Koigi Wamwere: Uhuru not qualified for top seat

Mr Uhuru Kenyatta has also declared his intention to vie for presidency in 2012. As expected, his loyalists are beating drums for him.

But what qualifies him to lead Kenya?

One needs to do something patriotic to deserve leadership. What has Uhuru done for Kenya to deserve leading it?

When Moi tyrannised Kenya, Uhuru, Kalonzo Musyoka, Musalia Mudavadi, William Ruto and others like them did nothing. Does this qualify Uhuru or Kalonzo for that matter, to lead Kenya?

Without a history of patriotic service, what special quality does Uhuru have? As far as I know, Uhuru has no intellectual superiority over Kenyans.

So, does Uhuru have a special vision that can liberate us from poverty? With his family’s empire built upon land it acquired when Kenyatta, his father, was president, Uhuru has never said he will return some of that land to the landless to blunt the pangs of their hunger.

Instead of living up to his name Uhuru, whenever he talks, I hear him pontificating against freedom. On matters of humanity, Uhuru’s heart seems as hard as a stone. Still, his supporters have reasons for wanting him to lead Kenya.

To begin with, he is a special Kikuyu whom all Kikuyus will support once he offers himself for election. And elections being a game of numbers, Uhuru thinks, support by a block vote of the populous Kikuyu qualifies him not just to vie, but to be the president of Kenya.

The other day on TV, I saw a lady called Wambui anoint Uhuru to succeed President Mwai Kibaki. She alluded to him as her husband – muthuri wakwa.

And of course, Kibaki’s support is assumed to be that of all Kikuyus, despite his failure to protect many of its members from post-election violence, and whose thousands of youth continue to suffer extrajudicial executions under his watch.

WITH MORE MONEY THAN MOST, Uhuru is a front runner for presidency in our politics. Sired by Mzee Kenyatta, many also believe Uhuru was born a leader. But fire does not always beget fire. It also begets ashes. Though Solomon was a great leader, his son Rehoboam became an unspeakable tyrant.

Other Kenyan women are also giving birth to sons. I don’t see Kibaki-Uhuru project selling more successfully than the Moi-Uhuru project.

Uhuru also has great hope for presidency because of his unfolding alliance with Mr Ruto, who may deliver a block Rift Valley vote to him.

For Uhuru and his community in Rift Valley however, doing an alliance with a majimboist like Ruto is like returning their finger where it has been bitten more than once.

Against their best interests, the aristocracy of Central Province might also anoint Uhuru as their ethnic chief. For this very reason, the rest of the country will most likely reject him as president of Kenya.

Only a Kikuyu who will put Kenya before Central Province, nation before tribe, is likely to lead Kenya again.

In seeking the presidency, Uhuru might sell himself as a protector of properties of ethnic elites who own, but not as distributor of national wealth to the poor who own nothing.

Uhuru believes he qualifies for presidency because he is young like Obama, and will mesmerise the youth who will embrace anything that is young and glitters.

Uhuru’s father led Kenya because he fought and suffered for her. Uhuru must do likewise.

Mr Wamwere is chair of Chama cha Mwananchi.

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