Tuesday, January 08, 2008

Facing up to the truth

For the past few days, I have butted heads with friends and loved ones about this, and prayed for the courage to write a post worthy of what I truly believe. Infact, I have enough worked on several drafts.

Today, I stumbled onto the MadKenyanWoman's realm, and lo and behold, there it was. The truth.

Here it is: Enough!

I post below a few paragraphs that immediately resonated with me, because this is exactly what I was telling my friends at the bar on Saturday, before they chose to walk away from me and avoid me all night.

"How have we produced this population of Kenyans so estranged, so alienated from a sense of collective hope and a progressive trajectory that they are willing to burn to the ground this national edifice we call our home? I begin to suspect that it might have something to do with the ways in which we treat our people as if they are disposable nappies....first we crap all over them and then we throw them away. Or, first we work them up with visions and dreams of a utopia denied them only by the holding of office by the ‘the other side’ then we slyly make insinuations of how much easier life would be without ‘them’ and then we give them a little nudge and say “oh look, there goes one of them now. And who left this panga lying about in the open like that, all nice and shiny and sharp?”

And then we exclaim in shocked horror: oh goodness, me! However could this have happened? Oh please, please, well, gracious me, whatever shall we do?

On the other hand, whatever can Kikuyus think we are about, saying complacently that “we” won the election when even Europeans who can count are quite able to figure out the implications of votes which add up to fifty thousand and are transmuted into seventy thousand by some mysterious Kikuyu alchemy? It boggles the mind, the sheer bare-faced effrontery of fraud meant to thwart the popular will and carried out in naked defiance of international observers and Kenyan media. We may not have universal education yet, but a good number of Kenyans can count for themselves with a fair degree of confidence in their own tallies. What on earth do the people of Central Province mean, dancing about in the streets like that with joy, when it is evident to anyone who believes in this country that uchawi numbers are self-evidently not a cause for celebration?

There’s hubris, and then there’s Central Province. I am fairly sure that it didn’t help matters. No one has won here, folks. We are all our own victims and our own oppressors—and some of us are guiltier than others.

The drunken man in a bar in a PNU stronghold who leeringly raised his glass to me in celebration of the government being “ours as usual” should, as he nurses the inevitable (and I hope excruciating) hang-over, ingest with his Panadol the human costs of maintaining the feudal principality of Kikuyustan--especially when other people would rather live in Kenya. Where does he think he will flee to, when the flames of discontent spread, as they inevitably will unless we come to our senses?

Amongst the many things that should stop the down-swing of that upraised panga is the fact that our neighbours in the region are deeply inconvenienced by our violent naval-gazing proclivities. It will probably serve us right to be in the position of receiving humanitarian assistance from countries we have regarded with pitying superiority up to now. Perhaps we will then understand that refugees are not lazy people on the dole; they are innocents trying to save their own lives.

Enough. If we are to sink with the ship, let us at least not pretend that all along we thought it was only a spring shower that was brewing, and not a furious tempest. Self-truth is a good platform to stand on and from which to survey this mess and decide what to do next. Enough pretence.We cannot bleat on endlessly about the wonders of our economic growth when most Kenyans have yet to see the evidence of such growth. We cannot leave people out in the cold whilst we luxuriate in the warmth of our riches and then, to add further insult, disingenuously ask them why they don’t come into the light of the fire when we know we’ve barred all the possible means of access beforehand."

In the end, truth and justice are the only pillars for true healing and reconciliation.

Let us all embrace the truth.


Today there is indeed a glimmer of hope. Leaders from both sides deserve praise for making efforts to reach out to each other.

ODM leaders must be commended for having the foresight to cancel the rallies and give way to mediation and dialogue.

Also, after blocking AU chairman President John Kufuor's visit last week, President Kibaki also deserves praise for inviting him back.

Now we can see that there is some effort by the two to sit down and seek solutions to this crisis.

But of course, every circus has its clown.

I am appalled by Alfred Mutua's continuous crass, and careless manner of talk.

Mr Mutua, when you say:

"If he (Kufuor) is to come over he is coming invited by our president as a colleague to discuss issues. So he is not coming as a mediator. So we don't have mediation happening because you don't mediate where there is no war. So we are expecting quite a number of African leaders to come over to Kenya, former heads of state and also sitting heads of state who would like to come and have a cup of tea with our president as invited guests."

Do you expect the Kenyan people to stand up and clap at your "genius"? Do you think this is a matter to be made light of?

Come to have a cup of tea indeed!

And when you say, Mr Mutua, that Kibaki has a lot of friends and they are just coming to chat with im, do you not realise that the people of Kenya have even more friends?

I wish Mr Mutua would stop treating us like blithering idiots. Mr Mutua owes us more than this drivel.

He has made many gaffs in his time as government spokesman. But this time, he should handle this matter with the seriousness it deserves!

Sunday, January 06, 2008

Dear Mwafrika...

You said in your comment to my last post "Stop the violence":

What's with the misleading title?! One thing you have to admit is that there
were flaws in that electoral process. Kibaki may have won but how it was
done left to much for people to doubt. "Even if you slither back, we
WILL get rid of you eventually"
. Threats will get us nowhere, we need
to look for peace by all

I would hope that what I meant was obvious but I would hate to leave you in doubt.

My headline was simple and to the point: "Stop the violence" Now, days later, even i must admit that at the time I was writing that, I didn't expect it would get as bad as it did, as fast as it did.

When I said:

I believe it is time for those who are trying to be underhanded to stop!!! This
country is much bigger than your selfish interests, you nasty bunch of
losers!!... Stop it and walk away. Read the writing on the wall. We are done
with you. Even if you slither back, we WILL get rid of you eventually. We may
fight today, we may be unreasonable and make off-hand senseless remarks about
each other. But tomorrow, we will heal. We will rise above your mercenary
shenanigans and then, THEN, we will have a common enemy and it will be you!! And
God help you when we set our sights on you!! Make no mistake, we will get you.

I surely was not advocating for violence. I firmly believe that the situation we find ourselves in was caused by a bunch of leaders who decided they were more important than the rest of us.

And while our hope is shattered, and our belief that we can shape our future lies in tatters, I believe that one day soon, we shall drag ourselves back on track, we shall stand together and we shall use our vote to get rid of them. Properly. Fairly.

That is what I said. That is what I believe.

That is what gives me hope when I despair. That the human drive for truth and justice will triumph.