I promised to continue with my escapades at KIA yesterday. I was supposed to go there today too but after working my mind senseless yesterday, I gave the whole thing a pass. I was tired. I am still, but let me summarise. Someone else went. I love the weekend editors.
To them it is not about quantity, but the quality of stories one submits.
I saw Alfred Mutua, nothing big with that. I sat three places from Mugo Kibati (Kenya Vision 2030 Director) and Kenya Wildlife Service boss Julius Kipng'etich, but I didn't speak to them, just a simple hi. No tittle-tattle.
I spoke to the Clerk of the National Assembly, Mr Patrick Gichohi, on his way to lunch and he laughed real hard when I introduced myself. "Wewe wewe wewe, ulinipata!" was all he said. We were meeting for the first time since the taxation expose.
Then, as I called Kilonzo, one of the relatively honest drivers here, I heard that some journalists were camping at the lunch tent to interview Karega Mutahi the Permanent Secretary who had been asked to step aside. I knew it won't happen, but the 'hate' of being scooped kept me waiting.
Then the President and the Prime Minister, who sat with Mr Muthaura (Head of Civil Service) decided that we too had to have lunch. So we went to a buffet at KIA and enjoyed our tax money in the form of a three-star meal. Meanwhile, the Prime Minister had ample time to leave. No questions asked on his reaction, now that the President had kept mum on his assertion that he had recommended that the beleaguered Education Minister, Prof Sam Ongeri, steps aside.
After lunch, a little more waiting, then the President left, Karega refused to answer questions --honestly, this guy is a civil servant and can't contradict the 'supervisor and co-ordinator of government functions'. Sometimes, silence is the best policy.
As expected, Prof Ongeri came out fighting. He said all the heat on him to quit over the free learning scandal were an "evil political plan", well, that was it.
So, I came to the office, banged the copy. Then Mr Nyambati Walter, a humdrum and garrulous MP called a news conference in Parliament saying he was not happy with pressure on Prof Ongeri.
That was that.
I went home. Today is another day. I have been in the office bouncing off my ideas on Cyprian Nyamwamu, the chief executive of the National Convention Executive Council. And do you know, he said the PM was full of double-speak.
He told me to check the Kacc 2005 annual report. Guess who I found in there.
Let me copy and paste the paragraph: "The case of embezzlement of public funds belonging to the National Museums of Kenya (NMK). Former NMK Director Dr. Mohammed Isahakia was charged in Court and refunded Kshs. 2.5 Million to NMK."
This guy is in the PM's office, as the permanent secretary. He refunded the money, yes, but, I have my buts.
As the Kacc acting Director John Mutonyi said at the meeting, it is quite difficult for Kenyans to believe that the government is keen on fighting corruption, when people who were implicated in the corruption ills of the past regimes are still in government. That was loaded. And the PM and the President sat right there listening. Did they "hear" Dr Mutonyi?
If the heard, I hope they'll act!