New Year’s Day is a day people celebrate not just for living to see another new year, but it’s also a time others use as the ideal opportunity to either change their ways, do something new or simply aspire to do better that which they are already doing.
Others could care less and even opt to sleep away and ignore the festivities that traditionally accompany a New Year’s arrival and go on with life as though the arrival of the day is no biggie–at least to them.
Whether you are one who has been awaiting the New Year with great anticipation to jump-start your life or some aspects of it or one who could care less whether you got here, we are all here this day and let’s thank God for that for there are many others who did not make it.
As we thank God and embark on whatever we hope to accomplish this year–and most of these are in the personal realm, we are collectively called upon to do certain things for the good of our respective societies and communities and as Kenyans, nothing tops that list than our going to the polls on March 4, 2013.
As we do so, I once again urge all Kenyans to pledge or at least keep in mind 10 things on my wish list for 2013 first published in the Standard on November 30, 2011 but remains as relevant today; in fact, more relevant and apt today than when first published, given the moment of truth by way of going to the polls in Kenya is fast approaching.
By Samuel Omwenga, The Standard, November 30, 2011
1. I promise to put my interests and those of my family first in all decisions I make and see to it that those interests are met through the labour of my hard work supplemented by others only to the extent they are a means to meet my objectives and this includes decisions I make about who to vote for in upcoming general elections.
2. I promise to only vote for and elect leaders who put the country first, and their interests of those of their cronies second or last.
3. I promise not to vote for anyone solely on the basis they come from my tribe or ethnic group and, conversely, I promise not to withhold my vote from anyone solely because they are from any particular community.
4. I promise not to vote for any politician who seeks to divide our country or gain office by divisive and tribal tactics but, conversely, I promise to vote only for those candidates who seek to unite our country and have a proven record for doing so.
5. I promise to be fair and open minded in evaluating candidates to vote for and base my decision not on the basis of misinformation, lies and distortion but on the basis of known facts, leadership ability, integrity and their stated positions on issues that I care about.
6. I promise to constantly remind myself that I don’t know better than the next person who knows best and in the event I don’t, I pray that God gives me the wisdom and/or ability to know better.
7. I promise to be considerate of the interests of my fellow Kenyans even as I pursue mine to the maximum extent possible.
8. I promise not to be a hypocrite and if I am, may God make it possible for all to see through my words and deeds, including those appearing in print or on computer screens as a result of my fingers typing at the direction of my wicked mind.
9. I promise not to hate anyone or wish them ill just for who they are and even if they have wronged me, I promise to find ways to forgive them as God instructs us all to do and that is, to love one another.
10. I promise to do my part in bringing about change in our country, including keeping these promises, or even running for public office myself, which should be a good start.
If all or most Kenyans keep all of these promises, and remain faithful to the end, then it wouldn’t matter who emerges at the top as the winner and is sworn in as our next president for that person would be governing a country united and ready to march forward as never before — more than even the euphoria of 2002. That’s the Kenya we should all desire. That’s the Kenya we must have in short order and the only one stopping us, is us.
Happy New Year everyone.