To my fellow Kenyan
Let me just be honest, I debated with myself on whether write on this topic or not. I had several meetings with myself on if I should write on politics and finally, here I am 🙂
I decided to write!Why you may ask? well, let me tell you why.
So that our next generation will travel through our political financial history like they experienced it just by reading this blog.
So that I will have contributed in reminding everyone that we need a good political environment for businesses to thrive.
Come to think of it, finance is a key tool in the political sector. It actually fuels politics. Now if this tool is diligently used, it can drive a developing nation into a developed nation.
Political dynamics heavily depend on finance for its survival! So, what does that mean to us? Believe it or not, you have the tool that will authentically craft the Kenyan story.
Well, what is this political finance? Political finance covers all funds that are raised and spent for political purposes. Such purposes include all political contests for voting by citizens, especially the election campaigns for various public offices that are run by parties and candidates.
Let’s get down to the facts on just how political finance matter to us. A report from local daily estimates that it takes about Ksh5 billion ($50 million) to run a successful presidential campaign.The political investment in our country is unbelievable. May I remind you that for you to raise Ksh5 billion you will need to save roughly Ksh 450,000 monthly ($ 4,500) for 100 years! Yeap, you heard me right 100 years!
On the other hand, a gubernatorial budget for a county in rural Kenya is estimated to be Ksh600 million ($ 6 million) for a successful campaign.However, some notable exceptions during the primaries proved the figures wrong by aspirants thriving with no budgets or campaign funding.
To become a Member of Parliament, you need at least Ksh15 million ($150,000) to mount a successful campaign.However, these figures differ depending on the size of the constituency and its population dynamics.
According to the Political Parties Act, a party must have garnered at least 3% of the total votes cast in a general election to qualify for funding by the exchequer as one of their sources of funding. Note better; The exchequer is simply the national treasury.
Political finance is such a serious space in our society to the extent that aspirants take bank loans to finance their campaigns.
Towards the end of 2016, the Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission (IEBC) attempted to implement the Electoral Campaign Financing Act.This Act was intended to regulate campaign financing but it was rejected by political parties, a parliamentary committee and later suspended by the High Court.
Amidst all the efforts to regulate campaign financing, the ball remains in our court. To our aspirants, your political investment calls for responsibility.It is only a good investment if you don’t affect our business environment.
For us as the voters it will cost the fiscal budget Ksh 100 billion ($1 billion);ksh 2500 per voter and could be Africa’s most expensive on a cost-per-voter basis. So what does that tell us? That we need to do it right.Doing it right means we vote, promote peace and not finance any electoral violence activity because we have a lot of financial recovering to do after the elections.
Firms are holding their investment projects and financial decisions, hiring is at a stand still, businesses are slow, investors are holding their shares; practically the financial sector is at a standstill.So if we spend our revenue on elections then dare to cause political violence we shall be on our knees begging for funds to run our country.It is our business to protect our stability selflessly.
These elections come at a time when the economy is susceptible to shocks emanating from the drought, inflation rates, and a slowdown in private sector credit due to the interest rates cap. The Treasury also noted that concerns about electoral violence could dampen short-term growth, weaken both local and foreign investor confidence and to some extent trigger a recession.
It is not only your democratic right to vote and ensure peace but also your business responsibility to ensure the environment is conducive for business.
Use what you have to promote peace be it a blog, tweet or a post; remember your political choice is personal don’t force people into your thinking that’s how we maintain peace by making your political stand private.
Dont allow us to bleed for them to lead.