Thursday, January 03, 2008


Kenya My Country, I weep For You.

In times of turmoil and anguish like now, in times of desperation and mayhem like the present, when dusk forestalls fear and dawn brings desperation, that is when leaders distinguish themselves. That is the point when leaders to peace and prosperity distinguish themselves from leaders of mobs and ruffians.

A leader does not sprout from the triumphant parade of the victors but from the humility of the vanquished. A leader does not thump his chest and lift his nose at the vanquished but stretches his hand and points them to the road of recovery. The good book of prophet Isaiah calls us to reason ‘Come therefore let us reason together’. This is the sensible thing to do, this is the right thing to do, and this is what we should do. And the time to do it is now.

But as somebody said, you cannot shake hands with closed fists. You do not sit down and talk when your house is on fire. You first put out the fire and then sit down and talk. Find where the fire started, make sure it does not ignite again. The call for talks, reconciliation and peace cannot be heeded when the bows are out of the quivers and the machetes are being sharpened. We cannot talk when our mouths are full of vitriol, hatred and war-mongering. If these leaders talked to the millions that came out and voted, why can’t they talk to the same to lay down their arms and stop this madness?

I refuse to believe that killing your neighbor, burning his house, destroying his livestock and livelihood will change your socio-economic or political status for the better. You have lived in the same neighborhood, drank from the same well, eaten together, gone to the same church, same hospital, same harambee meetings, same cattle dips, same water project, your children go to the same school, and overnight he becomes your enemy because your favorite candidate did not win the election. What folly, what madness, where did we lose our tracks?

We stood in the same queues waiting patiently for our turn to cast our ballot, what was the purpose of the ballot? Was it not to pick one from the many? What was the plan B? Was it not to accept the verdict of the people? If there was a discrepancy, foul play, irregularity, is it going to be corrected with the axes and fires on our neighbors? If your neighbor steals your cow, do you go and steal his? No. You call the elders and let him answer before them? You cannot burn the whole forest just because you are feeling cold and need to warm your toes. You should not kill, or die, just because somebody feels he should be the president, MP or councillor. Believe me. Moi was right, the ugali plates in your house will not increase just because that person won or lost. You may burn or loot but that will change your circumstances for a moment and then you go back to your old routine. Woe unto you if you will have burned that factory, shop or farm that employed you.

My fellow Kenyans, why are we so myopic, shortsighted, blindfolded, unreasonable? Must we hack each other to death just to make a point? What happened to reason? Where are those helicopters that were crisscrossing the country during the campaigns? Why aren’t they crisscrossing the country preaching peace? Is this not the time for the leaders to distinguish themselves from the mob and halt the violence?

Yes we have the police and security agents to do that, but we need all and sundry to play their part. If this is not forthcoming then we have no choice but to indict them of complicity in this mayhem and imminent genocide. We do not need half-hearted condemnations; we need total commitment and action. Call off these goons and gangs.

. These murderers, arsonists and looters must face the full force of the law. Their protection or remission should not be on any other agenda other than the courts. This is the only way we can tell that you are for peace and that you command respect of those you purport to represent. The country is on the verge of collapse, and if we do not guard it together, save it together, build it together, we shall surely be destroyed together.

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