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Willy Mutunga: My generation has failed Kenya

Former Chief Justice Willy Mutunga has now stated that his generation (him included) have failed the country with regard to the political problems and negative ethnicity that faces Kenya.

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In an interview with BBC, Mutunga says that his generation has failed him and the next generation of Kenyans will be the ones to solve the country’s political problems by shaping debate around the Constitution and resisting negative ethnic narratives.

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“My generation has let down the country, and I put myself in that position as well. I am asking the younger generations in Kenya to consider the wisdom of an older person but not to control or tell them. They have to choose their own leaders and control their own movements the young generations should not look for heroes and role models to run their politics,” he said.

“I blame Kenyans for not building strong institutions. If judges decide a case based on the Constitution, evidence and the law, but Kenyans are organised on the basis of ethnicity. So when their ethnic baron says ‘our victory was stolen’, you will have 10 million Kenyans baying for your blood and another 10 million Kenyans singing your praises,” he added.

In his New Year message, he urged political elites to take charge of the country and should stop dividing Kenyans ethnically.

Kenyan politics have been characterized by ethnic tensions since independence in 1963. But it was not until 2007 that the demons of tribalism really flared up after the hotly disputed national elections which left more than 1,000 people dead and thousands others internally displaced.

Tribalism in Kenya dates back to the colonial era. From 1920 to 1963, Kenya was under the rule of the British who

used the divide and rule method of governing. For years they played one community against another, in particular, the Kikuyus and Luos whom they considered a threat owing to their big numbers.


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