Why NASA flag bearer talks failed to take off

Standard digital

The opposition alliance’s retreat that had been set to start Monday has been rescheduled to begin today, according to one of the principals. Last evening, Ford-Kenya’s Moses Wetang’ula said he and his colleagues in the National Super Alliance (NASA) would start their meeting today. Earlier, it had emerged that the absence of one of the principals, the expected entry of Bomet Governor Isaac Ruto, and outstanding issues on power-sharing were among the reasons that prompted the postponement of the retreat.
Delicate talks
Also cited were concerns that too much publicity could undermine the delicate talks and apprehension that holding the crucial meeting with the ongoing contentious party primaries could send signals to the grassroots that could influence the nominations. Initially, the National Super Alliance (NASA) had announced that the four opposition leaders would meet on April 17, 18, and 19 to consider a report by the National Coordinating Committee (NCC) on the coalition’s presidential flag-bearer and power-sharing proposals.

The much-awaited retreat was put off after ODM leader Raila Odinga travelled to South Africa over the Easter holiday to visit his ailing daughter, Rosemary, and was expected back in the country either last evening or this morning. “We cannot go to a retreat because some of the principals are not present. Raila is in South Africa while Kalonzo Musyoka had travelled to Dubai,” said Amani National Congress (ANC) leader Musalia Mudavadi. Mr Mudavadi added: “The principals can only have a full meeting when all of them are around.” Mr Kalonzo had, however, returned to the country by yesterday. When contacted, Kalonzo alluded to a change of strategy. The Wiper party leader said the intention was to keep the schedule of the retreat a closely guarded secret. “We want this meeting to remain a mystery. We know that there is huge interest but we don’t want to be infiltrated and that’s why we are not disclosing any details,” he said. While disputing a leaked report that suggested a Raila-Kalonzo ticket had been recommended, Siaya Senator James Orengo, a member of the National Coordinating Committee (NCC), had announced that a decision on the coalition’s flag-bearer would be made during a retreat of NASA principals which he indicated was scheduled for April 17, 18, and 19.

Reports received yesterday had indicated that the retreat might be delayed for two or three days after Governor Ruto agreed to join NASA as the fifth principal. It is understood that Ruto will be received in Nairobi before the end of the week and will hold discussions with the four principals before they all fly down to the Coast to agree not only on who among them would fly the opposition flag, but also the power-sharing formula. The NASA chiefs are set to hold what they term a scheduled meeting in Nairobi this morning and it is not clear whether Ruto will join them. Yesterday, the governor confirmed that he would meet the four principals. “I will be meeting the NASA principals. However, for now I am conducting party primaries between Tuesday and Wednesday. So we will be meeting from Thursday heading to the weekend,” said Ruto.

Fine-tuning report
Asked if he had been invited to the Coast retreat, Ruto replied: “Who told you the retreat will be in Mombasa? It can be anywhere and yes I will be attending the retreat.”

“There is a need for more time so that the coalition is able to bring Ruto on board and work on ways of accommodating him and what his stake in the coalition will be,” said a source privy to the discussions. He, however, confirmed that the retreat would take place before the end of the month. Although NCC had completed its report, a technical committee was said to be fine-tuning it own on power-sharing. The NASA technical team will be compelled to adjust its document to incorporate Ruto’s Chama Cha Mashinani (CCM). Kitutu Masaba MP Timothy Bosire, a member of NCC, said his team had done its work.


Residents of Nairobi’s Eastlands will have an easier time accessing the city centre once a road expansion project launched by President Uhuru Kenyatta on Thursday is completed. The Sh13 billion initiatives will see Outer Ring Road converted into a six-lane highway with interchanges and over-passes as well as the construction of 10 Eastern missing links.

Of the total, Sh8.5 billion will go towards expansion of the 13-kilometre Outer Ring Road while the rest will finance setting up of the missing links covering about 16 kilometres. The two projects are funded by the African Development Bank and the European Union in partnership with the government.


The roads will also have footpaths and cycle lanes. The project is estimated to be completed in 36 months. At the launch on Thursday, President Kenyatta ordered implementing agencies to make sure that the work is completed within the set time-frame without compromising quality.

“The contractors must stick to the time-frame and give first priority to the local youths while hiring workers,” President Kenyatta said.

