Monday, April 24, 2006

The Missing Link - Kenyan/African Politics

Is it possible that, like in the ever debatable evolution of man theory, there exists an evolutionary gap in the Kenyan/African political circle? Is it possible that everyone is doing their best, but the reason why so much is going wrong is because there are 2 different "species" out there. Each stuck in their survival instincts despite the fact that these instincts vary widely between the two species.

Meet the species
There are two types of people in Kenya and the general Africa. Pre independence and post colonialism. Now they say, mtoto wa nyoka ni nyoka. Nobody ever explains what happens when a snake changes habitats and the child snake has to grow up in different environments where it learns how to hunt for different food types with new instincts to match its new environment.

The missing link
Is it possible that what's missing in Kenya is that one generation that understands both attitudes and habits clearly? A generation that understands what it was to be colonized, yet one that was young and fresh enough to comprehend and grasp that we had attained independence and it was finally up to us to make changes in 1963?

Dominating Theory
I'm under the belief that our problem stems from colonialism. Remember the mtoto wa nyoka? Well, the first leaders of post colonial Kenya inherited Kenya from the white man. The very one who came masquerading as a Christian but went ahead to practice ungodly things such as stealing. It is stealing when you kick people from their most productive land so that you can selfishly (another ungodly trait) settle in this most desirable land. Not wanting to digress, our founding fathers, the Jomo Kenyatta and his peers, inherited this land from these people. What had they learnt from these people, the colonialist? They had learnt that once you're in power, you oppress the local people. You rule by fear and oppression. You also grab everything worthwhile and you use the local people to push your agendas. You make the people feel worthless, you enrich yourself and you make sure they will always need you so as to be able to find their daily bread. Or am I wrong? Isn't this what the Kenyan was to his colonial master? Wasn't he a slave? Didn't he do the menial jobs? Work in the farms of his master, despite the fact that he and his family once owned the land he now works in and they never sold it? Didn't he learn how to feel worthless and incapable? Weren't the colonialists the people that introduced dictatorship and its general tendencies to the African governments?

Compare our current leaders and the trend that exists and continues to exist. Aren't they the new colonialists? Aren't they out there using and manipulating their citizens? Haven't they failed to see that they need to help these people? That they are "their people" and the point is not to gain an unfair advantage? Haven't these leaders learnt from their generations that the leader dominates his subjects and aims only to please himself? Would the African politicians who may stumble upon this argue with the similarities they share with our colonialists?

The sons and Daughters
Then come along the second generation. Have never had a white man rule his country. Cannot understand tribalism and its meaningless core. This generation sees Africa as a place to be proud of. This generation has not been called stupid or worthless by any white man. This generation loves Africa as their home and wants the best for it. This generation sees the previous generation as an enemy to development in Africa. This generation wants change. This generation wants Africa in the hands of people who believe in it and want to make it work. This generation recognizes that every African is going to have to get involved in building Africa. And that means adopting a 'develop Africa' mentality versus an 'enrich my pockets' one. For this reason, this generation sees the previous generation as enemies of the continent.

Is the solution...
...The generation that gets both these people? The generation that might be able to receive a listening ear from our current leaders who mainly believe that a leader is an older person. That wisdom comes with age. Not always, obviously not. Is there a generation that understands the fear, pain and uncertainty, and more so bad habits left behind by the colonial master for our leaders to inherit and at the same time understands the current generation? The one that sees us all as being the same. The one that understands division was created as a tactic to conquer the black Africa. The generation that might be able to convince our leaders that they have become colonialists, intentionally or not. A generation that might be able to express to our leaders the understanding of their fears, that one day the white man will come back and they better have more than enough, so when he takes most of what they own, he'll still have some left; and at the same time express that this is not likely to happen if we strengthen ourselves by building our continent. The part of the population that experienced the white man's rule, the struggle and the early post white man rule (direct one at least)days. Importantly the ones who haven't become part of the continous circle of oppression. The ones that haven't yet learnt how to oppress.

Surely, out there exists this missing link. Because without it, no young generation governments can be formed successfully. There's no winning by shutting out the pre independence generation. They do not trust other people to lead them. And unfortunately they don't lead very well. They also now have old money, stolen corruptly or not. And winning an election needs money. So isn't there a desperate need to identify the missing link and encourage them to bridge this wide and looming gap? For the sake of Africa, where is this missing link?

1 comment:

alberto22elyse said...
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