The Star Corridors of Power Political Gossip

What is it about the planned Simama Kenya rally in Bungoma that is generating so much heat? Local politicians are divided on whether the rally should go on with some even threatening to disrupt it. We are told, however, some people are planning to hijack the function and make it look like part of the Kikuyu Kalenjin and Kamba alliance.

Did the Coast MPs give a bouncing cheque to the Coast Investment Forum? We are told the forum which is organising a major meeting in Mombasa this month is now stranded after the MPs failed to provide Sh500,000 cash equated to the cheque as they had promised recently.

Officers in the Ministry of Justice have for the second time disregarded directives from their Permanent Secretary. The PS seems to be issuing instructions which no senior or junior staff adheres to. The latest is a directive to Human Resource department of the ministry to advertise the position of a director of a commission under the ministry. We have information that they have ignored the PS, who first issued similar instructions two months ago and his deputy dismissed her.

Constituents of Amagoro are unhappy with their MP Sospeter Ojaamong. They claim since the man was appointed Assistant Minister for Labour he has not only gone mute but has also stayed away from the constituency. They accuse him of not attending functions including funerals as much as he used to. Even those who used to be close to him now claim that the man has avoided going to his rural home for reasons best known to him.

A top journalist received unexpected honours, during a weekend function held at the home of an ambassador to Kenya, when an Asian businessman mistook him for Information minister Samuel Poghisio. The tycoon walked humbly and sat at the same table with the "minister" and started thanking him for appointing his wife as a board member of a key parastatal under his ministry. The businessman went ahead and introduced the journalist to the ambassador and other dignitaries as "the very humble minister of information." The tycoon further called his wife and passed the phone to the journalist to speak with his wife. Playing along, the journalist was paid many glorious compliments by the businessman's wife before being invited for dinner whenever available.

The behaviour of a senior public relations officer who is associated with a top level politician has baffled both his friends and enemies. The man, considered by many as very arrogant, has formed the habit of enlisting a female colleague to foreign trips whenever the boss is travelling outside the country. The officer then gets the perfect opportunity to make merry with the female colleague.

All is not well at the National Campaign Against Drugs Authority headquarters at the NSSF building. We are told that some of the staff members have now resulted to alcoholism as a stress reliever-talk of preaching water and taking wine. The source of their stress is said to be from a senior official whom the staff accuse of not only being too high handed but also very tribal.

The wife of a city-based MP has now hired a private investigator to pursue his husband whom she suspects is cheating on her. The woman is said to have paid millions of shillings to the investigators to trail the MP. Recently an investigator followed the MP into the gents of a five star hotel in the city to listen to a telephone conversation the legislator was having with an unknown fellow.

He may cut an image of a man who is doing well politically and in his private life but this flamboyant MP from the Coast seems to be in constant trouble with the women in his life. He has been married twice before and has broken two engagements with the latest one coming a few weeks ago. The man, known to be vocal, is apparently planning to announce to those who care that he is once again an eligible bachelor. This, according to those close to him will happen on February 26, when the ODM MP marks his 30-something birthday. Cards are already out and attendance will be by invitation only at his palatial Nyali home.

We hear that certain leaders of camps belongings to IDPs have suddenly become wealthy. Corridors of Power has it that their wealth is the result of contact with key politicians trying to evade the post-election violence justice and rallying victims into silence even through intimidation.

Coast MPs will never cease to surprise. One of them spent three nights in a kaya (holy shrine) between Kilifi and Mnazini in Tana River last week, in the company of four Mijikenda wazees in a special ritual aimed at maintaining his political relevance. The occasion, according to our mole, got the MP in unfamiliar territory, having to stay naked deep in the forest, to achieve his 2010 goals! The MP, who is a first-timer in Parliament, is now observing "strict" instructions. He has been directed to wear — at all times for the next two weeks — a special thin waist band laced with traditional charms including extracts from specific roots and plants.

There has been a lot debate on the Internet about last Friday's protest at the Jamia Mosque. Those involved are trading accusations about who was involved and why the demonstration should have been allowed. One thing that is however interesting from the various forums is the fact that some Muslims turned against fellow Muslims while some people mobilised non-Muslims to raid the mosque.

Is there trouble brewing at the National Environment Management Agency? We are told that Environment minister John Michuki has effected changes at the board but some former members are questioning his powers to appoint a new chairman. They argue that it is only the President who can appoint the chairman of the board.

Is there a problem with Kanu's forthcoming elections? We are told that some party members are not keen on holding grassroots elections because "no one wants to take responsibility for anything". According to its constitution, the party is supposed to hold national elections this year but those in the know tell us that those elections may not even taken place.