Uhuru was accompanied by African Development bank Director Gabriel Nagatu, Nairobi Senator Mike Sonko among other government officials. The project that was officialy launched by Uhuru dates back to November 23 2011 when Sonko (then Makadara MP) raised a question in Parliament through a private notice to the then Roads minister Franklin Bett on traffic conjection along Outer ring Road.

Below is the verbatim Hansard of Parliament how Sonko’s question led to the commissioning of the road’s upgrade yesterday by President Uhuru Kenyatta.

  • Mr. Speaker

Next Question by hon. Member for Makadara.

  • ‘Mike Sonko’

Mr. Speaker, Sir, I beg to ask the Minister for Roads the following Question by Private Notice. (a) Is the Minister aware of the frequent traffic snarl-ups on Outer Ring Road, especially at the Donholm and Kariobangi roundabouts, and what immediate and long- term measures will the Government take to remedy the problem? (b) What is the extent of losses, both in man hours and economically, resulting from the delays?

  • Page 8 of Hansard 23.11.11P
  • Franklin Bett (The Minister for Roads)

Mr. Speaker, Sir, I beg to reply. (a) I am aware of the frequent snarl-ups on Outering Road and especially at Donholm and Kariobangi roundabouts. To address the problem, my Ministry through the Kenya Urban Roads Authority (KURA) has procured a consultant to undertake the designs for expansion of Outer Ring Road, including improvement of the junctions into interchanges. The designs are expected to be completed by March, 2012. (b) According to statistics available to me from Japan International Corporation (JICA) on transport master plan for Nairobi Metropolitan, Outer Ring Road is one of the roads that have the highest volumes in the City with over 87,000 vehicles per day. It is estimated that 348,169 man hours are lost on Outer Ring Road every day while the financial loss is estimated at Kshs2.8 million per day. The Government is not able to compensate road users for losses arising from congestion. However, the Government has taken a lot of interest on this road and other roads in the country. That is why a lot of effort is being put into improving our infrastructure. Therefore, I urge all stakeholders to exercise patience and understanding as we address the issues.

  • ‘Mike Sonko’

Mr. Speaker, Sir, I appreciate the good work that the Minister and his team, especially the Director General, KURA, Mr. Nkadayo, for what they are doing in Makadara and the entire Nairobi in general. They have recarpeted all the roads in Makadara and Nairobi County is now like New York. The by-passes are all over. My question to the Minister is; since Outering Road links Juja Road, Mumias-South Road in Buruburu within my constituency, Kangundo Road, Jogoo Road, Lunga Lunga Road within my constituency and Airport North Road which links to Mombasa Road— The Minister has admitted that they have engaged a consultant—

  • Mr. Speaker

Order, hon. Member for Makadara! Come to the Question. I thought you were already there.

  • ‘Mike Sonko’

Mr. Speaker, Sir, I am coming to my Question. Since the Minister has admitted that they have engaged a consultant to design this busy Outering Road, could he give an undertaking to this House on when the expansion of this is going to commence?

  • Franklin Bett

Mr. Speaker, Sir, I want to thank the hon. Member for the compliments that he has given to my Ministry and my officers. The consultant is due to conclude his work on March, 2012. Soon after that, we are already engaging in discussions with a possible financier, that is, the African Development Bank (ADB), and they have already indicated that they are willing to put aside Kshs3 billion for the expansion of that road into a dual carriageway. I want to indicate that it will be a dual carriageway to all the places the hon. Member has listed.

  • Peter Njoroge Baiya

Mr. Speaker, Sir, while appreciating the effort the Ministry is making to alleviate the problem of congestion in the City and bearing in mind what the Minister has said about a consultant having been engaged, is he also aware of the fact that if you address one section of the City without reference to the rest, then improvement on one has the impact of generating traffic problems in another section? For instance, Thika Road improvement and expansion is going to make this road impassable as a result of traffic flow to the main road.

Yes, Mr. Speaker, Sir. We are alive to that situation; that as we improve one road, the congestion increases on another road. In view of the limited financial resources available to us, we cannot do all the roads at the same time. So, we have to go by way of priority, taking into account the volume of traffic on each road. As I indicated the other day, the traffic on Thika Road is the highest compared to any other road. The next is Uhuru Highway and Outer Ring Road.

