Intellectuals For Peace in Kenya (#I4PKE): Concept

There are too many Kenyans who have, at the very least, post secondary education, for Kenya to have gone through such moronic,horrific,destructive and embarrassing violence as happened in 2007/8 after elections. Unfortunately, most of us with brains just stand by and watch and then whine ad infinitum when the shit hits the fan.

Almost everyone in Kenya was affected and, therefore, we should all be working on finding solutions not just waiting for NGOs to bring us peace on a silver platter.

I’m using the word intellectual to encompass everyone who has anything between his ears.

The problem: The threat of a rerun of Post election violence hangs over the country like the famed sword of Damocles, the various sporadic episodes of “tribal clashes” being mere previews, so to speak. My concern is the large-scale violence as happened in 2007/8, which has been variously described as having been both spontaneous and pre-planned.

The spontaneous one is the one that concerns me most as it’s the one that easily gets hijacked, and thus serve as a red Herring  for the pre planned one.

Since 2007/8 PEV, various activities have been undertaken to prevent a rerun of the PEV. These range in scale from local, to national and even international efforts. A new constitution and it’s various provisions, in my view, ranks the highest in as far as efforts to dealing with the causes of PEV is concerned. However, and as I’ve stated often,”a constitution is just too much black ink on  white papers” unless it is operationalized. A constitution is also as good as it’s interpretation by them “learned friends”, whose interpretation should be guided by a thorough knowledge of the social dynamics of the society.

If all these efforts that have so far been carried out had been effective in dealing with the issue of prevention of PEV, we wouldn’t be having 50%( according to various polls) of Kenyans scared that it might recur.

In my humble opinion, most of these efforts have been largely  unsuccessful because they are trying to address the WRONG problem, a consequence of a  misdiagnosis of the real cause of PEV.

The real cause of PEV lies in the unholy alliance of a very powerful presidency and the tribe. The perception (right or wrong)  that once a member of a tribe becomes the president all the members of the tribe benefit is at the root cause of 2007/8 PEV. It’s easy to create feelings of resentment to members of the tribe whose member holds the presidency, and the rest is history…

The current  constitution addresses comprehensively the issue of the presidency by distributing all the previous powers to other arms of government namely the judiciary and Parliament. The million shilling question is: how many people know of this fact?

Listening to the presidential contenders going around the country promising heavens they’ll no longer have powers to provide once they clinch the presidency tells me that there’s still a yawning gap between the legal provisions in the constitution and the social reality. Most Kenyans still believe the current  presidency is still as powerful as in the old constitution.

Evidently,the shortest route to prevention of PEV should be a high impact civic education of the voters about the “new presidency”. This will lower the high expectations of Kenyans  of freebies from the president to the tribe members. Having the presidency shouldn’t be a matter of life and death.

I am proposing to have a one-day civic education clinic on “why it’s now nonsensical to vote for a person for president just because S/he is from your tribe”. This is what INTELLECTUALS FOR PEACE IN KENYA (I4PKE) is all about. It  will be spearheaded by students in tertiary education institutions (Universities and colleges) throughout the country. The students will March to their nearest shopping center and do the necessary.

This is as high impact as they come given that there are so many university and college branches dotted allover the country. The fact that the best brains in the country will be at work giving back to the community, so to speak,  will compound the effect. People will stop to and notice.  

I am proposing that we issue certificates of participation for all those students who participate in I4PKE. I’ll negotiate with the UN to know what’s possible. I am proposing that a major qualifications will be a group picture of at least five students wearing T-shirts from different political parties in front of raia, the idea being “many parties one peaceful Kenya”. We shall organize for the various  political parties to deliver the T-shirts to institutions. 

Apart from the requirements for the picture, THE DRESS CODE WILL BE WHITE, or at least a white top.  

I’m sure we can organize prizes for various pictures uploaded on social media (especially on twitter), from various companies interested in peace in Kenya.

The specifics of organization and coordination of students in specific institutions will be largely left in the hands of the students themselves (student leaders). It’s time to show they are leaders of today not tomorrow.             

The alumni of these institutions are humbly  encouraged to participate wherever they are.

We have a voice,let’s speak and bring sanity to the country ahead of March 2013 polls.

All the organization and coordination requires major resources, and it’s up to every individual and company/ organizations of goodwill to participate.

Do you have a vested interest in the prevention of PEV? Own a piece of the peace process: 0722106732 is the Mpesa number.

Kenyans are usually ONE 4 out of every 5 years, the fifth year being the time to go to our tribal cocoons and support our own tribesmen/women for the presidency. Let’s tell the few kenyans who think that the president must come from their tribe, and who are willing to destroy the country for him / her, to please get a life!

I believe I’ve covered most of the bases. However, Any additions/improvements/comments/ criticisms are all most welcome.          



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8 Responses to “Intellectuals For Peace in Kenya (#I4PKE): Concept”

  1. makagutu Says:

    I like this except I think even in universities, most students are as tribal as their uneducated village counterparts. For change to occur we must first and foremost change our attitudes towards our fellow men. It’s time we learn we are all the same under the skin and it’s the politicians that divide us! It is in our interest to determine where and how we want the country to be governed.
    Related to this issue is intellectuals [or I assume the middle class] must participate in politics. We must participate in the electoral process for among other reasons to eradicate the [sic]august house of idiots and thieves!

  2. thebrooder Says:

    I support any initiative that works to ensure we don’t have a repeat of the 2007/8 violence. The challenges are many, but we should not relent in our quest to let our fellow Kenyans understand that united we stand, divided we fall.

  3. Chrenyan Says:

    I support this initiative; it’s a good idea to let it start with the students.

    The issue need not be that the President is no longer powerful. Whether he’s powerful or not, the issue is that we ought to be for peace.


      Wow!Thanks for the effort you have my full support.As a student will work entirely to make this initiative a success.Much Thanks

  4. Kris Eeeh Baba Says:

    Hmmm,concepts fresh sana esp the different parties part. But personally right now I don’t think the issue ni vita ya next year,right now the main problem is to get the youth to vote. Yesterday I took some of my followers to register to vote and the guys conducting the registration told us that so far they’ve only managed to register 20-28 people per day.,.

  5. Kris Eeeh Baba Says:

    Hmmm,concepts fresh sana esp the different parties part. But personally right now I don’t think the issue ni vita ya next year,right now the main problem is to get the youth to vote. Yesterday I took some of my followers to register to vote and the guys conducting the registration told us that so far they’ve only managed to register 20-28 people per day…

  6. Maria Says:

    Awesome idea it’s about time we took back our country from the arrogant few who think they can control 40 million Kenyans..ignorance is bliss goes the saying but in kenya it turned out to be devastating (PEV) if we continue with the same ignorant views, there’ll be no saving us.

  7. Tonge Yoya Says:

    Amazing, I would be glad to be part of this peace campaign. We must do all within our power to a peaceful 2013 post election Kenya.

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