By MARTIN MUTUA
As he sat pensively on the ceremonial seat of the State in Parliament Thursday, President Kibaki was probably pondering whether the budget statement by his new Finance Minister Njeru Githae would solidify his legacy.
During his two-term presidency, mega corruption scandals like Anglo Leasing, Triton Oil, maize sale, free primary education and cemetery rip-offs threatened to cloud his legacy that on the brighter side was marked by an impressive economic growth and infrastructural development.
With the next General Election set to be held in March next year, this would definitely be the last budget under the Kibaki government as the country’s third Head of State.
President Kibaki was sworn into office on December 29, 2007 for his second term after the bungled presidential elections, but his term will be extended for two months by the National Accord, which created the coalition government in January 2008.
The Head of State has not had it easy since he came to power in 2003 following the Narc wave that saw him whitewash the preferred Kanu candidate, now Deputy Prime Minister Uhuru Kenyatta.
Whereas President Kibaki will be remembered to have come to power on the promise of zero-tolerance to corruption, his regime has been dogged with one scandal after another, with none having been investigated and culprits brought to book.
Dogged by scandal
The Kibaki regime has been dogged by scandals that have seen taxpayers lose billions from State coffers through corrupt deals that have involved top government officials. To date, however, none of the government officials who have been named in the scandals have been arraigned in court to face the law.
The scandals that have since left a bitter taste in the mouths of many include Anglo Leasing, Triton, the controversial sale of the Grand Regency Hotel and more recently the free primary education scandal where funds meant for public schools were embezzled.
But on the positive side the Head of State would be walking with his head high after leaving office following the establishment of several projects that have received accolades from majority of Kenyans.
The recent massive road network projects that have seen the country acquire super highways that have eased traffic congestion in and out of the city centre is a matter of public knowledge.
And apart from the embezzlement of funds meant for the education sector, the introduction of the free primary education will go down the annals of history as one of the cornerstones the Kibaki administration initiated for the country.