Wednesday, July 2, 2008

Kibaki has to fire Kimunya and do the RIGHT thing

Kenyan newspapers today have given us a glimpse of what happened in Palriament yesterday, chiefly the passing of a no-confidence or censure Motion in the Finance minister Amos Kimunya.

Kimunya is a confidante of Mwai Kibaki, who is president by virtue of a hotly contested election whose integrity is under probe as we speak. About the Motion, The Standard suggests that:
"The Grand Regency saga went to the floor of Parliament as furious members censured Mr Amos Kimunya over the sale of the hotel even as he put up a spirited defense of his actions. By adopting the censure motion, Parliament was asking that either the Finance Minister resigns or the President picks the cue and fires him. However, the President is not under obligation to go by Parliament’s decision."

The Daily Nation suggests the same thing.

For us to place the issue in context, let's go back to 1995, to the land of milk and money. Wikipedia tells us that Israeli Prime minister Yitzak Rabin had been murdered, and Bill Clinton was returning from the funeral with Senate majority leader Newt Gingrich. On the plane, Clinton ignored Gingrich, so to show his might, the angry Gingrich organized a clever plan that shut down the US govt literally. He simply forced a budget crisis, the kind we could easily witness in Kenya today.

A Cabinet sub-committee chaired by AG Amos Wako has also recommended that Kimunya resigns. Kibaki can ignore that without serious consequences, but not Parliament. No government can operate without a budget.

The only catch is that MPs might not be paid their salaries, a prospect they would not accept without a fight. That's Kibaki's only consolation, but judging by the mood of parliament yesterday, it would not be totally far-fetched to see MPs taking that option.

But Kenyans must ask what next. Suppose Kibaki does fire Kimunya, which as I have shown he has to do (if Kimunya does not resign first). Kimunya must be asked to explain, probably assisted by handcuffs and a sabbatical at Kamiti Maximum Security Prison, where the Grand Regency money went. Did it finance PNU elections last year as claimed by The Nairobi Star this week?

If so, who received the money? And if Libyan blood money (yes, blood money since many Kenyans have died as a result of the theft of Goldenberg money that birthed the Grand Larceny in the Grand Regency saga) financed PNU's campaign last year, doesn't that not logically lead us into the conclusion that Kibaki's alleged victory in last year's election is dripping with the blood of Kenyans? If Kimunya must go, what about Kibaki?

Kibaki has to fire Kimunya, and even if he resigns, the questions should only stop after Kibaki does the RIGHT thing. By now it should be fairly obvious what that is.

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