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ANALYSIS: Behind Kenya’s Political Turmoil, a Tale of Fathers and Sons

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The two men were political allies.
But they had a falling out over the direction of newly independent Kenya — especially over land and power — and became bitter adversaries.
Now their sons are fighting a modern adaptation of the same battle as they vie to lead the country, pushing one of Africa’s youngest and most vibrant democracies to the brink of a constitutional crisis.
“History is not exactly repeating itself,” said Maina Kiai, a human rights lawyer in Kenya, describing the eerie political parallels between past and present, “but it certainly is rhyming.”
Politically, Kenya is deeply — and evenly — divided between Uhuru Kenyatta, the president, and his longtime political rival, Raila Odinga. In last year’s election, Mr. Kenyatta won slightly more than half the votes, and Mr. Odinga slightly less. Those results were tossed out in a historic decision by the Supreme Court, which cited widespread irregularities.
The court ordered a do-over of the polling, which Mr. Kenyatta won. But Mr. Odinga has not accepted the result, and even “inaugurated” himself as “the people’s president” at the end of January.
In recent weeks, supporters on both sides have hardened their claims that their man is the only legitimate leader.
Mr. Odinga’s followers threaten to secede from the country if his main demands — dialogue and a path to new elections this year — are not met. Mr. Kenyatta’s followers say the opposition leader committed treason by staging his mock inauguration to undercut the legitimacy of the real one.
It didn’t start out like this.

From left, Jaramogi Oginga Odinga, left, and Jomo Kenyatta, second from left, with other leaders in Nairobi giving a news conference in December 1963 on the eve of Kenya’s independence

Jomo Kenyatta, the father of the current president, was a Kenyan freedom fighter, the living embodiment of African nationalism, and, therefore, the British colonial government’s most hated man. He spent the last decade of Kenya’s colonial rule in prison.
Jaramogi Oginga Odinga, the father of Raila Odinga, negotiated independence with the British. The colonial rulers wanted Mr. Odinga to lead the new Kenya, but Mr. Odinga had other ideas: He demanded Mr. Kenyatta’s freedom — and his appointment as Kenya’s first head of state.
“Kenyatta would not have been released, and he wouldn’t have been made prime minister, if it hadn’t been for Odinga’s backing,” said Daniel Branch, a professor of history at the University of Warwick and an expert on post-colonial Kenyan politics. “The two men always admired each other.”
Willy Mutunga, who was chief justice of the Supreme Court from 2011 to 2016, believes Mr. Odinga was motivated by more than mere admiration. “I think he genuinely believed that the country was going to be better off with somebody who had become a legend,” he said.
And so, in 1964, when Kenya became a republic, Jomo Kenyatta became its president, and Jaramogi Odinga vice-president.

Jaramogi Oginga Odinga, unveiling a statue of President Jomo Kenyatta in 1964. Mr. Kenyatta is sitting at right. Credit Bettman, via Getty Images

Not long after, though, things fell apart.
The elder Mr. Kenyatta became a pro-Western capitalist, entrenching the wealth of his family and his ethnic community from his presidential perch. The elder Mr. Odinga advocated sharing state resources — especially the land the British settlers would leave behind — among Kenya’s many ethnic communities.
“There was a dramatic departure between Odinga’s father and Kenyatta’s father,” said John Githongo, a longtime civil rights activist and a former federal civil servant. “In a sense, that old fight is ongoing now.”
That fight was, and remains, partly about land, and partly about power.
Mr. Kenyatta wanted to sell the British settler lands to Kenyans of means, and to concentrate political power in the presidency.

Mr. Odinga wanted to redistribute land among those marginalized by the colonial government, and to have a decentralized power system that would allow neglected regions more autonomy and a share of the state coffers.
These differences ultimately undermined the founding fathers’ alliance. In the end, Mr. Kenyatta set up a buyback scheme, which meant the land “went more or less to the political elites,” said Odenda Lumumba, the chief executive officer of the Kenya Land Alliance, a national land rights group based in Nyanyuki. “The political elites, to protect themselves, attracted their ethnic tribes around them.”
Mr. Kenyatta brokered land deals that benefited his fellow Kikuyus, and his own family. His government blocked repeated efforts by Parliament to limit land ownership, and his family amassed vast tracts of land, tea and coffee plantations, and stakes in ruby mines, among other riches, according to a 1978 dossier that the C.I.A. declassified last year.
In 1966, Mr. Odinga split with Mr. Kenyatta and started a new political party. It was banned three years later, and Mr. Odinga was jailed for more than a year.
After Mr. Kenyatta’s death in 1978, his handpicked successor, Daniel Arap Moi, banned other political parties, largely to keep Mr. Odinga out of politics.
His government also cracked down on dissent, harassing and jailing opposition figures and democracy advocates, censoring the press, canceling the passports of perceived “enemies” of his government — all moves the younger Mr. Kenyatta has reinstated, in these last weeks, as he battles with the younger Odinga.

