For those who have asked why Raila is putting himself through the grinder, why he doesn’t just retire, here’s something to think about. These elections, and all future elections to come are about you. Politics controls all aspects of our lives. Politics determines our cultural, environmental and socio-economic development. Elections are a critical part of the civic process, the part that allows each and every voter the right to have a voice.
The fact that millions believe their voice has been stolen; the fact that a predatory state run by resident bandits uses impunity for self-preservation; the fact that the credibility of institutions that support democratic principles, the rule of law and accountability is compromised – is a tragedy and injustice that must be stopped at all costs. We need to do it for posterity, we need to do it for justice, we need to do it so that future generations can have faith in a functioning country. We must pursue justice and our constitutional rights so that our children do not inherit the bandit state that we already have.
These elections are not about Raila or Uhuru – they are about each and every single one of us. Our hopes and dreams, our expectations and aspirations, our fears and insecurities. These elections are about our right to select the local and national leaders we believe will represent our interests with integrity and professionalism. Each and every single allegation of misappropriation, malpractice and the theft of the collective will of people must be taken through that grinder. We have to do what needs doing to stop a predatory state that has no compunction when it comes to disappearing people, when it comes to bludgeoning 6 month old babies and 9 year old children playing outside their home.
That we are in this state as a country is absolutely nothing to celebrate. That a 72 year old reformist is one of the only people in the country with the brass cojones to take the establishment head on is nothing to celebrate. That the sheer magnitude of the impact of this 72 year olds life’s work as a reformist and liberator will only be understood long after he has left us is nothing to celebrate.
The “Mta do” merchants are already waxing lyrical about how the Supreme Court won’t do a damn thing to change the status quo. Each and every one of us has the right and responsibility to do their little bit to change this country through civic duty or any other way they can contribute. Your civic duty doesn’t end with voting. You have to be engaged with what elected officials and civil servants at the local and national level are doing. You have to ask questions and proffer community solutions when examining the strategic choices they make and the programmes they implement. You have to take interest in the participatory budget making process and challenge excesses. It is your right and responsibility to do so. You can’t just vote and then wait for 2022.
Have a reflective day good people.