In Summary
  • A “test tube” politician is a greenhorn politician no one has heard of before but who suddenly appears with a bang on the national scene after a General Election.
  • The challenge needs our collective will and fortitude as a nation to confront it with a view to neutralising it immediately and safe the country.
  • Deputy President William Ruto is liked, trusted and admired by his people. That explains his enormous influence and power in the past decade.

The country and its institutions are facing a most serious challenge. This challenge, unless immediately addressed, will scuttle to the four winds the progressive advancement and growth of vital organs of the State.

The challenge needs our collective will and fortitude as a nation to confront it with a view to neutralising it immediately and saving the country.

The challenge is posed by “test tube politicians”. A “test tube” politician is a greenhorn politician no one has heard of before but who suddenly appears with a bang on the national scene after a General Election. He is usually the creation of a powerful politician. He is then elected to the Senate or Parliament or as a governor. He quickly loses the little head he had and makes silly of both himself and his creator.

He becomes an expert on all things from devolution to mineral exploration. He fights all enemies of the regime, real and imaginary, honestly thinking that his master wants him to do so. He then unilaterally but secretly declares himself defender and sycophant number one of the regime. He goes full circle. He becomes a national nuisance.

“Test tube” politicians are more common in the Rift Valley and in Nyanza than in other parts of the country. That doesn’t mean other regions, like the North, don’t have their homegrown “test tube” politicians. In Nyanza and Rift Valley, the prevalence of these politicians is attributed to the grace, eminence and the raw power of two powerful politicians. Deputy President William Ruto is liked, trusted and admired by his people. That explains his enormous influence and power in the past decade.

Raila Odinga has a similar status in his community. These two politicians are the two foremost creators of “test tube” politicians in the country.

Their respective political laboratories have produced some of the most useless and sycophantic politicians in the country. Occasionally, the labs – surprisingly even to the two – produce a national gem!

Because of their agenda and vision for their respective communities, they rarely trust the electorate to make the right choice as to their local leaders. Their political laboratories are designed as a filtering process that ensures accidental and un-vetted individuals don’t assume national offices.

Page 1 of 2