For we are the branding people. Once again in case it didn’t catch your antennae, we asked visitors not to put on political T-shirts. Sorry but we are not Third way Alliance. Yes we are not NASA. Neither are we Jubilee. We are just your usual Kenyans trying to talk about our brand of politics from a general point of view.
Back in time, long ago when God was still perhaps a teenager, we were colonised. Or should I write our fore fathers were colonised? But I hear some girl whisper “its founding fathers” Yes dear, you win, I win too for listening to you. This is it, our founding fathers were colonised. They staged a war. Some collaborated. Eventually they won. Not because they beat the Britons but because they negotiated their way out. Common issues; slavery, land et al.
Exit white colonialism enter neocolonialism morphed into political leadership. And politics became the order of the day. Here we are breathing, eating, sleeping, fighting politics. The modern day political leaders borrowed heavily from the colonial masters all the way from the Berlin declarations.
One way or another, politics are part of us. We deny, give excuses, explain but they are indeed part of us. Not that am defending our today’s decision to talk about politics. No! This is the reality on the ground (Hehe, like am this big grassroots campaign agent) enough. After five years we vote. In between we talk about the next election. Then vote. Then talk about the next. That way. But what we do is garbage in garbage out! Recycle. Someone put it nicely on TV talk recently “we have change of guard not regime change”
The whole lot of them; political class are Moi Students coming from the Oppressive KANU School of politics. There has been the morphomosis to Brands such as Narc, ODM, TNA then recently coalitions such as Rainbow, Jubilee, Cord, NASA just to mention. But one thing you will note is the origin. That whispering lady, can we still say their founding fathers were KANU affiliated?
But what defines our brand of politics? I will cite the now infamous tyranny of numbers but I want to mean tribal inclination. Sorry I was taking the long route towards Ethnic maths. Politics is a game of ethnic maths. There is some phrase “one of our own” that bows it’s allegiance to ethnic maths. To say the least this political world is ruled by that. And it’s what has birthed that euphoria of “it’s our time to eat” and recently “kumeza mate sio kula nyama ama namna my friend?
Fast forward to the concluded primaries and we have a lot to learn. What came out evidently is, the parties have owners. There’s the will of the people then there’s the will of the party owners and I beg we leave it there. We have as a result a record high of independent candidates. Those who have chosen to go against the establishments. For instance we saw some counties stage grueling battles of political heavy weights especially where incumbents were involved. On record is ODM party that announced two winners for the kisumu Gubernatorial. With a one Ojaamong pulling a Tharaka against Otuoma. Jubilee party silently ran two campaigns; 2017 and 2022. And it was widely evident in the types of battles across the “strongholds” which lands us to the interesting city politics. And someone says yes there’s trouble but then danger waits.
Our once time gleaming political star; Peter Kenneth came back now with resized ambition of wanting the governors position. See all the way from a foiled presidential attempt. But people are others, didn’t they ask him to go think about his options in life and perhaps come back fully decided on what exactly he wants to become amongst President, governor, senator, women rep (pun) or MCA! And didn’t it shake the Jubilee brigade. So we had team Nairobi that well, sounds like it carried the day. Talk of Sonko at Governor against Kidero, Sakaja at Senate against ChapiaChapia sorry it’s someone Sifuna. See the Senate lost taste all of them want governors out. And Shebesh at Women rep against the light of the city also known as ‘mama Taa’ whom we should however call Esther Pasaris. That one is interesting only if electorates vote soberly!
Our good friend Denno is in the colds. Ooops! Just like his opponent turned foe; Kenneth, he wasn’t decided which way out! Let’s face it; men of this town have plans. Big humongous plans. They wake up and plan and show up and make it count but the city got its own plans. The city doesn’t give a damn to the fact that there exist men with ambitious plans on billboards. It gets its way because well, it’s the city; it owns us we only live in it! The indecision of Dennis Waweru gave our Comic brand turned political Kj a fighting chance. Kudos to that boy. Si he’s put the fire burning ever since the days of ODM.
And people shhhh! One minute of silence. Kabogo lost! How? Wasn’t he a political god that side of the equator? What happened? Baba Yao! Waititu’s brand of politics sprouting from the expansive Eastland tends to read like that of being at the right place at the right time. See he loses against Kidero, goes back to throwing stones. All of a sudden Kabete happens; he wins then navigates towards the high office of Kiambu. Look he’s one foot away from clinching that space but wait Kabogo again put his best foot forward. He’s in as an independent. Does it mean a thing?
The cat walk lady? Sorry it’s Hustler who said that referring to a one Waiguru at a time when Kabura was word in town. Girl she admitted to have ferried our taxes in sacks in a court of law. Where is she though? Anyone? Forget about NYS, Waiguru she clinched the Kirinyaga Gubernatorial ticket on a record entry and it’s her against a one iron lady Martha Karua! That could be well, battle of the titans. See the seating governor lost. I think it reaches a point in time when the electorates become decisive. They are better working with alternatives than living with nonperformance. Because let’s face it, if it’s about thievery, all politicians are thieves. If it’s about scandals, each of the politicians Harbor at least a scandal. Politics is that murky! Am no analyst but this election if you ask me, the electorates are at that point in time when you give in and leave the political destiny to the gods of fate. They are out to employ the gamblers approach of trial and error. To see what the other thief can deliver differently. The air is still fresh of a one Abisai who made a fortune from football gambling. Gambling might or might not pay!
