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Diary 23 – What are we going to do about it?


I refuse to fight for so-called leaders who clearly care nothing about me, the common mwananchi. As we speak, they’ve already been sworn into parliament, which guarantees that they are on their way to becoming Kenyan millionaires (at our expense). In effect, we the voters, put them in that position, hence giving them the power to walk all over us now and for the next five years. My question is; what are we gonna do about it? What can we do for ourselves?

Many Kenyans have lost their lives or those of their loved ones, their homes and/or properties, their livelihoods, …., and they continue to suffer as they fight battles for leaders who seem indifferent to their plight. Why should innocent Kenyans, who did their civic (and only) duty by voting peacefully now have to suffer in the name of politics? Politics aside, who will pay for the loss of lives and the damage to private property? Is it all going to be labelled ‘collateral damage’ in the quest for justice and democracy? It seems very unfair to me and I see no justice in it whatsoever.

We keep hearing about justice, but justice for whom? Everyone is entitled to this justice, regardless of their political (or other) affiliations. I say that we, the wananchi, must stand up and demand justice for ourselves. For those who have incurred losses (physical or material), who will compensate them? If I lost my livelihood or my home as a result of the post-election violence, should I just take it lying down? Why should I have to become a refugee or a beggar in my own country through no fault of my own? If my property or my business was destroyed by hooligans who took advantage of the so-called ‘peace rallies’, should I just accept that we have to make some sacrifices for democracy? NO! NO! NO! Even football clubs are fined and made to pay for any damage caused by the hooliganism of their fans and this compels the clubs to reign in the destructive actions of their fans. Political parties and their leaders must be held accountable for all the damage and losses caused by their supporters. The government must also be held accountable for the damage and losses caused by the state machinery.

My ideas of peaceful protests against injustice do not include getting killed or maimed by bullets or batons. They would, among other things, involve filing lawsuits against the ‘giants’ who have put us in the situation we are right now. Many thought that giants like ‘Big Tobacco’ companies could never be successfully taken on by ‘common wananchi’. But it happened. Even colonial powers have been successfully taken on by small communities that were oppressed by them. We Kenyans have to stand up for themselves if we’re ever going to break the pattern of impunity by our so-called leaders. A lot has been said about the inefficiency of our judiciary system but they are not the only courts in the world. Serious crimes against humanity have been committed against Kenyans in the recent past and we would not be short of courts that would be willing to justly hear and try such cases. I’m sure there’s a lot that we can do for ourselves but we’ve got to stop being victims and pawns in a game that we’ll always lose in. We’ve got to start thinking of ways to help ourselves because it’s nonsensical to continue dying and suffering for so-called leaders who don’t even know (or care) that we exist.

10 comments to Diary 23 – What are we going to do about it?

  • The days of Kenyans simply complaining and doing nothing have to come to an end if we want change or justice. In the 90’s, several people took it upon themselves to fight for multi-party democracy against the odds and against a harsher regime. It was mostly the poor that did so but the middle class and rich reaped most of the benefits.

    As mentioned in other reports/forums, the deciding factor will be the middle class: Will we simply sit and let the poor do the fighting for us (not physical fighting but fighting as in protests, etc). We don’t all have to take to the streets but we can all do our little bits to show our support for the cause. The point is to be able to say I’ve done something that is a small or big way contributes to the quest for justice in Kenya.

    Some friends and I in the UK have resolved to try and petition UK parliamenterians and the UK press to keep the story alive and pressure Kenya for electoral justice. Its not a fight for a single person or party but a fight for the system to work.

    (not the same as Kenyas for Peace and Justice btw but similar goals)

  • John Charo

    A wonderful piece of writing and spot on!!!! It boggles the mind how the current crop of leaders think. I grimace even as I use the word “leader” because none of them have shown that they are deserving of the title.

    The police shoot to kill order is disgusting, enraging and thee list Ali should do is reign n his goons. Kibakis failure was to ensure this killing does not happen. From the confines of State House he has the effrontery to ask people to take their children to school!!! What balderdash. People are dieing and are homeless!!!! Wake up!!!

    ODM’s failure was in not reigning in the killers who committed crimes in their (ODM) name. Swift condemnation from the word go would have done a lot to stem the tide of killings. In my opinion the fact that they did not swiftly condemn the killings lost them the moral high ground. Now Salim Lone is left firefighting when Human Rights Watch releases a report/statement regarding the killings. And its blunder after blunder. “Our people are being killed like dogs” Raila laments. What about the people burnt in the church?!!!! Were they not deserving any recognition? Or were they just collateral damage on the road to State House? Weep Raila weep, but weep for everyone killed. They are after all Kenyans that you hope to lead.

    And whats this penchant that both sides have taken to placing ads in the papers. How many poor people that they purport to look out for would have been fed with the money spent. Feeding people would have done much more in terms of publicity than placing those Ads.

  • Isindu Mwangaza

    “It takes a long time to recover the reputation for stability,” Fox said. “Kenya’s economy has more resilience than many countries in the region so it can withstand more of a shock but it can’t defy gravity for ever.” These were comments made today by a sovereign credit analyst with Standard & Poor (S&P). Fitch Rating Agency concurs and their outlook is nor more rosier than S&P.

    Meanwhile, a column in todays Business Daily quoted CBK Governor ‘Prof’.Njuguna Ndungu attempting to forestall a fall in business confidence, by pleading with bankers on Monday to send out positive sentiments insisting that economic fundamentals had remained intact when the country was burning.

    Now I’m not a major financial player but well adversed with economic matters as a keen & vested observer, but it seems that the Governor is blindsiding the market by assuming that pleas dictate policy or fundamental structure of finance as he would have us believe. Interestingly, he admittedly albeit in no obvious terms that CBK had not anticipated substantial losses to the economy owing that to presumed guarantee of normalicy.

    I get the sense that given the global recession, the the situation calms down, assuming it will, when the Kenyan economy readjusts to its normal sustainable pace (without manipulation as has been the case) the shilling will plunge at least 15-20% and so will the value of the NSE. Now some will argue that this is ok because this will attract foreign invested and yet they forget confidence in any economy is part political and everything institution To achieve this, ‘our’ politicians have a tough task ahead.

    I fail to see how the likes of Mungatana or Bishop Wairimu can comprehend this without taking politically biased positions devoid of any acute acumen. Either way, we are handicapped for a long time to come. It will take the y-generation half their lifetime to correct the devastating effects the babyboomers have inflicted to this country. That means, lost opportunity and that hurts like hell.

  • I-Read-Lines

    Am I mad or what? Why do I seem to agree with everything you say mate? May be I am . Damn, another day several lives lost and our politicians will be recieving their first pay of the year in 2 days?

    Madness has to be redefined!

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