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By grace! Why Bunge Choir wasn't as amazing at National Prayer Breakfast

 Bunge Choir in action during the National Prayer Breakfast at Safari Park Hotel, Nairobi. [Denish Ochieng, Standard]

Lawmakers drawn from Raila Odinga's Azimio la Umoja and President William Ruto's Kenya Kwanza on Wednesday displayed a rare show of unity during the National Prayer Breakfast to belt out a tune at Safari Park Hotel, Nairobi.

Azimio's principals led by Odinga had on Tuesday said they will not attend the breakfast over what they termed as a mockery of God as the event does not offer "the environment the country needs for humility before God, honesty with citizens and respect between leaders".

The coalition that is at loggerheads with Ruto's administration over the contentious Finance Bill  2023, however, gave its members the green light to attend the event.

With 'permission’ granted, Nairobi Woman Representative Esther Passaris led a spirited alto brigade as National Assembly Chief Whip Silvanus Osoro made a stirring piano performance in a vain attempt to mask the off-tune choir.

Clad in white shirts, black trousers and matching red ties, the men kept glancing at their female colleagues for a melodic jolt into the heavenly consciousness. But, like the dream of cheap gas, they had to contend with the wait for an assuring note that never came. All they could do was reminisce into their own hoarseness akin to the Housing Levy’s tumbling bricks.

The ladies, who donned sculpting fit white blouses and black dresses with a splash of red in scarfs and floral headpieces, unlike the men, seemed composed and at ease to jazz up the event, especially after Osoro cracked up the event after he disclosed that Kimani Ichungwah was kicked out of the choir for singing ‘faster than the beat’. Mugithi anyone?

Or was it the poor choice of song? The choir’s rendition of ‘Amazing Grace’ was sporadic, too slow, at times.

 National Assembly Chief Whip Silvanus Osoro plays the piano during the National Prayer Breakfast. [Denish Ochieng, Standard]

In any case, if the “Row, Row, Row Your Boat" hand motions by the choir's conductor, the self-styled 'mla mamba', Tana River Senator Danson Mungatana, were anything to go by, then, by all means, Ichungwah escaped the crocodile's jaws and presumably had enough time to rehearse support for the Finance Bill as it braces for an iceberg.

"Amazing grace! How sweet the sound, That saved a wretch; like me! I once was lost, but now am found, Was blind, but now I see,” they sang. I hope they’ll see and find the tempo they all fit in during their Wednesday practice.

Give it to them though, they aren’t everyday musicians. But they share a unique trait with Kenyan boy band Sauti Sol for they too will take an indefinite hiatus from the music scene as a choir once the Finance Bill is tabled before the House.

The tune they’ll come up with as they trade jabs on the floor will make a great song, won't it?

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