Archive for February, 2009
Let all with one accord
In common bond united
Build this our nation together
And the glory of Kenya
The fruit of our labour
Fill every heart with thanksgiving.
Last stanza of the National Anthem
There hasn’t been much glory in Kenya lately. The body politic continues to spin out of control. The press regales us daily with detailed tales of who in government is doing what to whom. The country recoils with hunger; the nation limps on in despair.
The air is filled with the sounds of complaining and griping, moaning and blaming. Starting at the very top and trickling down to the very bottom. The Minister of Justice complains of corruption and the slow delivery of justice. The Minister for Energy moans about the disappearance of oil. The Minister of the Metropolis gripes about the inefficiencies at the City Council. The Minister of Gender bemoans the absence of women in high level appointments. The Minister for Agriculture shouts for the umpteenth time ‘It wasn’t me’. The Prime Minister says his life is in danger. The President’s wife complains of inefficient male ministers. The President complains about his wife’s complaint. And the entire population complains about everything else.
In Kenya today, it is all too easy to point fingers and there are more candidates for blame than fingers to point. But I should be slow to cast the first stone since I am the single biggest culprit in the woes that have befallen the land; I together with my fellow countrymen and women. For we freely chose the men and women whom we have made a hobby of disdaining in private and dismissing in public– the 222 who run this country on our behalf and make the laws by which we live but which do not bind them. And it is I together with my brethren who shrink daily from our sovereign responsibility to call these honourable individuals to order when they step out of line, and resort instead to endless complaining.
And so today, although the temptation to complain is overwhelming, I must choose a higher road, a more excellent path. I must pause and contemplate the Kenya I will set out to build for my children and their children after them. I do so with faith that there are many patriotic citizens who, like me, are concerned that we have chosen to murmur where we should be working; and to weep where we should be fighting for the survival of ourselves and our country.
Rather than watching the morals of the nation go down the drain we should vigorously promote virtue in our own private lives, in our homes, in our communities, on our roads, in our workplaces. We must take personal responsibility to make our personal spaces a little part of the Kenya we want. We must create little islands of excellence every day and have faith that at some point in the not too distant future, these islands will meet and squeeze out those in our midst who labour to destroy rather to build.
In private therefore, I choose to consider every moment of every day as an opportunity to build Kenya. I will make myself aware that every time I choose to act unjustly in private, I am destroying my own island of hope and so postponing that day that we all work towards when the glory of Kenya shall be realized and fill every heart with thanksgiving. It is a project of great honesty. For it allows no space to drink water in public while imbibing wine in private. It leaves no room for pointing fingers because all the hands available will be too busy building the new foundations of our nationhood.
This personal responsibility will inevitably lead to our public greatness as a people. It will contribute to creating a Kenyan society that is – to paraphrase 18th Century English writer, Samuel Johnson – opulent without luxury, and powerful without faction; its counsels will be steady, because they will be just; and its efforts vigorous, because they will be united. The governors will have nothing to fear from the turbulence of the people, nor the people anything to apprehend from the ambition of the governors.
The encroachments of calamities we cannot always avoid, but we will certainly be prepared to defend ourselves, for scarce any civilized nation has ever been enslaved till it was first corrupted… Difference of opinions will never disturb our community, because every person will dispute for truth alone, look upon the ignorance of others with compassion, and reclaim them from their errors with tenderness and modesty. Persecution will not be heard of among us, because there will be no pride on one side, nor obstinacy on the other. Disputes about property will seldom happen, because no man or woman will grow rich by injuring another.
As I call on my fellow countrymen and women to unite with one accord in order to build this our nation together so that the glory of Kenya, the fruit of our labour might fill every heart with thanksgiving, the prayer of Rabindranath Tagore rings in my ears with increasing urgency:
Where the mind is without fear and the head held high;
Where knowledge is free;
Where the world has not been broken up
Into fragments by narrow domestic walls;
Where words come out from the depths of truth;
Where tireless striving stretches its arms towards perfection
Where the clear stream of reason has not
Lost its way into the dreary desert sand of dead habit;
Where the mind is led forward by Thee
Into ever-widening thought and action –
Into that heaven of freedom, my Father,
Let my country awake.
In the big scheme of things, Kibaki and Raila, Karua and Ruto, Uhuru and Saitoti mean nothing. They will be confined to the footnotes of history before you can say “Kenya Tuitakayo.” You are free to choose to join them on their long journey to nowhere, or you can hide behind the fig leaf of endless complaining.
