Trading barbs takes politicians away from development agenda

What you need to know:

  • If we spend too much time fretting over immediate gains, we will have losses.

There are many schools of thought regarding how to invest money and make profit. Some people spend their time and money following stocks and investing in new ones.

Sometimes, they make big money, but more often than not, they end up losing a lot by dealing too much in the search of short term gains.

There are others that invest carefully and occasionally but do not spend too much time fretting over which stock will go public next. They put their money in and let it stay there for a long period, perhaps over decades.

It is similar to many real estate investors, who spot a good opportunity and sink their money in before the market begins to grow. The earnings usually take years and years to come to fruition, but it is worth it in the long run.

All of the short term stock trading takes a great amount of time and pulls the focus away from the bigger picture.

TRANSFORMING KENYA

Winners are uncommon in the short term investment game. Slow and steady wins the race. This kind of mentality is tried and true, and should be the basis for how we think about transforming Kenya into the best version of itself that it can be. If we spend too much time fretting over immediate gains, we will have losses.

That is not to say that we should not shift our strength primarily towards fighting Covid-19 right now. That is beyond and above all other issues facing Kenya during 2020.

It will not go away on its own and it behooves each and every one of us to follow government restrictions with regards to virus mitigation.

But when thinking about issues that will face us in the long term, we need to begin thinking with an investor’s mentality.

I am referring to the state of politics in our country today. While some politicians, such as President Uhuru Kenyatta, are working on laying the groundwork for long term prosperity in Kenya, others are busy planning how to win the presidency.

The recent news that officials and supporters of two opposing teams running in 2022 were trading barbs is yet another demonstration of the fact that politicians waste far too much time in matters that are not contributing to the development of our nation.

CAMPAIGNING

To begin with, 2022 is two years away. Any leader who is busy campaigning for a position that is two years away is not investing in the future.

He is wasting the mandate given to him by Kenyan voters that put their weight behind him.

The president has remained focused despite the noise. As he has said time and again, the final years of his presidency will be marked primarily by one thing: ensuring that Kenya continues to prosper.  

Turning Kenya into a middle income economy and securing peace and tranquility in the region, building a harmonious, cohesive society and presenting Kenya as the regional leader has been in his agenda.

These are the things that will mark his legacy. While it is a pity that politicians obsessed with 2022 are blighting the political landscape, it is best for us citizens to ignore them as background noise.

We voted Mr Kenyatta into office so he can deliver on his promises, and there are still a few years left for that to be achieved. But as we know from experience, such lofty goals do not happen overnight.

They take years to come to fruition. It is the same thing as investing for the long term. While there might be many twists and turns along the way, the eventual fruits are well worth the wait.

So while news reports treat barbs amongst political parties as tabloid-worthy fodder, we as the responsible Samaritans should be disregarding this drama.

There are more important things to deal with in the moment, and more worthy goals to work towards in the next decade and beyond.

Mr Mugolla is a public policy analyst.

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