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Palaver - 15.04.11

By | April 15th 2011 at 00:00:00 GMT +0300

Palaver

Dear Commissioner Hassan Omar, what kind of carpet welcome did you expect to be accorded your high-powered delegation of advocates, Muslim leaders, human rights crusaders at the Entebbe Airport? Granted, there is selective amnesia on the scales of justice, especially those involving words like ‘terrorism’ and "rendition of Kenyans" to foreign courts, did you seriously expect a warm reception in a country worried about an opposition leader’s call for Egypt-style uprisings? Were you surprised when passports of four of your 10-man delegation were detained? Says so much for that East African Something-or-other.

Crunching numbers is always such fun. Imagine this: The BBC will send at least 550 staff to cover the royal wedding on April 29 to bring nine hours of on-the-ground live radio and TV images to BBC One in London, happenings along the route of the wedding procession and one-on-one vox-pop reactions from around Britain. As for Kenya, all the big boys of broadcasting sent skeleton teams that were dwarfed by the Legislatures’ 40-plus, cap-clad, anthem squawking reps. And all because Kenyans could not hold an election without upsetting several nations, careers and neighbours.

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And still on ballot matters, voting just started in India, for Assembly elections ahead of vote counting on May 13. Difference with Kenya’s eight million voter nightmare in the 2007 model, is that more than 714 million people will vote in over 800,000 polling stations. In Goodluck Jonathan’s Nigeria, the 160 million-strong population boasts 140 million voters, eligible to cast ballots at 150,000 polling stations. That is not all. There are 74 million registered voters trying to choose folks to 360 House of Representative seats, 109 Senators, 36 Governors, from 54 parties and 20 presidential candidates. This, despite Kenya, India and Nigeria sharing common issues on voter bribery, mega corruption and electricity that only exists on policy papers, yet post-election violence is heard of in only one of the three. Arrghh!

And finally...

Does that Dombolo dancing Barclays ATM advert security guard get to keep his job?

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