Opinion piece by Uhuru Kenyatta

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BY UHURU KENYATTA

The world today is seeking to understand and invest in a newly emerging Africa.

It is impossible to ignore the fact that at present seven of the world’s ten fastest growing economies in the world are from Africa.

Our potential abounds in the form of minerals, oil, natural gas and the natural talents of our people. The influx of foreign direct investment in African countries is acknowledgement that we are on the right track

Kenya is no exception.

Ours is a nation of possibilities. Our young innovators, our new Constitution, our discovery of resources; our reformed and reforming Judiciary and our improving infrastructure are sure signs that our national vision is tenable and that that there is great opportunity for prosperity.

Yet, though our potential is great, our progress is hindered, and our prospects are threatened by some familiar vices.

Internally, the forces of negative ethnicity and religious extremism are, as we speak, spreading societal fear and distrust and distracting Kenyans from confronting many fundamental issues.

Tragic incidents such as those in Tana River, and in the Coastal region have made worldwide impact and are causing alarm and dismay amongst citizens; local leaders; entrepreneurs and foreign investors alike and while we will continue to condemn the violence and to stand with all the affected families- we have also taken heed of these events.

Across the country- too many of our citizens simply do not feel safe.

Across the country – too many of our citizens simply do not feel safe.

They cannot feel safe when they are forced to be overly cautious and go home increasingly earlier because a terrorist threat has been issued.

They cannot feel safe when a plethora of weapons and a lack of adequate regulation makes them insecure because they have to sleep wondering whether neighboring communities will resort to violence as a means to settle old-scores or advance their agenda.

Our youth cannot feel safe when education, that golden key we always told them would open the door of success- is less likely than ever to even get them a job.

In several places, young people cannot feel safe because drug-trafficking; prostitution; violent robbery and gang or militia activity, increasingly appear to be the only ways they can earn enough to get by.

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  • maina kageni

    Uhuru facts balance according to the analysis on twitter @muleim

  • Lawrence-right

    I am highly impressed by the philosophy of puting the country ahead of oneself. This is the Uhuru we feel together with.

  • Brother I do appreciate your well-meaning piece and thank you alot for it. However, in terms of national divisions, you are certainly an extreme contributing factor indeed. First, your presidential bid is truly divisive in the sense that you are seen as a referee who is suspected to have assaulted one of the teams. Of course, while is pretty sad and I really genuinely feel for you, you must quickly come to terms with your present predicament. Am refering to ICC case. Sir, you have also shown through deeds and pronouncements that you are indeed a very tribalistic individual. You seem to peg your ability to lead in terms of big tribal numbers.
    I also do remember when G7 was pretty doing well, you took words, which you hardly unerstood!, of Hon. Mutula and Hon. Muthama as those of brother VP Kalonzo Musyoka. Its obvious that given the fact that they support the VP and they are Kambas like him, you used tribalism to deride the VP. You also seem to be easily taken in by malicious lies from merchants of deceit. I come from Kiambu and do know brother VP has been very kind to you. He nearly damaged beyond repair his political career because of you. However, all you believed was lies paraded by his opponents! Forgetting the VP was not the foreign minister and could have easily told the president politely that shuttle diplomacy was never his cup of tea. He also stood with us when we were being hunted down like wild animals after elections in 2007. Can I say yours are unbelievable donkey thanks?
    If you truly loved this country, the moment you were charged with crimes against humanity, you would have opted to lay off your ambitions for the sake of the country. You know while we feel bitter because of the situation you find yourself in, its quite obvious your presidency in the current circumstances will pose a serious political and economic threat to the country. Am sure you do know the stand of our western friends on the matter. You seem to have employed bitterness instead of sober approach to the issue. Instead of seeing things in the bigger picture, you narrowed down the matter to mere machinations of merchants of deceit. While we know who is behind your problems, you must appreciate that the matter is no longer localized. It has ballooned to international issue.
    To insist that Kenyans should be allowed to choose their leaders, you actually sound hollow and arrogant. Why? Thats because of the fact that ICC matter has jettisoned our national perimeters and assumed very different international dimensions. Needless to say, that folks outside our borders who hardly understand our politics, view your utterances as incrudulously unbelievable. Their take is that suspected criminals are not supposed to even approach ballot papers, let alone being presidential candidates. Our penal code too has no time for such people as well. Am certainly not trying to condemn you but merely attempting to give unsolicited advice.
    The bottomline is that when you are charged some personal rights are withdrawn. Lesser mortals quickly become prison remandees. And when the charges are as serious as yours, they assume stigma status that hardly afford them freedom of choice. Since you and others brothers were charged by ICC, dangerous precedents have been created. We kept quiet because they favored you Sir. But their effect on the country is truly divisive, if not immoral. Thats why Mzee Hon. Ngumo would be found with a stolen property and merely asked to record statement with the police! We know what the law says and does with such characters. In nutshell, your stated position is not only assaulting our morality, but also helping create unassailable impunity.
    In the foregoing, dont you think its in the best interest of the country to sort out your problems with ICC before offering yourself for election? And what are Kenyans supposed to do if you are elected their president and then convicted by ICC? Is it right for the country you purport to love to have such history? Surely brother, you need to wake up to your senses and realize that country needs to move on without unecessary holdups. I feel extreme pain in my heart when I put it this bluntly, but there is no other way brother. We cant live in bitterness forever, good ideas not withstanding!

