Sunday, January 30, 2011

'KKK' ship leaked even before sailing

This 'KKK' Alliance thing was going to eat itself just like a rabid dog would its own legs when there is nothing else to gnash its itchy teeth on. I presume because it is as an alliance of and for numbers, and with numerical strength being permanent cornerstone of politics, first 'K' is Kikuyu, second Kalenjin and third Kamba.
Even assuming KKK was a creation of the media as Mr Uhuru Kenyatta, Mr William Ruto and Mr Kalonzo Musyoka now say, what reunited them and why the sudden denials and denunciations? Some in KKK claim it was supposed to be antithesis of Mr Raila Odinga’s remnants in ODM that they sarcastically call LLL Alliance — Luo, Luhya and Leftovers! Remember many believe Uhuru-Ruto-Kalonzo axis is largely cemented by anti-Raila venom. Still others joke there is a hidden ‘K’ represented in KKK Alliance by Mr Eugene Wamalwa, which stands for Kamluhya.
If it is not KKK Alliance in name then it is in form and spirit otherwise what would you call political platform the three have lately been sharing until two decided one of them was older, untrustworthy, and his curriculum vitae replete with subterfuge, cunningness, and opportunism coached as miracles.
Let us go back to the ordination ceremony in Kericho on Sunday January 16. Ruto told Uhuru and Kalonzo they should be ready to support him if he beats them during next year’s nominations. If he loses he would reciprocate with his Kalenjins. He clearly meant under one party or alliance.
Uhuru and Kalonzo who have perfected the art of furrowing the ground for alliances while maintaining the look of nationalists and ideology-driven leaders nodded in unison. Their dilemma must be how to get the other two Ks without shunting other Kenyan communities.
Uhuru reminded the Kalenjins he is still with them as was in 2002 even though they abandoned him for Raila in 2007. What he did not tell them is, he crumbled Kanu’s tent and walked with it to Kibaki’s house for refuge, and he is back to claim Kalenjin vote now that the Kikuyu vote appears assured.
We need not say much on Kalonzo because he is on record asking at a public forum that initial KK (for Ruto and Uhuru) should be expanded to include another ‘K’ — for Kamba!
To show he means business, he is now the champion of ICC deferrals and pullout because he believes it is the route to the Kikuyu-Kalenjin heart. Ainamoi MP Benjamin Lagat crowned it when he asked Ruto, Uhuru and Kalonzo to lock themselves up in a room, and haggle over whom among them would be the presidential candidate.
Lagat, who is one of the Kalenjin leaders whose political reflex is to blink when Ruto does, said Kalenjins would be waiting outside to be told by the Eldoret MP which direction to go once the door is opened. KKK stands for majority shareholders, but it does not shut the door, like any other good investor vehicles, to the small shareholders like those from the north and coast who have warmed up to it.
Uhuru-Ruto alliance started two years ago at a political rally-cum-resettlement campaign for IDPs in Burnt Forest, where Ruto famously said ICC was the best option, as it would take 99 years to complete its work. Its lynchpin was the fact that like in 2002, when the Kikuyu and the Kalenjin rode in one political boat, there were no tribal clashes. But then Kalonzo started knocking on the door saying he was bringing in one more ‘K’.
But though welcomed, Uhuru and Ruto appeared closer to each other than with Kalonzo, because of the longer history between them before 2002 in Kanu, and shared age bracket. The last they would want is to see Kalonzo ‘miraculously’ walk between them.
Word has it in private they seem to feel Kalonzo’s group is behind their tribulations with ICC and his shuttle diplomacy in the name of Kibaki is just to cover up his tracks and an attempt to wriggle into Kalenjin and Kikuyu hearts. He after all believes the Kikuyu owe him the presidency and should reciprocate, and the Kalenjin were his 'people' until Raila intruded. But now that the Raila-Ruto 'marriage' is on the rocks, he may just reclaim what was his. But remember Uhuru’s analogy of a hyena salivating over the swinging human hands?
The two also probably doubt if Kalonzo can play second fiddle to any of them if he loses in the primaries and suspect he will then stick to himself and look for another Julia Ojiambo to run with.
Apart from looking impermeable to other Kenyan communities, there was always the danger Uhuru, Ruto and Kalonzo would be held to account for subverting the new Constitution by using tribe to discriminate against others.
Then Raila dismissed it as an alliance of anti-reformers and watermelons and even claimed in it lay a drunkard and bhang smoker. Either way, KKK was quickly turning into Kenya’s version of America’s Ku Klux Klan. The three ‘wise’ politicians therefore turned around, blamed the media, and wrote to Mzalendo Kibunjia before he wrote to them a not-so- friendly letter. Talk of jumping the gun and you have it.
The writer is Manging Editor, Daily Editions, at The Standard.

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