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Greetings sir and happy new year to you. On 5th September 2022 I wrote you the first open letter in which I gave unsolicited advice to you, Sir the advice was broken down into five issues and for ease of reference and to avoid repetition you can find the letter on this link OPEN LETTER TO H.E KIAMBU GOVERNOR KIMANI WAMATANGI.

Sir I write these letters and articles as a civic duty to my county and country, because I will have failed in my duty if I fail to do so.

Sir, the last sentence of the second advice I gave in my first letter ended with the words “make sure you are not a victim of capture”. And I would like to begin from there.

A few things have happened since September last year, you have presented names of your CEC nominees to the county assembly and you have also had your first finance bill passed. You have rolled out registration of universal health care and you have made your inaugural speech at the County assembly and gave the state of the county address to our elected and nominated members of the county assembly. 

You have visited many county facilities and gave directives and other instructions. You have also called meetings at the county headquarters for all county staff. I have commented on some and allowed others to pass. Time will tell whether these activities will bear fruits.

But sir time is one thing that you have in limited measures. Before the end of this year or maybe mid next year, as is the nature of our politics, those that are eyeing your seat will have begun their campaigns, at that time you will have to choose between service delivery and delivering your manifesto or defending your seat through haphazard popular initiatives to gain political mileage. Your opponents will attempt to distract you, destabilize your agenda and allegiances will begin to shift.

Sir it is said that those who don’t read history are bound to repeat mistakes of the past. You have in recent times made pronouncements in regard to Thika stadium, Thika Prisons, Thika law courts as well as the land that Del Monte surrendered to the county and is located in Thika. Sir I think someone is not giving you the right advice in all these issues. Kindly take time to consult and appreciate the history of these institutions, that same wrong advice was given to leaders before you since 1997. The same is happening in your housing plan. 

Someone is setting you up for failure. They already did that in some of your nominees for CEC, they are doing that too now for your nominees for chief officers and directors. By the time you realize this, it will be too late for some of the decisions and pronouncements you have and will have made and you will be forced to swallow your words. 

Your Excellency sir, every king and great leader needs to have a council of advisors, those that give the best advice are not necessarily “official” President Jomo Kenyatta started this with the likes of Mbiyu Koinange, President Moi had such council in the names of Mark Too, Sharrif Nassir and others. President Kibaki had his league of elite personalities in the likes of Prof. Joe Wanjui, the Late John Michuki and others. President Uhuru too had his. You too must take this seriously. This should be a council that does not sugarcoat issues to make you happy. They will serve you the truth straight up, dry and bitter.

Out of the three last Kiambu Governors, only the first Governor had such a council. He respected sound, criticism, opinion and sound advice and had no time for things that were irrelevant and trivial to his agenda. He was the only one of the three to have finished his full term and he did so without passing any finance bill as all of them were challenged in court and stopped.

 You too must have your “unofficial” advisors who have your best interest and the county in their mind and hearts. The more you spend time in the county physical offices the more you will be captured by those that will misadvise you. And they have been giving you all manner of wrong advice as they did to the two governors before you. 

This is evident in the last two or so confrontations you had with the County Assembly members and the silent murmurs from the county employees. These murmurs grow into small grapevine talks. The grapevine begins to shape the narrative for your ouster and before you know what is happening your goose is cooked. 

One of the former governors was given the wrong advice into dissolving and merging water companies with total disregard to the law and communities, and fighting private capital and investments including bars and clinics. Another governor was misled in the issues of maintaining status quo and advancing unpopular policies.

 You are surrounded by individuals whose only mission is to make sure they survive your regime. They will survive under you and then jump ship into the next incoming regime. And silently the people that walked with you the longest in this journey are silently complaining, feeling frustrated. I urge you not to fall into this trap. There is a reason as to why it is called “regime change”. You cannot swim across the river by constantly going back to the river bank to rest.

Sir, you must remember that those who live in the highlands have the best view of the ones living in the plains and those who live in the plains have the best view of the ones living in the highlands. Remember also that a general cannot command the army troops from within the battlefield and a leader cannot govern a sovereign nation from without. One of the Key enablers to internal controls and governance is tone at the top. And this tone must be set by none other than yourself. It must be set right, because history teaches us that; it does not go wrong, it starts wrong.

I will end my second open letter with this statement extracted from the book; The River And The Source by Margaret A. Ogola; ...... and Akoko said to her daughter Nyabera: “my child…...if you are walking along and you find your path leading nowhere, then it’s only wise to try some other path.” 

Sir it is not too late to change the path.

Juma Hemedi M

Social Scientist and Thika Resident.

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