Thursday, July 18, 2013

Happy Birthday, Madiba

"Like as the waves make towards the pebbled shore,
So do our minutes hasten to their end"
Happy Birthday

Friday, June 28, 2013


I am working on a post on this subject...check back in a few hours.

Thursday, June 27, 2013


After a 3-year hiatus, we're back! I'm going to be sharing my thoughts more regularly moving forward. There's a lot to discuss. WK

Friday, January 22, 2010


RB's Status:

Ours is a rich nation.. O'wise we'd have been a failed economy/ nation long ago. The million dollar scandals, super salaried Mpigs and govt fat cats.. Drought, floods, never ending political crap, terrorist attacks.. Yet we still stand strong. Najivunia kuwa Mkenya.


The best glass-half-full perspective i have heard in a while.

When I was preparing to come to the states, i went to the dean of my faculty to have him sign some passport papers for me. In the course of conversing with him, i mentioned - very matter-of-factly - how i intended to bribe immigration officers with 10K in order to get my passport fast. The professor dropped his pen and starred at me as if I had cracked the Fermat's equation. Was he shocked that i was going to bribe to get a passport? Isn't that how things are done in Kenya? I asked.

He said it might be the case that there is corruption everywhere but there is only one reason why the country is still functioning: there are still good and descent people out there. He told me to go out there and apply for a passport and not to dare bribe anyone. I did and got it in 2 weeks.

His name was Prof. AKong'a. I hope to one day meet the guy and tell him how profoundly his lesson changed my outlook on life. Just because everybody is swimming in Nairobi River, it doesn't mean that you too must.


Kenya is the country to watch. Our continent have enough for everyone. I tend to think we need the equivalent of the civil rights movement back in Africa, coz, just like the blacks in US, even after slavery, they were still under oppression....we are independent but still subject to other people. But that is changing, we have started by reviewing the colonial Constitution for one that is relevant to us. We are constantly threatened that will not be able to export our goods to western markets yet we can develop a thriving market in Africa. If we can provide quality, both goods and services, we wont have to beg people to buy them..does Japan or China beg us to buy their wares? There must arise a new crop of African leaders who are not driven by basic survival but by a passionate desire to deliver our people from disgrace. I attended a medical class recently in one of the developed countries, and all the case studies, including films,are from Africa. Diseases that were eradicated 60-50 yrs in those countries are still ravaging us in masses. How long shall we continue blaming colonialism for our pathetic state of things? To every young Kenyan, whether in the motherland or the diaspora,our grandparents may have fought the independence wars, but we have an even bigger challenge..just like the civil rights giants..we will be there ..I will be there!


Its only a matter of time.. the resilient spirit is beginning to pay off in many ways. The passport experience Wilson narrates just goes to show that the first responsibility for change lies with the individual. As more and more of us catch this spirit - the belief that we don't have to uncritically accept what has been, the embracing of individualresponsibility for progress - change for good becomes inevitable. It is evident all around that we are at a critical point as a nation. We are living through defining moments... there is an awakening happening amongst us. More and more among our populace are willing to stand up and be counted as active players in the quest for change. The prob hasn't been the shortage of good and decent people - they are actually the majority I believe; prob has been the inaction, the passivity with which with have let the minority rogue members of our society run rough shod over us... the majority had believed the lie 'this is Kenya, that's just the way things are'... this mind set led individuals to abdicate all responsibility to politicians and 'serikali'... Now everyday more and more Akong'as are coming out. They are speaking loudly and clearly... and many more amongst us are believing them and taking corresponding individual and collective action..

Wednesday, October 14, 2009

This, I think answers the post "Being African is a Misfortune."

Being African is a Misfortune

Courtesy of Dr. Ligaga.

I am glad this forum exists, for where else would I vent, where else would I show my disgust at the endless gaze of Africa that the rest of the world clings to?