By the time Kenya held its first competitive election, in 2002, political leadership had passed from Kenya’s founding fathers to their sons. Mr. Moi, who had run the country for 24 years, had groomed Uhuru Kenyatta as his successor, and Raila Odinga picked up his father’s fight after he died in 1994.
In that election, Mr. Odinga’s party won, and Mwai Kibaki became president. But by 2013, Mr. Kenyatta defeated Mr. Odinga in a presidential election. Now he has won re-election — twice.

President Daniel Arap Moi, second from right, talking with Uhuru Kenyatta, right, after a meeting of the ruling Kenya African National Union party in 2002. On the far left is Raila Odinga.

It can feel, some here say, more like a family dynasty than a democracy.
“Mr. Kenyatta is the fourth president of Kenya,” said Mr. Mutunga, the former chief justice. “He is also the son of the first president, the political protégé of the second president, and the godson of the third president.”
Many here say Mr. Kenyatta’s interests look similar to his father’s.
“Uhuru Kenyatta represents, in some respects, the continuation of an old order,” said Mr. Githongo, the civil rights activist. “And Odinga has always represented a change from that.”
Mr. Kenyatta’s family’s land holdings have ballooned, to an estimated half-million hectares, or about 10 percent of the country, and corruption in his administration is rife. His first administration decentralized some of power shored up in Nairobi, but complaints about the financial support for Kenya’s new counties are widespread.
Many say budgets are slow to come, or never appear. Concerns about the central government’s fiscal responsibility became so bad last year that the United States suspended $21 million in aid to the Ministry of Health, citing corruption and poor accounting.
Mr. Odinga’s central political argument today is that over generations, many Kenyans have been left by circumstances — their geographic location, their ethnic groups, their landlessness — on the outside of power. He speaks often of marginalization and disenfranchisement, of economic grievances and historical injustices, code words that tap into decades’ worth of disappointments and frustrations first articulated by his father.
“What has always happened is the instrumentalization of grievance,” said Patrick Gathara, a political analyst in Nairobi. “People know they’re being treated unfairly, but politicians put a veneer. They substitute their problems for the people’s problems.”

 

SOURCE: New York Times

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AFRICA FOCUS

VIDEOS: Pastor Takes Off Female Church Member’s Underpants, Orders Pregnancy To Enter

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As religious leaders in Uganda intensify their fight against false prophets and pastors in Uganda, pictures are circulating on social media of a pastor from one of the sub-Saharan countries taking off a lady’s underwear in front of his congregation in church.

It is alleged that the Pastor took off the lady’s underwear by himself inside the church and ordered her to open her legs wide for the spirit of pregnancy to penetrate into her so that she can give birth.

It should be noted that false religious leaders are in the news these days for all the wrong reasons. Recently, a South African preacher made his congregation eat grass to ‘be closer to God’ before stamping on them.

Under the instruction of Pastor Lesego Daniel of Rabboni Centre Ministries dozens of followers dropped to the floor to eat the grass at his ministry in Garankuwa, north of Pretoria after being told it will ‘bring them closer to God.’
The same preacher made his congregation drink petrol after assuring them that the petrol had been turned into pineapple juice.

He first poured the liquid into a bucket before dropping a match into it and setting it alight to prove that it really was petrol.
We know alot is happening in the churches that are led by false prophets who claim to be men of god. We warn Ugandans especially ladies not to be so desparate for miracles…

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Meet 24-year-old Conco, Wife Number 4 To 72-year-old South African Former President Zuma

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‘SO what?” That was the response of former president Jacob Zuma’s family amid the barrage of criticism that he had fathered a child with 24-year-old Nonkanyiso Conco and paid lobola (dowry) for her in preparation for marriage.

The cheerful young Zulu maiden, who is now 24 years old, stands confidently in the shot while the cameraman and interviewee look the other way.

If Zuma does go on to tie the knot with Conco, she will be his seventh bride, and the youngest, with a 52-year gap between them.

Conco, who reportedly checked into a Durban hospital as “Mrs Zuma”, gave birth to the youngest Zuma son on April 12 – Zuma’s birthday.

Inkosi Bhekumuzi Zuma, of the KwaNxamalala clan in Nkandla, leapt to Zuma’s defence, saying there was nothing untoward in him taking another wife.

“He showed that he is an honest man by paying lobola for her. How many men out there use young girls and dump them like rubbish when they are fed up?” asked Bhekumuzi.

