Implement provisions of National Accord
The overwhelming outpouring of grief following the death of Kofi Annan attests to the greatness of a man who conquered the world and touched the lives of many.
Dr Annan was more than the secretary-general of the United Nations, which job many have held and performed as an assignment, but without inner convictions of oneness of humanity.
Dr Annan was a believer in human values, sanctity of relationships and true peace.
He lived the spirit and ethos of the UN of co-existence, bringing peace to the world and crusading for common prosperity.
It is for this reason that he won the 2010 Nobel Peace Prize, which was a recognition of the pivotal role he played in revitalising the UN, a body that at one point was losing traction due to grand failures and especially, escalation of war across the globe.
For Kenya, the passing on of Dr Annan is not just transition of a prominent personality. It is wrapped in deep memories.
Dr Annan goes down in history as the single personality who pulled Kenya from extermination after the bungled elections in 2007.
When all efforts had failed, it was Dr Annan who stoically brought retired President Mwai Kibaki and former Prime Minister Raila Odinga to the negotiating table and convinced them to accept truce and enjoined them to set up a coalition government.
His memorable one-liner quote: “It’s a deal” ended the guns and drumbeats of war. Kenya picked itself up, dusted itself and undertook to reform and reorganise itself to stem any future catastrophe.
As the chair of the Team of Eminent Persons comprising Gracia Machel and former Tanzanian President Benjamin Mkapa, Dr Annan led President Kibaki and Mr Odinga to signing the National Accord on February 28, 2008, which set the agenda for national reforms.
A lasting legacy of the National Accord was the review of the Constitution and enactment of a new one, which was ratified in 2010 and which changed the course of Kenya’s history forever.
A decade later, the country has undergone a complete makeover.
Even so, some challenges such as historical injustices, inequitable distribution of national resources and winner-takes-it-all politics remain unresolved.
The aftermath of last year’s elections that nearly saw the country burst into flames demonstrated that the perceived peace is just ankle-deep; that the country can explode any time.
Which is the reason we must implement all the prescriptions of the National Accord, particularly, Agenda Four that dealt with long-term structural, administrative and legal issues.
The best tribute Kenya can give to the fallen hero is to fully implement the provisions of the National Accord, which offer foundation for transformation and creation of a just and fair society; one where individuals are not judged by their origins but abilities.