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Greed And Appetite To Embezzle Public Funds Driving Political Rejects, Old Guards And Senators To Seek Governorship



Ali Chirau Mwakwere

Ali Chirau Mwakwere

2017 politics is taking shape with many moneyed individuals lining up to unseat incumbents in various positions. The position of the county governor is attracting much even more than the seat of the president. Nearly all the senators are planning to trounce their respective governors; academic dwarfs have been through commercial colleges to acquire their degrees and federal retirees of the gone regimes, and last poll losers are making a massive come back.

Fred Gumo, former Westland’s MP is the newest old kid in the block brokering political deals for his tribesmen. Gumo retired in 2013, went and was forgotten till he made short headlines over the controversy that was surrounding the sale of Ex-president Moi’s stolen range rover. He is now back in full swing pushing a deal to make Water CS Eugene Wamalwa jubilee’s flag bearer for Nairobi gubernatorial race. This was ridiculous after the rude politician had called it a day, he might not have amassed enough for retirement and is now back as a political broker to get a parastatal job in return.

The former cabinet minister William Ole Ntimama whose age DP William Ruto compared to that of Vasco da Gama may be old, down but not out. He recently led a team of Maasai leaders to embrace Jubilee Party in the state house. The retired politician promised to visit all Maa speaking regions to rally support for Jubilee. Nothing is for free, and Kenya is a place where political mileage can be gained at all costs, and obviously it’s a give and take deal.

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Jubilee’s Chirau Ali Mwakwere who lost his senatorial bid to Juma Boy Juma in the 2013 polls and later appointed Kenya’s envoy to Tanzania has been endorsed by ODM MPs who are not loyal to Kwale Governor Salim Mvurya. Mwakwere who has stayed away from the public eye since he was awarded the job for his loyalty has confirmed he’s in the race to be the next governor for Kwale County. If people rejected the honourable for a senatorial seat, what makes them think the electorate would trust them with a more sensitive seat like that of the governor?

In mature democracies like America candidates who are rejected in polls, concede and give the electorate a break. Senator John Mc Cain was Obama’s bitter rival, but when he was beaten in the 2008 elections he admitted and went back to his senatorial job. Kenya is different, even a candidate who knows he is apparently defeated in a contest will put the nation through lengthy court battles in the name of a petition which they eventually lose and promise to fight again in the polls to come. They become a nuisance to stay in the news and bother the state to be rewarded with a government job.

Former lands CS Charity Ngilu may be one of the strongest female political heavyweights in Kenya, but corruption has tainted her would be decorated career. Corruption allegations were at the centre of her tenure as Water Minister in the Kibaki regime to her short stint with the Jubilee administration where she worked as the minister for lands. The infamous list of EACC that had over 175 corrupt officials stamped her exit at the Ardhi House. She has blamed Jubilee administration for her woes and is now plotting a comeback through a gubernatorial position in the 2017 elections.

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The former Kisumu rulam MP Prof. Anyang’ Nyong’o would be expected to call it quits in the coming polls, but the ageing politician is just still not ready to call it a day in politics. Like most of his Senate colleagues, Nyong’o says he would only retire after attaining governorship. He says the incumbent Jack Ranguma has failed to spur development in the County despite receiving billions from the National Treasury. “We can’t allow such wayward governors to mess up noble concepts as devolution”. He claims to have amassed enough wealth for his retirement and self-interests are not part of his reasons to aspire to retire as a governor. He purportedly wants the people of Kisumu to enjoy the real benefits of devolution.

Like his colleagues, they realised late that resources are devolved and are at the county levels. There is nothing to control and steal at the Senate like governors do with county funds. This is the primary reason why there is a fierce battle between MPs and senators. Many governors have ‘bought’ MPs into their cahoots to pass a bill that would make it impossible for senators to run for the governorship. Greed is real in politics, and it’s funny that no governor is aspiring to be president in the next polls. They are satisfied in their positions that are attracting old guards and retirees who should find ‘a safe haven’ to retire elsewhere, not in positions where they can continue stealing from the public coffers.

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