Challenging Nancy Mungai’s Views on Swedish TV on Obama’s Visit to Kenya

nancy interviewNow that President Barack Obama’s long awaited visit to Kenya is effectively part of history, it is perhaps time to tackle some of the side issues that surrounded his visit.  Just hours before Obama landed in Kenya, Nancy Mungai, a Kenya-Stockholmer, suddenly surfaced on Swedish national TV 1 to present a plethora of lop-sided views about the political and economic situation in Kenya.

Nancy, who conveniently positioned herself as an “Advisor” of Swedish companies seeking to invest in Kenya, did not just present a distorted picture of Kenya but also veered haphazardly into a ludicrous pontification on the impact of Obama’s visit to Kenya. In view of the incongruent nature of Nancy’s views, and given the warped perception these views might impinge on ignorant layers of the national white Swedish population who may have bought her analysis, it is paramount that the record be set straight.

According to Nancy, Kenya is doing well economically through investment in IT and other services. Nancy told viewers that Kenya’s economic boom has led to a rise in the middle class. She advised that the US can help boost Kenya’s economy by investing more in trade and industry.

Unfortunately, in her IT-driven Kenya’s economic growth theory, Nancy did not give any statistics to support her assertion. In retrospect, Nancy may have been alluding to the propagandistic World Bank Group’s economic analysis update (April 2015) which placed Kenya’s economic growth at 5.4% in 2014. From a scientific stand-point, a country’s economic growth is tied to its GDP growth per capita, inflation rate, employment indices and living standards. The World Bank group’s analysis of Kenya’s growth rate was propagandistic because it failed to provide data on key indicators of the very economic growth it was referring to.

External debt
The Kenyan economy cannot be said to have grown when the reality on the ground indictates a steady decline in living standards of huge sections of the population. Currently, 13 million able-bodied Kenyans are out of work while every year, half a million unemployed youths pour into the job market from various learning institutions. There is no indication that the country’s GDP per capita is growing. Evidence on the ground indicates that the rate of inflation is so high that millions of Kenyans are unable to afford a square meal.

Instead of creating jobs, the government has actually been retrenching workers while civil servants are constantly on strike or threatening strike actions because of starvation wages. How can the economy be growing when the Uhuru regime continues to maintain a ban on Civil servant employment that was instituted by former dictator Daniel arap Moi? If the economy is growing, why is the government complaining about the national wage bill?

When a country’s economy is on the rise, its external debt should be on the decline. In the case of Kenya, the country’s external debt increased from Ksh 1.326 trillion in April 2015 to Ksh 1.381 trillion in May 2015 (Central Bank statistics). At the national level, the implication is that the average Kenyan is sliding deeper into debt and poverty. Currently, 43% of Kenya’s GDP (almost half) goes into servicing the country’s external debt. According to a modest World Bank’s analysis (April 2015), talk about Kenya’s economic growth could be immature because “External demand for exports is also sluggish and low growth of production for exports is widening the current account deficit. Also, the share of the manufacturing sector to GDP has remained stagnant in recent years, with low overall productivity and large productivity differences in firms across subsectors due to lack of competition”. With rising poverty, high unemployment, declining living standards, a growing external debt and a big chunk of the country’s GDP being swallowed by external debt serving, where did Nancy Mungai peg her economic growth theory?

A Middle class sliding into underclass
It is fashionable to talk about a “rising middle class” in Kenya. What usually goes missing during such analysis is the corresponding rise in the rural and urban underclass unable to fend for itself after the crisis of capitalism reduced large swaths of the population to unofficial beggars. On the contrary, with stagnant wages occasioned by a declining economy and a freeze on employment by the government, the so called middle class in Kenya is basically struggling to prevent itself from sliding into underclass by constantly trying to “go into business” with serious capital constraints. Nancy’s view that the Kenyan middle class is on the rise is pure fiction and based on a mantra created by Jubilee propagandists to prop up a regime in crisis.

In her attempt to theorize on the issue of terrorism, Nancy said that the issue of terror is global and not just a Kenyan problem. She actually hoped that Obama would assist in fighting terrorism. It is unfortunate that at the level of “Advisor” of Swedish companies seeking to invest in Kenya, Nancy does not understand that the Shabbab terror activities in Kenya are linked to the government’s unsolicited and aggressive war in Somalia. Kenya does not need Obama to help fight terrorism across the country. What the government needs to do is to withdraw KDF forces from Somalia, stop ethnic profiling of Kenyans of Somali origin and accord every Kenyan all rights as citizens of the Republic.

