Why the clamour for a referendum in Kenya is ill- timed and ill-advised

2 weeks 2 days ago
Supporters of Kenya's draft constitution attend a "Yes" campaign rally ahead of the 2010 referendum. EPA/Dai Kurokawa

Political manoeuvring in Kenya is picking up steam again. It’s most evident in the controversial clamour and debate for yet another national referendum ostensibly to help the country fix governance and constitutional weaknesses.

But will it?

The call for a referendum is coming principally from the party defeated in last year’s bruising electoral battle – the National Super Alliance. Their legal challenge resulted in unprecedented court annullment of Uhuru Kenyatta’s presidential win. This precipitated a rerun, with the outcome leaving a lot of big winners and sore losers. Kenyatta, the eventual victor, was confronted by a vanquished but defiant Raila Odinga hell bent on settling his political grievances on the streets and stoking political tensions.

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