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Tuesday, 30 July, 2002, 12:39 GMT 13:39 UK
Moi's golden parachute
President Daniel arap Moi
A lavish life awaits Moi in retirement
Kenya's President Daniel arap Moi is being offered lavish retirement benefits when he leaves office.

Mr Moi, who has dominated Kenyan politics for almost a quarter of a century, is constitutionally bound to leave office this year at the end of his five-year term.

But the president had in recent years seemed reluctant to step down, sending conflicting and ambiguous messages as to whether he will retire or who would succeed him if he does.

Moi's package
Monthly pension to amount to 80% of last salary
Six cars and seven drivers
34 workers
12-bedroom mansion
Three cooks and two housekeepers
Gym, swimming pool and sauna

According to a bill expected to be tabled in the Kenyan parliament soon, President Moi's golden handshake will include a hefty pension (monthly pension amounting to 80% of his last salary), luxurious housing, a fleet of cars, security and eventually a state funeral.

The move is the first official acknowledgement of President Moi's impending departure after elections which are due be held in December.

It is also seen as an attempt to entice Moi to leave office quietly after what his critics see as years of economic mismanagement, corruption and political repression.

Sauna and gym

His retirement package is expected to cost the Kenyan taxpayer $900,000 in its first month alone.

Among other things, it will go to pay for his fully furnished 12-bedroom house, 34 office workers, seven drivers, nine security men and a fleet of six cars, which will include two limousines.

Slum dweller flees violence
Critics say Moi leaves behind poverty and violence

The state will also pay for his medical care and that of his family, and pay for his trips inside Kenya and abroad.

Other attractive perks will include three cooks, two housekeepers, a swimming pool, sauna, a tennis court and a gym.

And when he dies he will be accorded a state funeral.

For some time now, Moi's supporters and critics alike have been confronted with the question of how to say goodbye to a living president.

Kenya's first president, Jomo Kenyatta, saved Kenyans the agony by dying in his sleep in August 1978.

Kenyans were not helped by the fact that, during Mr Moi's last term of office, the issue of his retirement became a taboo subject among government officials, especially those belonging to his ruling Kanu party.

However, this is not the first time the idea of offering President Moi a retirement package has been mooted.

Four years ago, an opposition MP came up with a Presidential Retirement Benefit motion, worth $250,000 a year.

Although parliament passed the motion, the government did not follow up with legislation governing the benefits or entitlements for ex-presidents.

Personal wealth

But, in reality, the president is hardly short of cash.

Kenyan queue to vote at the last election
Speculation is rife as the elections loom

His personal wealth has been compared to that of Zaire's late dictator, Mobutu Sese Seko.

He is reported to own seven impressive homes across the country and has been associated with 30 major business firms in Kenya.

Critics of the president are unlikely to be pleased by the prospect of funding what promises to be a lavish retirement for the president.

They say he is leaving the country burdened with massive foreign debt, failing infrastructure, accusations of widespread human rights abuses and continued ethnic tension.

Kenyans choose a new president

Key stories

Inauguration day

Moi steps down




See also:

31 Jan 02 | Africa
22 Oct 01 | Africa
14 Jun 01 | Africa
13 Sep 99 | Africa
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