An astute political entrepreneur, Raila long recognised the deeply transactional nature of Kenyan politics, and leveraged his struggle bona fides and his popular appeal for ethnic slices of the political pie. In salvaging Uhuru Kenyatta’s second term, however, has he done one trade too many?
For strongmen seeking office, the facade of competitive elections provides an important reputational asset. For the others facing real competition, procuring the services of Western spin doctors, who now deploy big data propaganda to engineer electoral consent, is now not just a cute fashion item, it is a strategic imperative. Whatever the case, the Cambridge Analyticas of this world may not demand payments upfront, says GABRIELLE LYNCH, but they almost always return for their pound of flesh.
Has the fourth Estate compromised its independence? Brown envelope journalists and editors, who believe in and propound the political (and ethnic) divisions of the day now fill the newsroom. “Small sacrifices” on their part has led to self-censorship. They have today betrayed their audiences and the very pillars of democracy which they were created to uphold. MUTHONI WANYEKI delivers a prescient message against the purveyors of silence.
Did the Jubilee government loot $20 billion during its first term? The equivalent of 10 Eurobond issuances, the money has disappeared from the government’s loan portfolio. Technically broke by its own admission, Treasury has blamed, unconvincingly, everything from devolution to the wage bill for the state of its finances. DAVID NDII delivers another damning indictment against the pirates of pillage.