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The Third Way – Part I

Speech made to the 2006 Kenyan Community Abroad (KCA) Conference, Arlington, Virginia, USA

Click here for the full .pdf version of the speech

I want to speak to you about the future of our country Kenya and development uncertainties occasioned by the current crop of political leaders; and I want to demonstrate that our politics and national development need not be what it is today! And I want to propose to you that there is away forward out of the morass we see of our politics; and I want to challenge every one of us to get involved! And I want to say: to hell with those who believe in politics for politicians only!

The way ahead is neither the government”s way nor that of the Opposition. It is the Third Way. It is the way whose approach to national development is different and is based on some core principles. The Third Way:

  1. Rejects personalization of politics; and rather requires all politics to be predicated on national interest; it is premised on politics of principle rather than searching for power to dominate, plunder and eat!
  2. Seeks the institutionalization of political parties in the true sense of political parties, such parties would compete on alternative ideas of development rather than rhetoric and platitudes;
  3. Stands for zero tolerance on matters corruption no matter the perpetrator, in other words, there should and MUST never be any sacred cows; you are found guilty of corruption, you pay the price; you are suspected of corruption you are investigated, exonerated or found guilty through a transparent process;
  4. Is based on justice, fairness and equity (note the term equity) for all Kenyans no matter their stations in life;
  5. Celebrates diversity and rejects tribalism, nepotism and cronyism; it is based on exploiting the strength that comes with the diversity of our people and natural resources and for the benefit of all Kenyans;
  6. Is founded on reason over passion, i.e. logic over emotion and sound and structured approach to national challenges;
  7. Is based on thinking globally and nationally and acting locally;
  8. Espouses Public Accountability in all endeavours;
  9. Is driven by the need to make our country Kenya, a great nation! We could become first a regional giant, a continental powerhouse and a global tiger!

To carry the mission of the Third Way needs Third Force. And the Third Force: an amalgamation of new political thinking composed of the progressive Youth, progressive Kenyans in the Diaspora, forward-looking Think Tank Networks, Civil Society, Public Watchdogs, the Press (electronic + print) and more. [I will come to this later.]

If there is something that summarizes this talk, it is a saying by Mahatma Ghandi, which goes thus:

The Roots of Violence [underdevelopment]:

Wealth without work,

Pleasure without conscience,

Knowledge without character,

Commerce without morality,

Science without humanity,

Worship without sacrifice,

Politics without principles” – Mahatma Ghandi

Click here for Part II

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