Kenya civil society groups fault president Kenyatta’s speech to parliament

President Uhuru Kenyatta

Justice Mutunga said President Uhuru Kenyatta would leave Kenya worse than he found it with the legacy of failed promises dogging him into retirement

By The Weekly Vision Online

“I have fought the good fight and kept the faith. I have completed the race” one could almost hear the words of St. Paul in President Uhuru Kenyatta’s two hour 8th speech to the State of the Nation address to both chambers of parliament and senate.

But the president’s long speech strangely failed to touch on the fight against corruption blamed for draining public coffers and stalling government projects. Civil society led by former chief justice Willy Mutunga and anti-graft czar John Githongo described the speech as a mixed bag of “misconceived achievements and failed promises”.

The two trashed President Kenyatta’s claims that Kenya was now the 6th richest country in Africa saying most of the wealth is in the hands of a tiny minority. Civil society joined Kenyans online and local radio stations to dismiss claims that the country had recorded impressive “economic growth”.

They said far from it the country had sunk deeper into poverty with a soaring external debt burden with galloping inflation choking family incomes. “Where is this economic growth the president is talking about? And the wealth creation?” pondered many callers discussing Kenyatta’s speech on the radio.

Justice Mutunga said President Uhuru Kenyatta would leave Kenya worse than he found it with the legacy of failed promises dogging him into retirement. He said mega graft at KEMSA, NYS and the Pandora Papers scandal was “proof” if any was needed that the Kenyatta regime was “part of the problem not the solution to widespread graft.”

Mr Githongo accused the Kenyatta family of “protecting graft cartels” through which billions had been siphoned abroad to offshore accounts. Githongo challenged Kenyatta to shed light on the Pandora Papers dossier as promised before he steps down in August 2022.

The head of state was categorical in his long speech that he would retire next year and hand over power to his successor.

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