A new political battle beckons, the battle lines are being drawn, politicians are choosing camps, the masses are choosing their colors, the referee is announcing the Rules of Engagement and the battle will soon begin.

Politicians are changing their camps, others are still loyal to their former camps, others are still on the sidelines; binoculars at hand, watching keenly, measuring the political temperatures, their legs ready to run to the camp with the biggest sway in their regions, all in all; the people’s problems, ideas, and agenda nowhere near their mind.

The only constants in the looming battle is a gullible electorate, a hungry electorate, a poor electorate, a divided
the electorate, an unemployed electorate, an electorate overburdened with debt, a society stolen and stripped of its national cake through rampant theft of public coffers, and a gluttonous political class.

The State of Kipkeino Stadium. Photo: The Star

We have done things the same way since independence with 2002 as an exception, tribal affiliations rather than voting on the lines of ideals and principles.

Will 2022 be a mirror image of 2002 or will we remain stuck in our ways? Will we do the same thing and expect a different result (definition of insanity) or will we change tact as they (politicians) do every election year? Are we woke yet? Are we ever going to be woke? Will it be too late? When will our TRUE dawn come? Or will we fall for ‘in six months the stadium in Wote will be done’ again? Food for thought.

Theodore Roosevelt, in his Essay; Fellow-feeling as a political Factor stated that it is impossible for Democracy to grow or to endure if the political lines are drawn to coincide with class lines. And it is not lost to any of us that our country has not been spared to social divisions that are default to any society.

Classes are classes no matter what baptismal names they are given, in our case, recently, in a tweet His Excellency the Deputy President celebrated the fact that his main opponent, the former Premier H.E. Raila Odinga had bought to the idea of battling along the idea of Hustlers and Dynasties.

Since when did the bare minimum of holding the highest office in the Republic based on one being a Hustler or a person with some family money? Is that the Kenyan dream? Don’t we have better issues to base our political discussions on?

Healthcare, Education, Economic growth, our foreign policy, the fight against Corruption, the true promise of job opportunity for our youth, affordable housing among many others. Should we rely on this Hustler narrative to guide us home? Should it be our North Star?

Every time Kenyans of good intentions wake up at 3 am on Election day to vote for their favorite candidate, they do so with the hope that they will articulate whatever they had outlined in their manifesto; progress in all the sectors of human life.

Seven years ago, Kenyans of goodwill voted in large numbers for their choice on who should become their leaders; from President to their local leaders.

The questions we ought to ask ourselves ahead of the upcoming political season is, what do we have to show for all those years? Is it progress or are have we made steps backwards? What outweighs the other; failures or the progress? And most importantly, who is to blame or praise? Which political group is to blame? And what did their opposition do to check those who were in power? Did they help in the looting of public coffers? Did they do their public given and constitutional mandate of checking those in power?

We all hoped that with the new government, it would lead the country back to its glory, one piece at a time. That is what the millions of Kenyans who voted were hoping for. But since then, our country has been broken, the steps that the Jubilee government has taken backward outweigh the steps that they have taken ahead. In the eyes of any reasonable man, this government has failed; not only in actioning their manifesto but also in their constitutional mandates.

The whole system has broken down. Everyone has to take responsibility for their commissions or omissions that have led Kenya to what it is today. From the electorate who voted according to tribal lines rather than ideas and a party’s development agenda, to the government, extending to those who have been in the opposition since.

Everyone in our beloved country (except those who have looted and slept on the job) is complaining. From religious leaders to bloggers, school-going children to their teachers, doctors, and nurses are on the streets, lecturers are complaining of delayed salaries, the jua kali guy is complaining of dying business, hotels are closing down, big corporations are moving their businesses to other countries with business-friendly laws and governments.

I am bitter about the meager numbers of employment opportunities available to me and my fellow youths. We were sold the idea of 5 stadia in 5years; it’s been 7 with two remaining to the end of their term, the laptop promises to pupils bite the dust too, five thousand jobs a year a promise; seen the latest figures yet? Affordable healthcare, Affordable housing, fidelity to the laws of the land, the big four agenda.

An artistic impression of City Stadium after Jubilee’s promises. Photo: The Standard.

The promises made during the launch of the manifesto of the jubilee government are still fresh in every Kenyan’s mind, with sound bites of the damned night doing rounds on Twitter, Facebook, and Instagram.

In seven years, we have the Highest Public Debt ever witnessed in the country with little or nothing to show for it, our health care system is messed up, our youth service stolen from, county governments coffers emptied. The high cost of living, unemployment, and blatant disregard for the rule of law.

The corruption scandals associated with the office of the president, the vice president, and most of the count governments rampant, inhumane, immoral, and extremely embarrassing. As a country, we have endured Jubilee’s rule with our faces in our palms. We have leaders who wouldn’t measure up to Chapter Six of the constitution.

For the last 8 years, we have endured Jubilee’s (and their friends) rule, dominated by incompetence, drama, and corruption on a scale never seen before. Our forefathers are angry. For a minute I thought, maybe we have seen the light, the public cry could be heard from Busia to the statehouse, from Mandera to the State House.

BUT, Instead of all of us fellow feeling and working towards a completely different direction and movement that would lead us home, we are being drawn into a battle of dynasties and hustlers, not a campaign of policies or ideas, just hustlers and dynasties, we should be ashamed.

Our National and civic life should be guided by fellow feelings, mutual kindness (as shown by Team Kenya in the recent Senate Revenue Debate), respect for one another, common duties, and common interests. Jubilee Party, any of its friends and affiliates are not and will never be the answer to our problems, ask the stadium in Wote.

We should go in a different way. Can Mutua tell us his plans, can Hon. Kavutha us tell his ideas, Hon. Doc Mukhisa Kitui where are your policies that will return us to the course of achieving the Kenyan dream? Hon. Kalonzo Musioka do you have what it takes, Sirs?

It shouldn’t matter whether one is a dynasty or a hustler, what should matter is, do they identify with the living force of our desired society, the desired interests of our country, our desired habits, our public principles/ideals. Does their track record speak for them? Does their record stay in line with Chapter Six of our constitution? The time for shenanigans, tomfoolery, and ballyhoo is over in our country. It is time to make hard decisions as the electorate.

Article courtesy of Ombogo Seth Mathias

By KDP

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