The global media has embraced and standardized Africa's image as the get-away safari destination on the one hand, and the starvation-poverty-disease continent that swims in eternal hopelessness; they have held Africa in this light as proof that Africa, the homeland of most of the world's black population, will never be as advanced as the 'white' continents. Africa, of the inferior race. Africa of the corrupt shortsighted leaders, and of the world's surviving primitives.

This 'dark continent' image has turned my continent into a pityful and sneer-worthy non-deserving continent. This continent where I have lived all my life, been happy in, and successful in, survived in.

Is Africa really that bad? Ought we be ashamed of being called Africans? Ought we be ahsamed of being black? What about the laughter and the education and the cultures? what about the joy of playing in the dust with friends whose names you will always remember even in your old age? What about the normal lives we lead? Are these successes not worthy of the media's precious spaces? What about the fact that Africa produces super-intelligent human beings? How else can you explain how Africans have excelled with minimum resources usually made available to students their ages in the West? What about the punishment of existing in a double life, that of the home and that of school, both heavily demanding and both equally important? The double burden of being the educated one, and the provider? and yet we survive in the same world as kids who have known nothing but over-protectiveness, whose every need has been tended to? If it is about survival for the fittest, who most deserves to survive? whose survival skills has been sharpened beyond question?

And so, while the only sport where Africans have outperformed the rest of the world is athletics (minimum resources required to achieve this goal), it is also the most inferior sport. After all, isn't it defined through funny looking, non-English speaking (hence lacking eloquence) black people from some god-forsakken land whose name periodically pops up to remind us that the world's first black leader hails from a father with humble beginnings.

It is easier for the West to typecast Africa using images of starving children. That is our public image. we are content with this image, because it prevents us from dealing with this complex continent. We marginalize and fragment its narratives, because we do not want to cause trouble, raise the expectations of the masses of Africa, give ideas of possibilities.

If the world is currently geared towards the superiority of capital, how can Africa be integrated into this dream? Easy! By making them give us whatever resources they have, so we can continue being the superpowers; by attracting the best brains using green cards, scholarships anything that will move the most diligent, strongest of us out of their holes, and making us grateful for the opportunity.

Now Asia rises and threatens to become the world's next superpower. Can the West let this happen? This would be extremely bad, because a breakdown of these societies would mean a change of power centres! Now we cannot have that. The under-dog race will edge its bony arse closer to the 'it' and soon we might just become powerless. This would be a big let-down. So we must fight on, we do not want to become the 'empy' continent.

So even now, while African crawls on its knees, hangs its head in shame as it begs for money from the Big Brother, accepts the disguised and sometimes open insults from the west, it continues to hope for release, relief. The West on its part continues to hold an image of eternal desperation and primitivity to measure how far its come and how far it can still go.

To succ
eed, it needs a failure.

Sunday, July 19, 2009

Thursday, July 16, 2009


Leaders formerly for the prosecution of PEV perpetrators at the International Court of Justice in Hague, are now back peddling and suddenly realizing the importance of preserving though they just discovered the concept, since it never bothered them a while back when they favored the Hague option.

But let us first examine this thing we call PEV, the Post Election Violence. ODM (for the most part), believes or portends to believe that it was as a direct reaction to the rigging of elections and as such the primary culprit should be Mwai Kibaki and anyone who engaged in the alleged electoral fraud.

The problem with this argument is that the International Court of Justice is not concerned with prosecuting electoral malpractice but crimes against humanity. So whatever the motivation of the perpetrators was, that is immaterial to the court. Furthermore, just because those who participated in the violence feel that their actions were justified, that alone should not be a reason for them to object to a trial...after all, the court is the proper venue for them to come up with a defence and if it is as compelling as they seem to believe, then they should have nothing to worry about.

The second problem with this argument is the arbiralliness of it. Let us assume that some people did in fact commit acts of violence as a reaction to stolen elections. That would mean that during the PEV period, there would have to have been two kinds of crimes: the justifiable (as a reaction to rigged polls) and the regular crime which would have happened whether elections were stolen or not, since crime occurs all the time.

