Monday, 24 June 2013

Those funny Kenyan politicians

After this year's election, i'm mainly interested in the new set of funny characters that may have found their way into Parliament. Kenya has never been short of caricatures in its political landscape. From the days of the late Kihika Kimani to the goofy Kalembe Ndile to present day rabblerouser Mike Sonko. They leave crowds and viewers bursting in laughter with the tiniest effort. Their antics and wild rhetoric may be unappealing but they make news entertaining. As serious politicians scheme majestic corruption scandals, the Kalembes, Sonkos and Waititus of this universe serve to entertain and tickle us.

Excitedly, elective posts have been expanded to accomodate governors,senators and women reps meaning one or two funny individuals may emerge. Already Igembe South MP Mithika Linturi who was the face of MPs greed wanting higher salaries is not only getting ridiculed for his vocal stand on legislators' selfishness but also his difficulties in speaking proper English. His English, concorcted to perfection with his native language is causing him to the subject of mockery to many.

Kalembe Ndile will enter the history books of hilarity. He was known for his unguarded, raw and at times unwise statements. Remember him for vowing to introduce family planning to elephants? I laughingly remember his ridiculous squabbles with his senior former tourism minister Morris Dzoro where they questioned each other's intellect and contested on whose English was admirable. And when in 2007, he hung on his official Landrover for dear life after upsetting a crowd. It seems Nairobi boast of such characters.

Leading the pack is Sonko along with former MPs Simon Mbugua and Waititu not forgetting the galvanic Stanley Livondo. Simon was known for his desire to spoil for a fight,engaging in public brawls for all, not to mention a court case in which he was accused of assaulting a journalist. He was once thrown out of Parliament for wearing rags.Mr Livondo made statements that curiously defied logic and reason. He once made a disastrous press conference in poorly constructed English breaking every grammatical that he could. His face was in agony as he ploughed through the statement which he was clearly not comfortable in. The statement included a wild narration of how his bodyguard caught a bullet by his bare hands. And his unashamed admission at slapping the aforementioned Simon Mbugua after a disagreement. The stone throwing exploits of Waititu despite a string of arrests cannot match the sheer madness that Sonko excites. From his memorable flash and splash the cash routines to his close relationship with anarchy, he comes second to none.

His parliamentary behaviour in speech and manner baffled. His list of outbursts is long and his ejections from the August House pointed to a volatile character. He once even dared to lower his trousers to the amusement of his colleagues. Guys like former MPs Bifwoli Wakoli and Joshua Kutuny humourously ran their mouths. Bifwoli's presidential bid was reduced to a rib-cracking joke because of his unrefined personality and his spotting of "Made in Bungoma" suits hardly made him a serious contender.He imposed a heavy Luhya accent on the Queen's language. His 'tukutane kwa tepe(debe)' phrase made him comedic relevant up until he disappeared into political irrelevance.

Kutuny had the time to chip in about the randy on-goings of Muiro gardens during a serious debate in parliament. His public utterances were careless and unmeasured. His willingness to engage a public rally in sheng' stood out. Former minister Chirau Mwakwere also had his moments. Who can forget his lengthy robotic dance at a political rally last year? Or his serenading of Kenya Airways staff with a lingala tune at a formal black tie dinner? Or Even his jabs at his political rivals with his clarion call "Dzipapa?". And in a case of over zealous loyalty, i also recall those MPs from the former Central Province who swore by the Bible to support President Uhuru. The ladies are not left out former Naivasha MP was very explosive even in the glare of Tv cameras. MP Esther Murugi had a brain fade moment when she threatened to call for a strip tease of women and lead a naked procession if President Kenyatta was ever detained at the Hague.former presidential candidate Kingwa Kamenchu shocked and amused in equal measure with her advocacy for a no underwear wearing society. I like the cheek these politicians add to news with all the boring news about Konza City, Vision 2030 and VIP lounges The list is long and probably many other politicians and incidents have not crossed my mind but the drama will certainly continue.  

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