  • Danson Mungatana

Mr. Speaker, Sir, in other countries, when there is a problem like this, at least the public are given an apology. When the rains came the other day, people stayed for over five hours on that road. I do not know why he is praising these people because they did not come out to say that they are sorry to Kenyans because they pay taxes and the money is being wasted. My question to him is; who takes responsibility for the wastage and who comes out to say sorry to Kenyans? When are they going to make their drainages on this road?

  • Mr. Speaker

Order! You are supposed to ask one supplementary question at a time. You want to do three?

  • Danson Mungatana

I was building up the question. Who is building those drainages?

  • Franklin Bett

Mr. Speaker, Sir, the drainages are done by the Ministry of Roads and the management of the drainages after we have done them is the responsibility of the Ministry of Local Government, that is, the City Council of Nairobi. They are the ones who as supposed to manage waste in their locality. I want to urge the Ministry concerned to assist me in that regard. By the way, I also want to add that even members of the public contribute in stock piling waste in our drainage by throwing litter anyhow. I want to urge members of the public that let us also be responsible by caring about the placement of litter in our hands.

  • Kiema Kilonzo

Mr. Speaker, Sir, I also wish to join the rest in congratulating this Minister who is “hands-on” in his work. However, what is he doing to ensure that when these roads are being done, not only in Nairobi, but other parts of the country, contractors put road furniture and all other necessary utilities? He knows very well that we were with him on the Kitui-Mwingi Road. The contractor has completed the road, but there is no signage, and this is the case all over, even in Nairobi. What is he doing to ensure that that is enforced?

  • Franklin Bett

Mr. Speaker, Sir, that is a very good question. Every road, on completion and before it is handed over, the engineer in charge has to make sure that the road furniture is in place. I want to assure this House that, that is always the case. As soon as we have cleared away some “animals” – and allow me to say so – come and take them away as scrap metal.

  • Mr. Speaker

Are you, Mr. Minister, by any chance, referring to Kenyans as animals?

  • Hon. Members


  • Franklin Bett

Mr. Speaker, Sir, I wish to withdraw!

  • Mr. Speaker

Withdraw and apologize!

  • Franklin Bett

Mr. Speaker, Sir, I withdraw and apologize. We placed a very beautiful notice on the Nakuru-Nairobi Highway to warn motorists not to over speed. If you went there, that beautiful signage has now been chopped and all of it taken away. That is the situation on all our roads everywhere in the Republic.

Mr. Speaker, Sir, the loss the Minister has told us of Kshs2.8 million a day translates roughly to Kshs1.1 billion a year. We find it very difficult to believe him because just a few months ago, he was all over this place running helter skelter that we give him our okay so that he could then offer concessioning for Uhuru Highway. Nothing has happened! He has never bothered to come to the House to explain why the concessioning project has not taken off. Could we believe him? Is he telling us that he cannot put an earth road on the other side where they want to make a dual carriage way, so that Nairobians can continue moving instead of losing Kshs1.1 billion a year?

  • Franklin Bett

Mr. Speaker, Sir, even doing an earth or gravel road needs money. The money I have is not adequate. I want to thank this House because for the past two years, they have authorized the Treasury to release to us over Kshs70 billion for our roads. However, that is almost 20 per cent of what we have always requested for from the Exchequer to do our roads.

  • ‘Mike Sonko’

Mr. Speaker, Sir, the last time the Minister gave an undertaking on Jogoo Road, he honoured it. In fact, I think all the other lazy Ministers, if there are any, who are sleeping should follow his example.

  • Mr. Speaker

Order, Mr. Mbuvi! You cannot use the word “lazy” in reference to your colleagues in the House. That is imputing improper motive that your colleagues are, in fact, lazy. You need a Substantive Motion. Could you, please, withdraw the word “lazy” and apologize?

  • ‘Mike Sonko’

Mr. Speaker, Sir, I withdraw and apologize!

  • Mr. Speaker

Very well! Continue!

  • ‘Mike Sonko’

Mr. Speaker, Sir, my question to the Minister is: Could he give a further undertaking that when the construction works on the Outer Ring Road begin, we will not experience another Syokimau demolition and that the Government will issue notices and compensate all property owners whose properties will be affected by the extension of this road, including the Mutindwa Market?

