I Bet You Can

Can you hear it?

 

I bet you can.

 

It’s the cries of enraged Kenyans as they call on you to hold up your end of the bargain. You never ran for office with a gun pointed to your head. You asked Kenyans to trust you and vote for you. Which they gladly went along with. Then why do you want to be praised when you do something for them? Why do you get mad and defensive when people point out your failures? How do you sleep at night when the people you swore to represent are made homeless and impoverished by your administration? Why do you want to be worshipped like a god when you perform your obligatory duties? Why do you feel the need to do so?

 

I bet you can hear it.

 

It’s the wailing of Kenyan families who have lost their loved ones in the hands of Kenyan politicians. Yet these politicians are still roaming the streets unbothered. They feel unassailable. It’s the families who have lost their loved ones in the hands of the Kenyan police. And yet again no justice for those families either. It’s the family of Yasmin Hussein, the boy who was shot by the police. Because for the Kenyan police, enforcing curfews means brutally harassing Kenyans and killing some in the process. Like we are animals. Or worse, like we are disposable. And then offering an apology like that would bring the young soul back to life. It’s the family of Felix Orinda. The Dj who was shot by a self-deluded narcissist. A Member of Parliament who is shooting the same people he speaks for. An ill-bred prick who has zero regards for human life. And just like you should have guessed already, no justice for the Dj and his family. Because justice is a foreign word in this country.

 

I bet you can hear it.

 

It’s the shackles breaking. The mental shackles that you have installed deep into the skulls of innocent citizens. The people you swore to have their best interest at heart. Gullible Kenyans who you call ‘my people’ come the election year just so you can manipulate them. The same people you ghost after elections just to show up in the next election year. The have-nots that you could afford to give free t-shirts, caps, and lesos, during your campaign just to lack the same energy when the pandemic strikes and people need masks – which, by the way, their lives depend on, literally. 

 

The have-nots that you keep wondering why they are broke. Yet job creation to you is an alien term. Like that wasn’t in your bloody manifesto alongside economic inclusion of both women and the youths. Yet we have seen none of what you promised. All you have brought us is debt and problems and more of each. And while debt financing is significant for the growth of developing countries if used wisely, ours goes into the pockets of money-hungry politicians. And yes, I know it’s slander to paint all our politicians as greedy and venal but at this point, we don’t know what to think really. And to be fair you cannot blame us.

 

 

Can you see it?

 

I bet you can.

 

It’s the pain in peoples’ eyes. The people who voted for you. It’s the sadness in the eyes of the 5,000 plus families that you deemed fit to demolish their houses in the middle of a fucking pandemic. The children who you let sleep outside like pye-dogs. The people you made homeless just because you felt like it. At a time where they needed to stay home to be safe. It’s the emotional pain people in Ruai, whose houses you demolished as well, are going through. The indigent people who keep wondering why they are treated like pariahs in their own country. The people whose rights are violated every second while their voices go unheard. Yet you wonder why some wish they were dead rather than be alive to face this inhumane cruelty induced by your administration. It’s sad and sickening.

 

Based on the fact that we are facing a pandemic, you would at least think that our government would act right – for once. But instead, the police are busy harassing Kenyans and killing some in the name of enforcing curfews, the government is busy demolishing homes and leaving thousands of citizens homeless, the same government is spending 4 million shillings for tea and snacks in their COVID-19 budget, and the two unscrupulous handshaking jerkfaces are pushing the BBI report down our throats.

 

I bet you can see it.

 

It’s the rue in peoples’ eyes as the sad reality of what our country has turned into sinks. It’s the regret in our eye as we watch our politicians screw us over and over. The overwhelming anger we experience as we watch our politicians turn into greedy land-grabbing dullards. As they loot from every other ministry or government project they can get their hands on. As they increase their salaries whenever they feel like, so they can drive luxurious cars and live in posh places. While teachers and health care workers strike now and then demanding salary increases in vain. As they embezzle healthcare funds and leave public hospitals at the verge of collapsing. Our only hope for survival if we ever become ill. They are the reason our public hospitals look like meth labs with no medicine, equipment, doctors, and nurses. No nothing. And when they sneeze twice in the morning, they take a trip abroad to get medical check-ups at the expenses of taxpayers. Like their deaths would be the end of the world. Then two days later, their friends follow them in $13,000-an-hour private jets to check up on them. And guess who is paying for that Ksh1.3m-an-hour bus ride? Taxpayers. It’s the pain we experience as we watch our country go down the drain, owing to a few avaricious individuals.