    • Kwessi, Hon Ruto is not basing his go for the high office on Hon Uhuru. He is doing it based on his ability to be responsible to kenyans compared to those who have been there already.

      Secondly don’t always base you your life on ”IF” because that small word alone means a lot and it is for lazy people!

      Hon. uhuru Kenyatta never divides me and you it is us. As men and women grown up enough to sleep in our own beds lets take responsibility and stop this buck passing. If i kill someone there is no need of saying i was incited or payed to do it. I should simply say i did it.! We will then move. that should be the same for post election violence. Do something and own up and that is why children under 18 don’t have IDs like you and me. Legally in Kenya at 18 you are an independent entity and it doesn’t matter your dad. So we should treat these post election cases. Uhuru Kenyatta did not kill anyone! did not displace or rape anyone! Why do we like accepting that we are less intelligent when the same rules are applied in the west. You don’t need to wonder why Europe and non colored persons think Black and colored people are less intelligent if we are so easily acting on behalf and not taking responsibility!

      • @Kachu Boniface : I do appreciate your sentiments and thank you alot for them. However, you seem to be taking the narrow view you are accusing me of! First, I were to be for brother Uhuru for clean reasons. But once his candidacy became clouded by very serious charges, I had to move on. ICC charges has nothing to with physical involvement. Its concerned about the enabler of criminal acts. Perhaps, you are very ignorant in law. When we talk of highest responsibility, you should be sure what that means and it entails. You dont to keep on crying for spilled water. Its very sad and bitter, but make no mistake about it. The charges against our brothers are for real whether we like it or not!

        Also your perception about divisions is twisted, if not illogical. Brother Uhuru’s candidacy is certainly divisive in sense that it advances personal interest at the expense of the country. Its also utterly divisive in the sense that poor folks charged with same offences cant be given shred of chance to explain themselves, but would instead be in jail. And if international community is opposed to his candidacy, is that not reason enough to change tactic? Do you know any other country where suspected criminals run the show? Do you know anywhere on earth where somebody goes for the highest office in the land to shield himself from charges or suvert justice at international level?

        As regards to racism, I dont think its any different from toxic tribalism. The propaganda being played around might at the end, cause some of us commit suicide once the hard truth comes knocking. To insult while hidding behind supposed assumptions by other people, is just too cheap. Why is the brother using European lawyers in the case if he doesnt think like you? What makes him think that justice can only be obtained through white advocates? Stop being naive and embark on finding solutions to the problem facing the brother if you are really genuine. To imagine that somehow he wont face trial after confirmition of the charges is to daydream pal. There is no shortcut at the moment, and thats the reality we are attempting to ignore.

  • Dr Darg

    “I ask that all actors ensure that they remain partial in the run-up to the elections, and that they respect the right of Kenya’s citizens to decide upon their leaders without undue international pressure or interference”

    Personally, I’d rather that all actors remain IMpartial…

  • upuzi_tele

    This article would have made much sense if it was written by someone else apart from you Uhuru Kenyatta. You are one guy who has total disregard for our instititutions. You have twice refused to attend a hearing of a case against The Star Newspaper claiming you are busy out on the campaign trail. You refused to resign as DPM thereby making Mudavadi to also not resign after decamping from ODM. You are insisting on running for president despite being accused by the ICC. This has clearly given Ruto the green light to also run for president.
    Surely you running for presidency is for your personal benefit and not for the good of the country. You are one person who still believes you are bigger than this Kenya.

    • peter G

      Let the white mans law take its cause and all will be in the open soon. no need to get personal and judgmental.

