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When none of your business becomes your business

Martha Karua, one of our most hyped politicians, was in the news again. This time round, it appears her god-like status is now fading as quickly as it came up. Some of her constituents were demonstrating against her; odd it was that they were motor-cycle taxi men, not demonstrating against her motor cycle policies, but against her so called support for the mungiki. It is odd, since the activities of the mungiki do not affect cyclists alone, but the constituency as a whole. This had reeked a strong oduor of hired demonstrators, as she claims.

As for the demonstrators and the planners, they appeared to have made a judgemental error when they claimed that their MP was supporting the mungiki. Martha Karua, been a sensible person and a lawyer, has been against the stance that the government is taking against the mungiki, by allowing other so called vigilante groups to hunt for mungiki and kill them. Been against this method, does not mean that you support the mungiki;the two aren't, mutually exclusive.

The government organs in the area are quite happy that someone is taking care of the mungiki on their behalf, by murdering suspects. The problem is that the people been murdered are suspects; according to my understanding of this noun, a suspect may either be guilty or innocent.

You may wonder why Martha Karua is making this part of her many business, while she can simply ignore the issue since it appears like the issue is to the benefit of all.

Well, appearances may be deceptive.Take a careful look at the history of the issue. The government was the sole authority, but had many shortcomings. Then a group of people bridged the gap, and started providing security services. No one questioned this, since it was none of their business; the arrangement appeared beneficial to all. As the group grew, it began to demand for more income , and went out of hand by holding lives as collateral. at this point, it became their business, since their lives were at stake.

Now some so called vigilante groups have rose to bridge the government failures again. Again, for the people whose families are not mungiki suspects, it is none of their business. The government officials in the area are covering up their bare bottoms by labelling critics as mungiki supporters. How long will it be before the vigilante groups begin trying other suspects other than the mungiki? Isnt' this the familar route that mungiki trode? At this point, it will no longer be Martha's business alone. I also hope that the vigilante groups have powers to bring wrongly killed innocent suspects back to life.

The same has happened in the Pakistan Swat valley. Due to government failures, the mungiki equivalent, a strongly armed Taliban took hold of the area. Since they were just restoring order, it was none of the residents business. Then the Taliban were pushed out of Afghanistan by a more aggressive United States army. Seeing Pakistan as a softer opponent, they began expanding out of their traditional remote enclaves, putting them in direct confrontation with the Pakistani army. the Pakistani army launched a counter offensive in the area, displacing many residents. To the residents , it was the government versus the Taliban, still none of their business. When the Taliban are a war, they tend to attack mosques that belong to other moderate Muslim faith, and attack they did. It is at this point that the Taliban became part of the business of the residents of swat valley. They have now taken up arms against the Taliban, and the government is supporting them from aerial attacks.

Point here is that when it comes to human rights and security, it will be just a matter of time before what affects others becomes your business. Ignore it at your own peril. As for the government, what matters is winning the battle, not the war. You might perish in the battle, but the government will outlive the battle and usually outlives the war too.

What is your business today?

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