AN OPEN LETTER TO HIS EXCELLENCY PRESIDENT UHURU KENYATTA.
I am obligated by my sense of patriotism and my civic responsibility to write to you and for posterity, record and register my unsolicited solmen advice and profound appreciation to the act of selflessness you exhibited by calling the Rt Hon Raila Odinga into your distinguished office for talks that have yielded to the much needed political stability, tranquility and improved environment for investment and a renewal of our sense of nationhood. In Ancient Athens, Friday 9th March 2018, the day of the handshake would be a day reserved for gods, heroes and legends.
Indeed, I realize that this initiative is not a two man affair but an act of a true bearer of the Kenyan dream, a Patriot per Excellence, Uhuru Kenyatta. This your Excellency is your initiative and as Mark Twain once said; ” In the beginning of change, the Patriot is a scarce man, brave, hated and scorned, When his cause succeeds, the timid join him, for then it costs nothing to be a Patriot “.
Your Excellency, you have heard murmurs from different political formations, the same groups that opposed your historic release of the list of corrupt individuals, the famous list of shame on 27th March, 2015 in your State of Nation address in the National Assembly.The merchants of corruption and Lords of tribalism rallied to frustrate and defeat your efforts at confronting corruption head on, they threatened you with dire political consequences and I believe you slowed down cleverly and deliberately so that you may live to fight the monster another day. The same forces have converged and regrouped and are now issuing fresh threats against your commitment to unite Kenya. Once again I am reminded by words of J.F Clarke, ” A politician thinks of the next election, a Statesman, of the next generation”. They are surely motivated in their criticisms by the politics of the next election and not by a journey that you have set for our country- a journey of unity, peace and prosperity. Raila Odinga in his book THE QUEST FOR NATIONHOOD says; “Nations are like the leaning Tower of Pisa. First, Nations are flawed constructions, but it’s their flaws that give them character (the Tower in Pisa is only famous because it is leaning!). Building a Nation takes time. Work proceeds in fits and starts, and continue over many generations”.
Your Excellency, I associate myself with the words of Edmund Burke, who said, ” The great difference between a real Statesman and the pretender is, that one sees into the future, while the other regards only the present; he lives by the day and acts on expedience; the other works on enduring principles and for immortality”.
Your Excellency, stay focused with this initiative, command those who believe in your leadership to align their politics to the vision of your decision.This way, the Country will follow in tune. For in the words of Mark Twain, ” Our Country is not the only thing to which we owe our allegiance. It is also owed to Justice and to humanity. Patriotism consists not in waving the flag, but striving that our country shall be righteous as well as Strong “.
Indeed, the day you shook hands with Rt Hon Raila was a moment of supreme sacrifice on your part, and a clear demonstration of your unquenchable optimism for the future of our beloved country, and more so, your firm grasp of how fragile, delicate and precarious our country is.
For once, you have demonstrated that your commitment to a united country goes beyond the bounds of Political Parties and individual interests. It only takes brave and courageous Leaders to choose to abandon the selfish interests around the Presidency for the greater good of the Nation, just like you and Rt Hon Raila demonstrated, an action which has been replicated far East across the oceans with North and South Korean Leaders agreeing to shake hands.
Your Excellency, addressing the King of Jordan in Geneva at the International Labour Conference in June 2003, a few days before his death in July, Michael Kijana Wamalwa said this: “Recent events in the region not withstanding, Your Majesty must not abandon further efforts in the quest for peace in the Middle East because sooner or later, the protagonists and meglamaniacs will, like Tom and Jerry in the famous Walt Disney cartoon script, ultimately realise that working together is more beneficial than fighting all the time.
Thank you for your kind attention and solemn consideration of this letter. I remain a dedicated Son of Kenya and an advocate of your Kenyan dream.
Robert M.A Kiberenge