Recently I found myself reading a book titled “Surviving the Loss of a Loved One” by Reginald K. Brown for no apparent reason. In the book, the author states that in an emotional state of sorrow and grief there are two traps of which the bereaved should be aware of. The first is to pretend that they are over the worst when they are not and the other is to hang on to the grief for too long. Reginald K. Brown continued to state that within the grieving process we have various stages that will help in recovery.
The first is shock and numbness; which is the immediate reaction to the loss and may take several weeks. It’s nature’s way of protecting you from the initial pain and distress. Secondly, we have the denial where one may find himself or herself not believing what has happened and some may think it’s a bad dream. Thirdly, we have blaming self/others. At this stage the individual may resort to a “blame game” on his/her loss to himself or other people.
Fourth, we have depression and disorganization. At this stage one may feel extremely sad and unable to do things they want to do and also unable to enjoy friends; indulge in hobbies or other pleasurable activities. Last but not least is the resolution stage where one makes a mistake of thinking that the solution is to stop grieving. Where as the loss will always be there and no matter what you try to do at some point the memories may still reappear.
After the last general elections we had those who lost and some had to cement their loss by going to the Supreme Court. Some of these individuals are still in the initial stage of grief where they are experiencing shock hence they are no longer in the public lime light nor do we hear them making any public comment or critic the winners (Government).Unfortunately, we are now seeing those who are experiencing the third stage which is blaming self or others exercising it and to be specific the Cord Coalition leaders.
Immediately after the Supreme Court verdict the Cord Coalition went back to their strongholds to win sympathy from their supporters claiming that democracy in our country was on trial while others spreading innuendo and propaganda that some of the Supreme Court judges had been bribed. Fortunately or unfortunately most the electorates had accepted the verdict and were in the process of healing and those who were angry and bitter, the memory of 2007/2008 post election violence still lingering in their minds forced most of them to sober up and move on.
Currently, the Cord Coalition leaders are back at the blame game and now the target is the IEBC. We all know the IEBC had its challenges and it being the first time as a country going digital on the electoral process, we all knew some technological challenges were inevitable without trying to justify the massive challenges. But starting to attack an institution that is well founded under our constitution and whose commissioners underwent a rigorous vetting process and their names approved by parliament is just simply political manipulations from our political leaders.
The Commission under attack now carried out the successful referendum of 2008 and for a period it was a “darling” to many and especially those who were on the winning side and to be more precise the leaders of the Cord Coalition. Why then change the perception just because the nomination of one of your nominee in the Makueni by- election was declared null and void simply because of failing to do a proper verification on whether the nominee was a registered voter or not .
Losing is part of life especially in a competition. It is something that we are all going to experience just like death and paying taxes. But how we handle and grieve over it is determined a lot by our character. The solution is not to disband the entire commission or polarize the country by saying you are not going to engage yourselves on any election carried out by the IEBC, yet most of your coalition members who won and are now Governors, M.P’s and Senators were declared winners by the same Commission. Also trying to jeopardize the existing government is not a solution because if the government fails we all fail, whether we voted for or against. Its time to move on and for those who lost lets try harder next time.
A political Scientist