Some Kenyans are reportedly calling on the international community to put pressure on President Mwai Kibaki and Prime Minister-designate Raila Odinga to name a functioning cabinet. This comes after United States Ambassador to Kenya urged both leaders to strike a deal as soon as possible to put the country back on track. Michael Ranneberger said there was a need to resolve the political impasse so as to help put to rest some of problems emanating from Kenya’s post-election violence that killed more than a thousand people and led to the loss of property.
Former United Nations Secretary General Kofi Annan brokered the power sharing agreement that effectively ended the election dispute. David Musila is a ruling party member of Kenya’s parliament. From the capital, Nairobi, he tells reporter Peter Clottey that Kenyans are capable of solving their own problems.
“I do not personally like the assertion. It is incumbent upon Kenyans to resolve their differences without expecting that outsiders would come and resolve their problems. In the matter of the naming of the cabinet that is now in contention, they are very minor issues, which in my view ought to have been resolved over the weekend. And the fact that when things like these happen international community seems to appear to be the one influencing decisions in the country, I think it’s very unfortunate,” Musila pointed out.
He said the differences between President Kibaki and Prime Minister-designate Odinga are surmountable.
“I called them minor because on Thursday the Prime Minister-designate did announce to the nation that they had reached an agreement, and that the cabinet would be formed on Sunday as you know. And the following day on Friday President Kibaki also did announce the same. Now we understand that it was because they are unable to decide on five ministries, who takes those five ministries that ODM (opposition Orange Democratic Movement) is desirous of getting these ministries,” he said.
Musila described as unfortunate the ongoing political impasse.
“You see, if it is going to be a coalition government, one government, to me it does not matter which ministries go where because they are all ministries in the same government and they are all going to be under the prime minister. The prime minister is not going to be in charge of portfolios under ODM, he is going to be in charge of all cabinet portfolios. And in any event if these five ministries are in contention, why can’t they be resolved? What is so important about them?” Musila asked.
He was hopeful a solution would soon be found to help resolve the political impasse.
“My hope is that within a few days a solution could be found… the internally displaced persons are suffering, with the onset of rains, these people are desperately camping outside, while two individuals are fighting over power. And I think that they ought to be sensitive to the suffering of the IDP’S (internally Displaced Persons). I’m talking about the President and the prime minister-designate because of the struggle over who runs which ministry, children are in the cold, and farmers are not planting their fields. So I would like to hope that in the next few days, they will sense and resolve this issue, he noted.