Opinion: It’s Time Luos Fully Embraced Government of the Day

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Dear Luos let’s embrace the Luos in government, especially the few in notable positions in the national government. Trying to render one of us irrelevant is trying to render all of us irrelevant.

Take for instance Waziri Eliud Owalo. I still don’t understand why he attracts so much vile and jibes from some of us.

When Uhuru came to power, he appointed one Luo to his cabinet. That Luo was Raychelle Awuor Omamo, appointed CS for Defence. She never stepped much in Luo Nyanza.

Even though KDF had annual recruitment of servicemen and women. Even though by tradition Defence CSs often get tens of slots to directly hire; she stayed put in Nairobi.

Her most prominent function in Luo Nyanza was representing President Uhuru in the funeral of Fidel Odinga, where her booing attracted Jakom’s anger, making him scold those who were jeering her, for KDF had provided the chopper, and the government had provided other assistance, but I digress.

The other CSs who came after her were not any better. Prof Magoha only realized he was Luo when it was now apparent Uhuru was supporting Raila, that is, in the waning days of Uhuru. Tuju under Uhuru had no portfolio, and you don’t ask much of a man with so little.

The Luo Pss were even worse. They had this fear. Was it real or was it their tactic of evading the concerns of fellow Luos? Nothing, however, mundane, would be discussed over the phone. And when you visited their offices, lofty and luxurious as they were, nothing much came of it.

That we have a CS who can actually launch anything in Luo Nyanza, who can go as far as organize a ‘home coming’ right here in Luo Nyanza, and invite the President, alongside other leaders, including Luo leaders elected in opposition, is communal progress.

As a community, many of the ministers and CSs we’ve had in the last 20 years have given us a raw deal. From Grand Coalition Government to this hour.

I do not know what Eliud Owalo and the two Luo PSs will achieve. But even if they don’t achieve much, they won’t be the first.

I argue here that it takes nothing from us to give them the benefit of the doubt.

A Luo presidency is a long game. I do not want to surrender entirely to the hopelessness that Dalmas Otieno condemned us more than 30 years ago when he said that a Luo will never be president of Kenya, but I have come to accept that a Luo presidency is not feasible in the next 50 years. Our best chance was last year, folks.

Let me conclude this way: if the future is predictable, we need intelligent leaders and practical followers. On the other hand, if the future is unpredictable, as it is now, we need practical leaders and intelligent followers.

The challenge for the Luo is to play at the centre, with whoever is at the centre. We hold the trump.

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