Friday, February 29, 2008


I am very pleased to report that, after several long weeks of often acrimonious debate in an atmosphere of considerable tension and anxiety, peppered by some frightening outbreaks of violence, an agreement between the 2 opposing political parties in Kenya, ODM and PNU, and their leaders Raila Odinga and Mwai Kibaki, has now been signed and publicly announced in Nairobi - yesterday evening. Chief mediator Kofi Annan and the current president of the African Union, President Jakaya Murisho Kikwete of Tanzania , were there to tell us so. And both Raila and Kibaki gave good speeches committing themselves and their parties to uphold the agreement and to ensure that it will be implemented.

The basic agreement is that a power-sharing coalition will be formed, and that the post of an executive Prime Minister will be created, and occupied by the leader of the party with the greatest number of seats in Parliament (that is Odinga of ODM). Also 2 deputy prime ministers will be appointed, one each from each of the largest parties. The cabinet will therefore comprise the President (Kibaki) and the Vice President (Musyoka) the PM (Odinga), the 2 deputy PMs, and other Ministers. Government positions in general from top to bottom will be shared out 50/50. Parliament will be convened next Thursday 6th March.

Of course the challenge will be for the political class to truly commit to this agreement and ensure that it is followed and respected. Let us hope they will do that.

Now the next stage of the mediated talks can get started and Kofi Annan says this will kick off today. These talks will be about finding a long term solution to the underlying issues that for so many years have been ignored or glossed over and which are recognized as being the root causes of Kenya ’s difficulties. These are Poverty/Inequity, Land Tenure/Land Reform, the repair of a badly mangled Constitution, and the reform of the Judiciary, and the Electoral process. We also hope they may tackle the other evils that we have had to live with over the years – corruption and the culture of impunity and lack of accountability among many more evils in the society.

So there is a lot still to do. But we in Kenya are enormously relieved that this agreement has been reached at last. Frankly we feared (only the day before yesterday) that the talks were destined for failure and that the country would plunge back into the horrific violence and anarchy that we suffered in January before Kofi Annan arrived. Now we believe that we have turned a very important corner and see a new road lit up for us.We have finally come out of the very dark traumatizing tunnel.....and can now see the light.

Of course there is a huge mess to clean up and Cosmos Education Kenya will certainly be playing a part in the national recovery process as far as our activities are concerned. Hundreds of thousands of jobs and livelihoods were lost or severely handicapped, in this case, there are lots of children who are very unfortunate due to displacement...hence lack of schooling and or proper education. Millions of us got badly traumatized, even though there are counselling centres countrywide, they are however not able to cope up with the large number of clients.

For CE Kenya, there will be no shortage of constructive work. However, if the politicians can really provide the space, or create a condusive environment that we can work in, I am very confident that we are very well placed and up to the task of reaching a large number of students especially those who are in the IDP camps. I say this boldly since i know the kind of a team we have on the ground has all the capability and willingness to walk an extra mile for this worthy course. I know that we are all committed to peace, stability, unity, justice, and to working positively to build this society,economy and this country at large.....and more so, make sure our children get quality education.

So congratulations and very many thanks to everyone for your patience, persistence and support. Lets all March forward now.......!

For CE Kenya members......please lets all meet tomorrow in the office as earlier agreed.

Eng,W/Tec, Peter Kanja
VP CE Kenya
+254 722 961 307

No comments: