Multi-Party Politics in Kenya: The Kenyatta & Moi States & the Triumph of the System in the 1992 Election

By David W. Throup; Charles Hornsby | Go to book overview

Three
The Creation of the Moi State

By the time of President Jomo Kenyatta's death in August 1978 Kenya had acquired the reputation of being one of the most open polities in Africa. Intensely competitive and comparatively fair national and local elections had been held regularly, despite KANU's monopoly of political participation since 1969.1 The press remained comparatively outspoken, and the churches, the trades union movement and the legal profession and judiciary were relatively free to defend civil society. After the accession of President Daniel arap Moi, however, Kenyans' freedoms diminished. The state became more authoritarian, dissent was stifled and political power became increasingly focused on specific ethnic groups.

During his first decade in office, the new President was to face far more difficult circumstances than his predecessor. First, Moi came to power just as the cash crop boom of the mid-1970s was ending and as Kenya's appeal as a tourist centre began to level off. The price for tea and coffee has plummeted and smallholder producers have received a diminishing proportion of the international price of their crops2 The easy economic benefits of land consolidation were nearly exhausted and the urban population was still expanding at more than 10 per cent per annum. Throughout the Moi era, state patronage has been in short supply and the President has had to make difficult decisions about which groups to coopt. Political patrons have found it increasingly difficult to satisfy the demands of their clients as resources have diminished, while Kenya's population has continued to grow at more than 4 per cent per annum. There are now nearly twice as many Kenyans as when President Moi took office.3

Secondly, Moi was a Kalenjin, not a Kikuyu. Under Kenyatta, the Kikuyu had come to dominate business and commerce, the civil service, many of the professions and, of course, politics. During the mid-1970s boom, Central Province had become one of Africa's few examples of self- sustaining, dynamic, peasant agriculture, based on the cultivation of coffee and tea for export and vegetables for Nairobi. With a comparatively elaborate communications and power infrastructure, Kikuyuland lay at the heart of the Kenyan economy in a way that the Kalenjin areas, the core

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Multi-Party Politics in Kenya: The Kenyatta & Moi States & the Triumph of the System in the 1992 Election
Table of contents

Table of contents

  • Title Page i
  • Contents iii
  • Figures, Tables & Photographs v
  • Acknowledgements viii
  • One - Introduction 1
  • Two - The Independence Struggle the Development of Political Consciousness 7
  • Three - The Creation of the Moi State 26
  • Notes 51
  • Four - The Regime in Crisis, January 1990-December 1991 54
  • Notes 88
  • Five - The Rise and Fall of the Opposition, December 1991-October 1992 92
  • Notes 164
  • Six - Kanu Fights Back December 1991-October 1992 173
  • Notes 237
  • Seven - The Electoral Process 242
  • Notes 285
  • Eight - The Beginnings of the Campaign & the Party Primaries 288
  • Notes 335
  • Nine - The Election Campaign 339
  • Notes 417
  • Ten - Election Day & the Results 424
  • Notes 451
  • Eleven - Why Kanu Won 453
  • Notes 527
  • Twelve - Kanu Rules the Nation 533
  • Thirteen - Conclusions the Emergence of Multi-Party Competition 582
  • Notes 603
  • Appendices 604
  • Index 642
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