Tuesday, 20 November 2012

Elect persons with drive to develop prosperity policies

By Mghanga Malasi  
As the election near so is the whispering along the corridors who should and shouldn’t be our leader among many Kenyans. One of the challenges Kenya faces today is deeply entrenched ethnicity and short-sightedness nature of our politics. The next election will certainly be interesting though frightening to many given the heightening of political temperature along tribal lines by the current leadership. The election will be unique in that there are several levels of the legislature that have to be filled through the ballot. It is for sure that occupants of the august house will have a hard time convincing the public.

Kenya desperately needs political stability, but the leaders do not seem to have learnt anything from the 2007-2008 predicaments. One day they are talking of the need to revamp the economy to realize the vision twenty thirty targets and the next thing politicians are fueling the ethnic emotions or they are engaging in their usual practice and games of ethnic divisiveness through propaganda and other lies. There is no doubt that the same resilience shown during the voting and ushering in the new constitution shall certainly be repeated next year. Kenyans have matured in democracy. However, more civic education is required to sensitise the electorate on the implementation of the new laws especially on devolution. The registration of voters should begin in earnest to recruit more voters for the elections next year. 

This year has been a tough one for majority of Kenyans. The next man or woman of the house on the hill has a difficult task convincing the electorate what he or she will offer. The country is still facing same myriad challenges of disease, poverty, unemployment and hunger despite the economic gains reported in the media now and then. 

Kenyans are still suffering and disillusioned; the youth graduating from universities every year have no hope of being employed any more in the saturated and highly competitive labour market. The disenfranchised youth have tried the ballot several times and failed to win emancipation. When they tried violence to claim their freedom last time, they were stopped in their tracks by a political settlement. One would wonder what will take to stop them after the next national crisis. 

There are various tents that drive the economy that the next president must promise to work on if the economy is to grow. It taunted that a healthy nation translates to a healthy economy. The health sector is needs facelift. This means more budgetary allocation to the Ministry of Health to improve on infrastructure and modernization of the hospital critical utilities.

S/he should seek to lower the cost of living affected heavily by high inflation, which is also undermining financial borrowing. Energy and fuel costs must go down. This president should ensure that we cushioned from the volatility of the international prices by may be developing strategic oil reserves. 

The education sector, apart from free education the government should increase and set aside fund for capacity and facility improvement and development in both primary and secondary schools. Many of the schools in the rural areas are ill equipped and therefore priority should be to establish an educational infrastructure development fund to oversee building of more schools and classrooms, libraries and science laboratories if we are to develop a skilled workforce for the future Kenya. 

If only our politics motive were that we keep politics pure and the motive is doing good to one’s country and its people then will all prosper. The qualification the candidates taking up important seats such as the governor, senator and presidency will matter if this country were to change for the good of all Kenyans not a few cartels. The economy should be knowledge driven those elected must be persons who have the drive and passion to develop policies that will bring prosperity.

Monday, 19 November 2012

CCM has reached Political Menopause, the signs are clear!

Nicodemus Minde
It is said that you cannot teach an old dog new tricks. The grand old party of Tanzania Chama Cha Mapinduzi (CCM) has been 'rebranding' itself. The party was in Dodoma in its National Executive Committee meetings where they 'elected new' members to serve as the party secretary, deputy party secretary and secretary for foreign relations. The quest for rebranding the now out of touch political outfit has been met with mixed reactions. The party and its top officials have been marred with graft and corrupt allegations, something that has really undermined it otherwise dwindling fortunes. The party has been on a roll of blaming its adversaries on witch-hunt. Its national chairman, President Jakaya Kikwete has failed miserably to provide leadership and sound judgement on methods of making the party regain former glories.

My thesis is that the party has reached its political menopause and it is finding hard to grapple with the reality of life. A story is told of the old lion and sly fox. In the hey days, the fox enjoyed abundant fortunes that came with the lion's grit and prowess in hunting. The fox could just wait for the spoils after the lion had hunted. Life was good! When the lion grew old and lost its mane and great hunting techniques, the fox knew that it had to invent a new way to survive. The sly fox one day persuaded a donkey to come vist the lion so that the lion could prey on it and the two could have a meal. This is what has become of CCM, it has now resulted to going back to the old guards who have lost their tegritude. The party elected with absolute majority former secretary Philip Mangula to the post of party vice chairperson of the mainland and another old guard Abdulrahman Kinana as the new Secretary General replacing 'the out-of-touch' Mukama. The other new members are former Finance Minister Zakia Menghji and Dr. Asha Rose Migiro. 

CCM has lost vision. It is a clear indication that it lacks visionary leadership. A clear indication that its days are numbered and as Jenerali Ulimwengu puts it, the party is showing its age and its creaking under the weight of long incumbency and just like the titanic, the iceberg lurks unseen and its a matter of when that the great party shall sink.