Thursday, October 30, 2008

Barack Obama campaigning in Kenya with his cousin, Odinga

How elections are worked out in Kenya

Kenya has an interesting history, and until recently was fairly stable for an African country. African countries have struggled with dictatorships, regardless of the form of government, poor infrastructures, ethnic violence, and weak economies built on handouts and guilt grants from their former colonial masters, now European liberals and socialists.

According to the CIA's World Fact Book, "Founding president and liberation struggle icon Jomo KENYATTA led Kenya from independence in 1963 until his death in 1978, when President Daniel Toroitich arap MOI took power in a constitutional succession. The country was a de facto one-party state from 1969 until 1982 when the ruling Kenya African National Union (KANU) made itself the sole legal party in Kenya. MOI acceded to internal and external pressure for political liberalization in late 1991.

The ethnically fractured opposition failed to dislodge KANU from power in elections in 1992 and 1997, which were marred by violence and fraud, but were viewed as having generally reflected the will of the Kenyan people. President MOI stepped down in December 2002 following fair and peaceful elections. Mwai KIBAKI, running as the candidate of the multiethnic, united opposition group, the National Rainbow Coalition (NARC), defeated KANU candidate Uhuru KENYATTA and assumed the presidency following a campaign centered on an anticorruption platform. KIBAKI's NARC coalition splintered in 2005 over the constitutional review process. Government defectors joined with KANU to form a new opposition coalition, the Orange Democratic Movement, which defeated the government's draft constitution in a popular referendum in November 2005.

KIBAKI's reelection in December 2007 brought charges of vote rigging from ODM candidate Raila ODINGA and unleashed two months of violence in which as many as 1,500people died. UN-sponsored talks in late February produced a powersharing accord bringing ODINGA into the government in the restored position of prime minister."

Raila Odinga is Barack Obama's cousin (in our system it would be first cousins according to Odinga, but others say they are just members of the same Luo clan). Odinga is a Marxist and named his first child Fidel Castro.
    Mr. Odinga told a stunned BBC Radio interviewer the reason why he and Mr. Obama were staying in near daily telephone contact was because they were cousins. In a Jan. 8, 2008, interview, Mr. Odinga said Mr. Obama had called him twice the day before while campaigning in the New Hampshire primary before adding, "Barack Obama's father is my maternal uncle." Obama’s Kenya Ghosts
Odinga ran on a platform of Change and was apparently a very sore loser (close race). That's not an unusual campaign slogan, but a U.S. Senator giving money to a foreigner, even his own cousin, to run a campaign is at best unwise, and at worst, illegal. Then that same Senator taking money from foreigners to supply his grandiose campaign, is not the lend lease or foreign aid plan we Americans are accustomed to.

Watch the second video; the first has been pulled, so I don't know how long the second will be up. Here's another one covering his trip to Kenya and his interference in their election.

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