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Kenya: Lesson for Nation From ANC Centenary



Nairobi Star (Nairobi)

9 January 2012


editorial

The ruling African National Congress this weekend celebrated its 100 years since its inception in 1912. Among the dignitaries invited for the celebrations were Prime Minister Raila Odinga and Deputy Prime Minister Uhuru Kenyatta- who are among those expected to be in the presidential race later in the year.

Kenyans and indeed, our political parties’ leaders have some lessons to learn from the ANC. How can their parties transcend their ethnic or regional groups, appeal and unite diverse groups that make up the Kenyan public? How can they create alliances based on ideology that will emphasise internal democracy?

While the ANC has fallen into some of the same pitfalls common to other liberation movements or political parties, there are lessons to be learnt about party structures, building of alliances, discipline within the party and other such issues.

Most of our parties lack structures and are run at the whims of whoever is the party leader. The party membership is a mere pawn as the leadershoi[or even the people funding it. Under these circumstances, it would be unthinkable to imagine that any of our political parties can exist long enough to celebrate a centenary!

Quote of the day: “Well, I screwed it up real good, didnt” l?” Richard Nixon the 37th US President was born on January 9, 1913. He became the only US president to reign after he was forced out of office following the Watergate political scandal resulting from the break-in of the Democratic National Committee headquarters and the Nixon administration’s attempted cover-up of its involvement.

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