This is the biggest question on everyone’s mind. You have probably heard it being discussed at work, or in the streets, neighborhoods, or in matatus on your way to work. Maybe even in church after service. Or if you did Political Science at the University, then you have probably received a text or a call from someone asking if you have an idea of who would be in President Uhuru’s next Cabinet. You know, those people who think you have an answer for anything political. (lol). But as it is, we are all waiting. Including the current Cabinet Secretaries themselves.
In my opinion, there are two key considerations that President Uhuru Kenyatta should make in deciding on his next team. And you will notice that I have deliberately left out William Ruto. Why? Because the next five years for Uhuru are more about his legacy, than his Deputy’s ascend to Power. And this is in no way related to the political machinations currently at play within the Mount Kenya and Rift valley honchos.
The first consideration is on efficient service delivery. Uhuru Kenyatta, in his inaugural speech on 28th November last year made a statement that could very well haunt him for the next five years depending on whether he lives by them or not. “You have given us a majority of leaders in Parliament and other electoral positions. We have no excuse not to deliver.”, he said to a nation pregnant with expectations. And two months on, Kenyans still await to see drastic measures taken by the government to reduce inequality by raising millions of us out to poverty, creating conducive environment for businesses that will in tun open up new jobs, and most importantly, adopt a zero tolerance on corruption as a government. “A poor man cares more about bread than the law,” Thomas Hobbes taught us. And Kenya is a nation of millions of poor men and women, who want to see the prices of flour, sugar and other basic goods accessible to their shallow pockets. These Kenyans want a shelter over their heads, and the confidence that their graduate sons and daughters can get employed regardless of their status. There are no two ways about this. The president needs a team of proven technocrats who will spend more time drafting and effecting policies than they will be addressing homecoming rallies.
The second consideration he needs to make is quite political. We are a nation of 43 tribes. Some are dorminant, while others are not. And this reality pans out everyday in our politics. It has been the silent drive behind the secession calls driven by the NASA outfit who, in my opinion are taking advantage of this reality for their own political gain. And it cannot be gainsaid that previous regimes in Kenya have done a shoddy job where equality in resource allocation is concerned. This is why today we have the CRA (Commission on Revenue Allocation) in place to protect Devolution from what could be an rogue Executive. But beyond this, the president should be seen as an enabler in unifying Kenya through his Cabinet appointments. However, this should not in any way replace meritocracy. But we have as many smart Turkanas, Mijikendas and Luos, as we do Kikuyus, Kambas and Kalenjins. And while his recent naming of John Munyes (a Turkana) is laudable, we must question the latter’s past record in service delivery. And not just Munyes, but every El Molo, Luhya or Kamba that could be named as CS. This way, more tribes will feel part and parcel of Kenya when they can see one of their own ‘up there’. And while this may not make much sense rationally, it does politically. If Uhuru would do this, and the appointees in turn sought to deliver, then there would be no better way for the government to silence secession campaigners and earn himself a comfortable legacy as Kenya’s 4th President.
There’s how I see it. Now let’s go back to waiting.