Explaining the lobola process, Bhekumuzi said, “This is a first step for a couple who are on the road to marriage. There are steps that follow lobola between the families of the couples. Don’t be misled; this is part of our culture.”

Zuma’s brother, Khanya, 73, who’s only claim to fame is being the younger brother of the former state president, will also become a polygamist soon.

He lashed out at those who were criticising his brother, saying: “I’m also taking a second wife soon. There is absolutely nothing wrong with it, because we are not hiding these women; we are making them feel proud by marrying them,” he chuckled. Both were unconcerned about the 50-year age difference between Zuma, 76, and Conco, 24.

Despite his resignation, Zuma still enjoys massive support from his home province, which was evident during his court appearance earlier this month on charges of fraud, money laundering and corruption. Scores of Zuma sympathisers descended on the Durban High Court precinct to show their support.

“The Nxamalalas are amasoka (casanovas). We love and take good care of women and we don’t hide that fact like other men do,” said Khanya.

He said paying lobola was a longstanding Nguni tradition, which the Zulus adhered to.

Conco, a former presenter at Pietermaritzburg-based uMgungundlovu FM, hails from Thornville.
She attended Haythorne High School in Woodlands, Pietermaritzburg, and did a business course at Varsity College in the same town, said her former colleagues at the station.Her close friends said she had bragged of being in a romantic relationship with Zuma, who she referred to as uBaba (father), since 2013.

It is believed that she now resides at the Zimbali estate.

Conco’s Instagram account has seen her amass more than 5 000 followers and she has received hundreds of likes for her pictures. In one, she showed off what was believed to be the engagement ring given to her by Zuma.

The former president is also married to Bongi Ngema, Gertrude Sizakele Khumalo and Tobeka Madiba, while reportedly having separated from Nompumelelo Ntuli, who allegedly tried to poison him. Ntuli no longer lives in Nkandla.

Zuma was divorced from Nkosazana Dlamini-Zuma in 1998. She is currently a minister in the presidency and has four children by him.

His Mozambican wife, Kate Mantsho, committed suicide in 2000.

Villagers in Nkandla were stunned at the news, with many saying that they did not know that Zuma, who they fondly referred as Mkhulu (grandfather), had paid lobola for another woman.

Hlobisile Hadebe, 52, said: “I did not know about that. It’s the first time I’m hearing about it, but according to our culture, there is nothing wrong with that. I was also born in a polygamist family.”

Zuma has made no comment on the matter. Saturday was also Zuma’s sixth wedding anniversary with wife Bongi Ngema.

Meanwhile, a welcome back event for Zuma was postponed to May 19.

 

Source: IOL South Africa

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FULL OBITUARY: Winnie Madikizela-Mandela dies aged 81

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Nelson Mandela kissing Winnie Mandela

Winnie Madikizela-Mandela, whose hallowed place in the pantheon of South Africa’s liberators was eroded by scandal over corruption, kidnapping, murder and the adulterous implosion of her fabled marriage to Nelson Mandela, has died in Johannesburg. She was 81.

Her death, at the Netcare Milpark Hospital, was announced by her spokesman, Victor Dlamini. He said, “She died after a long illness, for which she had been in and out of hospital since the start of the year. She succumbed peacefully in the early hours of Monday afternoon surrounded by her family and loved ones.”

Winnie Mandela

“She fought valiantly against the apartheid state and sacrificed her life for the freedom of the country,” the statement continued. “She kept the memory of her imprisoned husband Nelson Mandela alive during his years on Robben Island and helped give the struggle for justice in South Africa one its most recognisable faces.”

Madikizela-Mandela was jailed several times for her part in the fight against white-minority rule and she campaigned for the release of her husband at home and abroad.

But her marriage to Mandela began to fall apart in the years after he was released from prison in 1990. The couple divorced in 1996, nearly four decades after they were married. They had two children.

Hailed as mother of the “new” South Africa, Madikizela-Mandela’s legacy as an anti-apartheid heroine was undone when she was accused of being a ruthless ideologue prepared to sacrifice laws and lives in pursuit of revolution and redress.

Her uncompromising methods and refusal to forgive contrasted sharply with the reconciliation espoused by her husband as he worked to forge a stable, pluralistic democracy from the racial division and oppression of apartheid.

The contradictioncontributed to ending their marriage and destroyed the esteem in which she was held by many South Africans, although the firebrand activist retained the support of radical black nationalists to the end.

In her twilight years, Madikizela-Mandela had frequent run-ins with authority that further undermined her reputation as a fighter against the white-minority regime that ran Africa’s most advanced economy from 1948 to 1994.

During her husband’s 27-year incarceration, Madikizela-Mandela campaigned tirelessly for his release and for the rights of black South Africans.