Nancy: An extension of Jubilee propaganda machine
Instead of rendering a balanced analysis of the Kenyan situation and painting the correct picture of the Jubilee government, Nancy emerged more as a well-oiled Jubilee mouth-piece than an impartial commentator on Kenyan politics. What is more?

She totally ignored commenting on: rampant corruption of the Jubilee government; massive tribalism on the appointment of public servants; failure by the Jubilee government to honor its most basic election promises; violation of the Constitution by the government; frustration of devolution; political assassinations especially of Muslim clerics; failure of the Jubilee government to create jobs for the youth; human rights violations while she also failed to recognize Uhuru Kenyatta’s inability to govern. Nancy even failed to point out the issue of insecurity across the country and dramatic rise in crime rate by idle youths after promises of jobs failed to materialize. In fact, Johan, a Swedish journalist based in Nairobi, appeared to have been more knowledgeable about Kenya than Nancy.

After being accorded a significant opportunity by a Swedish mainstream media outlet to throw light ahead of Obama’s visit to Kenya, and as a Kenyan in diaspora, it is regrettable that Nancy wasted the grand opportunity. Instead of using it to educate the Swedish population about the real situation in Kenya, she converted herself into an extension of the vicious Jubilee propaganda machine desperately trying to paint Uhuru Kenyatta’s regime as the best regime Kenya has ever had when evidence shows that Jubilee is not just a total flop but a living catastrophe for the Kenyan people after this government came to power through a rigged election.

Okoth Osewe
Secretary General
Kenya Red Alliance (KRA)

14 comments

  • Godfrey Omony Onen

    I liked when they showed the good parts of Nairobi and Kogelo. I liked too, the way Nancy Mungai marketed Kenya and the positive things she said about Kenya. However, she could have taken the opportunity to tell the whole of Sweden about the high level of institutionalized corruption, tribalism in Kenya and the exorbitant salaries and allowances of Kenyan Ministers, and Members of Parliament. Slums should be gradually demolished and replaced by low-cost housing.

  • Obama is the man!

    “Enorm grej..man har ansiktslyft Nairobi”

    President Obama besöker Kenya idag. Svt’s Johan Ripås och Nancy Mungai om resans betydelse.
    http://www.svt.se/gomorron-sverige/enorm-grej-man-har-ansiktslyft-nairobi

  • Entrepreneurship in Kenya will never thrive, improve the livelihoods of majority Kenyans or alleviate poverty, as long as politicians and public workers engage in grand and petty corruption. The entrepreneurs pay taxes to finance some of the most lavish lifestyles in the world led by President Uhuru Kenyatta, his Deputy William Ruto, Cabinet Secretaries, Senators, Parliamentarians, County Governors and Members of the County Assembly, among many other joyriders. Financing their ostentatious way of living is in itself a form of corruption, since they pay very minimal taxes. Where in the world except in Kenya, do sitting politicians influence their salaries and allowances paid by the poor citizens? We did not have to wait for President Obama’s recent strong words of condemnation and examples of the huge cost of corruption to the country’s economy, to know it must be eradicated.

    Former President Mwai Kibaki was elected on a platform of fighting corruption, yet he presided over some of the worst financial scandals during his ten years in office. No Minister was jailed for the vice despite huge cash losses linked to them. Since President Uhuru Kenyatta took over in 2013, it has been business as usual.

    While he was Finance Minister, Uhuru Kenyatta authorized a forensic audit into the loss of Ksh4.2 billion allocated to the Free Primary Education (FPE) program under the Kenya Support Program Education Sector (KESSP) framework, from 2005-09. After a damning audit report was released in June 2011, Uhuru recommended legal action against all parties involved in the theft. Procedurally, the Treasury should have forwarded it first to the then Kenya Anti-Corruption Commission (now Ethics and Anti-Corruption Commission [EACC]) for action. Nevertheless, Uhuru side-stepped the Commission and handed it over to the Criminal Investigations Department (CID) which recommended that only administrative action be taken against a few officers in the ministry. This meant transfers, surcharges and demotions. Eventually, more than 100 top officials at the Ministry of Education escaped prosecution due to the recommendations.

