Skip to main content

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?

Comments

Popular posts from this blog

Beers in Kenya: A sober opinion

I have had a short beer swigging stint in my life. It has however been long enough for me to share my opinions of Kenyan beer. Interestingly, over the course of sharing such opinions with other drunkards connoisseurs,  I have found that we all have different views as to what beer is the best, which one makes you too drunk, or which one gives a free,  extra hangover for every hangover you get from it.
For starters, like everyone else, I discovered that beer isn’t as sweet as it looks like in those adverts that show golden barley swaying in breezes,  happy men smiling and toasting chilled, foaming glasses of beer as a deep voice does some narration in the background.
Beer is bitter! Now, it turns out beer is intentionally made bitter. See,  beer shares the same ingredients as bread. The major difference is that bread isn't fermented. Bread is sweet, so why isn't beer sweet?

How much Nairobi Residents Pay in Rent

In my last post, I explained how difficult for people looking for housing in Nairobi. The main challenge is lack of information. On this front, I began a project that will collect some information, which will provide some start for those looking for housing in different areas in the city.

In the last one month, 33 people have given their responses.




Interesting enough, majority of the respondents, 16 to be exact, live in 2 bedrooms. This may mean that either 2 bedrooms are the most popular rentals in the city, or the most available. Only one way to find out - if you live in a 2 bedroom rental, here’s another survey.

10 of those who filled in the survey live in self contained 1 bedrooms.

5 people have 3 bedrooms, including 2 in Kikuyu, 1 in Ngong and Lower Kabete each, and another around Langata/National Park.

1 respondent has a 4 bedroom, while another one has a self contained bedsitter.
Pricing




Turning to pricing, the price of 1 bedrooms ranges from Kshs. 10,000 in Rongai to Kshs…

Why Kenyans love Kigali (Part 2)

See part 1 of why Kenyans Love Kigali, which this articl is a continuation.

In my previous post on why Kenyans love Kigali, or Rwanda for that matter, I had mentioned on the security of the city. The post however widely dealt with the feel and appearance of the city, and a little bit of the country.

Both of my visits to Kigali have been through the airport, though you may opt for a more adventurous journey by road. Getting to Kigali then required a Kenyan passport, but no visa. Now, all you need to go through both Uganda and Rwandan borders are a National Identity Card.

For travel by air, Rwandair is a cheaper option for Kenyans as compared to our national flag carrier, Kenya Airways. Ironically, most other Africans get to Kigali via Kenya Airways, thought most Kenyans will opt for the cheaper Rwandair. The flights are comfortable and the service on board the 1 hour 15 minutes flight is great.

Depending on the weather, your landing can be quite full of turbulence in Kigali. The airpor…

Road Safety: Can Google Maps Help Kenyans Leapfrog Unmarked Bumps?

How long has it been since you heard the word “leap frog”?

It’s a term that grew in popularity as it was used to describe the outcome of the arrival and spread of the mobile phone in Sub-Saharan Africa.

For decades, “development” had appeared to stagnate in many of these countries, with slow-growing economies and little change in how people led their lives. In some instances, things appeared to have even gone into reverse gear.

But then, while the developed world was freaking about something called the Millennium Bug in 2000, mobile networks were coming up across the continent.

In the next decade, mobile phone usage would explode as many Africans were finally able to own phones for the first time ever. Previously, you had to lease a land line from a state-owned company and many of these had waiting lists several years long.

With mobile networks came SMS and USSD which innovative businesses took advantage of to create basic applications even within the limitations of these channels,…

The bitter story of the downfall of Mumias Sugar company

Have you heard the bitter story of Mumias Sugar?

Regarded by many as Kenya's most successful sugar miller, Mumias Sugar Company was a disaster waiting to happen.

Many pointed out how Mumias Sugar Company was a fortress in the wreck that is Kenya's sugar industry, only unaware that it was just a matter of time. As the old wise men said, "Ukiona cha mwenzako cha nyolewa, tia chako maji".

The proverb means that if you see your neighbour's head getting shaved, your head will soon be undergoing the same - you'd therefore better wet your head for a smoother shave, otherwise you will be forced to undergo a painful, dry, shave.

But what ails Kenya's sugar industry?

The Kenya sugar industry is under legal siege. The typical Kenyan issue of coming up with laws to tackle a problem is evident here.

Many of Kenya's sugar factories are owned by the government, and have slowly declined under mismanagement and corruption. The appointing of political cronies and trib…