Friday, 27 May 2011

Kenya moves from paradox to paradigm

Since the inception of the Government of National Unity (GNU) in Kenya, there have been many squabbles. In effect, squabbles have direct or indirect affected the lives of Kenyans. When GNU was ushered in there were dreams of huge leap forward that ended up becoming a too-often lie culminating from squiggles of success especially the making of the new constitution.

Though this marriage of convenience between Mwai Kibaki and Raila Odinga that brought GNU in has soldiered on, despite all drawbacks, there are many positive signs at this eleventh hour after the duo decided to embark on face lift for their marriage.

At essence, the mesmerizing way the duo quickly and expediently offered to their consent to the appointment of the candidate for Chief Judgeship the revolutionary-cum-resolutionary Dr. Willy Mutunga and his deputy Nancy Barasa is commendable and applaudable altogether. Indeed, this is but a new spirit that is likely to bring a lot of change in Kenya shall it be maintained.

Mr Kibaki and Odinga, never again allow you to be played off of being swallowed by narow ethnoegoistic political miasmas. Open a new page of reconcialiation and delivering. Verily, you know as well as I. This new realization of the duo is inspirational. For none of them can ably go solo politically without the other otherwise one wants to cascade into oblivion and historical dustbin. The duo is like the two side of the coin. Thus working together nicely for them is not an option but an obligation to their goals, nation and legacy.

Given that time is quicly lapsing for two principals, the paradox they make should come closer and closer reasonably and deliver Kenya. To know what this means, refer to the two antagonistic forces that generate electricity. This is the right way Kibaki and Odinga can make use of their paradox.

Notably, kibaki is currently laying some bricks for his legacy whiulst Odinga is gaining more qualification and expartize for yet another big job. The duo needs each other. Kibaki cannot leave a very bright legacy without Odinga who can not shoot up without Kibaki. In this situation whoever hampers another is but sabotaging himself. To know how this works, refer to the battle for the new constitution. When the duo opposed each other the draft constitution was shot down easily. If anything, this was the worst-case scenario. But when the duo worked together, the new constitution was ushered in easily. This is a positive and reasonable work of paradox whose benefits can end up becoming a paradigm in the future. Cooperation among the people making paradox undergirds achievement. So there is an urgent and permanent need for the duo to keep on working together mutually and amicably.

Shall the duo succeed in delivering Kenya from archaic rivarlies and political anarch; theirs will be a precedent for others that are still under the yolk of dictatorship and experimental politics in the region and far beyond. Therefore, the slogan of the duo should be: “Yes we can where they said we can’t.”

Let me cite another constructive paradox. As a constructionist, Mandela-De Klerk stance was a paradox. After they buried their differences and allowed common sense to reign in there came what is refered to as Truth and reconcialiation paradigm. From paradox to paradigm this is what it became. What a legacy for both! We need to learn to turn conflicts to constructive forces based on peace, justice and deliverance. This is but the biggest lesson from Mandela-De Klerk paradox-turned paradigm.

In a word, Kibaki and Odinga can still deliver and erase all negatives and past mistakes under their watch. Time is only now. After all, this has been a ground gristmill experience for the two. Conflicts even differences are but natural phenomena that make us think and meet our challenges. What is not natural is the drawbacks of giving a conflict intractability and permanent abode.

As for my friend Dr Mutunga, Kenya has a lot of expectations and hope all pinned on you. Please understand. Don’t go the way your former comrades in Arms went. I am not going to name names. But again when most of your friends and comrades got power, they drank a lot of it so as to end up intoxicated and licking their vomitase. This should not happen to you.

Your friends like Kiraitu Murungi, James Arengo even Koigi wa Wamwere know this too well. I am sure you’ll not embark on moribund politics of revenge and vengeance. Thus abhor all petit politics of this is our turn to eat and the likes. Like the two principals who endorsed you expediently without any squabbles, you too have a legacy to leave behind after your tenure comes to an end.

In sum, many precious metals and honorifics are there to pass but not the legacy that one leaves behind. You can see this in the oft-citing Plato, Socrates, Sophocles, Cicero and many more.

My last word of advice quotes this. “Doing justice is paramount to restoration, rectifying wrongs, and creating right relationship based on equity and justice.” John Paul Lederach in his book Preparing For Peace: Conflict Transformatio n Across Cultures.

To summize and reiterate, there is that culture of ethnicentricism, nihilism, impunity and corruption in Kenya judiciary being one of them. it is time for changes. Let us turn a paradox into a paradigm.

Source: The African Executive Magazine May 25, 2011

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