Nyali MP Mohamed Ali Jicho Pevu
Mohamed Ali at the Sugoi home of William Ruto


By Jerome Ogolla

For long in Maili Tisa, there was this tiny traffic policeman, who weighed slightly more than a kienyeji goat. The angry December winds threatened to sweep him away, because of his small size, especially in the mornings. He was a bit stable in the afternoons, because bribes added some little weight. I don’t know where he went to. I presume the NPS transferred him to a less windy work station. He closely resembles Mohammed Ali, the Nyali MP, might be his relative

I am on this “Jicho Pevu” journalist turned politician. He wants the country to elect the Kilimendi’s friend because the rich men have had their turn, and it is now time for the poor. If Ruto becomes president, will he be the first poor president?

No. Kenyatta Senior was an orphan. He grew up with his grandfather Magana before sneaking to Thogoto to learn some carpentry. By the time he was released from detention in 1961, by then 70 years old, Kenyatta was landless and penniless. His small farm and “singira” had been confiscated by the colonial government and didn’t even have a house

Even the famous brown leather jacket was donated, by a Mr Ambu Patel. Moi also grew up with relatives, at Chesire’s home, because his own parents were either dead or too poor to take care of anything. By the time he became an assistant minister, his only posseion was a plot in Sacho, despite having served in the LegCo from 1955 and teaching at Kabarnet Intermediate

Hezekiah Rabala Ochuka, Kenya’s third president, is also not known to have been wealthy. He served as a private in the air force before becoming president

Kibaki, the fourth president, is also documented to have been a man of modest means, when he left his teaching job at Makerere University in Uganda, to take up position as KANU executive officer in 1961. Uhuru the current president is the only man, wealthy man to become president in Kenya

For that case, the poor men have had their fair share of four presidents and it is now time for the wealthy who have only had one, Uhuru. Back to Mohammed Ali, when you say “sisi masikini” what exactly do you mean? With a ksh 1 million salary and ksh 18 M pension, are you a “masikini?”

By the same parameters, is Kilimendi’s friend, a proud owner of a ksh 2B home, Ksh 1B chopper, several five star hotels, and leading aviation insurer Amaco etc, a poor man? Only if the word has aacquired a new meaning! Is poverty a qualification for a public office? If so, I will tell you who a genuine hoof eater is. If poberty is the yardstick to gauge a person’s ability to become president, then I know of people who are more qualified

If the argument is that the DP was born poor then everyman is born poor, without any material wealth. In fact a human being is born naked without anything apart from two tennis balls which won’t even function until a decade later. That poverty this won’t sell. The country isn’t boarding

Since this whole debate is all about succession, let’s examine Ruto’s path in relation to Moi’s because the later, like him, also served as a Kenyatta’s deputy. Upon Mzee Kenyatta’s death, his powerful Coast PC, Eliud Mahihu telephoned Moi, then Kenyatta’s vice, who was by then in his Kabarak home, to break the news, and advised him to travel to the city, immediately

Along the way the notorious “ngoroko” lie in wait, with instructions from GEMA to abduct and harm Moi, to prevent him from being sworn in. By the time they mounted the roadblock, Moi had already passed. As much as the circumstances are different then and now, the constant factor here is that there is a group of “ngoroko” sent in by the same senders to stop the DP’s journey to state house

Whether they will succeed or not is a story for another day



Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.