It’s a full in-tray early in the year with 2020 issues rolling over

Wednesday January 13 2021
New Year.

Life has to go on and that means finding a new way of doing things because another year cannot go with children staying at home. PHOTO | COURTESY


As schools in Kenya open and children learn under trees while others practice no physical distancing, all we can do is pray for some miracle to stop the number of Covid-19 infections rising exponentially. But who are we?

These children will probably hug and greet each other because they haven't seen each other for almost a year, and many will go home with masks that don't belong to them.

“There can be no keener revelation of a society’s soul than the way in which it treats its children” those words were said by Nelson Mandela and they ring true.

All this happening at a time when there is a stalemate with striking doctors.

This week has been about getting back to form after dull festivities.

We seem to all agree that there are important things that we need to be sorted out like the doctors’ strike. Or the focus should be on the re-opening of schools?  We knew when schools would resume and many opened dilapidated.


The Covid-19 containment guidelines are too difficult to implement, and in some schools, the most basic items they are providing is soap, the amount of water needed for frequent hand washing is not readily available.

But life has to go on and that means finding a new way of doing things because another year cannot go with children staying at home.

It makes me think of a compact disc stuck in a player, the songs will repeat and you have to listen to the same songs over and over again. You can either choose to live with the small variety of music choice and enjoy it or turn down the volume and enjoy the music endlessly or turn off the player.

This is where we are. Building Bridges Initiative (BBI) is being described as reggae and how the music will not stop no matter what. Some people are enjoying the music and we are stuck listening, which in this case is BBI.

Others will turn down the volume, acting like nothing is playing because they can't understand it (majority of us are in this particular phase).

If you don't agree with the BBI message you can't do anything about it.

While a small number of us are doing what they can to stop the music.

Some people are upset about the way things are being managed. Others feel that the government can be engaged and get concerned about more pressing issues.

There’s like something that comes to our minds that clouds our judgement briefly, for just a few seconds and those few seconds matter. Things that don't make sense are suddenly our priority.

Nerima Wako-Ojiwa, executive director at Siasa Place @NerimaW