    Later, the Treasury paid back more than Ksh7 billion to the United Kingdom government as compensation for the money they had contributed together with other donors, to implement FPE. Most of the Kenyan taxpayers are not aware that from 2010, the donor community suspended direct funding of FPE to Government and channels money to reliable local NGOs. Former Education minister Sam Ongeri was then transferred by Kibaki to head Foreign Affairs and in 2014, Uhuru appointed him as Kenya’s Ambassador to the UN-Habitat. Ironically, he was soon accused by the Office of the Ombudsman of having acquired public land illegally in Kisii, while he was Local Government minister in 1982. No action has so far been taken against him.

    In a Standard newspaper compilation of figures by James Anyanzwa and Macharia Kamau (July 7, 2011), the Ministry of Finance then under Uhuru Kenyatta, could not explain the disappearance of Ksh10 million. Similarly, the Ministry of Agriculture then under William Ruto, could not account for Ksh92 million. Therefore, these two leaders have no effective record of fighting corruption.

    As long as Uhuru attacks corruption from a weak standpoint as he has done so far, it will remain deeply-rooted. The so-called culture of stepping aside pending investigations is not new. Kibaki practiced it religiously, yet those who had been asked to leave office were mostly reinstated or transferred to other ministries, having been ‘awarded’ clean bills of health after bogus investigations. The media for instance, questioned how former Internal Security Minister Murungaru under Kibaki could have amassed enormous wealth within two years in office. Former Finance Minister David Mwiraria is still being haunted by ghosts of the Anglo-Leasing scandal yet he had been declared clean, and former Finance Minister Amos Kimunya is still being questioned about the alleged fraudulent sale of then Grand Regency Hotel, and so forth.

    Uhuru’s current Cabinet Secretaries (CSs) were vetted and passed by parliamentarians in 2013 as persons of integrity, fit for governance. Two years later, earlier this year, the same Uhuru presented a list of names from the now crippled Ethics and Anti-Corruption Commission (EACC) to Parliament, which included CSs Charity Ngilu, Engineer Kamau, Davis Chirchir and Kazungu Kambi, among other politicians of various ranks, for scrutiny and possible prosecution for alleged abuse of office. The whole process of suspending them has been criticized for being too cosmetic and was probably done to please President Obama, since it was used recently by his sycophant Foreign Affairs CS Amina Mohammed during an interview by an international media house, to claim he is probably the only President in the world to ask Cabinet members to step aside. Kibaki as mentioned earlier, had done it without any effect. While at it, CS Amina should also explain to her employers, the poor Kenyan taxpayers, why her Foreign Affairs ministry was “the highest spender on foreign travel, at Sh860 million, which is 37.4 per cent of the expenditure by the entire government” according to a recent report by the Controller of Budgets for the 2014/15 financial year.

    I empathize with Ms. Nancy Mungai’s carefully-worded interview lest she annoyed her ‘Jubilee paymasters’. However, corruption in Kenya must be mentioned openly by anybody who wants to attract foreign investors. The Swedish reporter Johan Ripås presented an impartial view of the emerging middle class that could consequently create an elite group to lord over the poor masses, who are denied a share of the wealth they are heavily taxed for.

    • Very true @ jared odero
      Kenya must fight coruption first… president uhuru must stop coruption.
      Starting from him to other leaders.

    • We want to move forward
      Coruption must stop in Kenya
      Tribulation must stop in kenya
      Bad politics must stop in kenya
      Then kenya will have a bright future for our generation to come…..

  • There are kenyans who are just opportunists in diaspora. no sane kenyan can claim that kenya has had any economic growth. this lady appears to have been sitting somewhere in a corner with the internet not having been in kenya for ten years then goes on tv to say that kenya has economic growth. How can a country have growth when its population is starving and the government is stealing money from the people? very bogus.

  • I think thateven the Kenyan in streets know that Kenya has had no economic growth so Osewe you are damn right on that point. The only problem I think is that you may have spoilt the party for this lady. It is good that there are kenyans who do not just accept things as they are told. It is like you were reading my mind. I live in Sweden and I send money to kenya every month. If there is economic growth, how comes my family has not seen it?

  • jubilee propaganda

    This Jubilee mouthpiece lady has come with propaganda thinking Kenyans are stupid. We know the looting going on in State House and at all ministries in Kenya headed by Jubilee thieves.

