Political impunity by the President and the Prime Minister in institutionalizing the unconstitutional misnomer called “an acting minister”
Written by West FM
Read 1101 Times
“Courage is rightly esteemed the first of human qualities because it is the quality which guarantees all others” by Winston Churchill – Former Prime Minister of Britain
His Excellency President Mwai Kibaki and Prime Minister Raila Odinga should stop taking Kenyans for a ride in the way vacancies in the Cabinet ought to be substantively filled once the occupants die or they step down.
The Ministry of Industrialization is now going to one year being under an Acting Minister, Hon. Amason Kingi who is also the Minister for Fisheries. Kenyans may have effectively forgotten that that is the state of affairs at the Ministry of Industrialization. It cannot be that it is only Hon. Henry Kosgey who stepped from the Ministry due to his having been charged in Court for abuse of office of that Ministry who can only fill it. Are Kenyans being told that if the Hon. Henry Kosgey’s Criminal Case drags on upto the next General Election then the Ministry will languish under a non-substantive Acting Minister?
The Ministry of Local Government of which Deputy Prime Minister Hon. Musalia Mudavadi stepped down over a month ago is currently under an Acting Minister Hon. Fred Gumo. The Ministry of Internal Security of which the late Professor George Saitoti who was its occupant died in a horror helicopter crash now has an Acting Minister, Hon. Yusuf Haji. The Hon. Prime Minister Raila Odinga is yet to name an acting or substantive Assistant Minister in the Ministry of Internal Security to replace Hon. Orwa Ojode who perished in the helicopter crash with Professor George Saitoti on 10/06/2012.
Why would this Country having 220 Members of Parliament who are supposed to include highly educated, experienced back benchers and Assistant Ministers be subjected to the bizarre spectacle where Ministrys’ where vacancies arise at the Ministerial level remain substantively unoccupied at the whims of the President and the Prime Minister. What do you call political impunity then?
Take the case of Hon. Henry Kosgey’s departure going to a year. Why should the Ministry of Industrialization be under the stewardship of an Acting Minister. And what about the Ministry of Local Government, why should it remain under an Acting Minister? Even assuming those Ministries as if itwere ‘unstatedly” reserved for the tribes from which those who have left came from, does it mean then there are no other Nandi or Kalenjin Members of Parliament to fill Hon. Henry Kosgey stepping down? And if the Ministry of Local Government was reserved for Luhyias why can’t the Prime Minister give the Ministerial Flag to those of the Luhyia backbenchers or Assistant Ministers who are still in his camp and putting their political career on the line for him.
The Ministry of Internal Security is so critical to the security of all Kenyans, why should it be given to Hon. Yusuf Haji, who is already busy with the War in Somalia? Is it that the Ministry is reserved for the Kikuyu tribe and the President is still trying to balance the permutations in the Gema political architecture? Are there no competent replacements from Maasailand or Kikuyuland?
West fm states that the archaic style of political management being exhibited by the President and the Prime Minister in playing the game of “cat and mouse”, “carrot and stick” in filling vacancies that take place in the Cabinet is no better than President Moi’s paternalistic and dictatorial political management theatrics where he had the guts to lambast Kenyans who had pressured him to name a Vice President, that having re-appointed Professor Saitoti as Vice President he wondered whether the sufurias of ugali will increase for Kenyans.
The President and the Prime Minister are flagrantly flouting the Constitution of Kenya 2010 with regard to National Values and Principles of Governance. Article 10 of the Constitution obligates the President and Prime Minster to uphold the national values and principles of governance that include good governance, integrity, transparency and accountability in the discharge of their executive duties including the constitution of the Executive Arm of Government. It cannot be good governance, integrity, transparency and accountability for the Principals of the Grand Coalition to create a new species of political office unknown in the Constitution called “Acting Minister”.
The tragedy is that those who are most vociferous in condemning their opponents for failing to do this or that Constitutional duty are dumb silent as their political masters, god fathers , idols breach the Constitution in failing to expeditiously at any time a Ministerial vacancy occurs to fill it. Is Hon. Alfred Khangati, Alfred Sambu, Ababu Namwamba not fit to occupy the vacant slot of Minister for Local Government? So why are those MPs shouting themselves hoarse promoting the Hon. Prime Minster in Western Province or is that how one has to campaign for the vacant Ministerial slot?
The perpetuation of uncertainty for long spells before a vacant Ministerial slot is filled is a recipe by design or otherwise for corruption and impunity. Or is it a clever way for the President and the Prime Minister to, through backdoor, run the Ministrys they baptize as under an Acting Minister. Are we moving forward in contemporary political management of state affairs or still beholden to political patronage, the big man syndrome?
West fm states that institutionalizing the anachronistic concept of an “Acting Minister” in Kenya at this historical juncture is a direct assault on the Constitution of Kenya 2010 and more so Article 10. Carrot and stick politics of the Moi-era is at the heart of the style of political management that permits the Acting Minister culture. Those who claim to fight for the Constitution of Kenya, the ball is in your court. Political tyranny is inherent in accepting the Misnomer called Acting Minister. It must be busted and banished. It has no place in the Constitution of Kenya
WEST FM EDITORIAL©2012