Kenyans have been patiently waiting to see where William Ruto and his government want to take the country.
So far really nothing of substance has been done. Leave alone anything being on the table but some of the rush decisions by Ruto which he has made directly by himself just plainly stinks and make him look unnecessarily stupid because he did not have to do them.
The attempt by President Ruto to bring back the Moi era media control by the state in which KBC was the sole broadcaster in the country just backfired in his face. Shame on him for even trying something that crazy. The Kenyan media is diverse and very complicated. Ruto cannot and will not change that and has to learn to live with it.
I know Ruto has crying manenos and some hatred for sections of the media like Citizen TV whose owner Mr. S.K Macharia publicly supported Raila and the Azimio team for the presidency. Trying to kill those businesses with petty stuff is not going to work.
Free media has roots in Kenya today and Ruto cannot destroy it. My advice to him is to stop wasting time trying anything like that. Why does he think more than 200,000 Kenyans viewed his inauguration on Citizen TV with hardly 20,000 doing that on Ruto’s declared media KBC?
Because that is their media of choice and there is Free Media in Kenya today as opposed to the fuata Nyayo media of the past.
The days Moi used to sing and give orders to the country from morning to evening every day on KBC (Moi Broadcasting Corporation) with his nyayo political followers clapping for him are over. That is not coming back buddy and you have to deal with it as it is.
Kenyans are aware that the Ruto revenge mission is now in full gear. We have just learnt that the seven DCI officers who arrested Ruto’s deputy Rigathi Gachagua last year have been summarily fired. How dare they arrest the now deputy king and get him charged with corruption?
I am sure Martha Koome our Chief Justice will be getting instructions pronto to make sure that the case against Gachagua where he is accused of stealing money from the government is thrown out of court. Maybe all the seven judges in the Supreme Court will rule that Gachagua as deputy to Ruto is now above the law. We will wait for that.
In the meantime, Ruto just made a huge international blunder when he personally revoked Kenya’s recognition of the Sahrawi Democratic Republic as an independent state.
We all know William Ruto is fascinated with kings and he presumes himself to be one but there is no need to get super excited and make unilateral decisions on an issue as important as a historical regional conflict that Africa and various sectors of the international community has tried to resolve to the satisfaction of all parties involved.
Ruto did all that when after receiving a congratulatory message from His Majesty King Mohammed VI of Morocco.
Ruto said Kenya is accelerating relations with Morocco in areas of trade, agriculture, health, tourism and energy among others.
The SADR was colonized by the Spanish colony, and it claims the territory of Western Sahara.
Morocco has asserted claims over the region and there has been an ongoing conflict there for decades.
The situation in the Western Sahara Republic is one where any African president who wants to take the kind of extreme action Ruto did has to consult, first with his own cabinet and then with regional leaders like Tanzania, Uganda and then talk to the wider African governments involved before you open your mouth making this or that order.
We know that Ruto has no advisors in UDA since they are all his followers and their job is to clap for him but he is going to need more than clappers to run any sensible government. You need more than uniformed ties surrounding you to run the affairs of the nation.
Western Sahara was a Spanish colony until 1975 when Spain evacuated the place. After that Morocco and Mauritania tried to link up with Spain to keep the area as a joint colony of those three countries. In 1976 Spain informed the UN that they have left Western Sahara and will have no involvement there.
Morocco then just simply annexed the place and the local people formed the Polisario Front to fight for their country and that conflict has gone on for more than 45 years making Western Sahara the few colonies that still exist in the world today and the only one in Africa.
It was a military confrontation between the King of Morocco sending his army to Western Sahara and the armed resistance by the Polisario Front and it took a lot of international pressure on the big power Morocco to end the military aspect of the confrontation and now the issue is before the international community at Africa Union and the United Nations. You screw that up you are back to the military fighting which was very deadly for both parties.
I have no idea if Ruto even knows what the West Sahara conflict is all about. Ruto claimed that the United Nations should be the one to solve the West Sahara endless nightmare with Morocco. As we speak 41 countries in the UN have recognized Western Sahara as an independent country.
That hasn’t helped them one bit has it? That is why the African Union and African countries recognized Western Sahara as a country to put pressure on Morocco which is also a member of the African Union to let those people have their freedom.
When a new African head of state dumps Western Sahara so as to lick the fingers of the king in Morocco you undermine all the progress that has been made this far.
If William Ruto was politically alive during his days at the University, he would have known that the Students Organisation of Nairobi University (SONU) was a good friend of the people of Western Sahara because we were against the idea of African so-called kings could just grab other African countries through annexation and violence.
Ruto should avoid turning Kenya into a laughing stock around the globe by making arbitrary decisions and announcements to please his friends whoever they may be. When you run a country you have to make decisions based on some form of logic but more importantly for the love of God think before you open your mouth unless you are opening it only to eat food.
Adongo Ogony is a Human Rights Activist and a Writer who lives in Toronto, Canada