    • Upuzi tele….Be careful and think with your head. If any politician with any kind of case before any court cant run ,then woe unto us. no one will ever run. If you could have done simple studies you will realize that it doesnt matter that am accused as long as am not convicted am innocent and as such should not be victimized for that.
      Am assuming you are a neutrally fair person.
      Hon.Uhuru Kenyatta is accused of so many things related to countrywide 2007-8 post election violence which he was running as an Mp for Gatundu North. Am also assuming that Kenyan voters are 18+ and are somehow educated guessing from our literate levels. So Uhuru in terms of elections should be judged by Kenyan voters and no one else that is democracy…the majority decide but the minority are heard! If in march 2013 majority decide that Uhuru wins then that is it! not just you and me. If they decide that the ICC case is more important then that is it! We should never stop anyone unless convicted. In the past some Kenyans have shown that by electing a dead civic leader despite the fact that they new that he was dead and his opponents were alive!
      We should not condemn politicians especially when they are not our Mps because if you look at you representative you will be ashamed.

      • @Kachu Boniface: Do you know what are capital offences? Do you know what our constitution and penal code say about such charges? And do you know once you become accused person certain rights are immediately withdrawn? For instance, you can neither run your business when you are in a police cell nor run for office. And when the matter is as serious as the one alleged against our brother, you instantly become an outcast. Let say for example as an ordinary mortal, you are accused of smoking bhang, raping or killing, would anyone want to be associated with you? Get over it man, things are alot worse than we want to admit!

        • Click

          No way. Read constitution again.

          • @Click: You are free to ignore the fundamentals but once reality hits you, perhaps you wont be able to stand on your two legs. We are fronting and reinforcing tribalism for selfish reasons. We only want to lord on others because of our big tribe. But somehow, we imagine that other guys are not watching. By the way, retired president stayed in power for long long 24 years because other communities were not willing to give way for a Kikuyu.

            To pretend that only one of us can lead the country is to insult others. National interests must be considered. Brother Uhuru’s candidacy in the present circumstances is against those interests. Democracy can only be meaningful, fair and inclusive when all realities are carefully considered. Its amusing new frontiers of constitutionalism are being invented to suit Uhuru’s bid! Kikuyus need to be awake to reality and be pragmatic. Displaying bloated know-it all selfish attitude wont serve us at all. We need to identify a candidate that would be best for the country, in terms of peace and general welfare of every citizen.

            My take for a while now has been our next door brother, VP Kalonzo Musyoka. He was not involved in any anti-nation activities like murderous mass action. He is not only a man of peace, but also with very good credentials. Its noteworthy that despite concerted efforts to malign him, he has remained focused and very friendly indeed. That he has sticked his neck out for all, at the expense of his political career, is sure sincerity that no one can ignore. He has also avoided corruption for as long as we can remember. However, those who are arrested by pity propaganda, like our Uhuru, have always sided with merchants of deceit. Thay fail to realize that merchants of deceit are bewildered by any possible encounter with the brother VP.

            By the way, have you ever asked youself why the VP’s speech is always cut half way by certain TV stations whenever he apears on them? Only yesterday at Prof. Wangari’s anniversary, PM Raila was given alof of air time while he seemed to say nothing. But when it came to the turn of the VP, four words and then the cameras were moved away! Nonetheless, his line of speech was far better and substantive than the PM’s. Of course, somebody was trying to protect his idol from being outshined! And needless to say, those twisted instances are too many. They are even at times employed on the president himself!

            Now ask yourself why all this against the VP? Is corruption involved or mere tribalism or both? And the VP hardly collides with people! Are Kenyans being taken for a ride in order to discard good leaders? And dont forget even when we were praying for Uhuru and other brothers, towards the end, Uhuru had became very edgy about the VP.

            Apparently, the VP was being given alot of good coverage initially. His hands off thievery has never endeared him to looters. Is Uhuru against him because Kambas are not as many as us? What are his reasons for not working with him unless he looks him down in terms of money? Will other Kenyans allow the presidency to appear as though is our preserve and is that not divisive in itself? Why are likes of Raila and Uhuru ever against the VP? Are they afraid of him or there are certain unknown matters that are never brought on the surface? Are their credentials, ignoring the false feats, genuinely better than the VP’s? Or simply they are attempting to drive Kenyans in to a ditch?

      • upuzi_tele

        @Kachu Boniface, I wanted to reply you but something tells me to just ignore you. Your thinking is so shallow, you don’t know anything about the new constitution especially Chapter six which talks about Leadership and integrity. You are talking of Uhuru being accused of “many things”, clearly this shows you don’t even know what crimes Uhuru is accused of and why he is accused of the crimes. I will give you time to grow up first to know that the world did not start with Uhuru Kenyatta neither will it end with Uhuru Kenyatta. Whether he runs for presidency or not, I dont care and whether he is proved guilty and jailed by ICC or not, I will also not care. It is all upto him. period.

