Nasa selfish to its supporters
Every Kenyan, regardless of which side of the political divide they support, brave the morning cold to cast a ballot for people who they believe can represent their interests in the best way. The electorate therefore expects and deserves to be adequately represented by their leaders.
However, the National Super Alliance (NASA) and its leaders have completely failed their supporters and continue to misrepresent them unabated. First, the alliance failed to deliver their much touted victory in the August 8 General Election after misleading their supporters that they had the numbers and would win with a landslide. Even though NASA won their Supreme Court petition against the declaration that President Uhuru Kenyatta had been re-elected, that was not enough. NASA still has the enormous task of delivering the presidency to its supporters. However, the Opposition leaders are already failing in this task as they only campaign in press conferences and street demonstrations.
It is clear from all angles that NASA lost the election. Even in NASA’s perceived strongholds, Jubilee scored highly and won crucial parliamentary and Senate seats. What is more disheartening now is the fact that the NASA MPs and senators are now failing to represent their voters in Parliament and doing other things for which they were not elected.
They have refused to attend crucial parliamentary sittings. Most importantly, the NASA MPs and senators have declined to attend committee sessions on the amendment to electoral laws proposed by their Jubilee counterparts. Although they oppose the amendments, and rightly so, citing Jubilee’s tyranny of numbers, the minority should always have their say and the best place to voice this opposition is in the committee sittings.
But these are selfish leaders who cannot even agree on their parliamentary minority leadership, lending credence to Jubilee’s claims from the beginning that Opposition leaders are only interested in power sharing, however little the power might be. This selfishness is further entrenched in the fact that these MPs and senators miss plenary sessions, but make technical appearances and register in Parliament so that they do not risk losing their seats by missing eight consecutive sittings. If they feel they cannot serve Kenyans in the roles entrusted to them, why don’t they just leave the scene for people who are more interested in service delivery?
It is still fresh in Kenyans’ minds that immediately after the elections, it was Homa Bay Woman Representative who started agitating for a higher pay for members of Parliament. Even though her Kiambu Woman Rep Gathoni Wa Muchomba was almost caught up in the trap, she has since owned up to her mistake and apologised. But the vocal Homa Bay MP has refused to budge, further elaborating how selfish leaders can be.
Now NASA leaders and their supporters are resident on the streets to agitate for electoral reforms that they know cannot be realistically achieved within the short time left before the fresh presidential election. They are misusing jobless youths to further their selfish agenda, disrupting business for people who are not interested in their shenanigans.
To be fair to the Opposition, Jubilee leaders should also put on hold the proposed amendments on the electoral laws until after the repeat presidential poll. It is not right to change the rules of the game just before the match begins. The MPs should hit the campaign trail and show their NASA counterparts that elections are actually won by numbers, not on the streets. But if this is to be done, the opposition must also drop their demands about the IEBC reforms. It cannot be that they want to change the rules of the game and the referee, but cry foul when their opponents try to do so.
However, it is still within the MPs’ rights and duties to make laws and should the amendments be passed and made law, history will judge NASA legislators very harshly as leaders who let a crucial law to pass without their input. They must stand up to be counted and take their duties for which they were elected seriously. Kenyans from both sides of the political divide need crucial services urgently and the leaders must stop making everyone’s life revolve around elections and politics. The game is not quite enjoyable.
By Benjamin Washiali
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