Voters must elect leaders with a proven track record

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MACHEL WAIKENDA

As the newly formed pre-election alliances in the country prepare to face off and seek to form the next government, the main question doing rounds in Kenyans mind is just which combination will deliver the leadership our country so much desire.

The battle lines are clearly drawn, it is a contest between the Jubilee Coalition comprising The National Alliance, (TNA) United Republican Party (URP) and Narc; and the Coalition of Reforms for Democracy (CORD) comprising Wiper Democratic Movement (WDM) and the Orange Democratic Movement (ODM). There is obviously a third force.

The bottom line however is which combination has capacity to effectively take this country where it wants to go. Who can deliver excellence?

But even as we discuss this question, it’s fundamentally worthwhile to understand that if we are going to achieve distinction as a country, then we need to judge leaders by their past records because the leaders we chose must have delivered excellence in small departments they have led in the past for us to expect them to deliver the same for the entire country. Success for Kenya good people is not an exception but a prevailing attitude.

For starters, in case you did not notice, irreducible fundamentals of a worthwhile political party worth the salt must have already been settled by now so that if voted into power, that party or coalition whichever the case maybe, has the potential to create unprecedented ethnic harmony based on its diverse ethnic, regional and gender representation.

The importance of ethnic cohesion for the country cannot be over-emphasised considering the sad history of ethnic conflicts our country has witnessed in the past years.

Clearly, Kenya is not a theatre room, the work ahead is not about drama and excitement, it requires credible leaders who have shown demonstrated performance in public service.

The leaders seeking public office must be judged based on their past record; the score must be based on how much each one of them did for Kenyans when they had a chance.

For instance, as the Minister for Finance, Deputy Prime Minister Uhuru Kenyatta introduced several suggestions and allocated necessary finances to boost the country’s economy.

Kenyatta, who is also the Jubilee coalition presidential candidate, came up with what is largely known as SME’s and Kazi kwa Vijana among others.

Although the said Kazi kwa Vijana project did not deliver the intended results because funds were misappropriated, it’s worth noting that Treasury has played its part but the implementing departments messed up the entire project.

Kenyatta’s running mate and Eldoret North MP William Ruto, noting that agriculture is the backbone of Kenya’s economy, ensured that farming became more productive and cheaper by ensuring availability of fertilizer to farmers at a cheaper price when he was the Minister for Agriculture.

Similarly, between Jubilee’s Charity Ngilu and powerful quarters from her Ukambani backyard has its genesis on performance.

As a minister for Water, Ngilu ensure that the perennially drought hit Ukambani region got some water for irrigation as well as other parts of the country. Ngilu has performed splendidly despite being in cabinet for less than 10 years.

Clearly, the trio, Uhuru, Ruto and Ngilu have gone a considerable way to show true commitment in public service. They are a combination of leaders with a broad and deep knowledge of government responsibility and impeccable record of real accomplishment.

As we all know, the strongest weapon across the world is truth, this is why Kenyans need to check which is the truthful combination is.

Every one of us needs to ask these questions, we must participate in the process of electing the next crop of leaders because if we don’t, we will be governed by the incompetent, inferior and inefficient.

We need leaders with a clear vision for the country; we need leaders who think of how life even in slums can be improved in terms of housing and in all other aspects. For instance, the biggest slum in the county Kibera is still what it was in the 1970’s. The only difference is that it has grown bigger over time and as a result, life in that slum has become even more difficult. We need change that we can believe in.

(Waikenda is the TNA Director of Communications)

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