  • Franklin Bett

Mr. Speaker, Sir, I will not give an undertaking not to demolish structures on the road reserves. If structures are on the road, bona fide road reserves, they will have to be removed. My Ministry will, however, endavour to give notice to the illegal occupants of the road reserves. We will even go further to place crosses on all those structures which are on our road reserves. That is the better signal to the owner of the building when they see a marking of the Ministry of Roads on the wall or building or perimeter fence. So, I am sorry if there are members of the public who have constructed structures on the road reserves, I will have no choice, but to remove them to give the people of this country a much needed road

Manzi wa Nai



As if our politics was not pathetic enough, Nairobi is now witnessing a new crop of Woman Representative aspirants who think that the race for that seat is a beauty contest.

With taglines like Bae wa Naii and Msupa na works, it is very clear that these politicians do not take themselves seriously.

From the way they look and feel, it would seem that the current crop of Nairobi Woman Rep aspirants are not only looking for your votes, but also for husbands.

With their goldilocks weaves, fake nails, heavily made-up faces, crimson red lipstick, vertiginous high heels and full length photos that show us all their curves and bulges, what we have are not politicians but socialites contesting in a ‘city bum’ beauty pageant.


The only difference between the curvaceous, Dubai-visiting socialites and the Woman Rep aspirants is that the politicians can afford billboards to showcase what they have to offer.

This is why nobody in this country will ever take the Woman representatives or even the office of the Woman Rep seriously.

If your selling point is beauty and youth (Bae is a corruption of the word ‘babe’), how do you expect we, the electorate, to respect you, let alone consider your ideas?

If you are peddling your beauty and asking us to judge you on the basis of your skin tone, make up and sheath dresses that outline your body, how do you expect us to entrust you with the weighty issues affecting the city?

If you are more interested in showing us your curves on your social media pages and on billboards than your ideas, how on earth do you expect a typical Kenyan not to think of you in a way that is not sexual? What are you trying to arouse here exactly?

You would think that with all their university degrees that maybe, just maybe, something would have stuck after years of law school, but I am massively disappointed that when it comes to Nairobi Woman Rep, the use of brains has been replaced with beauty and legs.

Why aren’t male MP or MCA aspirants not selling themselves as ‘Chali wa Naii’ or ‘Mjamaa na works’?

Could it be that these Woman representative aspirants think that the only thing they have to offer to Nairobians is beauty and curves and not ideas that will change our stinking city?

This is possibly why female politicians have lost the respect of Kenyans.

They have packaged themselves as delicate models on the catwalks and Kenyans no longer view them through the prism of change agents or leaders.

To the average Kenyan, the only female politician worth the leadership title is Martha Karua, who has on many occasions been referred to as a man only because she comes across as a strong, no-nonsense politician, not a pretty girl with red lipstick and a tight skirt.

You cannot expect Kenyans to respect you if you package yourself as supuu (beautiful).

That is all they will see in you; your beauty — real or imagined.


Not even your male colleagues in Parliament will accord you the respect you deserve as a leader because you come across as a flower girl with a blonde-dyed weave and fake eyelashes.

Such misguided thinking is to blame for the regrettable behaviour we have seen from some Woman Reps who have earned the dubious reputation for filming erotica while occupying high leadership offices.

I mean, when a woman markets herself as Manzi wa Naii, do you expect male leaders to look at her and think business?

There is obviously nothing wrong with female politicians wearing makeup or looking good.

I am all for the lethal combination that is beauty and brains. But when it comes to packaging yourself as a female politician, please think beyond the legs and hips.

Make an effort to come across as a serious woman and a respected politician who is not afraid to tackle serious issues of public interest.

British Prime Minister Theresa May has the nicest pair of legs around but she also has a fierce leadership spirit.

Be a woman of substance. Be issue-based. Excite your electorate not with your curves, but with your ideas on how you will transform their city.

Kenya has enough socialites to last us a lifetime.

Keep the tight skirts and sheath dresses in your wardrobe for dates with campaign sponsors.

Cover up, ladies, and please put some respect in that Woman Representative office?

