So 2018 isn’t done screwing us over. Sick and tired, we contort our faces cursing vehemently, faces deep in the covers but still flip the other side under it’s command. In all senses, our worry is no longer whether or not the soap drops but rather how long the queue outside stretches. If you know, you know.
Kenyans that can handle the trauma of remembrance are free to read along. For non citizens and Kenyan citizens who haven’t been brought to speed on what’s happening in our beloved country, pour your popcorn into your bowl, sip your coke and relax.
Now, it happens that there were allegations of sugar soiled with mercury circulating in the market. Yeah, mercury in sugar. Being consumed by Kenyans unawares. In fact samples were taken by reputable firms and they tested positive of mercury poisoning. Which begs the question, why weren’t deaths by the thousands reported? Okay. Let’s tone down to tens. Why weren’t there even tens of fatalities due to mercury poisoning reported? Or didn’t these bureaucrats sit down and assess how quick a small dose of mercury fells a person? Wrong choice of poison maybe?
Bringing all reasoning to the table, isn’t it clear to see that this was a stunt by the so called cartels to have the prices inflated? Come on, it’s simple maths: Fake a story about sugar contamination. Hoard the same sugar. Create artificial scarcity and then inflate the prices. Yeah. And a kilo of sugar is still retailing at Sh. 150/= up from the previous Sh. 120/=. Months down the line.
And as if that wasn’t enough, 2018 flipped us over to a heavy levy on fuel. A levy that is ironically meant to offset some debt payment by the government to The World Bank. It’s hurting when a developing country’s taxes go to pay debt in stead of funding development. What bitters the hurt is that loots from Mwananchi’s coffers that would have helped pay these debts are now being used to build high end hotels and residential areas across the country. Diani. Vipingo. You name it.
A friend of mine later argued out that this was a positive way of looking at corruption’s after math. He spoke, saying that stolen money being planted back to the economy is generally healthy for a nation. It’s better kept to use than hidden in offshore accounts across the globe thus contributing to the nations GDP. Which makes sense but still…
What do you think?
And by the way, did you know that a staggering 50%(Gachoki Mwangi? Anyone?) of our nation’s GDP is used to service our huge wage bill? So much of the country’s income goes to service trivial things that would otherwise be sorted more amicably like by slashing questionable civil servants and doing away with the ghost workers wound. I’m sorry to ruin the party but the Women Representatives docket in parliament just doesn’t cut it. What’s the point?! I bet my friend Angoya Chivoli would agree on this one. Then we keep asking ourselves why we take behemoth loans from IMF, World Bank etcetera to fund ‘development’ we hardly see.
Ding! It just pinged in my head that agriculture is also a vital input into our country’s GDP. An agriculture we’re yet to fully harness, yes. Coming from a country who had to import rice from Egypt, a desert country some while back due to food insecurity, I can’t rant beyond a ‘Come on guys’. I think we have the greatest agricultural potential across Africa. We’re just too entitled and self consumed to see it. Pay Egerton University a visit and see what those guys are doing with their skill. Then tell me what we lack as a country to being the worlds greatest producer of anything there is. If only these practices could be employed on a national scale. We made it in coffee, tea and pyrethrum. Why not try maize, rice or even wheat? I mean what takes a country to be food secure?
It has never resonated well with me when a beautiful news anchor with a forced accent (they always fake an accent) stares at the camera and without blinking says how food insecure we are as a nation. I’m awaiting the day one of them will go rogue on air, pull down the Brazilian wig and talk us down on how mediocre our values have become. It’s only in Kenya that I hear silos in some region of the country are packed to capacity leaving truckloads of maize rotting in queues while in essence, some unscrupulous cartels have held the silo officials by their balls preventing farmers from storing their maize in the silos only to auction the storage space to the highest bidder. Years after independence, were slaves to our own selves.
So yes, 2018 just went on with it, ignoring our cry for mercy. Muffling our mouths with ‘joke’s on you’ linen.
As if that was not enough, months of torrential rain followed. With all the rain, we still woke up to an empty Ndakaini Dam.
“Some things get you so vexed you just laugh your rage off,” I told a friend.
The reason behind a dry Ndakaini is that some guys allegedly wanted to hold the water back so that they could continue fattening their pockets from high water bills within Nairobi City. Then every time we sing our national anthem, we cry to God above to help us dwell in unity, peace and liberty. Which often comes off as a joke. Maybe our anthem should be used as a background tune to a comedy commercial because everything we pray for and about literally laughs right back at us.
Sauti Sol will sing their throats dry but if our minds aren’t inclined to it, ‘Tujiangalie’ won’t soften our hearts to change.
Will the remaining 3rd of the year be any different? You tell me.