Saturday, December 29, 2007
Mwai Kibaki: Very Weak New Leader of Opposition in Kenya!
In considering the forces and institutions that enable democracy to flourish in the post-revolutionary Kenya, I would candidly pay particular attention to political associations and parties, which have identified themselves as being part of the new government that is coming in and the alliance called the Party of National Unity-PNU (the in-coming opposition) and the institutions of civil society.
There is no doubt that our political parties in Kenya have created democracy and modern democracy is unthinkable save in terms of the current political leaders. I can’t adequately stress the centrality of institutionalized party competition in any thriving nation in the world today. Democracy in a complex society may be defined as a political system which supplies regular constitutional opportunities for changing the governing officials, and a social mechanism which permits the largest possible part of the population to influence major decisions by choosing among contenders for political office--that is, through political parties. The existence of a strong and vibrant opposition -- in essence, an alternative government -- restrains incumbents. An opposition seeks to reduce the resources available to officeholders and to enlarge the rights.
My main worry now is that Kenya lacks a respectable and dependable opposition. Hon. Mwai Kibaki is supposed to take on the role of the Leader of Opposition, but going by his previous performance, it will be naïve for anyone to imagine that he can perform that role effectively especially given the fact that the incoming government is made up of young, energetic, intelligent, and experienced leaders. I do not have any doubt about the good intentions and motivations of the incoming leaders but most of us agree with Lord Acton who said “all power corrupts but Liberal power corrupts very liberally”.
Let us all pray that the Lord may raise up a new breed of leaders in the opposition who will be decisive, understanding of the concepts and facts of leadership, consistent and persistent in their desire to keep the government on its toes for the good of our beloved leaders and country.