Back to city politics and deep inside starehe Constituency once under our Lady of God Bishop Wanjiru of The Glory is here. Where? I doubt it’s still as glorious. Then recently under Maina Kamande whom the political incomers say he’s too old to rule. That place starehe is a battle of celebrities pitting our once vibrant activist Boniface Mwangi, a one Steve Mbogo whom Dick, Tom and Harry say “that kid got Mula!” and a singing sensational Jaguar. Look we might soon have a live band at the Parliament floors. That would be epic right?
In that same direction and the neighboring Embakasi East bestowed Babu (a young boy, with an old name) to lead them to Canaan. Ever since then Tibiiim and Tialala are words in town! Am seeing the chaps at Oxford consider the two words after they just took up ‘Bodaboda’ recently. But then see the brand of politics our future kids are glaring at! Sonko, Jaguar, Babu… does it say anything?
Wait, NASA took forever to get us a flag bearer. They kept getting in and out of retreats coming out with once upon a time tales until Isaac Ruto happened. That Ruto who insists there are two Rutos so get a little specific, him or the other one? They even called a Bomas session to announce that they had come to announce that a flag bearer would be announced the coming Thursday. Ahem, Bwana Wetangula that joke was massive.
But the presidential race is cut off between Jubilee and NASA. Noooo oooooh! Easy, easy the independent presidents battalion. Word on ground is, the horses are two and the rest of you fourteen or so are sorry, donkeys (tongue in mouth) the people are saying not me. Am just a powerless agent. Could you consider retreating somewhere and perhaps bringing us one of you such that we have three Horses with no donkeys? Would his highness Chebukati allow with his famous timelines? Because well, we don’t want a presidential debate crowded with podiums like child’s play.
Speaking of Presidential debate, this time around we have the presidential then deputy presidents separately. I see a situation. See Uhuru is an excellent debater oozing Briton English. RAO is a not so good debater but he got some thick history of this nation. Down to the deputies, Kalonzo is unbeatable in debate. Hustler struggles, he catches fast and turns comical. You guys remember that joke he burst recently? “Yule Jamaa anatusumbua ati ye ni mtoto wa chief. Na angekuwa mtoto wa Rais kama Uhuru?” (Laughter. . . Curtains fall)
Exit political shenigans enter reality. Politics is been always an issue of contention year in year out. We all live and coexist in peace it’ll political campaigns happen and all is not rosy. People take political sides and the air smells of division and hatred. Politics is sensitive bad and it can get personal. Gravitate is what I do these days when I bump into chaps of political rhetoric. I get to grasp the side of the divide they are supporting then I align with them such that we have a political conversation not an argument. That way lines of conflict are not drawn. But this is what someone West of Africa will call the politics of the ostrich; burying your head in the sand at the advent of danger to assume it’s gone. Our politics if anything, divide us more than they unite us!
Going forward, we are not going to elect leaders because they built roads, SGR and the ilks. Building roads for instance is part of their mandate. It’s a matter of reason not choice. But when they don’t Build them, we will question them as to why they didn’t deliver on their mandate. We are however going to elect leaders because they embrace dignity, openness and exhumed a strong definite stand against vices such as corruption and tribalism which are key monsters.
But there’s the disturbing trend on politics. Machakos governor for example, he rose real fast but see he’s out of the game just as soon as his presence was starting to be felt. He’s done some development deep down there but he’s loosing watch this space. Why? He played against the political rule book. He deserted the political gods. He got thinking that allegiance was a matter of choice not reason. When in politics, allegiance is key. Like the fate that befell chaps like kabogo was all about the internal Jubilee wars around the 2022 equation and the aspect of allegiance and or lack of it. Let’s face it but the political game is played in a certain way by certain people. Them that were born in the political dynasty. The rest of us, hard truth but we are only political spectators with only a vote to boot. The difference for Mutua for example between 2013 and now, is the lack of the blessings of a political godfather. It then rings the question of how do people vote?
We are about to vote for the ‘labdmark’ August Eighth Elections but if you ask me for instance, my personal State of affairs, this is what I will write:
Voter number 17000008
Polling station Kilimani Primary
Women Rep: Undecided
One because it’s ones secret at the ballot as of whom they are going to core. Two, am surely Undecided because the whole lot of them want to get into political leadership for reasons not servant leadership but sorry, wealth accumulation. Sic!. But indeed when it comes to voting, no one really votes soberly. People vote on top of list, ethical calculations. Yet the power we have however minute is our vote. It’s the only tool we can use to orchestrate a revolution. And it’s Che Quevara who said, a revolution is not an apple that galls when ripe. You have to make it fall.