Great ideas rot on state shelves to favour the powerful

Other countries benchmark here and implement them successfully, why can't we?

In Summary

• Constitution deals with issues of diversity, inclusivity but we set them aside and put up parallel groups with premeditated outcomes. 

• Government cannot be inclusive when the idea comes from the same people who have reserved certain influential positions to be exclusive clubs of their tribespeople. 

Referendum supporters at Uhuru Park in 2010
CYCLE REPEATS: Referendum supporters at Uhuru Park in 2010
Image: FILE

Kenyans have been treated to great ideas floated by people in power which count for nothing when it comes to implementation.

We saw this in how devolved resources were spent by MPs when they controlled CDF. Projects started by former MPs were abandoned immediately new ones were elected. In areas where no MP went for two terms, projects were guzzling public finances but remained white elephants.

The same scenario replicates itself when one looks at the way governments–past and present–spend money on starting inquiries and task forces to look at issues that past formations conclusively dealt with. Because their reports were or are incompatible with what those in power want, they are gathering dust on government office shelves.

Meanwhile, other countries come here to benchmark, pick and implement them to their success. The current Constitution deals with clarity the issues of diversity, inclusivity and integrity among other things. Instead of aligning our actions with the provisions of the law, we abrogate the same and set parallel groups with premeditated outcomes and the cycle goes on yet money continues to be lost in such repeat but hollow exercises.

It would not be surprising for the current initiative by President Uhuru Kenyatta and ODM leader Raila Odinga to come up with things former initiatives such as the Kenya We Want Forum recommended. How do we achieve inclusivity when those in power have reserved certain influential positions to be exclusive clubs of their tribesmen and women?

There is a serious dereliction of values in abandoning constitutionally laid down procedures for a referendum for a controlled process to accommodate a few powerful people. 


Economic and political analyst