Masinde Muliro University of Science and Technology (MMUST) has conferred Prime Cabinet Secretary Musalia Mudavadi with a honorary degree in Peace and Sustainable Development, giving him a ceremonial “Doctor” title.
MMUST Vice Chancellor Solomon Shibairo, speaking during the university’s 18th graduation ceremony, said Mr Mudavadi was recommended by the university’s senate and the council following his achievements and exemplary service to humanity in peacemaking initiatives that has earned him the title “a safe pair of hands”.
“Mr Mudavadi is a public servant, trailblazer, diplomat and a peacemaker who is now famously known as ‘a safe pair of hands’. This prescribes and instils positive peace as it builds on societal attitudes that foster long-lasting peace,” said Prof Shibairo.
“He strictly adheres to speaking the truth and intrinsically exhibits non-aggressive and non-violent behaviour in his career and political life. It is these traits and persona that easily predispose him as a promoter of peace that results in sustainable human security and development,” he added.
Prof Shibairo noted: “Many a time, his approach to politics has served to lower political temperatures that could otherwise precipitate election-related ethnic tension and polarisation in the country. The apogee of his peace-making effort was demonstrated when he was named as the team leader of the ODM’s side in the Kofi Annan Mediation Team during the 2007/2008 post-election violence in Kenya. He was the chairman of the Orange Democratic Movement contingent at what became known as the Serena Talks.”
He went on: “Eventually, he was called upon by the chief mediator, Kofi Annan, to be the main mediator among his Kenyan counterparts in what became famously known as the Kamkunji. Consequently, because of his peaceful disposition and commitment to end the mayhem, he was able to successfully mediate between the Kenyan counterparts and contributed immensely to the end of the 2007/2008 post-election violence.”
“His contribution to ending the violence was a huge advantage to Kenyans since it improved the wellbeing of those who had been confined as the IDPs. The peace building movement thereafter degenerated to restore calmness in postelection hotspots,” added Prof Shibairo.
On the improvement of the economy, Prof Shibairo said Mr Mudavadi between 1995 and 2002 spearheaded the liberalisation of the communication sector through an Act of Parliament the to the establishment of the Communication Commission of Kenya which would put in place instruments for proper communication and e-Commerce birthing over 50 TV stations and hundreds of radio stations and mobile phones that have increased business prospects and economic space.
He said Kenyans will remember the ravaged economy in the early 1990s in which Mr Mudavadi saved the country from runaway inflation and judiciously stabilising the economy of the country as it was in tatters.
“Guided by sustainability ideals, in less than five years between January 1993 and December 1997, he ended the notorious pillaging at the Central Bank of Kenya, reduced inflation rate from 50 per cent to a single digit; and, was able to establish the autonomy of CBK that laid the foundation for managing the domestic debt,” added the university.
Born in Sabatia on September 21, 1960, the son of a prominent politician of his time, Musalia Mudavadi learned at an early age the intricacies of leadership and the need for peace at all material times.
As a young man at the age of 28, he became a Member of Parliament when he was elected unopposed in a by-election in Sabatia Constituency, which was occasioned by the death of his father and went on to retain the seat a record four times.
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With the knowledge he gained from studies in economics at the University of Nairobi, he became a public servant par excellence, serving for over 19 years in six ministries and eventually ending up as Vice-President, Deputy Prime Minister and Prime Cabinet Secretary.
MMUST further said that Mudavadi’s establishment of the Mudavadi Memorial Foundation Trust Fund which “responds to societal needs”, demonstrates the Prime CS’s “immense accomplishments in sustainable development”.
Mr Mudavadi said it was a significant coincidence that the honour that was bestowed upon him from MMUST, a university named after the great nationalist — the late Masinde Muliro.
“My most sincere gratitude goes to the fraternity of MMUST and all Kenyan people who have for the last 59 years have worked together to restore peace, security, national unity and reconciliation,” he said.
He regretted that since independence there have been challenges that have affected development in the country.
To manage and influence our people in a collectively beneficial manner, each one of the leaders need to understand the society’s situation and motivate people to teach peace and work towards sustainable democracy.
He dedicated the honorary degree to those who have believed in him including his wife, Tesi and all who have been injured in the struggle for peace.