Kenya Scores Poorly in Integration Bid

Published on 29th January 2008

The current impasse in Kenya that ensued from the 2007 general elections is a great disgrace. It clearly demonstrates that not everyone who preaches democracy actually upholds democracy.

When Kibaki quit KANU and formed DP, he demonstrated that he not only valued change and democracy, but was also tired of KANU’s oppression under President Daniel Arap Moi. Kibaki’s unsuccessful attempts to capture presidency were interpreted as a defeat against democracy. Who would have imagined that the champion of democracy would stay put as the blood of Kenyans floods the land reminiscent of El Niño floods? Who knew that Kibaki's version of democracy would lead to violence, internal displacement and flight of citizens to other countries?

When Kibaki defeated KANU by the help of his current enemies; there was neither contention, chaos nor death. The losers accepted defeat despite the fact that they had every machinery to protest and stick to power as he has done. KANU understood that to manipulate the ECK to go against the verdict of Kenyans would result in the destruction of the very citizens they wanted to lead. They respected and valued the wish of the majority and accepted defeat. Afterwards, an official inauguration ceremony was organized. Dignitaries from all over the world were invited to witness this event. This was true democracy.

Who knew that Kibaki who was sworn in the open in 2002 would abuse democracy by being sworn in behind closed doors in spite of contentious results and absence of other heads of states to witness the function? Only president Yoweri Museveni of Uganda congratulated Kibaki. What did he see in Kibaki’s victory that other heads of state did not see? What was he congratulating? The blood shed as a result of Kibakis self proclamation as President? Maybe Museveni based his message of goodwill on war. It is only in war that someone can be congratulated for victory after killing his opponent. Not in elections.

Does Museveni understand democracy after ascending to power using the gun? A man who clings to power using the gun in spite of his waning popularity? A man who tells Ugandans that they can’t withdraw power from him since they didn’t confer it to him in the first place? Can such a person fail to congratulate Kibaki?

The world can now see why Tanzanians have cold feet towards the East African Cooperation. The world can now see the fire we were heading into. If Kibaki would have lit the same fire in the EAC, where would we have run to? Now, Kenyans can run to Tanzania or Uganda. If the entire East Africa was on fire, where would we flee to?

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