Friday, February 19, 2016

A Letter to my President....Uhuru Kenyatta

How so true what Sheba Hirst said on Feb 16 on her FB wall - that keeping up with corruption stories in Kenya is a full time job - we need an app to do so - have we stooped this low my dear President Uhuru Kenyatta and other leaders in Kenya - I had a dream....
I am not sure when we will see some serious action from you but if I were you Mr Presso, I would do what Hong Kong and Singapore did at some point to fight corruption and where they started with the most corrupt departments which is also the same in Kenya - Tendering, Police, Customs, Immigration, Inland Revenue, finance, public works - you know the list and then moved on to individuals - we know them all - what are we waiting for? Do not cover anyone - hata kama he is in your party or is a buddy - lets fry them all!
In Hong Kong and Singapore them days:
1. Their leaders, government and politicians (not our Mpigs but the clean ones) supported the 'frying' of any big wigs such as ministers, lawyers, surgeons etc who were involved in any corrupt deals. Their cases were investigated, properly prosecuted and their properties confiscated and bank accounts frozen. There were severe penalties and Kamiti, Shimo, Naivasha Prisons would love to have them as guests for a long time. Whereas Hong Kong has other issues these days, Singapore, a nation we were at par with when Kenya attained independence is no where close to to us - why? You know why. Are you willing as the president to do this?
2. In Africa today, the only leader I know who seriously decided to deal with corruption and other vices in his country and lived humbly was Thomas Sankara and who paid the ultimate price - death - but years later, we still remember him for what he did then. How shall we remember you when you are no longer presso, the youngest ever at that? That when I open the newspaper, I am bound to see several stories on corruption by big wigs and nothing is going to happen to them? That some of the worst scandals and corrupt deals happened when you were the C.E.O Kenya - Chickengate (though this started a little earlier) but what has happened about it since we discovered the culprits?), Eurobond, NYS and Anglo Leasing that happened during your predecessor Baba Jimmy - what has happened to those 'high class' thieves? Then there is another one where after almost bringing Kenya to its knees during Baba Gideon's time, now he is a pastor of some church - walking scot free. Which 'gate' did I forget?
3. Chief Justice Willy Mutunga said it mildly - Kenya is a nation of cartels and dangerous ones at that. We are heading to what happens in Columbia and other South American states where they reign supreme - is that the legacy you want to leave in Kenya?
4. The current Parliament will remain the worst ever - thanks to Devolution and a Constitution that has been misinterpreted to suit those who want it to work for them. Devolution should have cut down on poverty and underdevelopment but it has instead converted people into overnight millionaires and I hear some are billionaires - though Forbes has yet to recognised them - at the expense of the masses and they wag their tails around feeling at the top of the world, driving expensive fuel guzzlers that Kenya can ill afford, while their electorate sleep hungry and there is money that the government has already dished out to the 47 counties? And Kenyans, we condone this and do nothing about it but complain!

5. Land grabbing - the perennial past time for Kenyans today. Get rich quickly by hook or crook and we watch and do nothing. As we speak, I understand that part of Karura Forest that the late Prof Wangare Maathai fought hard to keep and was even injured for it is gone - and we Kenyans will go and buy apartments and houses built on it as if we do not know how it was gotten - that is how we condone corruption. We are as much thieves as all those corrupters and land grabbers. How many of us today bother to ask how the land on which our houses or apartments are built was gotten?
Because of above: Our young people now believe its ok to steal in Kenya to get rich because being rich has become the only way you can be recognised in Kenya as 'someone' by us - and if you get rich through stealing, you know you will get away with it because you will bribe your way through the police, judiciary and anywhere else you can pay to get away with stealing labeled 'corruption' - in other words, we are creating a whole generation of thieves!
For how long will Kenyans condone corruption? But then again, we can only do so much - if a leader wants to deal a blow to corruption, he (for now) will do it. Neither the Jubilee nor Opposition leaders are clean on this - let them fight these vices from within their parties, from the bottom of their hearts with no tribal or other affiliations in mind and let us see how far we can get. But that is asking for too much.
My dear presso, empty PR rhetoric is not going to do it. You have to take the bull by its horns and let us see how serious you are about cleaning Kenya up right from your own affiliates to the rest of the nation? Let those who want to scream to high heavens about 'human rights' abcd or whatever do it, but do it now so that in future, we can enjoy our beautiful land of Kenya - a country that could be at par with Netherlands where they are closing prisons, while ours are overcrowded and need new ones. Netherlands does not even have half of what we Kenyans have in terms of resources - human and natural and yet, life is worth living there and life is miserable in Kenya - except for a few. Yet, it does not have to be like that. Kenya can afford to ensure its 46M people live a life of worth living and not now where only a handful do.
Otherwise, in years to come Mr Presso, even your own children will go somewhere internationally and people will remind them what happened while you were the CEO. Not sure you want that! Then I woke up from my dream....