HOME OR AWAY, NATION BUIDLING IS EVERY CITIZEN’S AFFAIR
Living in Kenya for the two centuries of my life is one of the best things to happen to me. I can’t imagine how it would be in any other part of the world. Don’t get me wrong. There are better countries than Kenya, but home is and will always remain to be the best. Our roots shape who we become to a great extent, whether or not we acknowledge it.
Needless to say, I appreciate my Kenyan heritage. Thanks to the hard times and tough situations that make us appreciate the good ones. It is the worst of what has been that brings about the thoughts and possibilities of the best that could be. Failure to understand this, many want to run from the difficulties for greener pastures. As it is said, the grass is always greener on the other side because someone took the effort to till the ground, plant and water. Never does anything happen by chance. Running away from our virgin land to the productive one should leave us with the question; Who will till our own ground?
It amazes me how children can turn against their parents. There are logical arguments to defend this, but the fact that our parents brought us to earth is enough reason for us to honor and give back to them in appreciation. No matter what they did or didn’t do, we cannot change the fact that they are our parents. Many of us would have loved to belong to better families than our own, but the sooner we accept where we belong, the better. The same applies to our country of birth, our motherland. Whether or not we embrace it, we are bound to give back. Change of nationality doesn’t change our origin either. Like a normal child is expected to give back to the parents, each citizen should take it upon himself to do something significant for his nation.
As you must have noted, this article began with the quote of a typical pessimistic Kenyan. I beg to differ, sorry if you happen to be one of the pessimists. To say that corruption will never end is to promote corruption. This indirectly tells the corrupt to continue being corrupt, as it introduces the novices into the same filed. To settle for injustice with the “that’s how it is” attitude equates to taking part in the oppression of the poor, needy and voiceless in the society. Change is possible, and as long as it remains constant, Kenya can change for the better.
Listening to and reading from bitter Kenyans in the Diaspora and even at home, it is evident that a majority think the government is responsible for all the failures of the nation. Unfortunately, this lie has been injected into the heads of citizens, giving everyone a reason to point fingers and play blame games. Yes, the government has its share of it, but the citizens are the greatest contributors to the success or failure of any nation.
If the bribed refuse to take bribes, bribery will abort. If the voters refuse to sell their votes and genuinely vote for result oriented leaders, change will be visible. If everyone decides to treat the country like it was their own home and cared enough to ensure order, the country would be orderly. If critics would give a hand in building rather than just blame, how will change be impossible?
I refuse to settle for less, because I believe that Impossible is Nothing. If hands are joined in one accord, growth is inevitable. Noteworthy also is the fact that those who are doing nothing to see change are the loudest when it comes to negating the possibility of change. I’m told that before I was born, doing the same thing would give the same results. Sadly, we live in a time of change where doing the same things sends us centuries back. To become better people, to become a better nation, change MUST be embraced.
Like our national anthem states, service should be our earnest endeavor. Service to the people, service to the nation. The glory of Kenya will only be the fruit of our labour when we take part in building the nation. Otherwise, the hope for change will be fruitless. The talking, complaining and blaming will not make things better. It is our commitment and actions that will. You have a role to play, I have a role to play. The next generations should find it better because we did something; and that something should be more significant than finding another home away from home.
We have a long way to go and time is not on our side. The good news however, is that those who believe are willing to pay the price for change. I have come across great minds and organizations that refuse to join the naysayers. Where there is a will, there is a way, and “a people united will never be defeated.” Such is KUDO, Kenya United Diaspora Organization which believes that Kenya is ours to develop and protect; providing a forum for Kenyans in the Diaspora to utilize their Knowledge, Skills and Abilities to develop and provide social security and Economic prosperity for Kenya, themselves and their posterity. See more at: http://kudovoice.com/)
Borrowing from the Kenyan loyalty pledge, this is a call to pledge our lives and strength in the task of our nation’s building.
“Ask not what your country can do for you, ask what you can do for your country.”
– John F. Kennedy
All Kenyan. All the time.
By Liz Ekakoro:Diaspora Messenger contributor