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Corruption claims floor both CORD and Jubilee

By Makau Mutua | January 3rd 2016 at 00:00:00 GMT +0300

NAIROBI: I am sick to my stomach — of both CORD and Jubilee. One is the government, while the other is a government-in-waiting. But the two increasingly look like the two-headed hydra. Neither appears capable of saving Kenya. That’s because elites in both tribal cocoons treat political parties like grass-thatched huts—temporary, collapsible, and inherently insecure. Nothing illustrates the bankruptcy of the intellect — and utter lack of political morality — than the current mud-throwing on corruption. CORD and Jubilee honchos are facsimiles of pigs in a mud-pit. Let me tell you why Kenyans need neither CORD nor Jubilee. We need to break free of our tormentors in both ramshackle parties and create an alternative leadership. If not, we are sunk — completely.

This is the basic construct — a fact that’s undeniable. Thieves infest both CORD and Jubilee. Personally, I believe Jubilee has the more deadly and voracious thieves. But you can’t be half pregnant, or partially corrupt. You are either corrupt, or you are not—full stop. That doesn’t mean that one thief can’t accuse another, but the answer to an accusation of theft is not to point to your fellow thief. Two wrongs don’t make a right. You shouldn’t proclaim your innocence as a thief by pointing out that your neighbour is a thief too. Nor should you hide under your tribe’s skirt to flummox your pursuers. Each wrong, or act of theft, must be answered on its own merit.

Let’s admit one very important thing — Kenyans are gullible. That’s because by now they should have figured out there’s no real difference between CORD and Jubilee and throw the lot out. Kenyans should also have figured out that their tribal barons are maggots. They prey on them by invoking the tribe. I always wonder what the Kikuyu peasant has in common with Jubilee’s Uhuru Kenyatta. What does a hungry poor Kamba — without access to water — have in common with Wiper’s Kalonzo Musyoka? What does a desperate Kalenjin IDP have in common with URP’s William Ruto? What does a godforsaken Luo labourer have in common with ODM’s Raila Odinga? Yet these miserable souls will defend the tribal kingpin to death.The problem with thieves in both CORD and Jubilee is that they aren’t even imaginative.

That couldn’t because they act with brazen impunity, or that they know that Kenyans are too stupid to really challenge them. They’ve fed Kenyans with tribal kamuti [Kamba potion that beguiles you]. It’s a powerful drug. Perhaps the leaders themselves are simply reckless thieves. I mean look at the looting at NYS. Or now the alleged bribes given by BAT to leading politicos. Let’s not mention Anglo Leasing or Goldenberg. The Eurobond saga, if proven to be a heist, will be the biggest ever. And no one—not a single thief—has ever been caught. Isn’t it a joke that we’ve police and courts?

Both CORD and Jubilee elites have a perfect script on corruption—if you accuse me, I will accuse you back. That’s right—the anti-corruption war is nothing but a “he said, she said” mud fest. There’s no truth—that ever comes out—because the opposing sides hogtie each other in accusations and counter-accusations. That’s what happened to CORD’s “war” on graft against Jubilee. Jubilee had taken such a beating that you knew another shoe was going to drop. Except the shoe dropped on CORD. The air could go out of the Eurobond investigations because the BAT saga has put opposition chiefs on the back foot. If CORD asks any more questions, Jubilee will tell them to account for BAT. No one will come to rescue Kenyans from the claws of their leaders. Methinks we are a meek lot, although that’s a revolting thought. We will happily accept any garbage that’s dumped on us. Our leaders know this —and laugh all the way to the bank at every election cycle.

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Where will the dam break—when shall we say no more? Do we have it in us to throw our masters off our backs? Is it the pedagogy of the oppressed? How can we break this cycle? Aren’t you tired of seeing the mugs of the same crooks on TV telling you how to be virtuous? Let’s decapitate the whole lot in 2017.

In Tanzania, President John Pombe Magufuli has taken the guillotine to the corrupt establishment. Heads are rolling. Recently, he evicted the head of the railways from office because of corruption for the SGR construction. Yet we have not heard Tanzanian leaders making counter-accusations, or saying their tribe is “being finished.”

Meanwhile, in Kenya we are taking debt without public knowledge. We may wake up one day and find we are totally bankrupt—like Greece. That’s assured unless we elect an alternative leadership. 

CORD Jubilee John Pombe Magufuli
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