Commentary: Mr. Dick Morris Is Just A Spit In The Sea
In many parts of the world, election time is a time of memorandums, manifestoes, propaganda, exhibition and political competition emanating from all contestants seeking office. In the case of Kenya, there has been no shortage of the above although, in the last week, what appears to have captured the attention of opponents of ODM is the entry of Dick Morris, a white American election consultant, in Raila Odinga’s Presidential campaign team.
Just like President Kibaki and his allies like Nicholas Biwott, Professor George Saitoti, Njenga Karume, Simion Nyachae, John Michuki and other dirty political maniacs in Kibaki’s backyard, Raila’s Mark Morris is not totally clean and he has obviously had his share of scandals in the United States. George Bush had the scandal of starting the war in Iraq but he was re-elected President. Bill Clinton had his sucking Lawinsky scandal but he escaped impeachment. These are examples that are, in no way, meant to justify these dastard acts.
What is baffling is the ugly head of racism that has greeted the entry of Dick Morris in Raila’s Presidential campaign team. At some point, one detects the lack of understanding of the “politics of populism” and how it works in an environment like Kenya until situations of the Dick Morris type emerge to act as a paradigm.
Although Morries is a volunteer working for free, many critics have raised concerns as to why Raila “has hired” a white American to “head” his election campaign when there are many qualified Kenyans who could do the job. In Stockholm, armatures in the field of political commentary have averred that Dick Morris should leave Kenyans alone because Kenyans have a bigger “Dick” which can do the job.
Kenyans in Stockholm crying wolf are well aware that at the Kenyan embassy in Stockholm, white Swedish nationals are occupying sensitive positions, not because there are no Kenyans who can take up their jobs but because the Kibaki government has decided to retain them at the Embassy after they were hired by the former dictatorship of Daniel arap Moi. Dick Morris bashers have never raised a finger at these foreign and white Embassy staff who continue to swagger along Embassy corridors like neo-colonial conquistadors who are there to stay.
For example, Peter Lane, a white national, is the official translator at the Embassy and consequently, he acts as the link between the Embassy and the Kenyan government at the documentary level where the element of translation comes into play. If we suppose that Peter has links with the Swedish secret security apparatus (and this is just a supposition), then the Kenyan Embassy, which is the official representative of the Kenyan government, has no secrets. If you want to understand the major implication here, try telling the Americans to employ a Russian translator at the American Embassy in Stockholm. It is like having an American translator at the Iranian Embassy during this age of nuclear technology and weapons of mass destruction!
Apart from Peter Lane’s job as a translator, he could have access to a wide range of information including the internal workings of the Embassy in terms of finance, politics, trade and so fourth, information whose misuse cannot be quantified now. If, today, the Kenyan government enters into crisis with the swedish government, you can be sure that the swedes will be well informed. In condemning Dick Morris, are critics also suggesting that the likes of Peter Lane should not be working at the Embassy because they are white?
Dick Morris is not working for the Kenyan government and so far, there has been no MoU to suggest that once ODM seizes power, he will be one of the key players in government. His status is that of a volunteer so what is the hullabaloo all about?
Still on the Kenyan embassy, what about Mrs Ingrid Österberg-Gerdin, a white Swedish national who is the “Accounts assistant”? She deputizes Linnet Vitisia, the Financial attaché. When it comes to the field of accounting, Kenya is teething with talent so why can’t Kibaki hire one of our brilliant brains to take over Ingrid’s duties at the Kenyan embassy? If the question is about a white man or woman being unfit to run the affairs of Kenya simply because of their white skins, isn’t this racism? Should the services of Peter Lane and Ingrid be terminated because they are white?
MISSING THE WIDER AND BIGGER PICTURE
Obviously, there could be multiple explanations as to why white people continue to populate the Kenyan embassy as “supportive staff”. The difference between these white folks and their white counterpart, Dick Morris, is that Morris is not living on tax payer’s money since he is working for free so who is the better evil – Kibaki who has hired them or Raila who has accepted a volunteer?
The story could have ended there were it not for Lina Jonsson, another white Swede, blond haired(?) in charge of the Stockholm Office of the Kenya Tourist Board. She works under the auspices of the Kenyan embassy. The question is: Aren’t there Kenyans who are qualified enough to run this office or must we leave such a strategic office to be managed for us by a whitie?
Some people have advanced the view that white Swedes are needed at the Embassy because their Swedish is better than the natives of Kenya. But these are meatheads who have never come into contact with Kenyans who sing Swedish like Taraab music. When these Swedish-Kenyans are on the phone at the other end, you could think that its a Svenssson or another blondie so don’t even try that argument.
The Kenyan embassy is a small place. If we expand the surface area and extend the analysis to Kenya, the country’s whole economy has been on the hands of British and American imperialism since the days of Kenyatta, Moi and even Kibaki. Majority of companies at the Nairobi Stock Exchange have white CEOs. The biggest Newspaper in the country – The Daily Nation – is owned by Aga Khan, a foreigner of Indian extraction. In fact, the two leading banks in Kenya which controls our money – Standard and Barclays – are owned by white Europeans, leave alone the big companies used by Europe and America to repatriate profits from Kenya on a daily basis back to Europe.
Whether you are talking about the Coffee or tea industry, the pyrethrum or flower industry, the white man dictates the prices which keeps our farmers perpetually poor. They run companies dealing in these products. Even our Kenya Airways is white owned after it was privatized. A Kilo of raw coffee in Kenya costs a few shillings while here in Sweden, a cup goes for Ksh 170 and that is at cheap coffee houses. Its the white man, not the black farmer who enjoys the profits all along the way. If you don’t know this, then you need a ngoto.
Is Mr. Dick Morris worse than the likes of Cholmondeley, the white grandson of Lord Delemare who has shot dead two Kenyans at his so called ranch but who has never gone to prison? Have Kenyans forgotten that white highlands are still on the hands of white people more than 4 decades after independence?
What is Dick Morris (a volunteer) compared to Artur Margaryan and Artur Sargsayan, two white hard-core, drug dealing criminals allegedly from Armenia who were guests of the Kibaki government and who are credited for commanding the infamous raid on the Standard? As if that was not enough, one of the gangsters was sleeping with the President’s daughter Winnie and doing business with Winnie’s mother also known as the President’s other wife! Who is dirtier – Dick Moris or president Kibaki?
If they are not white or Asian, who controls the distribution networks in Kenya, the tourism industry, the Entertainment industry and other key aspects of the Kenyan economy?
Isitoshe, who forms the bulk of the so called foreign investors in Kenya – black or white? Mr. Dick Morris is just a spit in the sea and those attacking Raila on this petty issue are all missing the bigger and wider picture which can only come into view if you put on ideological lenses.
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