She remained steadfast and unbowed throughout, emerging to punch the air triumphantly in the clenched-fist salute of black power as she walked hand-in-hand with Mandela out of Cape Town’s Victor Vester prison on 11 February 1990.

For husband and wife, it was a crowning moment that led four years later to the end of centuries of white domination when Mandela became South Africa’s first black president.

But for Madikizela-Mandela, the end of apartheid marked the start of a string of legal and political troubles that, accompanied by tales of her glamorous living, kept her in the spotlight for all the wrong reasons.

As evidence emerged in the dying years of apartheid of the brutality of her Soweto enforcers, the “Mandela United Football Club” (MUFC), her soubriquet switched from ”Mother of the Nation” to “Mugger”.

Blamed for the killing of the activist Stompie Seipei, who was found near her Soweto home with his throat cut, she was convicted in 1991 of kidnapping and assaulting the 14-year-old because he was suspected of being an informer. Her six-year jail term was reduced on appeal to a fine.

She and Mandela separated in 1992 and her reputation slipped further when he sacked her from his cabinet in 1995 after allegations of corruption. The couple divorced a year later, after which she adopted the surname Madikizela-Mandela.

Appearing at the Truth and Reconciliation Commission (TRC) set up to unearth atrocities committed by both sides in the anti-apartheid struggle, Madikizela-Mandela refused to show remorse for abductions and murders carried out in her name.

Only after pleading from the TRC chairman, Archbishop Desmond Tutu, did she admit grudgingly that “things went horribly wrong”.

In its final report, the TRC ruled that Madikizela-Mandela was “politically and morally accountable for the gross violations of human rights committed by the MUFC”.

Four years later, she was back in court, facing fraud and theft charges in relation to an elaborate bank loan scheme.

“Somewhere it seems that something went wrong,” magistrate Peet Johnson said as he sentenced her to five years in jail, later overturned on appeal. “You should set the example for all of us.”

Born on 26 September 1936, in Bizana, Eastern Cape province, Madikizela-Mandela became politicised at an early age in her job as a hospital social worker.

“I started to realise the abject poverty under which most people were forced to live, the appalling conditions created by the inequalities of the system,” she once said.

Strikingly attractive and with a steely air – her given name, Nomzamo, means ”one who strives” – the 22-year-old Winnie caught the eye of Mandela at a Soweto bus-stop in 1957, starting a whirlwind romance that led to their marriage a year later.

But with husband and wife pouring their energies into the fight against apartheid, the relationship struggled before being torn apart after six years when Mandela was arrested and sentenced to life in prison.

Madikizela-Mandela later described her marriage as a sham and the birth of their two daughters, Zindzi and Zenani, as “quite coincidental” to her one true love – the struggle against white rule. “I was married to the ANC. It was the best marriage I ever had,” she often said.

Graca Machel, who stepped into her shoes as South Africa’s first lady when she married Mandela in 1998, paid tribute to her predecessor in the years after her union. “It’s unfortunate that in our lives we don’t interact very easily but I want to state very clearly that Winnie is my hero. Winnie is someone I respect highly,” Machel once said.

As the years passed and Madikizela-Mandela’s public standing plummeted, her relationship with the party she loved soured. She bore the air of a troublemaker, arriving late at rallies and haranguing comrades, including Thabo Mbeki, Mandela’s successor as president.

In 2001, a television camera caught Mbeki brushing Madikizela-Mandela away and knocking off her hat after she arrived an hour late for a rally to commemorate a 1976 anti-apartheid uprising by Soweto schoolchildren and students.

Nelson and Winnie Mandela at the Johannesburg airport. May, 1990

Years later, she clashed with the next president, Jacob Zuma, becoming a political patron of the renegade ANC youth leader Julius Malema, who quit the century-old movement to found his own ultra-leftist political party.

Confirming her support for Malema and backing his calls for seizure of white-owned farms and banks, Madikizela-Mandela revealed her contempt in 2010 for the deal her ex-husband struck with South Africa’s white minority nearly two decades before.

In a London newspaper interview, she attacked Mandela, who died in December 2013, saying he had gone soft in prison and sold out the black cause. “Mandela did go to prison and he went in there as a burning young revolutionary. But look what came out,” she said. “Mandela let us down. He agreed to a bad deal for the blacks.”

She also dismissed Tutu, post-apartheid South Africa’s moral fulcrum, as a “cretin” and rubbished his attempts at national healing as a “religious circus”.

“I told him a few home truths. I told him that he and his other like-minded cretins were only sitting here because of our struggle and me – because of the things I and people like me had done to get freedom,” she said.

“I am not sorry. I will never be sorry,” she concluded. “I would do everything I did again if I had to. Everything.”

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