When the Court of Appeal sitting in Nairobi finally rendered Mary Wambui jobless; the biggest win went to none other than President Uhuru Kenyatta.
First things first. Wambui’s win in Othaya, as unlikely as it happened, had ruthlessly shocked the country. However, back then, to overplay that win was akin to passing a contempt card to often President Kibaki’s much hyped legacy. TNA would not want to antagonize that narrative, for the prospects of Uhuru’s presidency rested squarly in apportioning himself the successes of Kibaki stint at the top, while passing the failures to ODM and its presidential candidate, Raila Odinga.
Truth is, Kibaki remains historically ignoble both as a president and an MP. As an MP, history records that his own people – the people of Othaya – who, in political correctness ought to have appreciated Mzee’s economic gesture, contemptuously rejected his self-anointed successor – a one Mr Mugambi.
On the ground, Kibaki’s highly doctored ‘development record’ as Othaya MP was given a contempt card. The people elected Mary not because they lacked an anointed successor of Kibaki but because they wanted to put an end to a half a century of being taken for granted. It had happened before; at the turn of the century, another President and long time overload, Daniel Moi, had been rejected by Baringo residents.
Gedion Moi survived between 2002 and 2007 but was ultimately rejected. All other Mois had been rejected around that period as current Deputy President William Ruto finally created his own political fiefdom. Moi in 2002 left the presidency with nothing of a political reputation to translate into a political capital by backing a successor.
However, for Othaya, the spectacle was different. The Kikuyu elites in the media and within the government Â had succeeded in painting Kibaki as a successful president who steered Kenya into the current economic prosperity. These people presented an abstract propaganda of economic successes of the former president but which the people ‘on the ground’ did not feel.
TRuth is, in most areas in the country, more people slid back into poverty during Kibaki’s 10 years than has ever been appreciated.
The economic system benefited the top 1% who could wire public funds while overseeing shadowy deals when dishing out lucrative government tenders. That’s how people like former Finance Minister Amos Kimunya, folks whom in 2002 where ‘shillingionaires’ transited into multi-billionaires during the decade stint in government.
Like in the poor Baringo or Kuria, Kenya’s prosperity under Kibaki was conducted in the stock-market while the people’s prosperity remained, analogically, in the ‘fish market’, or ‘mboga market’. Both Kibaki and Kimunya (also rejected) were builders of the stock-market. Again, both were destroyers of the fish-market!
The election of Mary Wambui also had another rider to it. In Kibaki’s 10 years, the people on the ground attributed the man’s presidency to Mary. She was the political fixer who ensured the man remained ‘in touch’ with the people. She was a ‘Nyeri activist’. She was an ‘Othaya businesswoman’. She was a woman whose ‘base’ was literally in Nyeri. She knew the people; the people too knew her. She was their ‘mama’, and in Africa, such communitarian values make people love you. Kibaki, it is now being revealed, often rode back to parliament because he had a safe ‘local player’ in the person of Mary Wambui.
Here was a woman who did so much. . .and yes, for the period that she was indispensable for Mwai Kibaki, the period her local networks mattered for an elite Nairobian living and playing golf in Muthaiga; Kibaki, the opportunist he is, made Mary happiest, powerful and prosperous. Kibaki’s instruments of national power were locally safely kept at Mary’s side. She became a powerful player in both Othaya politics and economy, and rose to matron the other state – the state junior statehouse official Â – Eric Ng’eno – recently termed the “parallel state” within the Kenyan state.
It can be said: the two related, politically, so symbiotic. Each was a positive parasite of the other. Each ‘ate’ the other and both were well fed. A man and a woman made both love and history work. But now, time, our human friend, had other ideas.
Sometime in January 2013, at the time when political parties were signing alliances and making deals, Mary and others in the ‘parallel state’ almost forced Uhuru to let go his presidential ambitions. It is said, by players who saw it all, that had it not been for Mama Ngina Kenyatta, another ‘no pushover’ in her own right, and the Kenyatta family endless money, Uhuru almost let go, meaning; he may by now be answering PEV charges at the Hague. Had Wambui had her way, Musalia Mudavadi would be the occupier of the seat on the hill, or, if Musalia had bungled it, Jakom would be serving his first term!
When Mary pulled a la mudavadi on Uhuru; she bit more than she could chew. Â It was not the first instance she was fixing power or Uhuru – she had done it before – she is believed to be among the top PNUists who ensured Uhuru’s name reached the Hague as early as possible. Again, she is believed to be the hidden face of those current dark forces pulling the Jubilee agenda down.
That she celebrated when Uhuru’s name was confirmed. That she linked key Mungiki witnesses to the prosecutor’s net. That she assured top echelons of Kibaki’s security apparatus, especially the NSIS, the police, then under Mathew Iteere – that things ‘will be ok’ and so they should give their evidence of Uhuru’s link with Mungki. . .all these are high rumours in Uhuru’s bureaucracy.
Thing is, Mary became untenable to Uhuru the moment the ICC confirmed Uhuru. However, because politics is about interests, she dealt well for Uhuru by seducing Mudavadi with money in UDF. By the way, ever wondered why Mudavadi is taking too long to get a a working table in Jubilee? Well, that’s simple: Mudavadi is seen as Wambui’s ‘bouncing baby boy’! With that tag, the son of Mudamba must undergo a series of cleaning(s) to exorcise ‘madimoni’.
Again, with Kibaki exiting the presidency after the fallout which made Lucy parade an old man to demarcate the “first family”, Mary increasingly saw her political and power stature dwindling. She could no longer be a power broker. Kibaki, once again, had shown he can betray anyone.
In vying for the Othaya parliamentary seat, Mary was not just seeking a job. A job to serve her people. She was fighting to remain relevant in a system that would do everything to ‘finish her’. She was fighting to keep the “parallel state” alive; and her power, wealth and relevance intact for a future that was extremely uncertain. She was fighting not to be a Mark Too (Moi’s power-broker now in oblivion) or a dodo like Betty Tett.
With Kibaki out; and Uhuru in, Mary would not be who she was. The incoming president was himself wealthy; so, in a way, was cushioned from the vagaries that come with political poverty. Buying Uhuru would be extremely difficult. It has proven so. Having Uhuru’s ear will be a daydream – that can only happen without Mama Ngina! Sadly, Mary and Mama Ngina are like Museveni and Besigye; the two have no written records of historical friendship, and 2002 is still fresh!
When the Court of Appeal finally ejected Mary Wambui; it removed from the power axis a big cog. Make no mistake, she is going to fight hard and long to recapture that seat. However, the level of state machinery that will be sent to Othaya will convince all ye doubting Thomases that Uhuru Muigai wa Kenyatta is the 4th President of the Republic of Kenya!
I mean, Mary’s place in Kenya’s politics has taken the road to oblivion. I only wish I was a voter in Othaya. Agikuyus, please take this opportunistic chance to be wealthy because money (what you guys love most) shall be poured.
Kenya Today had early in January PREDICTED that Wambui would be a tough nut in Jubilee….you can read to believe it here.