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Remain steadfast in uniting Kenya, Kalembe's last words to BBI proponents

By Erastus Mulwa | May 31st 2021

Former Kibwezi MP Kalembe Ndile [John Muia, Standard]

The late outspoken politician, Kalembe Ndile, had challenged the proponents of the Building Bridges Initiative (BBI) to set aside their individual ambitions for power in order to remain united ahead of the next general election.

In his last encounter with journalists at Intercounty Hotel in Athi River where he convened a press briefing eight days ago, Kalembe urged the country's top politicians to "remain steadfast" in uniting the country and maintain the rule of law.

He advised that constitutional amendment through BBI should be pursued in a transparent way, and in a manner that will not offend the country's supreme law.

A visibly weak Kalembe singled out senior political leaders in the country including Wiper's Kalonzo Musyoka, ANC leader Musalia Mudavadi, Kanu chairman Gideon Moi and Ford-Kenya's Moses Wetangula and urged them to reach out to ODM's Raila Odinga in order to fix the country's political destiny.

"I urge all these politicians to respect the rule of law. The ruling by the High Court on BBI should also teach Raila a lesson that anything is possible with God. If the Covid-19 pandemic brought the whole world on its knees, what is so special with BBI?" posed Kalembe.

He urged the proponents of BBI to pursue their ambitions with an open mind, and without chest-thumping, warning that God was the ultimate judge of destiny.

"I urge Kalonzo, Musalia, Wetangula and Moi to consider engaging Raila in an arrangement similar to the former National Alliance Rainbow Coalition (Narc) which propelled retired President Mwai Kibaki to the presidency in 2002. They should all avoid greed for power," said Kalembe.

Until his death, Kalembe had joined Kalonzo's Wiper party after a short stint in the Jubilee party.

Kalembe founded The Independent Party (TIP) through which he unsuccessfully vied for Mavoko parliamentary seat.

He would later dissolve the party to join Jubilee in the run-up to the 2017 general election.

Besides politics, Kalembe was a seasoned businessman who had interests in hospitality and real estate. He owned rental units in Mavoko and also ran a popular eatery and entertainment joint, Macha Be, in Machakos town.


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