My president launches portals, funny portals

In April 2013, Uhuru Kenyatta was sworn in as the country’s 4th president in what he called ‘the most complex general election in our history’ with both praise and criticism in equal measure.

In his speech, the jubilant president said his government would be founded on economic growth, strengthened by a globally competitive education system and access to affordable healthcare and food-security.

He promised to be held accountable by all Kenyans on promises such as zero maternity fees, loans for the youth and women, funds for devolution and dealing with unemployment. Whether these were illusions or have been achieved it’s up to Kenyans to decide and vote them back in or out.

This is the battle the Kenyatta government has. To actually prove to Kenyans that it has worked and that its projects were not projects of the coalition government according to Raila Odinga-led opposition coalition  the National Super Alliance or NASA . To help Kenyans easily see and identify its achievements, the Kenyatta team has over the years launched various portals such as President.go.ke which tracks the president’s itenary with speeches and press releases. Mygov.go.ke- the larger government press machinery run by the ministry of ICT and supporting the executive arm to communicate its achievements as well rally for his election and the grand launch of delivery.go.ke which was personally launched by the president and his deputy to showcase the Jubilee government’s achievements since it came in power in April 2013. The site replaces Nexus.or.ke which never survived a month and complements President.go.ke and Mygov.go.ke.

Delivery.go.ke, run by the President’s Delivery Unit, is divided into three sections namely Flagship Programmes, County Programmes and Ministry Programmes. The Flagship Programmes are under ICT, Lands, Health care, and Infrastructure with many listed as completed, ongoing at different phases, or completed.

Whether the projects began in the Kibaki regime or were funded by international organizations, it’s not a big deal. Some of the projects such as roads, hospitals and bit of rural electrification are genuine while others are exaggerated. The site indicates 2.5M plus title deeds have been processed while processing fees for another 3M titles waived. Delivery.go.ke run by the President’s Delivery Unit, a centre of government function based in the Office The President has done a fair job as the primary unit tasked to improve the coordination of National Government flagship programs. Nzioka Waita, its head has done a commendable job. But it gets worse.

Over the weekend, we noticed several sites online allegedly ordered by propaganda firm Cambridge Analytica feared for its role for Trump election and the Brexit referendum vote. The two sites, one for Raila and one for Uhuru, built in the same format with the same goal- respectively spreading hate and loyalty about the candidates on social media. The firm behind it went ahead to buy Twitter and Google Ads for the sites, a move readers think aim to hijack user democracy and win the swing vote among the youth undecided about both Uhuru Kenyatta and Raila Odinga.

To the NASA camp, the websites and ads are miracle if the comments on some of the aerticles are anything to go by. One such article by a certain Kimani Ichung’wa (hope not the M.P) claims to Raila everything is bad if he doesn’t take credit.

“NASA flagbearer Raila Odinga has tried to make this a campaign agenda, and has called for the project to be scrapped or reversed,” Ichung’wa writes. “His statements betray, once again, that attacking the government is more important than advancing the country’s development agenda, and caring for his own constituents. He will have to explain why a high-speed train that will trigger economic development and create jobs in Western and Nyanza regions — his own backyard — should be cancelled.”

“The answer is simple for all who haved followed Raila’s political career. If he doesn’t take credit for something, he tries to discredit it, even if it is good for Kenya and the people. The opposition’s excuse for opposing the SGR extension is another red herring. They claim the government is making the national debt unsustainable,” says the writer. However, to the surprise of the writer, the negative articles are working wonders for Raila Odinga and his team.

Surprisingly most of the readers are in support of Raila Odinga, the NASA candidate and are not portraying the intended negative image the team had intended.

“Job Orandi Mageto you’re so stupid person when you talk badly to Raila. which kenya a you living madeni yanatumaliza kabisa kwa hii serikali yenye haijali mkenya wa kawaida. serikali yenye anatuambia ati unga ni 90 na hali ilali unga ni 130 kwa sababu ya kufikilia duni kuwa supermaket ziko mpaka vijijini.

