We are less than a year to our election date and as usual, the quest for alliances, partnerships and collaborations have been on now for several months. We have seen the push for the Mountain unity which is not taking shape due to differing selfish ambitions of the Mount Kenya region’s leaders, we are seeing the North Eastern block coming up with their alliance as a region, the leaders from the Coast for some time now have been pushing for their regional alliances, and we have seen the Eastern block in discussions to form their alliance too.
For several years the Western region has been on the push to have a western united front but have not fully succeeded, the Nyanza region through the years have had fanaticism of the Prime minister. However, that too is starting to show cracks as some leaders within the region over the last few years have started standing their ground on extreme issues against the fanaticism of the prime minister. There has also been a push for the Upper Nyanza region of Kisii County and surrounding to form their alliance pulling in one of the influential cabinet secretaries as their lead.
What is the sustainability of such regional or tribal alliances?
What message are we passing to our children who are born in cross-tribal marriages and do not fit in such one tribal and regional alliances?
In addition, away from regional blocks majorly pegged on selfish, tribal lines and ambitions, there has been a quest for national unity based on various idealisms. United Democratic Party (UDA) with their idealism of bottom-up economy have been making strides in pulling in the youth, entrepreneurs and what they term the citizens at the bottom to try and lure them for support ahead of the coming elections.
The One Kenya Alliance (OKA) have also been busy individually driving their agenda as they still work on a common alliance. ODM has also been popularizing their party with push and scramble for Mount Kenya support working to lure majorly with the region political and business leaders at this point. As recent as yesterday 28th September 2021, we saw the advancement taking shape with the meeting of key business and opinion leaders in the mountains. Other perceived political parties seem to be dying silently including the party that is supposed to be the current ruling political party.
Not to mention that there have been a few individuals who have also expressed their presidential bid for 2022 including Reuben Kigame a celebrated musician in Kenya but are yet to fully take off in their presidential campaigns.
Do we even have national agendas highlighted in some of the alliances or is it selfish ambitions being driven? Are the alliances genuine or will they be the same old as we have seen last 3 decades?
Are we ready as Kenyans and more so the Youth in Kenya to accept and also be part of the TRIBAL and SELFISH quest alliances?
I recently wrote an article on Collaborative leadership that aimed to share my expert opinion that I strongly feel is also critical in politics.
Two key aspects, in my opinion, I consider critical as we review and align with the various coalitions and alliances is to check below areas:
Any of the above alliances that do not drive NATIONAL focus is more of tribal or regional alliance with selfish ambitions that are likely not to be fulfilled when such leaders ascend to power. Such alliances for sure does not represent the spirit of unity in leadership embed in our constitution. However, this might also be argued that it embeds the spirit of unity of the region and for sure that is true and thus my argument that such alliances are tribal/regional and based on selfish agenda.
We know our various leaders who are driving these alliances and collaborations. The key question to ask is do we have authentic leaders in them? Some pointers of what authenticity is not would help us understand and gauge if the leaders leading these alliances are authentic leaders or not. Authenticity is not sincerity but, self-referential; Authenticity is not impression management like we have seen the leaders doing but, is to serve selfishness; Authenticity is not self-monitoring but, a commitment to integrity and values. This means that Authentic leaders have a high level of ethics, integrity and quest to serve not to be served. Are these the leaders leading these alliances and collaboration? I live you to review.
In the words of one of our top leaders “The fact of the matter is that we are a tribal society, and this is what divides us,” he said. “We pretend that we are national leaders. But when the time comes, we switch to tribal vernacular and become what we are.”
It is up to you and me to make that call of where our focus will become 2022 elections, which camp to support now as we move to 2022, which leaders to follow and eventually vote them in, and which to unfollow and vote them out, which leaders have the NATIONAL agenda at heart, which leaders are perceived to drive their SELFISH agenda?
Do we have AUTHENTIC & COLLABORATIVE LEADERS?
About the Author:
Gilbert Ang’ana is the CEO of Accent Leadership Group. He is an expert source for topics relating to all matters leadership, coaching, and organization development and a regular content contributor to various online publications. Gilbert is also a Director at Innovate Leader Academy an online academy that teaches matters leadership. He is a Leadership Coach, Scholar, and an Independent Research Fellow.