Sawa Bae? Thanks, Msupa. Have a blessed Easter, Manzi wa Naii






The Government has embarked on a nationwide discussion of the progress made in implementing various development projects by providing information to the public. The intention is to promote effective two-way communication, free access to information and a more transparent means of tracking progress made in national socioeconomic transformation. This level of accountability is unprecedented in this country.

As usual, ODM has panicked and is reacting in a frenzied and disjointed manner that does nothing to improve the quality of the national conversation. The reason is that ODM is frightened. It is running low on creative ideas and safe spaces for reckless commentary.

Why is ODM is afraid of the government’s achievements? What does ODM find frightening about expanded access by Kenyans to improved social services? Why is ODM afraid of Kenyans becoming more connected, more mobile and more able to move goods and services across the country faster? Why is ODM afraid of better equipped hospitals where wananchi can access services which were previously available in exclusive private facilities? Why is ODM afraid of cost-free, credible examinations? Why is ODM afraid of the removal of hyacinth in Lake Victoria? Why is ODM afraid of the electrification of hamlets and slums all the way from Kisii to Kibera? Why is ODM afraid of the issuance of title deeds to Kenyans?

One of the reason for ODM’s fear is that the bar is being set too high. ODM has no capacity to implement development on any meaningful scale. It specialises in Triton, Maize, Kazi Kwa Vijana and Kisumu Molasses type disasters in the name of development. This is why ODM wishes that every successful government project was a corruption scandal – corruption is a language they best understand. Therefore, ODM believes that any resources spent on development is a wasted. They believe that violence is the most effective form of communication and that democracy is not a way for Kenyans to choose leaders.

Another reason for ODM’s fear is that they strongly believe that only the elites should enjoy good healthcare, education, access to electricity and title deeds. They are intrinsically allergic to the empowerment of other Kenyans.

Even democracy, for ODM, is a cruel sham; a theory and a sport for the professors and consultants and politicians. According to ODM, Wanjiku is totally excluded from the table of national conversation and cake-sharing. That Jubilee is taking the side of Wanjiku causes alarm and sleepless nights for ODM leadership.

For this reason, ODM leaders purchase direct nomination tickets in their hundreds, violently attack one another at every opportunity and spend no time deliberating on policies or ideas to bring development to the people. To deflect attention from their many dangerous shortcomings, ODM loudly and falsely criticise Government achievements. They must get used to the idea of shared prosperity. They must prepare for an empowered mwananchi.

Jubilee’s delivery is steadily exposing ODM’s allergy to three Ds: Development, Democracy and Decency.

11 April 2017

Saudi investors visit President Uhuru

This slideshow requires JavaScript.


The President Uhuru welcomed Over 30 Saudi investors – led by Saudi Arabia’s Commerce and Investment Minister Majed Bin Abdulla Alqassabi, just a day after Qatar’s Sheikh was in Kenya..

The meeting discussed the possibility to import cheaper crude oil from Saudi Arabia and boosting export of Kenya’s products such as tea, coffee, vegetables, textile materials, fruits, nuts and beef.

Leading Saudi companies present at the meeting included Al Mobty Group of Companies which was represented by its chairman Eng. Abdullah Al-Mobty, Alkorayef Group represented by Mr Saad Abdullah Alkorayef and Hmood Al Khalaf Trading and Transportation Group whose General Manager Hmood Al Khalaf attended the meeting.

Others were Kingdom Paints Factory Company and Care Group which were represented by their CEOs Mr Sultan Alqahtani and Dr Emad Al Thukair respectively.


Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad Al Thani in Kenya. Worth about 2Billion Dollars, He is among the 10 richest royals and and among the 7 richest Sheikhs in the world.
When you are talking about who is who in middle East. His name will come up.

Alafu you hear sijui this government is chasing away investors blah blah blah.

4 political realities Luos must accept

Samson Ogola


If there is one thing I hate as a writer, it must be writing against a tribe or an individual. So, believe me when I tell you that I hate being the bearer of this message. Luos, once very rational and hopeful, are today politically frustrated and disillusioned. Most of us want war, we are annoyingly arrogant and support alarmist utterances against imagined political foes. Things aren’t working for us politically, but instead of facing the reality, we’ve become escapists…always blaming our political failures on others.

