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NATIONAL STABILITY

Transition is tricky, risky so handle it deftly

Whenever there is a key leadership change there are usually stoking of fears of what it portends.

In Summary

• During times of change so much can go wrong especially in security, crime, terrorism, corruption and tribalism. 

• Uhuru's era has been one of more challenges globally and locally.

President Kibaki addresses a crowd in Uhuru Park, Nairobi, during his inauguration on December 30, 2002. To the left is outgoing President Moi.
TRANSITION: President Kibaki addresses a crowd in Uhuru Park, Nairobi, during his inauguration on December 30, 2002. To the left is outgoing President Moi.
Image: FILE

I’m used to seeing President Uhuru Kenyatta get annoyed and make outbursts. I’m privileged to have seen him grow from a relatively unknown in the 1990s to an established politician. So I have seen many of the twists and turns in his rather colourful career. I have seen Raila Odinga, William Ruto, Musalia Mudavadi, Kalonzo Musyoka and others on their decades-long journeys.

Kenya politics have been very eventful especially from the late 1980s when the clamour for pluralism begun after the restrictions on political parties and the single-party dictatorship that soon grew after Independence to the enactment of the infamous Section 2a in the old constitution in 1982.

As President Kenyatta's era is coming to a close in a few years, there is obvious need to keenly watch the politics at national and regional levels. Whenever there is a key leadership change there are usually stoking of fears of what it portends. We are already seeing or are intrigued by what leadership change portends to a key business, Safaricom, after the demise of CEO Bob Collymore. But whatever happens, people of goodwill would want to see Safaricom grow and innovate.

 

If this is so significant, what of change of guard in a country's leadership? The change of the person in charge of a country is quite significant especially for big democracies, countries in problematic areas like  Africa, parts of Latin America and Asia or in dictatorial regimes. 

The change of the person in charge of a country is quite significant especially for big democracies, countries in problematic areas like  Africa, parts of Latin America and Asia or in dictatorial regimes. 

Uhuru's era has been one of more challenges globally and locally. Some achievements are visible but challenges abound. Corruption throughout all past regimes still prevails. Without addressing it, Kenya will not achieve political and economic progress or social cohesion. Uhuru has a few years to leave a worthwhile legacy. Change is looming. Expect significant political events.

Barring constitutional change in government structure, expect politics to be very hot between now and 2022. Expect a lot of political intrigues. There are claims of planned assassination of DP William Ruto and counterclaims. The Tangatanga and Kieleweke are busy and so are others. We must safeguard the stability of the nation politically and economically. During times of change so much can go wrong especially in security, crime, terrorism, corruption and tribalism. Thus transition periods need to be managed deftly.

There is clamour for a better political and economic dispensation. This informs many calls for a plebiscite to change the Constitution.

We have a long way to go but we hope for the best.