A senior member of the Cabinet from Central province, who cut a deal with a Dubai-based firm to employ jobless youth, is in panic mode. His worries follow reports that the youth, who were to be employed in a railway company in the fast growing Asian city, have been turned into slaves. The man, who is keen to ensure the story does not see the light of day in the local media, has quietly and frantically been making arrangements to return the young "slaves" back home.

Has Internal Security minister George Saitoti blocked the contractor working on the Kitengela-Namanga road from expanding a section of the road? We are told that people close to the minister have told the contractor to find a way to divert the road even though one of the properties associated with him is on a road reserve.

Is it true that Al Shabaab militia group has issued fresh threats to the government? Some diplomats were overheard discussing that the Somali insurgent group had warned the government that it is about to launch some attacks targeting border towns in northern Kenya because of swoops on their nationals the police have carried out across the country.

A CEO of a prominent agency in the Office of the President was slapped and escaped with a black eye after crashing into a party and engaging the hosts in an altercation two weeks ago. Those who witnessed the exchange described it as "ugly and embarrassing" because some of the words that were uttered in the quarrel were unprintable. Because of her demeaning actions, we are now informed that the CEO has been giving varying explanations for the injury.

We are informed that the police-Nacada road safety campaign in December was to involve placing accident cars at 16 spots in the city. The man who was hired to do the job ended up displaying three accident cars only and those who gave him the contract are wondering what happened to the rest of the cars.

Tourism minister Najib Balala has been making frantic efforts to reconcile with Prime Minister Raila Odinga. Our mole, an associate of the minister, tells us that two previous attempts to meet the PM have not succeeded. Balala, we are told, has lined up a group of elders to help reconcile him with Raila.

The decision by former Kiambaa MP Njenga Karume and some Gema leaders to pay Prime Minister Raila Odinga a courtesy call last year did not go down well with some Central province leaders. We are told by those in the know that the unhappy lot has been waging a war quietly against anyone they think is starting to support Raila.

A CEO of a prominent parastatal in the Coast is in trouble with his PNU bosses in Nairobi. The CEO has fallen out with his masters because of his decision not to employ the minister's relatives and reward his cronies. The CEO was apparently summoned to Nairobi early this week to explain his decisions. It is reported that his masters got even angrier because the CEO stood his ground. Now his juniors are worried the man could be sacked.

Yesterday, we told you of a Nacada-police deal on road safety campaign, where three instead of 16 accident cars were used in the campaign. We are aware that the man behind the deal was a State House operative during the Narc administration and a close ally of a former Finance minister. Corridors of Power has now learnt that one of the companies involved belonged to a journalist, who prints a Central Kenya newsletter.

Who is supplying bottled water that MPs drink in Parliament? We are told that a key member of the Parliamentary Service Commission has been awarded a tender to supply the water, through his company. He used his influence in PSC to kick out the previous supplier, a former prominent member of the commission. Talk of conflict of interest!

A top journalist with a leading media house was kicked out of his house for constantly beating his wife late in the night. Our mole has told us that neighbours lost patience with the top talk show host and asked the landlord to give him marching orders. Corridors has learnt that the wife-battering journalist now has a new home. It is only a matter of time before his neighbours discover his ways.

Is it true that the Americans have issued a new travel advisory to their citizens? Some diplomatic contacts tell us following demonstrations by Muslims eight days ago, the American Embassy in Nairobi immediately issued a travel advisory warning American citizens to be careful. The advisory reportedly named government and private installations that terrorists have targeted. Professor George Saitoti would it not be wise for you to say something about this rumour that is doing the rounds and causing fear among Kenyans?

What is going on at Kemri? We are told that the board has been unable to find a chief executive for reasons that no one is explaining to the staff. Even those who have acted in the position do not seem to fully comprehend the goings on, only blaming what is happening on politics. Now, the board has once again adver-ised the position despite having done so and even shortlisting people before.

The procurement staff of a parastatal based at NSSF are complaining that their CEO has been bulldozing the awarding of tenders for supplies of various items to one company that is sometimes not even qualified to supply the goods. Of interest is one company associated with a political operative which is always single sourced and staff are now wondering why Public Procurement Oversight Authority has remained silent on the issue despite several complaints.

We are told that African countries have decided to back the Bethwel Kiplagat Truth Justice and Reconciliation Commission as a way of helping resolve Kenya's problems. Those in the know tell us that the Africans stepped in because the Europeans and Americans have described too many conditions before they can help the commission. Talk of African leaders walking the talk for once!

This entry was posted in . Bookmark the permalink.