To Vote or Not To Vote : A Story Of Confusion...
We are a confused lot, or at the very least we have been plunged into the mud and muck that has become choosing an election date. Ever since the 17th of this month when the courts ruled that the general elections are to be held after parliament has completed their term on the 14th of January 2013 as is stated in the countries new constitution signed by the head of state in 2010 and that the elections are to take place within 60 days.
This awakened yet another disagreement between President Kibaki and PM Raila Odinga… which makes one think whether these two ever read from the same script? Well apparently not! And proceeded to arouse strong opinions from those in government including:
The VP Kalonzo Musioka who was "surprised by latest twists and turns"
Presidential aspirant William Ruto: "Where did they get the March date from?"
Martha Karua who said it was "illegal"- Rather strong considering that they must have at the very least perused through the constitution at some stage in the last two years since its enactment into law!
But none have been so critical as Raila Odinga who I suspect did not have a good week after coming under fire for his criticism of the court’s decision to hold the elections early next year when he called it a “Koti ya Bandia” which the Chief Justice Willy Mutunga did not take lying down: He said Raila has a right to disagree with a court ruling but should be within the realm of the law.
"Mr Odinga is Prime Minister of the Republic of Kenya. He is a creature of the law, he is a critical and fundamental arm of executive. He must be aware that he bears a duty to uphold and protect the independence of judiciary required by the constitution- especially where he is unhappy with its decisions,"
The court gave the two premiers another choice: That of agreeing in writing to dissolve the Grand Coalition (a baby of the 2007 Post Election Violence) which would effectively dissolve parliament and as a result elections would have to follow within 60 days, but I think the whole country know that would not happen any time soon - if ever!
We as a nation( and here I speak primarily of myself and other like-minded voters) were ready and eagerly waiting to elect a brand new head of state who will hopefully bring about real visible changes to a land desperate for it. But now it is with a mixture of wonder and confused questioning I will wait ‘patiently’ (I am anything but) for the dawn of 2013, to dust off my identity card and head for the long lines and black ballot boxes, make my loud voice heard then leave to brandish my purple pinkie for all to see.
But in the mean time I will content myself with sitting back and watching the evening news each night… it has achieved the qualities of a good soap opera with everything from verbal fist fights and mudslinging to political party hopping of near epic proportions although the constitution has poured cold water on my fun by putting into practice the rule that states that those intent on vying for electoral posts must be registered before the April 30th deadline after which party hopping party hopping is out of the question.
So as we wade through the quagmire of confusion and await further action from the two premiers our attention will turn not only the developments in the Hague but on the countries own scramble for Kibaki’s vacated seat but also to the yet to be resolved (but always promised) issue of the IDP’s, will they finally keep their promises?