As for me and my house, we choose to work towards a new Kenya where the dark days of despair shall soon begin to give way to our season of hope.
19th February 2009.
By NJONJO MUE
Let one and all arise
With hearts both strong and true
Service be our earnest endeavour
And our homeland of Kenya
Heritage of splendor
Firm may we stand to defend
2nd Stanza of the National Anthem.
We are living through dark and difficult days in Kenya at the start of the ninth year of the first decade of the twenty first century. Society has simply stopped making sense. We are unable to feed ourselves, to keep watch over the public purse, to pay our teachers, to protect our children, to resettle the displaced, and to apprehend and punish criminals, including those who bear the title “honourable.” The tragic fire that recently engulfed a leading supermarket in downtown Nairobi is a sad reminder of the flames that are engulfing us on every side, flames we are apparently unable summon up the courage or the will to put out.
We are frustrated and we are angry. Angry at those who have made it their stock in trade to gamble with our very lives; angry at institutions which only seem to work for the rich and trample upon the poor; angry at our own apparent helplessness to take charge of our destiny. We are also guilty. Guilty because the selfsame individuals and cartels are where they are because we helped put them there. Guilty because we voted for them, we sang for them, we praised them and carried them on our shoulders; we even fought and killed each other for them.
Yet one year down the road, many of the once excited masses are on the verge of utter despair. The daily newspaper headlines tell a sad tale of a country adrift coasting along on auto-pilot with no one particularly in charge. The walls surrounding our nationhood seem to have collapsed. Now it is a free for all as people who call themselves leaders help themselves to our scarce resources as they build up their bribing arsenal for the next round of this debilitating duel scheduled for 2012.
Many citizens have already resigned themselves to the fact that blood will again be shed as the titans battle it out again in four year’s time. Others are simply too exhausted to engage. They simply throw their hands in the air in surrender to the politicians whom we have allowed to move to the centre-stage of national affairs with their dizzying intrigues. Many still are in awe of the waheshimiwa’s and treat them with pretended reverence hoping to have a morsel of the stolen bread tossed their way. Most are just too busy trying to put food on the table to get distracted by the daily shenanigans of politics.
One suspects that the various crises unfolding in this country almost on a daily basis are orchestrated from certain quarters. This with a view to overwhelming the people with the sheer magnitude of the challenges that face us. We are too busy putting out the fires to stop and think and plan ahead. The idea seems to keep the citizenry too preoccupied to notice that 2012 is fast approaching, and then do what politicians do best – mobilize along ethnic lines and whip “their communities” into meaningless coalitions for the sole purpose of making a grab at power.
Writer Milan Kundera poignantly reminds us that the struggle of people against power is the struggle of memory against forgetting. And so for the sake of our national survival we must remember. We must remember all the injustices visited upon us by the oligarchy that has arrogated upon itself the divine power to misrule. We must remember the oppression and repression, the pillage and the plunder, the murder and the torture of the governed by the governors. We must also remember that those who conspired to steal the garment that covered our country’s nakedness are the same ones who will come in four year’s time calling us out to line up behind them and give them the mandate to once more loot, kill and maim by their acts of commission and omission.
But we dare not stop at remembering. We must act and act decisively. We must draw a line in the sand and tell the oligarchy “thus far and no further!” We must recall once again the ringing challenge of our national anthem which bids us to stand firm and defend “our homeland of Kenya, heritage of splendor.” Time has come to defend this homeland and this heritage from all enemies – foreign and domestic – including the domestic ones who drive around in big cars, some even having the temerity to fly our national flag while all they do is plan the next heist on our national resources.
If our so called government can sit tight and watch what has happened in this country over the last few months take place and not act decisively and convincingly to rid itself of those in its midst who are responsible for the starvation, the murder and the mayhem, it is not only our right, but our bounden sovereign duty to overthrow it and replace it with one that shall be accountable to the people – not to tribal blocks or to this or that or the other party or coalition.
Now is the time that the Kenyan people have to call upon the courage of a different age and the spirit of a previous generation which dared to take up homemade guns in a blatantly unequal contest to take their country back. Only this time, where others chose violence, we shall engage with our intellect; where others killed to make their point, we shall heal to make ours. But we should not kid ourselves. No matter how peaceful the means we choose, there shall be a cost, for power concedes nothing.
