Last year in November, while launching the 2018 Consolata Calendar at Our Lady Help of Christians Catholic Church, Upper Hill, I told the Christians that if there was a year Kenyans couldn’t wait to end, it was the year 2017.
I went on to say that the best way to end the year was to buy our 2018 calendar, as it would make them feel like they were already in the New Year. The joke caused big laughter in the church and certainly translated into huge sales for the calendar.
While it was said on a light note, it is a fact that like most election years, 2017 was a horrible year for Kenyans. It was a year full of drama, twist and turns as the heightened political situation held the country hostage for a major part of the year.
The country was literally at a stand-still before, during and after the General Elections as Kenyans adopted a wait-and-see life.
There was even a joke, that if you asked any Kenyan to do something for you, they would tell you to wait until after the elections. The, elections came, the results were nullified, and we had to wait for another ‘after the elections’.
The country’s economy was hard hit by the political uncertainty. According to economists, the year 2017 cast a cloud of gloom over Kenya’s economy as it saw a number of businesses turn to life support through painful cost-cutting measures.
While people will be talking of last year, the business community will be talking of the ‘lost year’.
At the very tail end of 2017, the country was again in a sombre mood as road carnage claimed lives of Kenyans (more than 100 lives were lost in a span of three weeks in road accidents by the time we went to press).
We hope the New Year will bring with it new blessings for our country.
It will be a happy New Year if the new government puts in measures to ease inflation, reduce corruption and wastage of public resources, and ease the cost of living for taxpayers.
It will be a happy new year if the leaders we elected put aside their personal animosity keep their promises of making the country a better place for all.
It will be a happy new year if the government puts in place measures to reduce loss of lives on our roads.
It will be a happy new year of the government provides job opportunities for hundreds of young people who are jobless.
We hope 2018 will be a year of recovery and growth. May 2018 bring you peace, prosperity, and progress.
Happy New Year to you all.