Selfish political leaders are to blame

Tuesday March 14 2017

Elgeyo-Marakwet residents mark the International Anti-Corruption Day

Elgeyo-Marakwet residents mark the International Anti-Corruption Day on December 9, 2016 in Iten. Political corruption is ongoing as we speak. PHOTO | JARED NYATAYA | NATION MEDIA GROUP 

By KANYI GIOKO
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Colonialism is the policy or practice of acquiring full or partial political control over another country, occupying it with settlers, and exploiting it economically.

Save for the words “another country”, the political class in Kenya have actually accomplished this through state capture.

This is a type of systemic political corruption in which private interests significantly influence the State’s decision making to their own advantage through unobvious channels, which may not be illegal, but for our clueless leaders, their political benefactors, both foreign and local, have stealthily achieved total control over the economy and the process of embedding themselves on the body politic is ongoing, as we speak.

The common mwananchi has been reduced to a business pawn and a vote validation tool, whose interests were long forgotten in the brazen pursuit of selfish goals.

It’s not lost on the ever-rising peasantry that the promises made to them from half-a-century ago have never been fulfilled.

Every five years the bag of goodies is dangled before their faces in a bid to induce them to return the leaders to power.

This phenomenon has led to the now widespread voter apathy that is very pronounced even within the perceived strongholds of certain key politicians.

The biggest worry of the average Kenyan is where to get food, health care and other basic necessities to lead an acceptably humane life.

Access to food is a big crisis. Food security has deteriorated in most parts of the country over the years.

They include Laisamis in Marsabit, Tana North in Tana River, and Fafi, Balambala, and Dadaab in Garissa, parts of Kilifi, Taita-Taveta, and Kwale counties due to the poor long rains and generally, lack of proper planning on our part.

SELF-INTEREST

On health care, the ongoing doctors’ strike is proof enough that we have a systematic killing machine in the name of public health.

The doctors in the public hospitals across the country have come out strongly and demanded better working conditions to give Wanjiku (the ordinary Kenyan) a surviving chance when hit by common ailments.

The public health system is in a shambles, while the private sector is thriving.

The less I say about this matter the better since we are all privy to the shenanigans right from the top echelons to the bottom on this matter.

It’s simple; your lives do not matter, your vote does.

Other areas where cosmetic moves are made on camera, include the quagmire we call the public transport system.

Very good solutions exist in the mould of the “Michuki Rules” but these are often discarded on the whim of populism and at the expense of order and safety.

In this era and time, it beats logic why our public transport system is in the hands of roguish corrupt cartels that are competing with the public health sector to kill as many Kenyans as possible within the shortest time possible.

The areas of grievances are numerous and cannot, therefore, be exhausted in one write-up.

Substandard fertilisers, exaggerated educational reforms, tribal cocoons within organisations, among others, all form part of the partial or full capture of the State by self-seekers all packaged in some nice mwananchi-friendly language to hide the obvious ill intent.

TAKE A STAND
Our turn-around strategy, as a country, will not come from the sky or from outside our borders; it must come from within and very soon.

Kenya must be redeemed; the downward spiral has taken far too long.

Solutions will never come from anywhere else but from right here at home.

It’s a pity that the current crop of leadership is complicit in the common man’s plight.

This makes it very hard for the voters to make a choice since the rot cuts right across.

However, there is a need for the emergence of a serious and strong third force to shake things up a bit and help reclaim our lost national glory.

The turnaround must come from all of us. In our areas of dwelling and influence we should all resist the urge to go against our better judgment in order to identify with empty and parasitic affiliations such as tribe or class.

We are human beings for crying out loud, if the images of the starving compatriots, in the cattle rustling areas do not move you, then you need to reflect deeply and choose to save Kenya.

Stand up to be counted, build Kenya as it’s the only place on this earth we call home without the fear of walls or bans. God bless Kenya!

Mr Gioko is a digital content curriculum developer at the Ministry of Education. [email protected]