Now, let us say that one rape case which took place at a shopping center in Molo was committed by a mob protesting the stolen election and another one which took place in Naivasha was as a result of a regular pervert doing what he does. Who is to determine that one of the two crimes was a justifiable political statement and the other a random act of lawlessness? Doesn't that also mean that we free anyone arrested of committing a violent crime between December 29th, 2007 and March 1st, 2008 (or thereabout)?

The third problem: justice, in a case where there is a clear victim, is never about the accused but the victim. What the courts are going to concern themselves with is the actual people who lost their lives. So if ODM is arguing that their goons were motivated by the rigging of elections, they better be ready to prove that that peasant woman burned at a church in Kiambaa participated in the rigging. Likewise, if Uhuru or any other Central Province politician participated in retaliatory attacks and retaliation happens to be their defense, they better be prepared to show that the innocent people murdered in Naivasha had directly participated in the killings in Rift Valley.

Which leads us to this question: shouldn't the first person to be summoned by whichever court takes this matter be Raila Odinaga? Here's the rationale and please stick with me; a hit-and-run accident occurs, there is a dead body lying across the street and all but one witnesses give their varying accounts of what happened. One witness, witness R, however, claims that no accident took place at all...not wait, if any accident took place, the dead person must have brought it to himself because he is a relative of a known car thief. Now, whether or not witness R has anything to do with the crime, wouldn't you as a prosecutor want to have a few more words with him about the incident?

That is the position which Raila Odinga is in. The whole world but himself and the hacks, acknowledges that crimes against humanity were committed in Kenya. Why should he not be the first one to the Hague so that he can shed a little more light on his seemingly untenable position?

Elections were muddled up and that is regrettable, elections might have even been rigged and that is unforgivable but a worse affront against our country took place after the election controversy which made any theft of votes look like pick-pocketing. When the country exploded, only one person had the power to come close to ameliorating the situation, that person was Raila Odinga. He had the power to directly address those who were killing in his name and tell them that their true enemy was not their neighbors but the occupant of the state house and his cronies-in-thievery. The violence would have subsided, Raila would have earned international repute and approached the iconic status of Mandela.

But he chose to tacitly and sometimes implicitly support what was going on. And for that reason, even when Barack Obama mentions the heroes of the PEV tragedy, Raila is not among them and neither is any of those who believed that they were opposing the rigging of elections. The only people he reserved compliments for were those ordinary people who opposed the violence which Raila still believes was justified.

Monday, June 15, 2009


NEW YORK (AP) — Another Obama relative has a book deal.

A memoir by George Obama, the president's half brother and a resident of Huruma, Kenya, will be published by Simon & Schuster in January 2010. George Obama, 27, shares the same father with his famous, older half sibling, although George and Barack Obama — 20 years apart in age — did not grow up together and did not meet as children.

George is the youngest of the senior Obama's seven children and was born six months before his father died.

Little is known about George Obama. The book, tentatively titled "Homeland" and to be written with author-journalist Damien Lewis, will tell of George Obama's fall into crime and poverty as a teenager and his eventual embrace of community organizing — a passion shared by the president — and of advocacy for the poor, an identification so strong that he chooses to live among them.

"Even had George Obama not been our President's half brother, his story is moving and inspirational," David Rosenthal, Simon & Schuster publisher and executive vice president, said in a statement Sunday. "It is an object lesson in survival, selflessness and courage."

Financial terms were not disclosed, but an official with knowledge of the negotiations said the deal was worth six figures. The official, who was not authorized to discuss the contract, spoke on condition of anonymity.

Other Obama relatives are working on books, including a half sister, Maya Soetoro-Ng; and the brother of first lady Michelle Obama, Craig Robinson. Duke University Press is releasing the doctoral dissertation of the president's mother, Stanley Ann Dunham, who died in 1995.

Barack Obama has written a pair of million-selling books, "The Audacity of Hope" and "Dreams from My Father," in which he describes George Obama as "a handsome, roundheaded boy with a wary gaze."


Read comments about this story on the Huffington Post including that of a reader who is surprised that George Obama can actually write!