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Parliament under state capture

The doctrine of separation of powers is no more.

In Summary
  • Parliament is now answering to the Executive.
  • They are now busy trying to emasculate whatever remained of the Opposition.

The Court of the Kabaka of Buganda had a motley crew of persons, including a good number of hangers-on. They stuck to the Kabaka’s coattails to curry favour (the Kabaka was a very powerful man and owned all the land in Buganda). He could therefore assign one a choice piece of land at a whim.

The banquets at the Kabaka’s table were permanent and resembled those of Cleopatra Queen of Egypt who celebrated her birthday daily. The Kabaka’s subjects could not get an audience with him without presenting a gift, some came with livestock whilst others brought grain, agricultural produce and all manner of gifts. Therefore there was never a shortage of choice meats and, hence, the coterie of gate-crashers and ne’er-do-wells.

Amongst those in the Kabaka’s court were men who sat directly behind him known as the ‘Abanyambi’. Yes, you guessed right, ‘those who fart’. In Buganda custom Omwamis or Kings did not “break wind” as it was beneath their dignity. Breaking wind, however, is a natural function and Omwami would often do so after gorging himself. To save face, he would turn around and admonish the Abanyambi for breaking etiquette for which they would apologise profusely. They were the fall guys.

Recent developments in our political landscape are a cause for concern. Raila Odinga, for a long time a champion of democracy and the rule of law, is now “sleeping with the enemy” and is all but part of government. The voting pattern during the removal of former Senate Deputy Speaker Kithure Kindiki all but confirmed this.

The deep state is working overtime to destabilise Amani National Congress and Ford Kenya. Why? Because they refused to play ball in the scheme of state capture. Why is Wiper not being destabilised? Because they agreed to play ball. Musalia Mudavadi is playing hard-ball and, as a consequence, there is a price to be paid.

Speaker after speaker (no pun intended) lauded Kindiki as loyal, good, effective and efficient. He was described as intelligent, fair and a man of integrity and dignity, then they all stabbed him in the back by voting him out. Why would an august House want to throw out such a man? Could there be an external force now controlling Parliament? If so where is our democracy?

Kindiki may have lost a parliamentary position but Kenya is all the poorer having lost democracy. Kindiki left with his head held up high whilst the Senate shamelessly descended into the abyss. Have our legislators become modern day Abanyambi?

Some years ago this writer wrote, “Ominous signs of tyranny and dictatorship are evident in our current political landscape. Meddling with independent state institutions is now commonplace. This practice was routine in the Jomo Kenyatta/Moi administrations. Truth be told our current leaders vehemently opposed our current constitution. Is it any surprise that they have introduced constitutional amendments almost continually since 2015?

“The first was to amend the Judicial Service Act to have the commission submit three names for appointment of the chief justice thus giving the President leeway to appoint a ‘friendly candidate’. The next was a Miscellaneous Amendment that reduced the power of Parliament and the National Police Service in the appointment of the Inspector General and Deputies.”

They have now gone a stage further and captured Parliament after compromising the Opposition leader. Parliament is currently answering to the Executive. The doctrine of separation of powers is no more and they are now busy trying to emasculate whatever remained of the Opposition.

The deep state is working overtime to destabilise Amani National Congress and Ford Kenya. Why? Because they refused to play ball in the scheme of state capture. Why is Wiper not being destabilised? Because they agreed to play ball. Musalia Mudavadi is playing hard-ball and, as a consequence, there is a price to be paid.

Cotu leader Francis Atwoli has been signalled to dethrone him with help from some mischievous leaders. Those who “have refused to retire” are busy bulldozing all other possible presidential candidates/competition out of the way. Buoyed by their success in “shunting” the Deputy President aside they believe the sky is now the limit.