Kenyans are avidly discussing this week’s rare press conference where President Mwai Kibaki denied having a second wife.
The surprise press conference left the nation stunned, not so much by the revelations, but by the fact that the President is engaging in such meaningless drama.
The nation was left with little doubt that President Kibaki has, quite frankly, lost it. He lacks good judgement, he has lost his credibility and morality. He has totally ruined his standing among Kenyans.
Kenyans don’t really care whether a man has a second, third or twentieth wife. As in most African societies, polygamy is not something to be embarrassed about. If anything, it is a sign of potent masculinity.
As always, Kibaki has ended up with poop all over his face by trying to deny the obvious. Speaking at the Nairobi State House, President Mwai Kibaki told the nation that he has only one wife, Lucy Kibaki. As Lucy stood next to him, Kibaki repeatedly refered to her as his, “dear wife.”
The President was reacting to a belief that he is married to one Mary Wambui. The lady, who is described in the media as a ‘political activist’, enjoys government security and is driven in government vehicles. She donates hefty sums of cash at fundraising events even though her sources of income are not well known. Many believe the money comes from the president.
Kibaki further added that he has four children – Judy Wanjiku, Jimmy Kibaki, David Kagai and Tony Githinji. The President was denying Mary Wambui’s daughter – whose paternity points towards his direction. Like her mother, Winnie enjoys state priviledges and after Kibaki became president in 2003, she got an influential job at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs.
Many suspect that First Lady Lucy Kibaki was the brains behind this week’s press conference. Lucy exercises crude influence over State House sometimes using violence against those who disagree with her. If Lucy demanded that the President publicly disown the ‘other’ woman, Kibaki would have had no choice but to succumb to her whims.
Lucy is capable of so much hysterical drama that everybody is afraid of her. During the press conference, government officials around Kibaki appeared embarrassed at what they were being forced to do.
Kibaki’s latest drama brings to mind a mediaval story of the Naked King.
Long, long ago in a land far, far away, there lived this rich and powerful King. A group of tailors happened to visit his palace and told him that they were selling the finest, most expensive garments on earth. The King asked to see the garments and the tailors made some motions with their hands in the air, as though they were pulling out a dress.
The tailors told the King that the garments were so fine and light that nobody could see them. The King bought the garments and put them on for a public celebration.
As he was walking through the streets, everybody could see that the King was stark naked. However, because of his power nobody dared tell him openly. The King’s courtiers complimented him on how handsome he looked in the new and invisible garments. It was not long before the charade was shattered by a small child.
Children do not know how to hide their feelings. The boy pointed at the King and shouted, “the King is naked, the King is naked …!”