2017 Polls:Why do we need an election in Kenya?
Can anyone help me understand why we need an election in Kenya. If parliament cannot transact the business for which it exists why do we need parliament? From what I see happening in Kenya it seems to me that political parties and not elected or appointed members of national constitutional institutions bodies think of themselves as the bonafide representatives of the people.
Consider for example, the Kenya opposition parties action on IEBC. They forced the president to concede to their demands to replace the electoral commission because the opposition did not trust the commission. Yet even after agreeing to have the commission replaced, the opposition is still screaming that IEBC cannot be trusted.
The opposition leaders led masses to the streets and disrupted daily lives for many Kenyan for selfish reasons. These opposition leaders seems to have only one agenda–that is disrupting the current leadership with the hope that will help them win.
This is an unjust and a primitive approach to politics. Unfortunately we have religious leaders who appear to side with and enable this troubling opposition behavior. For example, the National Council of Churches of Kenya and Supreme Council of Kenya Muslims who are urging the president not to sign the electoral law that was recently passed by parliament instead of condemning the opposition leadership for calling for mass action.
It is important to put things in perspective. Those fighting the former president Moi regime had valid reasons to do. It was necessary to go to the streets because the country had no independent judiciary. Today we have an independent judiciary and a president that respects the rule of law. That was the reason the opposition leaders went to court to stop parliament from passing the new electoral laws.
By calling for mass action the opposition is demeaning the very judiciary they ran too simply because the court did not side with them. Had the court sided with them they would by now be calling for mass action because the government led by the president had disobeyed a court order.
But the opposition leaders are calling for mass action under the pretense that the Jubilee administration is ignoring the will of the people. This begs the question “which people?” Are the opposition leaders telling us that those who support the government are not people?
BEWARE OF THESE OPPOSITION LEADERS
My hope is that reasonable people can see that the opposition leaders are aware that by calling for mass action they are calling for bloodshed. They know that their supporters especially in those areas like Nairobi where they hold mass protests are outnumbered by Jubilee supporters.
They are also aware that the supporters of the president are pissed by the tendency by opposition leaders to unjustifiably insult the president. I have no doubt they are hoping that their followers will fight with those of Jubilee and create an impression of a country that is burning so they can then blame it on the president and his deputy. I call on all peace loving Kenyans to reject calls for mass actions. We have independent judiciary and the opposition leaders if they have sincere grievances can go to court.
The church and other religious and civil organization need to encourage use of the judiciary and where necessary review judicial pronouncements and expose those judgments where the rule of law is not adhered to too. Otherwise constitutional bodies including the National Assembly ought to be left alone to fulfill their constitutional mandates. The party that forms government must be protected to carry out their functions for the period for which they have been elected. They ought to be challenged when they violate the constitution not when they do things that some people don’t like.
It is very sad that selfish purposes are the reason why we have extrapolated governing structures that are a huge burden to the tax payers. We as a nation must not serve the egos of individual leaders anymore. Consider for example, what would happen if the country went into elections having ruled out a manual backup to the electronic voting system. What happens if the electronic system fails? Obvious in such a case confusion and chaos are guaranteed.
So why would someone fight to have people vote in a system where confusion and chaos are the guaranteed results? To me the answer is simple. This serves the selfish people that know they have no chance of winning. For this reason such a careless plan must be rejected by those who care for the nation.
Rev. Dr. Muhia Karanja of Toronto Canada.