Wednesday, March 31, 2010

Ambassador Kiplagat should be given a second chance

I'm one of the Kenyans who felt that Kiplagat's dark past will not endear him to carry out his duties as a TJRC boss, but on further thought, I think the man should be given a second chance.
After all, we should not be a society that demonizes people without giving them the benefit of the doubt.
Many of our top echelons of power have a lot of skeletons in their closets and are still running the Country’s affairs. We have murderers, sycophants and looters currently at the top in Kenya’s leadership. After all, Kiplagat served a corrupt regime of Moi just like Kibaki, Raila, Kalonzo, Saitoti, Uhuru, Ruto, and Mudavadi etc.
Who is clean in a Country like ours where public coffers are looted, people are killed and we see nothing being done to the culprits?
That is why I view Ms Betty Murungi’s exit from deputising Mr. Kiplagat as hypocrisy, phony and populism. I’m sure she would have continued to serve the commission as number two if Kiplagat was from her ethnic community.
Staying put as deputy in the commission would have made Ms Murungi the voice of reason in the TJRC. You don’t jump the ship when the sea is rough. If she truly felt that she can’t serve under Kiplagat, the best she would have done was to quit completely from the TJR.
Just because Nobel Laureate Desmond Tutu has voiced his concern for Kiplagat’s exit does not mean that Kenyans should follow the same chorus.
Ambassador Bethwel Kiplagat, is the right person to lead the Truth Commission because he was there and he saw what happened and I believe at his age, he will work with a wet towel around his head to ensure that the Country does not fall into the same trap. I’m sure, as a grand parent, he understands the need to have a better Kenya than what we have seen all the years.
Again, my support for Kiplagat is not driven by tribal leanings since I’m not a Kalenjin, but as a citizen of Kenya from Gusiiland.
Through the TJRC, Kenyans will capture the dark past, forgive and work mechanisms of avoiding the same. To keep pressuring Kiplagat to quit over his past does not heal the wounds of yesterday. It’s his dark past alongside other Kenyans that his commission is set to work on and reconcile the nation.
Lister Nyaringo
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