Denice Job Ochieng Hmmm you talk as if you are a visitor in Kenya and as if you are soon leaving…. Get this its not about the locomotives and all that you say,, look into the life of a normal mkenya who pays taxes as well as looking for sh.200 to pass a meal.. And look forward to another,, now maintaining the life is the problem…. Tell such a Kenyan about the locomotives!!! And yet no food to put him up!!! That’s why I strongly sa that… #JUBILEE_MUST_GO who to take that place #BABA_JOSHUA_RAILA
Frenky Madividy Stupis analysis we all know how much raila has contributed to the development of this country both freedom wise,economicwise and politically.your stupid analysis can only be compared to that of Mutahi Ngunyi who always dreams about raila
Vickery Omwandho ABDUBA DIDA QUOTES:
” Uhuru Kenyatta spent 3 years at the ICC trying to save himself, when he came back he called parties and started campaigning, when did he sit down to work?
Those working in this Country are the Chinese. They propose an idea, fund, implement and manage the idea! and that’s the tragedy of this Country.
 
 According to the Star, the Jubilee Party hired global data mining company Cambridge Analytica and British communications firm BTP Advisers to help it retain the presidency. For the record, Cambridge Analytica, which allegedly uses fake online opinion pieces as news, hate and ethnic profiling to create divisions between political camps  and win over undecided voters has a string of failures in Nigeria while working for Yar’Adua, and in Lativia and in St Lucia and failure to help Ted Cruz clinch the republican nominations leave alone the US presidency.

Unlike other populations, Kenyans are queer and might not easily be swayed by backward psychological warfare waged by ex-military men through social media ads. Negative labels elevate candidates up above others and easily wins them sympathy votes for not fighting back; a principle used by Sun Tzu, in his Art of War , “Appear weak when you are strong, and strong when you are weak.” Apart from public war of words, Raila is not fighting back by showing he cant compete the Uhuru team on resources then using the same tactic to claim the incumbent is using public resources and shortchanging voters against Kenya’s elections Act Section  14.

The act states that a candidate, referendum committee or other person shall not use public resources for the purpose of campaigning during an election or a referendum. No government shall publish any advertisements of achievements of the respective government either in the print media, electronic media, or by way of banners or hoardings in public places during the election period.

Coupled with corruption, ceiling food prices, inflation and unemployment,  the issue of public resources makes Raila an easy sale to his sympathizers by portraying himself as the Joshua to lead his people into a safer Canaan with food and honest leaders. So whether Raila is going to hire a data team to buy ads or not; the damage intended by Jubilee Party strategists is working positively for the opposition.

Though known as a big data firm, Cambridge Analytica doesnt actually use big data, but neuroticism, old-fashioned propaganda and tricks and subterfuge like it did for by creating tensions between Latvians and ethnic Russian residents to influence voting behavior. In Trinidad the firm helped a candidate by importing graffiti artists to do slogans and stickers to appear as if they were by Trinidadians. In Nigeria, in 2016, the firm dissuaded opposition supporters from voting by organizing anti-poll rallies and discrediting opponents. For Leave.eu, the firm targeted anti-BREXIT supporters with Facebook, Twitter, and Google ads using their digital traces.

Cambridge Analytica buys personal data from surveys on social media, land registries, car registration, shopping data, loyalty cards, membership cards, shopping, schools, among others then aggregates this data into real people with their age, address, fears, needs, interests, and where they stay or who they intend to vote for. These findings help Cambridge Analytica to target each person with an appropriate political message to influence their voting. Unless the tactics are stopped, Kenyans should be ready to come across various ads targeting them and their peers with different political messages such as go out and vote against Raila Odinga, not to vote totally or to vote for the Jubilee Party to complete its development projects for the good of all Kenyans.

It gets worse with Google search with various keywords to do with Raila Odinga, Kenya elections, Unga among others lead to paid posts from various sources portraying Uhuru Kenyatta as the savior who pushed down Unga prices.

Read more about Cambridge Analytica here, here, here and here.

 

 

 

 

 

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