We are growing up. And growing up comes with challenges. One of those challenges is growing responsibility. Everybody has had his or her teenage years. Everything you know seems to change: the world around you, your friends, your ideas, your body. What you don’t realize as a teenager, is that you are changing and not the world around you.
Looking at Kenyan at the moment it feels like looking at a teenager that is growing up: it’s going against anything her parents (people, constitution, democratic allies) are telling her. ‘I am against, an I will who you who decides.’
Kenya is full of ambitions. The world is at our feet, we even dare to compare out nation with long established societies worldwide, preferably and convenient often indicated as The West, out former Colonial masters.
To a certain extend, the modern times represent a new reality for the teenager Kenya. The reality of power to the people amd the power of the Constitution. Welcome to the world of Nations.
As the teenager grows up and has to adapt to a different reality, Kenya is growing up, slowly adjusting to the different society. The world as thought it was is not there anymore, we live in the Kenya of 2015, where people are aware of the rights they have, where you cannot just neglect the rights of the people that yu so passionately swore to follow.
I have the impression that our small class of leaders are the teenagers that can’t adjust to the new situation. They are fighting against anything that represents the ‘modern world’ that they so much want to be part of.
And anything that goes against it, is unacceptable. Where a separation of the powers is officially embedded in our new constitution, the idea of the meaning did not fully land yet.
Welcome to the world of grown ups, where people are held accountable for what they say and what they do. The children’s era of Kenya has ended and we are slowly moving to the stadium of grown ups.
But it might take time. As as citizen of one of the most liberal countries in the world, The Netherlands, I am aware of the fact that we had a constitution in 1848. We still have it. It took more than a century to build that democracy, it was a proces.
So maybe we should not expect out teenage leaders to grow up to fast. What it doesn’t mean is that we should allow our teenage elite class to get away with their behavior.
We, the people who voted them in, should be keeping them responsible for the promises they make. They might think that they will get away with their behavior, but one day they will have to realize that we are living in 2015 and not in the babystage of this teenage democracy anymore and for sure not in the wonder years.