If we keep silent at such a time as this, God will raise another generation that is able and willing to take on our demons and lead our country to the Promised Land while we ourselves perish in the wilderness of our despair. But if we recognize that our very freedom is at stake and proclaim from the rooftops that no one shall take us hostage ever again, God shall raise a standard and He shall lead us on to victory. On which side will you stand?
3rd February 2009
In a separate development, this blog has been mentioned among 100 best for learning about Africa.
“Remember, my people, the ones I once called my children, what I told you months ago about the scorching- that you must choose between your self based even religious perceptions and work versus accepting me, the SON. Have you forgotten the parable of the sower as in Matthew chapter 13? Read it again! Learn it and inscribe it on your heart. Don’t let the seeds my prophets, my teachers of the Gospel, have spoken and revealed of me- the Word Himself- go unheeded. This is your last warning for the scorching sun is now here bringing with it famine like none you have known before. Matthew 13:6- “But when the sun rose, they (the seeds on rocky ground) were scorched because they had no roots- they dried up and withered away.”
I tell you, I love you, my Kenyan children, but I say: “get roots in ME, the ONLY BREAD OF LIFE AND LIVING WATER, before it is too late.” Roots mean faith. Are you rooted in self efforts? Your successes? Your hard work? Your playing church? Your spiritual harlotry? Are you content with bragging about hearing the Lord but not appropriating the Word (Christ Himself through the power of the Holy Spirit) entirely?
My people, the ones I have dearly loved, the world waits and turns to you for an example for you have known depths of trials that many have never known. Your roots were once solid for some of you. But some have been burned up. I tell you, leave you selfish pride and leave your churchianity. Find now URGENTLY spiritual fathers and mentors immediately who will model and facilitate walking in me- the SON , the Word made flesh. Let the tutors and governors (see Romans 8) now come forth and mentor the fatherless.
DO NOT DELAY. If you have ears to hear and eyes to perceive lay hold of the SON entirely NOW. There is no time left. The scorching sun is on the hroizon and anything you try and collect that is not more of me – more of my character and more of the “great I am who am Himself” will surely burn up. Stop collecting and storing treasures in your own means.
I ask you to spend days and nights in travail. Make me your life’s passion again. Become rooted or, as the natural famine you fear, an even worse spiritrual famine will come upon you unawares.
NOW GET READY.NOW-DO NOT DELAY or suddenly and without warning the roots will be scorched and dry up and even the little false sprituality and churchianity you have will rot.
Find roots- Seek out authentic mentors and representatives of me who will only speak all Scriptural truth in its entiety rather than piecing and parcelling me out. For there are those among you even with doctrines of leaven as of the Pharisees and Sadduccees- signs, wonders, and things they shall do but the roots are not broad and deep.See Matthew 16:1-5:
“Now the Pharisees and Sadduccees came up to Jesus and they asked Him to show them a sign from heaven attesting to His divine authority. He replied to them, ‘When it is evening you say, It will be fair weather, for the sky is red, And in the mroning, It will be stormy today, for the sky is red and has a gloomy and threatening look. You know how to interpret the appreance of the sky, but you cannot interpret the signs of the times. A wicked and morally unfaithful generation craves a sign but no sign shall be given it except the sign of the prophet Jonah. THEN JESUS LEFT THEM AND WENT AWAY.”
I will, my children, again establish roots if you will repent and turn to me at once. I will not delay. And I will heal the righteous in the land. One without roots will be scorched next to the one who is rooted in me. One will fall by your side and even hundreds in a day but you will walk past them with your held held high for you know the gloryand lifter of your head, if you are rooted in me. Do not delay. Choose now with solid faithful assurance and firm conviction.
ACTS 10:34-35-“AND PETER OPENED HIS MOUTH AND SAID: ‘MOST CERTAINLY AND THOROUGHLY I NOW PERCEIVE AND UNDERSTAND THAT GOD SHOWS NO PARTIALITY AND IS NO RESPECTER OF PERSONS. BUT IN EVERY NATION HE WHO VENERATES AND HAS A REVERENTAL FEAR FOR GOD TREATING HIM WITH WORSHIPFUL OBEDIENCE AND LIVING UPRIGHTLY IS ACCEPTABLE TO HIM AND SURE OF BEING RECEIVED AND WELCOMED BY HIM.”
Rev. Michele Aluoch, c. 2009-CTHIM