By Dorcas S
When I was in Secondary school, one of the most popular books among the students was the “James Hadley Chase” series of short fictional whodunit thrillers written by the English writer René Lodge Brabazon Raymond.
The 25th book in the series “The Guilty Are Afraid” was written in 1957, four years before President Uhuru Kenyatta was born. The book is set in an affluent gangster-ridden coastal city and has the requisite twists and turns that became hallmark of the entire series with the protagonist/s tormenting the guilty antagonist/s. Almost always the perpetrators lost.
If memory serves me well, the guilty antagonists exposed themselves through a series of blunders and attempts at bravado; the hubris and hot air that typically comes before a fall. As the noose tightened around the perps, their (guilty) conscience started to take hold forcing them to confront the crime they committed. Loudly and brashly, the criminals begun accusing everyone and anyone of scheming to “get them” – without any proof.
Effectively, the guilty became afraid.
This past few days Kenyans saw René Lodge’s thriller play out, coincidentally, in the coastal city of Mombasa. Unfortunately, what they saw in the tourist mecca located along the Indian Ocean was not someone’s creative words on pieces of paper – in a book. What the country, indeed the world witnessed was a president of a sovereign state – Uhuru Kenyatta – finally unhinged; fearfully looking over his shoulder because he believed he was being followed – by a county governor!
Mr. Kenyatta vowed to teach the governor of Mombasa County Hassan Joho a lesson because he was “interfering with national government projects” and “following him like he (UK) was his (Joho’s) wife”!
So how did the man nicknamed “Kamwana” plan to teach Gov. Joho a lesson?
Rather than confront the governor “mano a mano” or “umundu khumundu” in a battle of oratorical wits and policy positions, the Commander-in-Chief ordered the military and para-military units he commands to go after Gov. Joho and place him under “office arrest”.
And what “national government project” was Gov. Joho interfering with?
Mr. Joho was “interfering” with the president’s re-launch of the ferry MV Likoni; a re-launch that was happening amidst accusations of Mr. Kenyatta’s penchant for taking credit of projects that he did not launch or were launched BEFORE he came into office.
Back in January 25th, 2012, Arizona Governor Jan Brewer caused a scene when she was seen wagging a finger at visiting President Barack Obama. Video footage and still shots of the encounter on the tarmac at Phoenix-Mesa Gateway Airport went viral and showed the ever-cool President Obama briefly engaging the agitated governor before walking away leaving her literally “fighting with herself”.
Side note: The US Secret Service for its part had prepared for President Obama’s trip to Arizona with the usual non-intrusive aplomb.
Back to “Kamwana”, before turning his fire on the Governor of Mombasa, Mr. Kenyatta had gone after Governor Josphat Nanok of Turkana for questioning the national government’s inexplicably revisions to the oil revenue projections. Before that, he attacked the striking doctors and during the September 2016 funeral of former MP William Ntimama, “Kamwana” again displayed childish petulance by gloatingly telling his opponents that he would continue to “eat meat” even as they, out of power, continue to “salivate”.
Nor has President Kenyatta spared his nemesis and the occasional “brother” or “mganga” (witchdoctor) or “muguruki” (madman) or former PM Raila Odinga the now-normal upbraiding of those he disagrees with him.
Shortly before calling Raila names, Uhuru had invited a cross section of stakeholders to State House for an innocuous-sounding “Summit on Good Governance”. Like clockwork the president threw yet another tantrum this time pleadingly asking those gathered “what they wanted him to do” (about the corruption overwhelming his government)?
The foregoing is a catalogue of petulance and churlishness, all over the last six months, that raise serious questions about President Kenyatta’s state of mind.
So, let’s put President Uhuru Kenyatta’s latest meltdown and mis(use) of the country’s armed forces against a political opponent into perspective using a favorite benchmark of Jubilants – President Barack Obama.
Were President Obama to emulate President Kenyatta’s reaction to Gov. Joho’s “dis”, the 44th POTUS would have ordered the US Army (or Marines) to place the “disrespectful” Gov. Jan Brewer under “office arrest” hence stopping her from “interfering” with the “federal government project” of securing the Arizona/Mexico border that both parties had/have vested interest in!
That would never happen and were it to happen, Congress would begin an investigation – as fast as Uhuru’s government pays out tenders to all but doctors (and teachers)! The media would demand answers, relentlessly and incessantly. And they’d be some repercussions.
So why is the President becoming unhinged?
Why is he so angry?
What is President Kenyatta afraid of?
And what husband follows his wife around? That’s just creepy!
Did Kenyans send a boy to do a man’s job?
And finally, will Kenyans make amends come August 2017?