Miguna After Vain Glory
The instinctive embrace of abrasiveness and cockiness of Miguna Miguna is legendary. Ostensibly he is now glowing with palpable self-importance after writing a political thriller with the singular goal of painting his former boss with a black brush. No-one doubts the brilliance of Miguna who in June 1988 went to Canada as a political refugee.
In this sensational book, Miguna has morphed into the quintessential back-stabber of our generation. While Miguna chose to go abroad, Raila Odinga and a coterie of nationalists including Gitobu Imanyara, Koigi wa Wamwere, Rev Timothy Njoya, Martin Shikuku, Kenneth Matiba, Charles Rubia, James Orengo, Wangari Maathai, and so on, opted for the trenches.
Not one to be held captive by the past, Raila sought competent manpower from knowledgeable Kenyans after carrying out due diligence, whom he thought would make positive and substantial contributions to our beloved country, to act as his inner circle. Miguna’s deep legal knowledge seemed just right. But Miguna seemed wedded to the idea that Kenya should be beholden to revolutionary ideas. He seemed to love the political intricacies that had wrecked Kenya soon after dodgy presidential results were announced by Electoral Commission chairman Samuel Kivuitu on December 30, 2007.
Miguna was miffed that his boss seemed to give in so much to the demands of the “enemy camp” led by President Kibaki, from what we have read in his book Peeling Back the Mask. If Miguna is to be believed, Odinga was not interested in being unnecessarily intransigent. Instead his heart and mind always put first the salient interests of Kenya. And that meant that if he and Kibaki could reach some workable compromise, he would not mind walking the high moral ground. As Raila has continuously stressed, he will never put his personal ambitions above those of Kenya.
Miguna’s controversial book is a monologue. And even before it has hit the bookshelves, many actors mentioned, for instance Education minister Mutula Kilonzo, have dismissed many of its claims. When he worked in the PM’s office, Miguna was given access to plenty of privileged material because of the high office he served. As a person of honour, how can he go round to inform the world what he saw at the time?
If indeed corruption and impunity did take place in the PM’s office, why did Miguna at the time not muster enough courage to blow the whistle? Apart from Raila, the book seems targeted at smearing Caroli Omondi, the principal administrative secretary at the PM’s office, as a financial crook using underhand methods.
But I wonder what commercial venture Miguna has ever been involved in, to create employment for the army of unemployed locals? Together with Raila we initiated the Kenya Bureau of Standards where industrial goods are inspected and given the badge of authenticity and good health. We later set up our personal businesses, him in gas cylinder manufacturing while I went into beverages.
Peter Kuguru is the author of Trailbrazer