      • Eliman

        Defending one of their own to the teeth as usual. Lets see what Mutunga and company will say on 27. When support for a politician is blind, all sense reason is lost. Crime against humanity means UK finaced, hired, organized, chaired etc actions leading to death of humanity. This humanity is what he is supposed to lead without proving whether is Innocent or not. Kachu what will happen to this country if UK win on March 4 and convicted of crime against humanity on 8th August 2014. More interestingly your UK wins leads on March 4 and is required to attend Hague hearing during run off?

  • Zeki Timona

    Thanks Mr Kenyatta for your article.You are truely a Kenya’s son .That is why , WE the majority of Kenyans hope to put you in that house on the hill because you are like a Doctor who knows the kenyas disease, thereby giving the right medicine.
    We demand to make you the country’s CEO and you have no choice but to accept.Kenya is not to be dictated others countries on who to elect as the president.We don’t interfere with other countries internal affairs and we cannot let others interfere with our affairs.
    As for ICC the court was crystal clear thatyou are innocent until proven guilty.After all we know the ” impartiality” of those allegations and how the investigations were conducted.Us kenyans knows who is guilty of PEV since the crime was committed on our soil.
    A fact is that is that our country politics are tribal based.So it sucks to hear a peron trying to potray you as tribal.You are not the cause of kenyas tribal politics but that how it has been over the years.None other than you who is urging us to think like Kenyans.
    Go, go, mr president in waiting

  • Doreen

    Why not join hands,unite and spare us the agony of a rigorous,needless electioneering.knowing well the the political class are birds of a feather,they flock together,they flock to gather….please do another piece and tell us the ideological difference between TNA and all the other parties…and finally when and how were you nominated as the TNA flagbaerer

  • Kenyans will decide in march!!!!!!!

  • i can bet that UK dint write this article , he just signed it ……

    • @Francis: I seem to concur! Kenyans surely know where their problems eminates from. Cant we face it?

  • kedgimibadhi

    Aha…we should not be dictated to by foreigners, but we can hire them as our lawyers because they are better in delivering justice than our own. You dont respect foreign ideologies but you need them as your lawyers. You are calling for the institutions to be set up while not respecting those that have been setup and functioning. It appears you believe rthat there are some people who should be punished when they break the law while there are those like you who have the right not to obey the laws. Ridiculous!

    • @kedgimibadhi: Foreigners are part of us pal. We cant do without them regardless of the pretences to the contrary. Why were we unable to kick out Ambassadors who were interefering with our internal affairs? Why did we cry for them when mass action was turned to mass murder? No country on earth can run her affairs in isolation. Even the most powerful nation in the world cant. Pronouncements to effect that we should be left alone are coming from selfish politicians who see the presidency as protection shield. They dont have the interests of Kenyans at heart at all. When you set the country on fire in 2007/8, why did you not tell the international community to lay off?

      When you are charged with serious crimes like rape and murder, you are no longer the trusted guy we know. You become somebody who has to cleanse himself to return to the old self. In the eyes of the public, you become an outcast until proved otherwise. However, those who are enjoying political power seem to have it their own way. That truly affects the national psyche for the worse. If for instance, Mzee Hon. Gumo was not a senior politician, would he be a free man by now? If an ordinary man was found with a stolen car, would he be even given time to explain himself? I thought the idea of moving away from the old constitution was to kill this selective application of the law?

  • Hon. Uhuru Kenyatta, let me tell you a short story from ancient bantu. There was one tome several animals , as in anthology there was the famous hare and the hyena. In one sitting the hare complained that the mothers were creating too much trouble asking for this and that because they were old anyway. So as wise animals of the village they agreed to go and put their mothers in sacs and through them in a local ferocious river while they slept. The hare being a cunning animal did not actually mean to harm the mother . In the middle of the night the Hyena and other animals went to their mothers house and sure that they were asleep tied them and put them in sacs the quietly threw them in the local ferocious river…they died and that was the last time they knew of them. For the hare he could not do that to his loving old mother so he hid her in the banana plantation. The next few days were not easy for the rest but the hare was managing.
    The simple lesson is for Kenyans…We agree to remove corrupt, developmentless people but when it come to real action we defend our own. As a kenya some people high and mighty as the PM should not be in that office if we depend on what we have so far heard about the going ons there! Last election some regions voted out almost 70% of the former MPs while others retained almost all of them. Why should we waste time agreeing that parliamentarians are corruot and during elections we never use our heads but our stomachs!/

  • cephus sir sikolia

    after you smartasses talking,whos ruling now….too much talk no vote,,,,

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