We must stop these tribal divisions

By Juma Hemedi

Throughout African history different communities have coexisted with each other for generations. This coexistence was disrupted with the coming of white settlers in different parts of the continentKenya was no exception. Throughout our history as a country history has recorded a lot of atrocities committed against Kenyans more so from certain areas of this country. But we should not allow ourselves to be prisoners of history. we must focus on what will be good for our people and the generations to come. Recently there have been too much noise and beating of tribal drums over which tribe should join with which tribe to defeat which tribe. These kind of talk will not take this country anywhere, it only fuels the ever growing stereotyping, biasness, suspicion and discrimination that has characterized the tribal relationships in this country for so long.

As a people we have a very unique opportunity in history to be able to realign our aspirations as country and help our youth and the future generations to become a productive generation, one that will define regional and global business, commerce, value addition, export, Agriculture, innovation, Arts and have them become great drivers of the global economy. This will only be possible if we stop making the future generations prisoners of history. Countries like India have made great strides by passing on to their generations an industrial culture founded on values of family and community strength.

Despite having being invaded by more than a dozen countries in the course of their history alongside civil wars, the Chinese defined themselves and passed on to their generations a culture of work focused on creativity and innovation. Today China leads in innovation in the construction industries as well as plants and machinery. The Japanese are defined by the philosophy of the kaizen (continous improvement of working practices and personal efficiency)

At times it is disturbing to listen to leaders give excuses and blaming colonization and other historical issues anytime we cannot deliver on our mandate. Granted colonization is responsible for some of the historical divisions that bogged this country down, but surely colonization is not to blame when we are engaging in cattle rustling in the 21st Century and while at it, we kill innocent people,sometimes women and children, colonization is not to blame when we steal money meant for buying medicine and medical supplies for our people in hospitals. Colonization is not to blame when we are engaging in corruption and unethical practices and hindering the growth of a Nation. It is not to be blamed when we elect our leaders to represent us but they instead represent themselves.

we should make commitments as a people that we will pass to our children the tenets of honest work, of being industrious, of caring for their community and environment. We should pass to our children the values of respect and of being humble and the fear of God. We should pass on to our children the value of education and knowledge, education that helps them lift their sights and help them play their role in this ever competitive world. We should remind our children that it does not matter what tribe they were born into, what matters is their character and the content of their mind.

We should remind our children that their tribe is a very small fraction of the world population. We  should avoid passing tribal anger and historical discrimination. We should teach them that their failures is not as a result of the other person in that tribe, they cannot blame anyone else for their own mistakes. As a people we need to rise beyond our negative historical issues if we are to make a mark in our country and the world

the writer is the Cordinator of Ajibika Africa Society, a mentorship and advocacy organization.



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