If you are a Kenyan — “mwananchi” not “mwenyenchi” — then there is a high chance you are feeling like I am, let down by the leadership of the country, and in fact the whole system. Nothing seems to be working anymore, at least not for the common Kenyan like you and I. The whole system is only working for the elites, the “wenyenchi” and the bwenyenye (rich).
You can’t believe all those years after independence, we have Kenyans dying of hunger. Like SERIOUSLY! How can you build an economy if the same people you need are hungry? The people in Turkana and Baringo don’t deserve that humiliation. At this age is unthinkable that a human being can die of hunger. And you can imagine the frustration of Baringo people, each year having to fight hunger and poverty while Kenya’s second president, Moi who ruled the country for 24 years hails from here, and even retired here.
From the education system which in reality is a complete failure and which so far has only succeeded in pumping more and more graduates into the country’s no job, job market. We have millions of us out here searching for jobs each day with no hope of landing one. They tell us that we should concentrate more on entrepreneurship, but they’re not ready to financially support us. You walk around the streets with your business plan, hopping from one office to another, from one bank to another, from one individual to another looking for capital to fund your startup until finally you give up.
To be frank, the 8-4-4 curriculum is a total waste, and maybe this new 2-6-3-3-3 system should be given a chance, and maybe, just maybe, we might be able to chance this yearly influx of graduates into a job market that has no jobs, and have more job creators than seekers.
Our judiciary is another failure. Just a few years after the 2010 Constitution that gave it more power, it has turned out to be a total flop, and the recent corruption allegations in the court corridors are not doing it any favors. Of course we’ve always known our courts to be corrupt, only working for the wenyenchi and the loaded, but we were optimistic it would turn around. I had faith with the current Chief Justice, Maraga, but he’s just one man. Nothing ever changes in Kenya. The same forest, different monkeys.
The people who keep stealing billions from the public coffers, are taken to the courts and released. And that’s the end of that case. Someone steals Kshs. 50 billion and you release them on Kshs. 1 M bail!
Our courts and jail system is put there for the poor, for me and you in Kibera slums, Kawangware, Pipeline, Kayole, Dandora, just to name a few. Visit Kamiti Prison, or Industrial Area, or Naivasha Maximum, and you would see that three-quarters of the convicts in there were falsely accused and police carried out shoddy investigations, and since most couldn’t afford strong defense teams, they’re now rotting in jail. It’s heartbreaking.
Health sector. Another shame. If you are poor in this country, then that’s a sure death sentence. The country’s health sector has been taken over by the private sector with all the best services in these hospitals. You are sick, you visit a public hospital and you are told that you can’t be treated because a certain simple test can’t be done because a certain machine is unavailable or has broken down. So you are directed — by the doctor — into a private hospital that he or she is the owner, or shareholder to go and carry the test that you would most likely be charged exorbitantly.
We have Kenyans still dying of malaria and other easily treatable ailments. My own sister, a final year student in the University of Nairobi succumbed to Cholera in 2015 because the only hospital that was near, Mama Lucy –named after the late first lady of former President, Mwai Kibaki — was staffed with only selfish doctors and nurses who are only there to earn a living and go home at the end of the day, and not to take care of patients.
The drugs we heavily pay for in taxes, keep finding their way into private hospitals and chemists where we have to pay for them, and in the public hospital you are told there is no medicine. Is this a country, or a joke of a country!
And that’s not all. Even the security is affected. Why are we the only ones in East Africa the Al shabaab keep attacking? Is it that we are a soft target? Or maybe because the Al shabaab militias hate us more that they hate Ugandans and Tanzanians.
As I’m writing this, we are still mourning the loved ones we lost in Dusit, Westlands attack. And you hear the government talking of erecting a wall along the Kenya-Somalia border, and you are left wondering if that is really the solution or maybe someone want that tender so they too can “eat” like their comrades in the dams saga. This is Kenya, and we know how it works. If you have leadership thinking the “Donald Trump way,” then you have a leadership deficit.
How is a wall going to help if you still the same corrupt officials siting under that same wall? How is a wall going to help stop a local bred terrorist living among us?
This country has a big problem, and neither is a referendum to do some “minor” changes to the constitution going to help. Look closely at those championing for that and you’ll notice that most of them have hidden agendas. All these guys want is to change the constitution to favor them as 2020 election approaches. They want to create more devolved units to give them more power and create opportunities for their cronies.
As much as we all agree that punda amechoka, and that the constitution needs to be checked, what we don’t agree with is the timing. If anyone wants to change the constitution, then let them wait till after the 2022 General Elections. Period.
Just like political analysts and strategists, Herman Manyora and Joseph Simekha, I too believe Civil Impeachment is all that is left for you and I, the poor mwananchi. We have so much power vested in our hands. If we really want to make changes, then let’s not wait for a miracle to happen. Let us, me and you, who feel like we’ve had enough, take it upon ourselves. Let everyone, including the clergy who have really let us down for long as a generation, come aboard. Think of the Arab Spring first before you say it is impossible.