Did Prof. George Magoha use honorary degrees to negotiate renewal of his term?
I am still disturbed over how President Kibaki’s and Prime Minister Raila's unpatriotic and selfish hunger for power-at-all-costs can be rewarded by honorary doctorate degrees conferred by the University of Nairobi!
In old England, honorary degrees were awarded to, amongst others, subjects who showed conspicuous merit or who had done extraordinary good service to the state or the university. However, in the politics of honorary degrees it has increasingly become an open secret that honorary degrees are now political goods for trade, as I suspect is the present case.
A degree honoris causa is literally conferred “for the sake of honour”. What honour can Kibaki and Raila possibly claim from the 1200 dead; the 350,000 IDPs and the billions of property pillaged as a result of their self-serving political machinations?
What claim to public honour can Kibaki stake when the Kriegler report confirmed plausible questions over the legitimacy of his presidency; following the scary indictment of the Waki report that post elections killings were planned at the State House and further in light of allegations that neither is Raila innocent for some of the crimes spawning in the post election period?
What honour does the University of Nairobi find in these two acting in characteristic selfishness, when “other forces” (read) Chinkororo, Mungiki, Baghdad boys etc threatened to share or snatch power from their hands, by quickly moving to put out the fire they started through signing the "negative peace accord"?
What honour can Kenyans find in the grand coalition government’s failure to resettle thousands of IDPs who are stuck in IDP camps? What honour can the President and Prime Minister claim from there pussy footing in resolving agenda no. 4 issues: historical injustices, unemployment, land problems, poverty, resource redistribution etc? What honour can the two claim when they have already started flip-flopping in the implementation of Kriegler and Waki reports?
Mr. President and Mr. Prime Minister, Kenyans will give you honorary degrees in any field you want if you can give us a democratic and just constitution; if you can resolve issues of agenda no. 4 in the peace accord; and if you can implement Kriegler and Waki reports to the letter.
I firmly believe Kenya is a civilized country where no institution worth its salt should award such covetous honours as doctorate degrees to anyone for the reckless and barbaric behaviour of engineering fights, killings, rapes, looting, displacements among other evils for selfish ambition; otherwise all of us will begin fantasising about methods of fast tracking ourselves to such honours.
The first honorary degree ever awarded, to Lionel Woodville by Oxford University, made him a doctor of canon law in a blatant bid to win the favour of a powerful man. Is it now sadly the case then that Prof. Magoha likewise awarded the honorary degrees to Kibaki and Raila as negotiation for the renewal of his term as the Vice Chancellor of University of Nairobi?
Bunge la Mwananchi
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