By Dorcas S
You have to love Chinua Achebe’s ability to capture the essence of human behavior in the simplest of terms.
Writing about Obiako, the palm-wine tapper who suddenly gave up his trade, Achebe suggests that:
“There must be a reason for it. A toad does not run in the daytime for nothing.”
The Nigerian goes on to offer that the Oracle had warned Obiako that he would fall off a palm tree and kill himself; this because the vintner had arrogantly defied the soothsayer’s advice that he sacrifice a goat in honor of his dead father.
So who or what has Uhuru so “obiakonized”?
Why is the president abandoning a key tenet of the presidency and sowing doubts about the Supreme Court or as Chinua Achebe would ask, why is the metaphoric toad (President Kenyatta) running around in broad daylight (publicly criticizing an independent branch of government) – in the process endangering the court’s viability AND risking the stability of the country?
Has some Oracle or series of events converged to warn Uhuru Kenyatta that he is going to lose the elections come August 8th?
President Kenyatta’s wild and unsubstantiated accusation that Chief Justice David Magara is “siding with NASA” is the proverbial “placing his fingers or thumb on the scales of justice” to effectively tilt the court’s ruling away from NASA towards Jubilee; this in absolute violation of the construction “co-equal branches of government” i.e. legislature, executive and judiciary.
So according to Mr. Kenyatta, the institution (Judiciary) whose decision all Kenyans needed to respect back in March of 2013 – when it ruled in Jubilee’s favor against Raila Odinga’s CORD – had now “lost its independence” and was “interfering with the functioning of the executive and siding with NASA”?
My how things have changed since then!
For some perspective, consider that back then (2013) when Mr. Kenyatta was wholeheartedly embracing and commending the ruling of Chief Justice (CJ) Willy Mutunga’s Supreme Court, four of the court’s seven justices were allegedly receiving KSh.200million to rule in favor of Evans Kidero as Nairobi’s governor – in a challenge filed by then-Kabete MP Ferdinand Waititu; this according to then-senior counsel Ahmednasir Abdullahi.
It is neither unreasonable nor conflation to go from Supreme Court justices accused of receiving bribes in the case about Nairobi’s gubernatorial race to justices accused of accepting bribes in the case about the presidential race; cases which both occurred during the same court 2013 calendar year.
Because the same four justices, along with the Deputy CJ and the CJ form the same Supreme Court of Kenya that heard the case filed by Raila Odinga against IEBC, Uhuru Kenyatta and William Ruto.
So the fact that Uhuru Kenyatta has come out with his guns blazing against the same court’s ruling, this time against his Jubilee party, begs the question:
Why would someone whose role as the chief executive of the country make such serious allegations against an independent judiciary that ruled in his favor – four years ago?
Why is Mr. Kenyatta endangering the viability and stability of the country’s supreme legal organ?
What has so spooked Uhuru Kenyatta?
I avoid trying to read the tea leaves regarding Kenyan politics but Mr. Kenyatta’s recent outbursts, when placed side-by-side with the mood of the voters and the trajectory of the 2017 Elections paint a picture of a very worried candidate.
Kenya’s current zeitgeist can be summarized in these eleven words:
A Hungry Man is an Angry Man and Angry Men Vote!
Like Mr. Achebe’s elegant characterization at the beginning of this article, the foregoing message to President Kenyatta is a simple message from an electorate that from all indications, is primed to turn out en masse come August 8 – against President Kenyatta!
That’s why the “toad” is endangering his safety by hopping around in broad daylight!