rate their leaders
By Regina Mutua
MACHAKOS residents have witnessed the first ever public driven vetting process of its leaders with aspirants for Governor, Senator and Women Representatives turning up to parade their credentials.
|Findings for the race for Governor|
|Findings for the race for Senatorship|
Governor Aspirants who presented themselves for vetting included Prof. Thomas Kibua, a former Central Bank Deputy Governor, Former Government Spokesman Dr Alfred Mutua, Engineer Titus Kathukya, Mr. Tony Wambua, a former teacher, and Jimmy Mumina, a former civil servant.
Senator Aspirants at the forum included Kangundo MP Johnson Muthama, Nairobi lawyer Mr. Boniface Mutinda Kabaka, and youthful Leonard Mutua Ndambuki who is running on a Democratic Party ticket.
The debate, organized by The Machakos County Development Forum(MCDF) in partnership with Kenya Mpya Initiative was attended by hundreds of Machakos County residents. MCDF is a citizen driven initiative that was founded over one year ago to prepare a framework for devolution in Machakos County. Businessman Mr Tito Kitulu is chairman of MCDF whose other key leaders include Mr Martin Malinda( Secretary), Director of Lukenya Schols Mr Martha Mulwa(Treasurer) among others. Mr Martin Masai, Editor of The Anchor is chairman of the Leadership Selection Panel.
Members of the vetting team come from various fields including relgious groups, Education sector, Civil Society and Professional groups. The other members are: Anne Wacira – LSC secretary, Mike Mutungi – CEO ICL (member LSC) Saidi Omari – Muslim rep (Vice Chair LSC) Martin Malinda – MCDF Secretary, Bishop Bernard Matolo – Religious Leader Rep,Tito Musyoka-chairman MCDF,Archbishop Ndambuki- ABC church Rep,Martha Mulwa – Treasurer MCDF, Fr Joseph Makite – Catholic Rep,Mary Mutuku- Poverty Eradication NGO ( co-opted) and Mathew Muendo – Poverty Eradication NGO (co-opted).
The LSC members are active citizens who perform other duties in various professions but serve on purely volunteer basis and do not draw allowances from the initiative. Kenya Mpya meets the operational expenses of the process.
During the exercise, citizens attending are given a Leadership Score Card where they enter scores on ability, integrity, education/qualifications, and understanding of the job. In most cases, there is evidence that citizens gain new understanding of the aspirants and some indicate that they may change the choices they may have previously fixed their minds on.
The Machakos vetting event was the second to be performed by the initiative with the first having taken place in November for Parliamentary and Ward Representative aspirants for Matungulu ward. Nine MP aspirants turned up and over 20 Ward Representative aspirants turned up for the event held in Tala.
In October 2012, Machakos County residents launched their five year strategic framework with an ambitious vision of turning the county “from third world to first world in one generation” and went on to develop a score card titled “Nani Kiongozi” that they used during the debate to assist them to rate their leaders for coming general elections.
This debate was part of a national process that is being rolled out to all the 47 counties in due course with 10 other model counties in participation that include: Machakos, Mombasa, Meru, Kisumu, Wajir, TaitaTaveta, Homa Bay, Nakuru, Kericho and Narok.
Kenya Mpya are part of the organisers of these debates in a yet to be defined relationship with MCDF. The initiative is seeking to bring about transparent, issue based, result oriented and people centred leadership in the county as a key to accelerate national development. MCDF has been funding its activities by individual contributions while Kenya Mpya has lately been funding other activities.
Speaking during the debate, Dr. Mutua called on the residents of Machakos County to choose persons of integrity and those that have the interests of residents at heart come the March general elections. Even then, Dr Mutua had to be stopped on his tracks as he made disparaging remarks on an aspirant who he did not name, even when his thinly veiled broadside appeared to have been aimed at Ms Ndeti. The LSC is pursuing the veracity of the documents Dr Mutua gave and would deliberate over the matter in due course.
Mr. Muthama, terming himself as an experienced politician noted that he had the capacity to bring together great minds to work for the prosperity of the County adding that as a shrewd and successful businessman, has the capacity to source for funds to develop the County.