Kenyans must be commended for keeping peace throughout the electioneering period. They disappointed journalists from the Western media houses who had been dispatched to a looming warzone – they expected nothing less than a bloodbath and wrote as much prior to the elections. But while we enjoyed the peace, save for a few places where there were demonstrations, I was shocked by the sheer
stupidity of some of our countrymen and women. I would have liked to use a sexier word so as not to annoy their kith and kin, but friends; stupidity by any other name is stupidity.
I am referring to those who committed or attempted suicide because their preferred candidates lost. Philosophers and psychologists agree that to commit suicide is to declare total hopelessness. It is to conclude that life has no meaning and, therefore, to continue living would be absurd. Finally, it is to declare with your actions that not even God can solve your problems.
How can a married man with beautiful children to take care of conclude that life is meaningless? How can he declare, as one of these men told his friends before he hang himself on a tree, that “there is no reason to live if my preferred presidential candidate doesn’t win.” Really? Were his children not enough reason to live for? And now that the man is dead, who takes care of his children? Didn’t he leave them in deeper trouble than that which he hoped his preferred president would get him out of?
I might be too daft to comprehend this but I really cannot think of a reason why anyone should die because of a politician.
Here is a man who is struggling to get a permanent job to feed and educate his children, yet commits suicide because another man who had applied for a job as president, so he too could afford to care for his children and provide them a better life, but didn’t get the job. Here is a married man who commits suicide because his candidate lost; yet the one he died for did not even know the fellow existed.
Are these not the same politicians who throw words at each other during rallies only to meet and drink beer together at night? I will not be surprised if the new president appoints his opponents in the concluded election to head parastatals to cushion them for the next five years. But the dead man’s children will for the next five years suffer hungry nights, drop out of school and his wife…what will happen to her?
Former president, Kibaki, is my tribesman. In fact, his Othaya home is a stone’s throw away from my grandfather’s home. But what personal gain did I get from his presidency? Nothing!
I continued to work for the money I needed. I paid my taxes like other people and my landlord had no tolerance for me on account of the retired president. I paid rent like everyone else. What reason could anyone give me for committing suicide because of a president? None! even if I was that president. I think Kenyans need to find better things to die for if they must. They must stop the madness of dying because Arsenal lost a match, or because a candidate lost a race. Students must know, too, that life is more than passing a single examination or losing one relationship. Men need to sacrifice for the future of their children – ensuring they live in decent homes, live healthy lives, eat healthy foods and get a decent education.
Singles should do everything possible to ensure they accomplish their education and talent development goals. They must build relationships that enrich their lives and join movements that challenge them to become better. We all must work with the law of reciprocity. You commit to those who commit to you personally. You do not die for a man who does not know you exist, or who can’t die for you if you were the one running to be president. It is the height of stupidity for a man to claim that he finds no reason to continue living because his team or candidate lost.
Such men need to look for something better to live for. What benefit has accrued for those who committed suicide last month or their families? Brothers, let’s get a life; that’s the minimum the world expects from us.