Foremost I wish every Kenyan a Merry Christmas and continue to a good beginning towards the real march to an open, equitable, just and prosperous society going forward from January 2013. So far we have witnessed a great deal of movement toward these noble goals. Having said that, there are last minute year end knee jerk developments which show clearly what we are faced with. No doubt the coming year will be full of the same old challenges and surprises, but overcome we must and finally set Kenya to the path of true greatness and prosperity for all – grandparents craved it pre-independence, sacrifices were made for it at independence and we are still clamoring for it post independence. Now that the dyes have been cast I am confident that we will start the New Year going in the right direction.
Currently we are frozen in a time warp which illuminates with great clarity the thinking and philosophical differences that have shaped what we have as Kenya in this day and age. It’s a compressed tale of how our discourse has been shaped from independence and the different interpretations of governance. Despite the fog what comes to the fore and should be thoroughly examined is the HOW? Two cases stand out in this regard – the “battle” for a new dispensation and the resultant progress so far. The nitty gritty and in-depth analysis of the how’s and the why it was supported and opposed is known, but to date I have not met a single soul who does not admit that after enactment the momentum is picking up to say the least. The current purge in the judiciary is testament enough if there is any need to inject the dark side of the good book in justifying our action and or inaction in the political arena. The incoming police chief is another work in progress but it will definitely be an improvement from what we had despite the outcome. Security situation on the streets was non-existent, everybody was literally for himself – it was almost like the Wild West. If you live in the leafy suburbs you might think am exaggerating but think again.
The second is the thinking behind the strategy – of how to execute the formations or “mbuses” designed to transport us from the “analogue to the digital age”. The old Kenya was a Nation bound and tied to the time honored tradition of scratches – you mine and I yours amongst the “honorable”, and a different contract (constitution) for the general population – some had gone as far as calling it toilet paper. The ongoing real time implosion of one of the “mbuses” does not give us just a picture, but a front seat high definition (talk about digital) view of how the “hidden hand” was used and has been used in the past to put together unofficial unaccountable structures giving birth to a series of oathing fraternities which in turn cascaded downwards to executors and enforcers forming an impenetrable fortress of impunity which drove this country to the brink of war – not to mention the massive loss of treasure over all the years. What is the alternative on display? – Tolerance, reason, dialogue – the basic true building blocks of a civilized society. The choice is clear.
In this day and age the words Character and Leadership must count for something. Many Kenyans have come to realize that leadership does not start with printing the biggest poster and having the biggest megaphone, but to have the character and decency to say and do what you mean instead of blaming others. In other countries that have moved to the digital age a mischievous contract to dupe your opponents and the people would have resulted to automatic disqualification? Shall we be moving to the digital age by word of mouth only? Character is made up of your core beliefs and core truths build over a long long time of observation and tutelage and cannot change over night. What is important here is the small but irritating truth that “action speaks louder than words” – Some quarters have decided that they are not yet finished with this saga and moving the rumble from the shouting ring to the corridors of lady justice via statute. This was the best xmas gift to Kenyas. Many are watching the HD movie in glee – What an end to the year!
Besides – what’s up that the just ending tenure of the head of the armed forces has been extended despite the mandatory retirement age and that the US has announced sending some of its troops to Kenya for “training” … make you go mmmmmmmmm….?