For a Kenyan to write and actually believe what is now the title of this blog is a difficult thing.
We are not one people, and if one people makes one Nation, then perhaps, in many ways we are not One Nation.
2007 was the eye opener year for many Kenyans, who were, like me, dreamers.I am one of the most optimistic people you will find, perhaps that may also mean that i have such strong hope, almost to a naivety, for things, such a loving husband and a house atop a hill, with picket fences and acres of rose bushes.
My poetry may speak louder of my dreamy nature, but this was crushed after 2007, when i went home for Christmas holidays, after voting in Nairobi, then traveled up country to be with my mother and the rest of the family. it was supposed to be a wonderful Christmas. It was, bu the days that followed the announcement of the presidential results were made in hell.
I remember TV scrolls of people killed in different parts of the country. it was as if some high voltage energy was passing through different towns, and tribal killings began, by the time January came, over 1000 people had been killed, perhaps many more.
After that, Kenya has been a divided country. A coalition government was formed, and even that has been a difficult union.
so one day on twitter, i see a hash-tag ‘#FEb28th, lets sing the National Anthem.’
I was curious.
I followed different tweets about it, and the dreamer in me was reborn.
Once again i wanted to believe in my country again.
I wanted to see how many Kenyans out there wanted to feel the same, to feel united even as our political class continues bickering over various issues.
On February 28th, 2011, at 1300hrs,It happened, and Kenyans (in Nairobi according to local press) joined hands and prayed through our symbol of National Unity. The National Anthem.They sang it loud and clear,i could feel that those that sangit, believed it.
It was sang in public places around the city. I sang it in the office, as I was on duty, and for the first time in a long time, i began to think of my lost patriotism.
February 28th came and went, and the cynics had their say, but for me, it was the beginning of many beginnings.
I want to be proud of Kenya again. I want to be proud of what is Kenyan and stop poking jokes at patriotism.
It means Kenya airways will be my first flight of choice,even though they have their challenges. It also means i will drink Kenyan coffee and dump Nescafe. I will drink Kenyan tea and dump my twinnings. It means i will support local entrepreneurs and challenge young people to grow up in a country they love. I will influence whoever i can to begin to change their perceptions about our beautiful country.
In beautiful, I am not talking about the wild safari’s, i am talking about its people.
The wonderful, amazing Kenyan people who i interact with on a day to day basis, the amazing entrepreneurship culture that is likely to shape the economy of this country.
I will revive my “kenyanness” and will be proud of it.
Feb 28th should be everyday, if we are to be one People, One nation.