The Kenyan government is a government filled and littered with scandal after scandal. It has always, since day one, initiated itself into tribal setting and tolerating the practice of corruption which it swore to fight. How can senator Obama support a government whose governance is centralized in one tribe whereby that same tribe is involved in corruption scandals?
Senator Barrack Obama's visit to Kenya was of good faith and acceptable. The reaction from Kenya's envoy to US, Mr. Peter Oginga Ogego, terming Barrack Obama's remarks as "injurious to Kenya-US relations," is absurd and unfounded. The Kenyan envoy and the Kenyan government must know to date that the Illinois senator was born by a Kenyan father which entitled him to visit and say whatever he wanted. He is a US citizen who is entitled to be a Kenyan citizen from his father.
Senator Obama's remarks that "corruption and ethnicity based politics is what Kenya must overcome" were true facts of the day. It is needless for the Kenyan envoy who got instructions from Nairobi, to react without reasoning on matters on the ground. If the Kenyan government was elected democratically then the Senator is democratically obligated to talk in a free country without any fear. The Narc government which was elected under one united umbrella and chose Kibaki to contest and respect MOU (Memorandum of Understanding) disobeyed that agreement because in it, some politicians from some communities were going to be appointed to positions which were threatening to Kibaki himself. That made him appoint people from his community and region in disregard of the government of national unity which brought him to power. Senator Obama was right on the point of tribalism and ethnicity that is why they are ashamed and scared.
Kenya's corruption in the government sector and the opportunity created by the Kibaki government to encourage it as a daily practice was not in bad taste as stated by the Kenyan envoy, Mr. Peter Ogego. Anglo Leasing scandal which was carried over from Moi's government was orchestrated and carried on by President Kibaki's inner circle even though his pledge was to stamp out corruption. In this scandal, a huge sum of money was signed out by Kibaki's cabinet knowing that they were defrauding the tax payers. There was nothing wrong for senator Obama to lament about high profile corruption ignited by Kibaki administration. The newly appointed Kenyan ambassador to US is quite wrong and should think twice.
Hiring international criminals "The Armenian brothers" to come and commit crimes in Kenya is a total crime committed by the government. The Armenian brothers were sneaked to Kenya as investors when truly they were not. They committed crimes including car hijacking, they were drug trafficking agents on top government officials' payroll, they were brought to Kenya to eliminate influential opposition leaders from communities opposed to the President, they were brought as government secret police who attacked and masterminded the Standard Media's invasion thus suppressing freedom of the media, because of high profile corruption the Armenian brothers were issued with airport access cards to enter any location at the Kenyan airport facilities which endangers travelers from the West. This was international airport security violation. Who of the two should be trusted and supported between senator Barrack Obama and Kenya's Ambassador to US, Mr. Ogego. The remarks by Kenyan Ambassador to US are wrong, outdated and are out to promote insecurity and instability of Kenya.
The government was overwhelmingly elected to solve some critical problems which were created by the former President Moi's administration. Kibaki was elected to instill accountability, create transparency, fight corruption, fix the economy since he is an economist and establish a government of national unity. To date, his make up is tribally aligned. He was elected on a national forum known as Narc which included all communities but because of his ambitions to lead a government on tribal lines, he has formed another party from his region known as Narc-Kenya which is the point where senator Obama pointed out as "ethnicity- based politics" which is evident today.
Kenyans abroad support and applaud the US government's effort which took senator Obama to Africa. The US government should in future do the same by organizing influential politicians from either party to tour Africa and mingle with the locals as Senator Obama did. In future, visits like this will scare corrupt leadership and pave way for properly managed government. Senator's visit and remarks are highly welcomed and expected to be carried on by other US leaders. Africa is still in the age of HIV, diseases, hunger, ethnicity and corruption where monitoring by donor countries is compelling. Forward ever backward never; Africa needs your support to remove corrupt leaders.
By Patrick L Okeyo