It has been a hectic month for Kenyans after the voting on August 8th. A lot has happened within the last ten days. Despite the challenges that came with the elections, a few things that have happened within the past week indicate things are back to normal. These events prove that Kenya is eventually moving forward.
1. NASA resolves to go to court
At last, the National Super Alliance (NASA) has chosen to go to the Supreme Court to challenge the results of Kenya’s presidential election. Before that, the coalition had raised some issues with the credibility of the elections and had said they would not go to court again as they did after the 2013 elections.
The decision comes at a time when unrest was prevailing in some of their strongholds, especially in Nairobi and Kisumu. The unrests have led to loss of lives and destruction of property, with the youngest victims being a baby and a young girl in Kisumu and Mathare respectively. Supporters of the coalition who felt that the election was not transparent and credible brought about the unrests.
The decision by NASA to go to court is a step in the right direction. It shows respect for the rule of law and we hope it shall give assurance to their supporters.
2. Young people make history
The youth have made history this time round.
They voted in large numbers in the elections. In the 2013 elections, 63% of the voters were the youth. In the August 8th 2017 elections, the youth were almost half of all the registered voters. The Kenyan Constitution defines the youth as anyone who is between the ages of 18 to 35.
The youth have also largely maintained peace. During the post-election violence that engulfed Kenya after the disputed 2007 general elections, the youth committed many of the atrocities. This time round, they voted and went on with their business. Much of the country has been calm because they youth knew that they had much to lose if they were to engage in violence.
We have also seen the youth elected very young leaders into politics. In 2013 elections, Alfred Kibiwott Munge became the youngest MCA to be elected in Kenya at 19 years old to represent Lembus/Perkerra Ward in Eldama Ravine Constituency, Baringo County. In this election, some young people elected include Stephen Sang, 32, who became the youngest governor representing Nandi County and John Paul Mwirigi, 23, a university student who became the MP-elect for Igembe South Constituency.
3. Business being back as usual
Before the elections, many people, especially in urban areas were afraid that violence would erupt after the elections. Many headed to their ancestral homes and a large number of businesses remained closed during the period before and after the elections.
However, business is back as usual. People have resumed work and many businesses are running as usual. These include shops, markets, butcheries, and eateries. The NASA leaders had told their supporters not to go to work this week in solidarity with their opposition of the presidential results, but it seems many people did not heed that call.
Kenyans have appreciated the prevailing peace and stability to continue making a living. After all, elections are a one-day affair and they could not stop them from earning their daily bread.
4. Inauguration of governors
Another sign that Kenya is moving forward is the inauguration of governors. From yesterday, the governors began taking oath of office. This will go on up to the 22nd of August. There was an official timeline released to show when each of the governors will be sworn in.
Some of the Governors that have taken oath of office include Dr. Alfred Mutua of Machakos County and Ali Roba of Mandera County.