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Folly of leaders who never learn


Folly of leaders who never learn

Publication Date: 3/1/2008

Before the gods destroy you, they first make you crazy,” says Rotimi in The Gods Are Not to Blame, the Nigerian rendition of Sophocles’ Oedipus. In this madness, one moves in self-inflicted suicidal jaunts until one finally seals one’s own fate.

Looking at the present Kenyan situation, there are all the signs that the gods have struck because we seem to be hell-bent on self-destruction despite all the warning signs of calamity. 

Reading between the lines of the terse, four-paragraph statement issued by US Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice on Tuesday, it is clear that our beautiful country, which rose from colonial rule to independence in 1963, is about to lose its sovereignty.

And the reason for this grave situation is irascible politicians who are so consumed in the quest for power and selfish pursuits that they will auction our pride and nationhood. They do not appreciate the ramifications of the course they are taking.

If we were to lose our sovereignty due to our inability to resolve our contradictions and differences and the international community, led by the US, imposed a solution on us, the political leadership would have to be neautralised in one way or another to pave the way for a new administration. 

It looks as though our leaders hardly have any reference to history.

Panama, Nicaragua, the Phillipines, Iraq and Afghanistan quickly come to mind as examples of squabbling countries in which, to prevent anarchy or impose its will to protect its interests in the geopolitical sphere, the US has taken over the micro-management.

The fate of these countries’ leadership was sealed before they could squeal so as to remove any alternative seats of power in the “reconstruction” of the occupying force. 

Thus, Kenyans are today faced with the cruel task of choosing between loss of sovereignty and a civil war. How tragic!

The suffering and anxiety that they have gone through in the past two months have led to such deep trauma that the choice of peace and a return to normalcy is paramount to them.

The sigh of despair when chief mediator Kofi Annan announced the suspension of the talks on Tuesday was felt all around the country and anger was easily discernible above the hum of numerous phone messages.

In a country in which freedom fighters are still alive despite marginalisation by successive administrations, this signifies the highest form of betrayal by selfish politicians. 

If the current crisis is not quickly resolved the blood spilt by the freedom icons to establish our nationhood from colonialism and that shed in the four decades of the struggle for real democracy will have been washed into the ocean of futility.

Is it in order for so much pain and destitution to be visited on millions of Kenyans because the political leaders refuse to acknowledge the dire consequences that await the country if this mayhem continues?

Many people believe that politicians will not listen to what the people are saying, or their prayers to be able to move on because they can see the dark clouds forming in the horizon. 

And yet everyone is saying that the post-election violence was only a shot across our bow – a warning of what evil and carnage can beset us if we do not act.

I am not a fatalist, but this headlong and determined dash towards the precipice seems to be preordained.

The other night some friends were talking of being on the lookout for the movement of the US navy Sixth Fleet in the Indian Ocean to know when they are headed our way.

The twilight girls are excited that “ma-men” could be coming back after such a long time.

Write to the author

About SG

Secretary general of Chama Cha Mwananchi. This blog www.chamachamwananchi.wordpress.com, is based in Sweden.


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