Published On: Tue, Jan 31st, 2017

Amina’s Loss – A Wake-UP Call for Kenya

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Kenya’s loss to Chad signals the end of ‘Business as Usual’ (writes Topi Lyambila) CS Amina Mohammed’s spirited fight ended in round 7 triggering, back in the country, on social media a blazing tirade with mixed reactions, many blaming it on the Jubilee Government.

No major surprise in my books though, it was an accident waiting to happen.

For a long time, Kenya enjoyed the big-brother status in regional and continental politics; founding father Mzee Jomo Kenyatta along with other luminaries like, Kwame Nkurumah, Mwalimu Julius Nyerere, Dr. Milton Obote, Leopold Senghor, Haile Sellassie, Abdel Nasser, Kenneth Kaunda, Patrice Emery Lumumba, and several others rolled out the African Union chatter in the hope that the Continent could at some point bargain as one in international trade and politics.

Mzee Jomo Kenyatta was seen as the Elder Statesman, given his age and history in the struggle for independence, his foray into continental politics was respected and expected.

Today 50 years on, we have come a long way in bounds and leaps, the changing political landscape has not been kind to us and we must admit the status we enjoyed then, is non existent and what we are doing is scraping the pots and pans.

Kenya must today accept the fact that it is no longer the de-facto regional leader and that it must listen more to its neighbours rather than appear to be talking down to them, as has been the case in many instances. It is for this very reason that we are losing major contracts with Sudan, Uganda, Ethiopia, Rwanda, and Burundi; why, because they find using alternative routes through Tanzania for example more sound and achievable.

Just in case you wondered why Uganda, Rwanda, and Tanzania abstained in the voting exercise. We must begin doing things differently. This know-it-all attitude is going to take us to the doldrums.

It is for such reasons that many laughed at the globe trotting antics by Jubilee supremos in the name of campaigning for Ambassador Amina (a reluctant ruler), who in my opinion should have done the run-around herself; be seen and be heard, ticking off her political agenda for a new Africa that was grappling with issues such as; climate change, immigration, civil strive, insecurity and the political/economic meltdown.   But instead she was content with sitting pretty and on the occasional interview talk about what she believed Kenya was playing in the African survival – this on a background laden with spiraling corruption unchecked, impunity and disorder, were not exactly the cornerstone mantra of an incoming AU commissioner-in-chief.

Having said that we must now go back to the drawing board, where pertinent questions must be asked if we hope to be players in the future of the continental agenda.

It was a spirited fight to say the least but we as a nation could have done better by making it more inclusive, and not play it out like it was another feather in the Jubilee Government cap.

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Amina’s Loss – A Wake-UP Call for Kenya
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