In a profound state of highly spiritual consciousness; actually a few degrees below transfiguration, St. Augustine yelled, "Give me chastity but not yet!!". In the Kenyan quest for peace, the relevance of such hesitation is outstandingly evident. In unison, we scream, "Give us peace but not yet!!". First we want to see either Raila or Kibaki as president. No peace until our dead and displaced are appeased. Peace is only possible after ancestral land in the Rift Valley is returned to its rightful owners. We want peace but only under a new constitution. Peace is PNU. Peace is ODM.
In the meantime, anarchy ensues. Whereas some IDPs are living in conditions much better than their previous polythene Mungiki-taxed slum dwellings, most are trying not to get used to the daily Red Cross food rations; they realize resettlement in the slum means three or four meals of squalor per week. At this juncture, one cannot fathom the number of dead denied a proper and decent burial. Reality suggests that nondescript mass graves will continue dotting the Kenyan landscape until we find justice and peace…in that order. Only in Kenya can justice be the stumbling block to peace.
Like most, I want to believe that Kenya will rise up from the smoldering chaos with unbridled thirst to regain its composure. I hope that the weeks of mayhem be viewed as a serious case of democratic hiccup and nothing more. Mwangi and Atieno will grow up together in Eldoret, go to school in Kakamega, marry in Kiambu, settle in Mwingi and buy land in Kisumu. All the while, Kipruto will be living it up in Muranga as Kalonzo sells honey in Kitale without fear or intimidation. The continuity of that Kenyan lifestyle must be a priority. That we have lost everything is not an understatement. That we refuse to remain in the same status need not be an overstatement.
Folks, we must demand our lives back. I think we all agree that it is indeed unpatriotic to want a government based on the current constitution and institutions; the dismantling and reconstruction of both must be expeditious. We must appreciate that on our plate is an opportunity to change this country forever i.e. begin on a clean slate. Citizens from both sides of the political divide have been martyred, let their blood not have spilt in vain. Let us choose peace but first satisfy all its preconditions. Let us resolve all these issues to finality. There's no other way out of this quagmire. The question on why the Finance ministry is represented by one tribe can never be answered by the quip that they are all qualified. The question on why a particular tribe was targeted during the height of the skirmishes can never be answered by the quip that it was only political. Someone must pay for all the businesses and homes burnt and looted. The police must be explain why they killed demonstrators. Rift Valley militias must tell us who owns them. Mungiki must face justice. Kenya has changed folks. Let us embrace this change.
Kibaki and Raila must not raise up their jointed hands in a show of political peace while Kipchumba and Kimani are still squabbling about the validity of title deeds.