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HON RAILA SHOULD BE MADE PRIME MINISTER, SAY KOIGI

COMMENTARY

Power sharing most viable option

Story by KOIGI WAMWERE
Publication Date: 1/24/2008

Everyday our crisis grows and so are the calls for a solution through various options that include a repeat election and a coalition government.

Last week, ODM MPs agreed to be sworn in as members of the 10th Parliament. This indicates Raila Odinga and his ODM MPs may not be too keen on a repeat election. If that is so, other than President Kibaki conceding defeat, which is unlikely after he has been sworn in as winner, ODM and PNU joining a coalition may be the only option left for peace. 

However, for Raila to join a coalition with Kibaki, the President must invite him. But having made Kalonzo Musyoka, the third man in the presidential race, his vice president, President Kibaki should make Raila, the second runner, prime minister and cede reasonable executive powers to him, as he should cede others to VP. 

Ordinarily, I would not fight for anybody to have this or that office, but angry communities take personal interests and power of their leaders as their own. By creating premiership for Raila, the President will therefore not be creating office for an individual but communities who see their liberation in the power of Raila and must be pacified for unity and salvation of the country. 

Mr President you don’t have to like Raila to make him PM. Just consider the bigger picture.

And there are many other reasons why it is good political sense to incorporate Raila into the Government of national unity as a solution of the current crisis.

First, the President has a sole duty and responsibility to do anything and everything to restore peace and unity in this country. 

Second, president Kibaki has said he wants to form a government of national unity that is all inclusive, meaning, even Raila and his ODM are welcome.

THIRD, PRESIDENT KIBAKI HAS ALREADY brought Kalonzo and ODM-Kenya into the Government of national unity. Bringing in Raila and ODM will only make government of national unity greater, not lesser. If it was logical to make Kalonzo VP, which I had twice asked the President to consider, it cannot be illogical to make Raila prime minister.

Fourth, by appointing Raila Prime Minister, Kibaki will not lose his presidency. He will only strengthen it and enhance his legacy.

Fifth, if democracy is a government of the people and the more people it has behind it, the better, including ODM into the Government will enhance our democracy, not weaken it. I know this will hurt opposition in parliament but our democracy can only be built upon a foundation of reconciliation, justice, peace and unity.

Sixth, Raila may have lost elections but the over 4 million people that voted for him give him a right to share power with an equally strong Kibaki.

Seventh, when the president creates premiership, it will not be for Raila but prosperity too. Those in power may not have in five years time. They will then need a strong VP or premiership for refuge and protection. 

Eighth, President’s advisors should stop fearing Raila. Raila has metamorphosed into a man of comfort and establishment. The rich should not fear him. He shall not rock their boat. 

Ninth, through election of both Speaker and his deputy from the ODM party, the executive is now PNU while the legislature is ODM. This will certainly create paralysis in government and only the inclusion of Raila will allow the government to function normally.

Tenth, if the president believes he won fairly, it makes a lot of sense for him to be magnanimous with Raila. And magnanimity is never a sign of weakness but courage. 

Mr Wamwere is former MP for Subukia.

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About SG

Secretary general of Chama Cha Mwananchi. This blog www.chamachamwananchi.wordpress.com, is based in Sweden.

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