  • Thief Waiguru

    Dirty Mama Waiguru

    Almost daily for the past fortnight Kenyans have been treated to a steady litany of reports of theft from public coffers, corruption on an unprecedented scale and abuse of public office centering around the Ministry of Devolution and Planning and the National Youth Service. The Auditor General revealed this week that the Ministry acquired a Billion shillings worth of assets without supporting documents. Treating one of the biggest spending Ministries as if it is a “corner-duka” is not good enough. The Auditor General further raised questions about the manner in which major tenders were awarded by the National Youth Service (NYS).

    However, what is most alarming to me and Kenyans at large is information that has come to light more recently in the form of documentation that I have here in my hands. These documents establish the following: Integrated Financial Management Information Systems

    1. On the 26th of March, 2015 President Kenyatta tabled before parliament a confidential unredacted and incomplete report by the Ethics and Anti-Corruption Committee (EACC) dated 20th March, 2015 into the ongoing investigations being carried out by the EACC. This was initially a spectacular move that saw a number of senior officials step aside while their cases were being investigated.

    2. On the 21st of March 2015, the EACC wrote to the Treasury seeking all documentation regarding provision of consultancy services for re-engineering of the Oracle Database application. The contract between the then Office of the Deputy PM and Minister of Finance, Uhuru Kenyatta, and Copy Cat Ltd had been signed in July 2011. The initial Local Service Order for KSh.45,970,800 on 11-08-11 was signed for by the acting head of IFMIS, Anne Waiguru. The third quarterly payment to Copy Cat was signed off by the same officer on 26-04-12 to the tune of KSh.11,492,700.

    3. The contract between the then Office of the Deputy PM and Minister of Finance, Uhuru Kenyatta, and Copy Cat Ltd regarding IFMIS was signed on 29-02-12 4. On 21-04-15 the EACC wrote to the Ministry of Finance seeking documentation to assist with its ongoing investigation into the provision of consultancy services vis-à-vis the Oracle database. The subsequently provided documents reveal that the Director of IFMIS on 09-05-12 authorized a renewal of Oracle support licenses for a year at a cost of Ksh.54,943,483.

    5. On 17-05-12 she authorized payment for the provision of consultancy services supporting IFMIS to the tune of KSh.55,302,615. A fortnight later on 29-05-15 she authorized a payment of KSh.331,387,296 for the ‘purchase of Oracle hardware for upgrade of the IFMIS servers’.

    6. On 06/02/15 she authorized a payment of KSh.137,219,640 being 20 percent of the total contract sum for rollout of ‘Ministry of Devolution and Planning’s training and 10 percent of final payment of the IFMIS’ to the same ministry.

    7. On May 7, 2015 the Principal Secretary at the Treasury approved a request for an additional KSh.4 billion to the NYS under the 2014/5 supplementary estimates. The letter noted, however: “Going forward, we wish to reiterate that it is a violation of the Public Finance Management Act, Section 197(I)(h) which states that “it is an offense of financial misconduct if, without lawful authority, an officer incurs expenditure or makes commitment on behalf of the Government or entity” since this results in pending bill.”In actual fact the Devolution Cabinet Secretary had requested over KSh.5 billion and the breakdown is attached.

    QUESTIONS 1. If IFMIS was being investigated by the EACC for the inflation of contracts to the tune of KSh.1 billion, why didn’t the Cabinet Secretary at the time of the suspicious transactions – Anne Waiguru – step aside like her colleagues such as Principal Secretary Michael Kamau of the Ministry of Roads?

    2. Was it incompetence, greed or something else that caused the Cabinet Secretary to underestimate her budget by KSh.5 Billion?

    3. Why did the Cabinet Secretary ignore the warnings by the Acting Director of Budget and Principal Secretary Treasury dated 07-05-15 and 29-04-15?

    4. Did the Minister of Finance (now President) and his Permanent Secretary (now Chief of Staff) know and when did they learn of it given the rate at which money was literally speeding out of the government under their noses?

    5. Most importantly, Kenya’s experience with IFMIS demonstrates the mess our public finances are in and thus the need for an audit. The saga has also demonstrated that you can’t digitize integrity with a silver bullet computer programme that itself becomes an opportunity to rip off the public. Most important however is the game of favorites being played with the war on corruption.

