The politics that is the Uhuru budget

Last Thursday, Finance Minister and Deputy Prime Minister Uhuru Kenyatta delivered what has been touted as the most ambitious yet key to economic recovery budget speech in Kenya’s history.

I too was impressed by the young Kenyatta’s budget which if well implemented will be a key to regional development, poverty reduction and employment creation.

In particular, the 2009/10 budget promises to improve infrastructure especially in rural Kenya in the process boosting the local economy.

Uhuru plans to give millions of Kenyan youth an opportunity to earn a livelihood by increasing money allocated to the CDF, Youth Fund and Women Fund. He has also promised to make more youths fishermen and jua kali artisans.

All the niceties aside, my analysis reads politics in Uhuru’s maiden budget – since no one has pointed out any errors so far. While it promises to make your life and mine more comfortable and improve our economic status, the first Uhuru budget is a well calculated political scheme.

It may be hard to believe that Uhuru has made sure that his colleagues will not forget his good “deeds” that they up their profiles among the locals. Uhuru, just like any of his predecessors, may not have another opportunity to read another budget – things change fast in this country.

And in order to ensure that he remains a key figure ahead of the 2012 elections, Uhuru gave our MPs a lot of goodies to bring to us in the name of different funds. Even though the MPs may never come close to the money, the various ministries will have to consult with the constituency office before a new school is built in the area.

Uhuru has made the MP more powerful, he has ensured that at least you will remember that your MP brought you development through a budget granted by the son of Muigai who has wanted to lead the country since 2002.

And so if he has brought you water, your children are going to school, you have markets and your eldest son is doing a kibarua somewhere, why then shouldn’t you send him to State House  ten years later when your MP says so.

While you give Uhuru marks for an economic recovery oriented budget, I give him the thumbs up for playing the cleanest politics yet.

And if he keeps on the momentum and ensures no errors in the implementation of his budget, I am sure he will score big on this one.


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