“Your vision will become clear only when you look into your heart. Who looks outside, dreams. Who looks inside, awakens.” Carl Gustav Jung.
We are making some strides towards taking charge of our destiny as a people as evidenced by the high number of former legislators who will not be on the ballot box. Even though I am over cloud nine because the erudite but insidious Nyong’o alias Mr. Hubris and the rodent eater Njeru Githae have had their egos broken, it still seems that despite the anticipated progress in Kenya, the forces of impunity are just shaken but not stirred. On the face of it, it may appear a matter of small misunderstanding, but in truth, the distorted pseudo nominations left a lot to be desired in our quest for real and true democracy. Why else would a person who lost in the Trojan horse nominations be handed a nomination certificate? Provisions relating to deadlines in the Elections Act have been put on the back burner as the threat of sanctions as the IEBC has reached a crucial turning point. Parties have fallen short of the requirements of the Elections Act by discarding rules that would have ensured fair-play and competition and they must be made to feel the heat.
In my ward and constituency, Riruta and Dagoretti South respectively, both ODM and TNA nomination voting went on smoothly and peacefully. It was the people who decided their flag bearers. In the ward contest, Samuel Ndungu Njoroge popularly known as Jua Kali having taken Satellite by storm, finally had his day after trying unsuccessfully in 2002 (Safina), 2006 (Safina)and 2007(PNU) by routing the former councilor James Kariuki Kiriba. New-comer Dennis “Denno” Kariuki Waweru formerly of the Nairobi bourse’s Faida Securities Limited bagged the legislator’s nomination nod. Kiswahili guru Felix Ochieng, sikate tamaa clinched the ODM ticket to set up a fight with Jua Kali. In the neighboring Ng’ando ward, perennial contender Peter Wahinya “Wanguvu” vanquished outgoing councilor Mugo to clinch the nomination. I tip my hat to these people and it is my guess that beyond 4th March, the trappings of power will be upon them.
Political parties have shown us once again that they find the preservation of the status quo more important than the express will of the people exercised through the ballot. We seek political and social equality while political parties are busy perpetuating a strategy of segregation based on patronage and blood relations. But as our bothers in Siaya, Homa Bay, Kisumu and Migori have shown by word and deed, the Kenyan dream will never be allowed to metamorphosise into a nightmare, the people are rising up and demanding what is rightfully theirs, and thank to the almighty God who is no respecter of persons, the mass will triumph over bureaucrats and impunity. Those who may be persuaded to dismiss these people as disgruntled “omeras who do not like rules or conventions” demonstrating and rioting, they must open their eyes and look beyond the veneers; these people are genuinely fed up. These are politically savvy and enlightened people who fully understand the workings of democracy and they will not stand by as their rights are trampled upon by party honchos locked up in ivory towers in Nairobi, they know that no one has the birthright to lead and they are putting their necks on the line in their quest for justice. Simply put, they are charting their own course.
Franklin Bett, The ODM National Elections Board chairman is a strident believer in the rough-and-tumble political way of doing things, a vestige of boardroom politics, has gone on record to state that the party will decide on who to hand nomination certificates contrary to the cornerstone of established norms of democracy where majority always have their say – and it is respected. The people made their choices, and choices ought to have been respected by the party organs. This poisoned chalice must be rejected at the ballot. It will be a humbling experience for some come Election Day. In 1988, Moi with his bootlickers conducted sham elections through the infamous mlolongo system where it was not out of this world for the contender with infinitesimal queue to be declared by the returning officers (provincial administration officials) to have carried the day. The idiosyncrasies of vintage KANU are back full throttle. The political parties must reform and move with haste by respecting the suffrage will of the people if the words reform and democracy are to be used conjunctively.
In other news, Clifford Ferdinand Ndung’u Waititu (I have nothing personal against Waititu the human, father and relative to others, but I have an ax to grind with his wayward manner of doing things and incitement) the proud owner of the TNA Nairobi gubernatorial ticket, who the Russians would term as nyekulturni is a product of a sham election, now let us try all tricks in the hat to floor him come 4th March. We need to up the ante of propaganda if Clifford is to lose when he locks horns with Dr. Evans Kidero. Any effort you chip in will be time well spent.