Written by Purity Wairimu Ngure
The post election violence that saw Kenya plunge into a state of darkness after the presidential election still haunts us today. To say that life was ok before the violence is an understatement. Life was excellent. Life was pure bliss. People formed groups regardless of their tribe. Women had ‘chamas’, merry go rounds. Prayer meetings for each household were for combating the devil. We all shared a common enemy. Everyone was proud to be a Kenyan. We had the same spirit, the same zeal, of living and progressing as Kenyans. But all that changed after December 27th 2007.Remember the campaign – lets be proud to be Kenyans”. There was also a national dress for Kenya.
All our dreams, our thoughts and our prayers changed after the election violence. It was one of Kenyan’s darkest moments, when we learned that our destinies were separated by the pronunciation of a word. The way God was pronounced determined our life or death. We retreated to our shells, to our cages. We are afraid to look at one another. Before, we could ask our neighbor “which tribe are you” but not anymore. Our children no longer play with those of Mama Kamau. I can no longer shop at Ndunge’s shop. I cannot leave my keys at Kamaus. I no longer buy fish at Mama Odhiambos. Simply because we let our beliefs, our thoughts determine our lives. As Kenyans, we forgot that we need one another in our lives. We need the likes of Kavule for his carpentry skills; we need Otieno for his fishing prowess, Njambi for her bargaining power when she is in the market, Vidali for the ‘mrende’ he brings to the market. In other words, we need one another.
We should come back together as children of one father. We need to discard our poisoned beliefs and build a better Kenya. We are all down, but we can arise but not if we let our minds, our souls and our hearts control us. We have the power to move on. We have the power to instill in ourselves the drive to keep us going. Never again should we let ourselves be guided by emotions that will lead us take what is not ours, kill our neighbours and their children, burn their belongings and chase them away.. We need one another to make this nation work. We need to rise up! We can make it.