01 02 03 Africa Expat Wives Club: 5th Jan - Trying to move Forward in Kenya 04 05 15 16 19 20 21 22 23 24 25 26 27 28 31 32 33

5th Jan - Trying to move Forward in Kenya

It’s great news that the US Assistant Secretary of State, Mrs Jendayi Frazer has arrived and the AU chairman John Kufuour is also due to arrive in Nairobi today. The more level heads applying pressure towards finding a palatable solution to this problem, the better.

Desmond Tutu’s presence on the ‘day of mass action’ I think served to diffuse the time bomb that was waiting to explode and Kenya owes a lot to him. A Kenyan mechanic, a friend of my husband, today said that after the first day of shocked demonstration when the election results were announced, most people who had jobs were keen to get back to work and normalcy. Sadly the situation was fuelled by so many public holidays and the fact that those who had no work to go to saw a window of opportunity to loot and use the chaotic, comparatively lawless situation to their own gain. A Kenyan mother on the radio yesterday said that 27th December 2007 was the first time her son had voted in an election and after recent events he now vows never to vote again.

Meanwhile, we ventured out to a fully booked Indian restaurant last night, which was buzzing with relieved customers. There is a very long way to go from here, not only with Kibaki and Odinga’s negotiations, but also with the rehabilitation of the country. All efforts must be made for those displaced by the crisis. In answer to the question; ‘can the tribes live side by side again after this?’ it must be unequivocal; ‘yes’ as Kenya is essentially a peace loving nation and everyone is keen to move forward.

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