BBI RALLIES

What next after Moi’s burial? BBI secretariat back to business

In Summary

• Kimani said the move follows the end of the mourning period declared by President Uhuru Kenyatta for the late and former President Daniel Moi.

Supporters raise banner of president Uhuru Kenyatta and ODM leader Raila Odinga during a BBI rally in Mombasa.
Supporters raise banner of president Uhuru Kenyatta and ODM leader Raila Odinga during a BBI rally in Mombasa.
Image: JOHN CHESOLI

The Building Bridges Initiative steering committee has called for a stakeholders' forum on Thursday and Friday.

Joint secretary Martin Kimani in a statement on Wednesday said the two-day forum to be held between 9am and 4pm will focus on validating the report of the BBI task force.

Kimani said the move follows the end of the mourning period declared by President Uhuru Kenyatta for the late and former President Daniel Moi.

According to the statement, the Ministry of Public Service, NCIC, multi-sectoral forum and women in business will give their their views on Thursday, while youth 4 BBI, County Assemblies Forum and political parties liaison committee will do so on Friday.

This is an indication that the country has gone back to the BBI agenda that has sparked mixed reactions within the political class.

Moi died on Tuesday last week at the Nairobi Hospital where he had been undergoing treatment for close to four months.

As a result, Uhuru made a proclamation announcing Moi’s death and declaring a week of national mourning.

As a result, the Building Bridges Initiative task force  announced the postponement of all consultative forums to allow the country to mourn the passing on of Moi.

“The steering Committee on the implementation of the Building Bridges to a united Kenya task force report wishes to announce the postponement of the scheduled public engagements which had been advertised," a statement signed by joint secretary Paul Mwangi said Tuesday.

"This is in honour of the late former president of the republic of Kenya his Excellency Daniel Toroitich Arap Moi."

Earlier, Senate Majority Leader Kipchumba Murkomen said the Tangatanga brigade had also suspended all the planned rallies.

“Following the passing on of HE President Daniel T. Arap Moi all BBI rallies have been postponed. Consequently, the Nakuru rally which was planned for February 8 2020 has been rescheduled to a future date to be communicated in due course,” he tweeted.

Makueni county was expected to host a rally on Saturday, while Nakuru was to host on Sunday at the Afraha Stadium.

The weekend before Moi passed on, drama unfolded in Kitui as Gatundu South MP Moses Kuria and Murkomen were roughed up by youth during the BBI rally.

Drama started when the duo arrived late for the rally and Kitui Governor Charity Ngilu ordered their eviction for what she termed disrespect to President Uhuru Kenyatta and ODM leader Raila Odinga.

As Kenyans came to terms with Moi’s death, the battle to control regional BBI rallies had exposed jostling among political bigwigs positioning themselves to shine in 2022 in what appeared like a nasty circus. 

A day before Moi died, National Assembly Majority Leader Aden Duale told the Star, "the Building Bridges process had been hijacked by the political class creating a lot of confusion.” 

ODM leader Raila Odinga himself called the BBI process an unstoppable train that has left the station and urged everyone to jump aboard. In Kiswahili, he said it was a train without brakes.

That sounds like a runaway train, out of control.

It emerged that governors were embroiled in behind-the-scenes wars with perceived rival regional kingpins over organising the BBI meetings, which often are more like political rallies than what they're supposed to be — 'sensitisation' meetings.

Fearing that governors, playing influential roles in the mobilisation of the rallies, could eclipse them, regional power brokers and MPs launched a fightback to protect their turf.