    According to this EACC report, except in a couple of cases where entire committees were under investigation, there are only two cases without a named suspect: One is Case No.15, regarding allegations against the National Treasury which was reported to the EACC on 18-11-14 regarding alleged irregularities in the re-engineering of Integrated Financial Management Information Systems (IFMIS) which runs on an Oracle platform, inflated consultancies and disregard for procurement procedures. The acting director of IFMIS at the time of the alleged crimes was the current Devolution Cabinet Secretary – Anne Waiguru. Before case number 15. Mr Teko, Jeremiah Matoke, Mrs Mary Musoma and Mr Omutia are all mentioned by name in cases 13 and 14 as in all the other cases.

    The second is Case No. 20 involving the IIEC, the latter day IEBC. The court in London named specific officials of the IIEC some of whom are still officials of the IEBC and named the specific crimes they committed which has led to the jailing of their partners in crime in the UK. In the list presented to Parliament, EACC claims not to know the IEBC officials and makes no mention of the monies involved.

    Before case number 20, Mr James Oswago, Wison Shollei, Edward Karisa and Willie Kamanga are mentioned by names in regard to tenders for Electronic Voter Identification Devices. Yet the London court categorically mentioned IEBC chairman Ahmed Issack Hassan, Energy secretary Davis Chirchir, James Oswago, Gladys Boss Shollei, Kennedy Nyaundi and Kenneth Karani in what has been termed “Chicken-gate.” They were accused of receiving up to £349,057.39 (over Sh50 million) in bribes for tenders.

    Your guess is as good as mine on why the IEBC officials have to be protected. They delivered for Jubilee. Bottom line? We will not take the President seriously on the war on corruption until all thieves are treated equally. The law must apply on scandals over IFMIS, NYS and IEBC in the same way in the same way it has happened at Roads and other ministries.

    http://rao.co.ke/the-game-of-favorites-that-is-the-war-on-corruption/

  • The woman Nancy was not capable of handling a balanced interview since she favoured Jubilee.

  • Bandit economy

    Now that the Auditor General has found Jubilee misused KSH 66 billion, where is Nancy’s economic growth? How can a country grow with a deep hole worth 66 billion? In fact over KSH 450 billion was lost during 2013-14 under the so-called successful government of UhuRuto. They are just a bunch of thieves running a Bandit Economy!!!! Bloody BUre kabisa.

  • Ole Mata Kobole

    Hallo, this lady is just a hustler like ruto. Ask yourself how an advisor in matter of business started commenting on politics and you get the answer. Business people normally shy away from politics because they don’t know how being openly political can affect their business so if you see a business person on tv commenting on politics which does not concern his business, something is wrong. halafu, which company can seek advice from a nigger in sweden sitting in a one roomed apartment when there is swedish ministry of trade, foreign affairs trade attache and the swedish association of companies including swedish chamber of commerce? even there is east african chamber of commerce in sweden and in the worst case, there is swedish embassy in nairobi with a trade attache. a serious company would rather seek advice from nigger ambassador of kenya or even travel to kenya to check with kenyas ministry of trade/commerce, kenya chamber of commerce and several trade bodies of east africa. all these bodies have more accurate information than some nigger advisor. I am a Jubilee mole but i do agree that there is corruption in government and insecurity. my advice to this lady is that hustle but don’t try to hustle on national tv because you will be caught with pants down. amen.

  • Hard-working Kikuyu-Kalenjin Government they say, but look at the theft of billions of dollars. One was saying if you steal millions you are an idiot. The fashion today is to loot billions of shillings. Now we know why Ruto the Kalesinga of Shambas can afford big money at harambees.

  • Karibu Nyumbani Nancy

    Does Nancy Mungai read Ksb ?Why is she so un-informed and mis-informed .Swedes society is more political mature than any other Eu countries. You cannot sit in the bench and start frothing nonsense as if you are preaching to robots .Next time my dear poor Nancy they invite you to a studio try to think and talk commonsense hence people from Nordic countries knows very well about Kenya and Africa ,and they have their own representatives ,Embassies,Journalists, consulars. Church organisations,Ngo’s. research institutes and perhaps some who advises Kenya government in many fields. Waswede si Wajinga,Wako mbali kabisa.Asante Dada ,Habari Yako.

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