In the world of sports, sometimes it’s too familiar a sight. On one corner, you have an exuberant team coach, spewing out encouraging rhetoric and confident team talks to the press just before a big match and on the other side, you have the team, the villains to some and the heroes to others. The team has been tailored according to the ethos of the sports club in question, be it football, rugby or any other association sport. The team has overcome the odds, as is the norm, it has battled the underdog tag, in the middle of seasoned pros, it has earned the right to dine at the exclusive table, but as aforementioned, something always happens in sports.
The team walks out to face the competition, and fast forward minutes or hours later, they are losers, the years of toil washed away and the prior hard work reduced to nothing, why? Because there were two different tactics on display, two different styles, and two different targets. All eyes pan to the coach, and he shifts blames to the team, “They didn’t play as we agreed,” he says, and the team players reply, “Maybe his plan wasn’t too good. Maybe he inducted other people to his coaching staff that were hell-bent on wrecking years of hard work we had in place. Maybe, we don’t agree with his new styles of operation, and maybe, we smell betrayal. He is a sell-out, we know he’ll do away with some of us anyway!” Funny enough, it’s becoming a familiar sight in politics too, and looking at our country at the moment, one wonders if the government will be able to work as one unit to achieve its goals or if the noises within the Jubilee team will lead to the inevitable, a lost match and a disgruntled club, team and coach involved.
A handshake that brought unity in Kenya and discord in Jubilee
The effects of an earthquake aren’t noticed at the exact time, but minutes later, hours later, days later, people sit down and accurately analyze the effect left behind. The handshake came with such tremendous effects, but which were underlying, to the point that it eliminated political notions in the first place(the first few weeks after), however, now the effects of its tremor are being felt, with some Jubilee leaders, particularly Rift Valley leaders and generally those allied to Deputy President William Ruto expressing their discomfort. At the time, leaders supported it fully, given that Kenya had been experiencing political tension that threatened to spill over, and we can’t ignore the peace brought to the nation. Barely a year after, the same politicians have found it hard to ignore what they may deem an earthquake of a decision, that has left behind damages to their political ambitions.
The irony is, many of those who are complaining are in Jubilee, and the party leader, President Uhuru Kenyatta may be wondering, what happened to the team, “I thought we had one goal and aim, to serve Kenyans and ensure the Big Four Agenda is a success?!” The Big Four Agenda is a masterstroke if it’s a success, and it’s a big ‘if’, but the threat to its success is in the discord of leaders who are supposed to be in the team that seeks to ensure it’s a success.
Yes, there are Cabinet secretaries, Principal Secretaries and the likes, but even MPs, MCAs have a role to play. Leaders who are criticizing the war on corruption have to address the Big Four Agenda as many times as they are addressing concerns with the handshake, the DCI’s capacity to fight graft and other issues that revolve around 2022 succession politics.
That party development plan and manifesto allowed most of them to claim seats of power, and it’s not a piece of paper that you can shred and forget; Kenyans need healthcare, jobs, financial stability, a guarantee that the country’s future is safe and most of that is contained in the Big Four Agenda.
Political exchanges cast a dark shadow
Likewise, leaders who are exchanging bitter words should remember their responsibility to Kenyans. It’s not comfortable to always follow the script when addressing the public and some may say as a politician it’s better to speak from your intuition, but one wonders what you always ponder on, that you can’t even address the challenges facing youths when given an opportunity to speak, but instead lock horns over funds just to cement your political correctness.
Once, understood, twice, it becomes uncomfortable, thrice, it becomes boring, the fourth time, it sets a tone, and as we see, it has taken other leaders to come out and tell Deputy President Ruto and former premier Raila Odinga to cut off the political tone. All in all, President Kenyatta will hope his set targets are achieved, and that his team, will keep the focus until after the match, then heated exchanges can be done. The government can be counted winners in the end, if they deliver their targets for Kenyans and do away with the persistent problems like corruption and at the moment, it’s either it wins or loses, no middle outcomes, besides, the penultimate match has no trophy for neutrals.