More than several times, I have listened to people willing and ready to fight should Raila lose again. If some Luo leader isn’t threatening  (in a public rally) to declare Homabay County a Republic, another is asking Luos to be ready to die for Raila this time round. And that doesn’t even scratch the surface when it comes to Luos and love for stone-age politics.

Promising hell-fire in the ‘unlikely’ event Raila loses is almost becoming our motto. We have stooped too low to supporting every nonsense, because in such we see solutions to our prevailing political problems. Luos, though intellectuals, are so afraid of reality that they wouldn’t hesitate to eliminate the source. Anyway, I’ll cut to the chase and address you in the most direct way possible.


I’m a Luo by any definition of the word; a realist. I have refused to buy into emotions and wishful thinking. Tribal pride cannot stop me from bending too low or even crawling to achieve my goals. Here are the 4 political realities Luos must accept for sanity’s sake:

1. Luo Isn’t A Superior Tribe

While  we are within our rights to be proud of our tribe and its culture, we don’t have the right to feel superior to other tribes Kenya. We are not a software. We are not a lifestyle. It is never a calling to be a luo. We can and should beg if situation demands. The ‘Jaluo oksechi to kwecho (A luo never pleads but begs)’ is at best dehumanizing for a slogan.

This may shock you, but Luo is just one of the 42 tribes that make up Kenya. It doesn’t matter who think we are, our needs cannot be bigger than that of all Kenyans combined. We don’t have the right to force everyone else to think like us, to love our leaders the way we do. We cannot hold Kenya hostage…no one owes us anything. The sooner we accept the ugly truth the better.

2. Raila Is Not A Special Leader

Let me state clearly that there is nothing abnormal about loving Raila or admiring what you believe are his sacrifices for the country. Even according him unquestioning loyalty is not far-fetched as it is normal in Kenya for people to worship tribal overlords. However, it is childish to think that Raila is a special tribal (who has sacrificed too much for this country) that he MUST be rewarded with presidency. The fight for democracy and freedom was and is never a one man show. Others paid the ultimate price, if you must be reminded.

Again, Kenya is a democracy; one only becomes president by garnering 50%+1 of the total votes. There is no shortcut, no rewards however much someone thinks he is owed. We can’t force Raila on other Kenyans because we want one of our own in Statehouse. Seeking the presidency for sentimental value is as awkward as it is useless. What is that only Raila can do that he must be president? If there is, let’s share this unique attribute with others politely not forcing him down their throats.

3. Not Every Election Is Rigged Against Raila

Raila vied in 1997 and came a distant third. We all know he won in 2007, but Kibaki stole his victory. How do I know that he won in 2007? ODM had majority of elected leaders at every level. Based on our tribal politics, a political party or coalition can’t have the highest number of elected leaders yet lose the presidency. Using the same rationale, you’ll see why Uhuru won in 2013.

So, to contentiously whine that our victory is stolen even when we are too disorganized to organize credible nominations is a bad joke. Baseless claims of rigging of an election 5 years before it is conducted can’t and Won’t help. Let’s grow up, accept defeat, examine why we lost and strategize for a win…it is possible to win just as it is to lose!

4. You Can’t Fight Your Way To The Presidency

Some of us are spoiling for war, ready to die and to kill to realize a President Raila. But like I said Kenya is a democracy and Raila can only be president through the ballot. It doesn’t matter how suicidal one may feel, we lack what it takes to tilt Kenya let alone turn it upside down. And who is it that we want to fight should we lose?

Why do we think other tribes will join us in our war against imaginary enemies? How comes all inciters only insight Luos? Have you seen Muthama inciting Kambas to fight should  Raila lose? Or Aladwa/Khalwale telling Luhyas to be ready to die for Raila? No, all the nonsense is told to the deliberately naive Luo audience, because only us can consume political dry jokes.

For a people that were begging to be ferried home through their enemy’s buses during the 2007/8, it is annoying to always ask for war. I didn’t see warriors in the slums we infest; people were scared to death, staying awake all the night in fear of Mungiki and going without food…we attacked no one…reality dawned on us that we are incapable of making real our threats. It was pathetic; starting wars we cannot win when peaceful solutions were available is costly and stupid.

My people, let’s embrace other Kenyans, show them that we value them. That’s how we will win..not this jaluo oksechi (a luo never begs) nonsense! And don’t forget, it’s never too late to turn things around and make Luos great again.