 

 

Can you feel it?

 

I bet you can.

 

It’s the discontent in our voices as we raise our grievances in a country with no justice system insight. It’s the citizens boiling with rage as they watch public funds being siphoned from government projects by a few corrupt individuals who own the country. Greedy beings who are willing to go through lengths to stay in power in their quest to protect their so-called family wealth (stolen wealth). It’s what their parents did and it’s what they are all about as they prepare their children to do the same to our kids. Our offsprings will grow in a failed nation with a collapsed economy, bad governance, mediocre healthcare systems, no employment opportunities, no quality education, poor transport systems, no access to clean and adequate water, you name it. All the problems that we face today only that by this time they will be heightened. Their children, on the other hand, will grow up in some bougie estates, go to high-end schools, have access to the best private healthcare systems, or just live abroad away from a dying nation. And the cycle will continue. The rich will turn richer while the poor continue to suffer every day – their ticket to an early grave. And until we get it together and be ready to pick up the pieces, the anger and frustration we experience today mean nothing.


*

 

We can disagree on things about this country but one: Our leadership is messy, rotten, and corrupt. And so are our systems. We have corrupt court systems, healthcare systems, prisons, schools, ministries, judicial, and justice systems. Thus our attempts to fight any of them proves fruitless each time. In Kenya, politics and wealth go together. On top of that, most of our politicians are there for selfish reasons. Some want to amass wealth while others want power so they can protect what their parents stole from the public. Being a politician in Kenya means you are untouchable. You can embezzle funds from a program designed to help the youth and instead of facing trial, buy your ticket to becoming a governor. You can murder citizens and get away with it and you can shoot and paralyze someone with no consequences whatsoever. After all, you are a Kenyan politician which means that your life has more value than others. All our justice system gives a damn about is money. What you are willing to pay to make your case disappear. 

 

Our elections are another joke. The blame is on us here. We get enticed with sweet nothings – empty promises and small small campaign money – and we forget that we are in dire need of good leaders. And since we can only vote for politicians that share our ethnic background (the sole reason we get manipulated), we leave out good leaders and vote for the same thieves we’ve been voting for over the years. All in the name of mtu wetu. We show hatred to other ethnic groups and their candidates and say “suck it” to their faces when our candidate wins. And while both candidates join the government through shitty handshake deals, we go back to poverty, bad governance, ridiculous tax rates, unaffordable healthcare, low salaries, unemployment, and all the problems we were facing before the election. With time problems bring us together again – like now. We forget about our ethnicities and start fighting together for what we deserve. For our rights. But come the next election year, the hate grows back and we are back to mtu wetu slogans.

 

We are the problem. We vote based on ethnicity rather than reasoning. That’s how we end up with crooked politicians in power. We then have to suffer the consequences. I know it’s frustrating and gut-wrenching and at times feels like choking on your vomit. But we can blame no one. We made our bed and now we have to lay in it regardless of the discomfort.

 

Think of Kenya as the moribund grass concept. A situation where grasses grow themselves to death citing under-grazing and lack of mowing. When this happens, the dead grass builds up and chokes out nearly all the new growth leaving waves of dry grasses year after year. Eventually, all that is left are clumps of mottled grey grass and naked grounds in between. At this point, grazing and mowing are rendered futile. The only solution is to burn everything to the ground from which healthy grasslands sprout. We are at this point. A point where the majority of our systems are rotten. A point where our rights are violated every day. A point where the government fights and kills its people. And the only viable solution to save this country is to set everything ablaze.

 

Then and only then can we get rid of the moribund.

 


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17 thoughts on “I Bet You Can

  1. Preachhh…at times like this such candidness is needed and I hope all those that go through your article will have such courage to speak up and the wisdom to make better choices

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