Most often than not, as Kenyans we find ourselves complaining about one thing or the other, not that we don’t have reason to but just that sometimes we tend to forget what a wonderful country we have. If you asked a typical Kenyan how things are, they would tell you that we are doing very badly as a country. Yet to an outsider looking in, we actually have it good. If you have ever traveled outside our country or followed @TheSoloWandera on her journey across Africa, then you would know how good we have it.
Here are a few interesting things which happened last week.
This election was a big win for women due to the fact that a good number of them got elected into positions of leadership against all odds. For first time since the start of devolution, we will have 3 women governors and 3 women senators. The governors include; Joyce Laboso in Bomet, Anne Waiguru in Kirinyaga and Charity Ngilu in Kitui. Women Senators are Susan Kihika in Nakuru, Prof. Margaret Kamar in Uasin Gishu and Fatuma Dillo in Isiolo. 23 women were also elected into the National Assembly not to mention the 47 women reps. Also for the first time there will be a woman member of the national assembly in the North-Eastern part of the country, Sophia Abdi Noor. This is a big feat in that part of the country and her win will help inspire other women there to seek elective positions in the future.
This election has also been a big win for the youth as they have also been elected to positions of leadership. This is in a country where the youth are usually looked down upon as lacking leadership abilities. Their win is a sign of changing times where Kenyans are willing to look past a politician’s deep pockets and choose a person who has their best interests at heart. There is none who epitomizes this than John Paul Mwirigi a 23 year old Bachelor of Education student at Mt. Kenya University who was declared the winner of the Igembe South Parliamentary seat in Meru. He was able to beat seasoned politicians from the major parties who run flashy campaigns. While his competition campaigned in big cars, he was on foot and would sometimes be given free rides by boda boda riders. This election also gave us the youngest governor 32 year old Stephen arap Sang in Nandi county.
As we were glued to our television screens, the 2017 IAAF World Championships were going down in London. I have to confess that I didn’t even know that they were taking place. In this outing, Kenyan athletes did us proud and managed to finish in the second position with a 7 medal haul. While not letting what was happening back at home cloud their focus, athletes like Faith Kipyegon managed to beat off their competition in a thrilling race to clinch the gold medal In the 1500 m race. Hellen Obiri also managed to do the same in the women’s 5,000 m enabling her to win her first world championship title. Conseslus Kipruto also managed to run away with the gold medal in the 3,000m steeplechase. All in all our athletes did us proud but due to the elections they were hardly given any recognition.
As the election season hits fever pitch, it is usual to hear that hotels have very low bookings as tourists either avoid the country or make hasty departures. This is because many of them fear a break out of post-election violence. However, in a positive turn of events the Tourism CS Najib Balala reported that hotels and camps in the Maasai Mara had a 90% booking. As you well know tourism is a top foreign exchange earner and employs many people. The presence of these visitors indicated the confidence that other countries had in us regardless of the outcome of the elections.
As you can see in as much as your candidate won or lost, there were many positives during the election period. It is now up to us to ensure that we rise up to the occasion and build up on these positives for a better Kenya.