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Transforming Kenya: It starts with you

Garbage dumped by people, which ends up blocking drainages
flooding roads and houses. What does it take not to dump the
rubbish in the first place? Donors ? a new constitution?
Marcus Olang put up several updates yesterday , on Twitter. The messages were that we needed to have a culture of trust as citizens before we expected our government to be trust worthy. Double standards: we cannot keep swindling each other and make lots of noise when someone in the government swindles the country. 

Among other "enemies" of Kenya Marcus talked about include negative ethnicity , poverty, disease and injustice. 

He also made a comment that made me feel good, that a single person can make a change, a single person can start change. He said that a pebble can start an avalanche. I compared the ideology to Tunisia, a single person setting himself on fire began a revolution. 

Historically, many people have known me a a pessimist - that guy who loves complaining over everything, seeing the negative rather than the positive. I have pointed out to a few that by complaining, we are piling on pressure on people to change, plus most of what we complain about does not need a lot of effort to fix - cultural issues.

I am also quite pessimistic at people who come up with feel good  messages. Why? Because that is where it usually ends. One clever quote and we go back to our status quo. But this time round, I was ok with a feel good message, one person can make a difference. Why? Because we all say how bad the culture is, and wait for someone else to change it. 

Chief Justice and Mutunga will not change our country, or any one else for that matter. In fact, it looks as if NGOs and foreign nations are more interested in a better nation than we. 

We blame the matatu conductor for attempting to defraud us, the police for been corrupt, the government for stealing donors funds. The police should be reformed, the corrupt ministers should resign, Michuki should be brought back to reform the matatu industry. 

Let's take a moment: what makes the policeman corrupt, or the conductor fraudulent. The policman is not trained in college to be fraudulent. He gets employed a clean officer, until he tries to make an arrest, and the culprit attempts to bribe him. To the small salary we pretend to pay him, the bribe makes a lot of difference. When growing up, he has heard of clever people who made corrupt deals and a lot of money for their families. 

The corrupt minister was once clean, but firms competing for contracts tried to lure him by offering sweet deals. It became hard to resist. His community, friends want a share of the money.He wants a good lifestyle - he grew up poor, and this is his one opportunity to transform his life. The businessmen urge him not to be foolish  by turning down this golden opportunities. He finally accepts one bribe, then a second, then he gets used to them, every deal has to come with a bribe. In the paper he is a bad guy, in the village he is a hero, with his lavish lifestyle and big cars.

The policeman also needs a great life, and he has the corrupt minister as a role model. The community talks of that foolish  civil servant who never took bribes. Now he is retired and has a modest home and lifestyle. 

The conductor: How many passengers does he ferry daily? How many of them are dishonest, if he forgot to ask for fare, they would not pay up. He comes to see the community as a harsh one which needs to be handled carefully. why do they carry excess passengers? Well, the questions is why passengers board a vehicle they see is full?

The community becomes what we make it to be. If you dropped money, would the person behind you tap you and give it back? If the shop keeper, or the conductor gave extra change, is it a fall of good luck or will you correct them? 

Why are our towns dirty? why do you throw rubbish everywhere, out of the car window? How much rubbish do you dump in non-designated areas in an year? How much rubbish do 10 people like you dump?

Most of the population is educated, but few are learned. They will not understand why they should vote for people outside their tribe. They do not understand that  a price control law is bad for the poor, they do not understand that the country is a big research lab for GMO and HIV. If you do, please help them understand it. 












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