By Dorcas Sarkozy
“In the time of darkest defeat, victory may be nearest.” President William McKinley (25th POTUS)
The easiest article one could have written/can write in the wake of NASA’s decision to postpone the inauguration of Raila Odinga and Kalonzo Musyoka is one lambasting the decision and excoriating those who made the decision.
As some commenter colorfully offered after Musalia’s presser, “how does one add logs to the fire then stop cooking the ugali” or some variation of that.
Let me dispense with some formalities from the get-go:
NASA was not “adding logs” to any fire nor was the party “cooking ugali”.
The struggle against a status quo led by two former criminals who escaped conviction by obstructing justice cannot be compared to cooking ugali.
Calling out corruption, extra-judicial killing, murder and intimidation of opponents and those manning democratic institutions is not “adding log to the fire”. Fueling the “fire” of inequality, marginalization and police brutality has been happening since independence – thanks to country’s governments, past and present.
Besides, realizing when the odds are stacked against you and recalibrating one’s strategy is not a sign of weakness.
Finally, taking a step back to re-evaluate and re-strategize without losing sight of the overall goal of the movement, while deflating and frustrating, is wise and judicious.
Let me be very clear so there is no misunderstanding about where I stand:
– I have absolutely nothing in common with those who support, cheer on or rationalize the murder of babies.
– Ordering the killing of children and unarmed protestors does not require any interpretation of motive, values or mores.
– I will never understand the collective punishment; of the madness embodied in the wanton killing of cows – belonging to people whose livelihood depends on said cattle!
– I share very little with people who support those who steal with abandon; who get ahead, not because of their effort or creativity, but because they are connected – by last name, village, tribe or some other undeserving connection. While I appreciate the importance of networking, I draw the line if the network is based on values antithetical to those I uphold to wit; I would not network with a gang of thieves, of racists or of xenophobes.
I am writing this piece after today’s (Sunday) Service and I highly doubt that there were, among the congregants, individuals accused of orchestrating the death of 1300 fellow citizen or those who support such people.
As has been amply demonstrated and much to the chagrin of Jubilee, NASA is a national movement supported by 66% of Kenya.
Raila Odinga is head of the ticket. Kalonzo Musyoka is his deputy.
Hassan Joho’s Mombasa County offered to host the inauguration.
Musalia Mudavadi and Moses Wetangula headed today’s conference
Contrastingly, Jubilee is a duopoly supported by 34% of the country – headed by leaders who doubt their very legitimacy.
It, Jubilee, is a union born out of the fear the opposing ends of the pairing has of one another – a reality that has been given credence, not only by repeated chattering, but by the current head of the ticket who washed his hands of off any efforts to craft an electoral system that works for all Kenyans – not just the incumbency.
It is this lack of confidence Jubilee has in the foundation upon which its legitimacy is based that make today’s postponement of the inauguration of Raila Odinga and Kalonzo Musyoka palatable albeit a let-down and a disappointment.
That aside, the delay does not change NASA’s fight for electoral justice, democratic & civil rights, self-determination & economic independence
It does not mean that NASA wants a power-sharing agreement with those responsible for the callous and wanton death and destruction of human lives.
As pointedly articulated by Musalia Mudavadi, NASA’s struggle continues unabated.
Not to sound flippant, coy or find some type of moral victory or silver lining in today’s announcement, NASA has, and will continue to embody the words of author Anais Nin:
“Life is truly known only to those who suffer, lose, endure adversity and stumble from defeat to defeat.”
A movement is successful any time it advances its cause without losing the lives of its supporters – something NASA has accomplished – by allowing cooler heads to prevail and postponing Tuesday’s event.