The cutting edge

Tuesday February 13 2018

‘FRIENDLY’ AG. During the presidential election petitions hearings in the Supreme Court last year, Mombasa resident Carey Yiembe vividly recalls, Attorney-General Githu Muigai appeared as the amicus curiae (friend of the court). With the dispute over the outcome of the presidential elections held on August 8 and October 28, still raging, Carey is baffled about the deafening silence from the AG. He poses: “Where are you, Mr AG, when some senior government officials and also opposition politicians are now defying court orders? Doesn’t the friendship cover this as well?” His contact is [email protected].

****

GOSPEL TRUTH. The country has become so highly polarised that any claim or suggestion by the political elite on either side of the divide is taken by their supporters as the gospel truth, remarks Sam Kinyua. Democracy, Sam adds, can only thrive where the opposing views are given equal coverage by the media, “which must assert themselves and start a national conversation to help heal the country”. To win public trust, he concludes, “the media must be seen to be impartial, objective and also tolerant to criticism”. His contact is [email protected].

****

OFFICER MECHANIC?  Still reeling from a nasty encounter with a traffic policeman on Waiyaki Way, Nairobi, Benjamin Ashuma says he has been left with a number of nagging questions. Used to being flagged down by police, who normally only check the insurance sticker and ask for his driving licence, Benjamin was puzzled when the officer “turned into a mechanic all of a sudden”. He was asked to switch on his lights, at 11am, and also if his wipers were working, and ordered to open the bonnet. Is this in order? he wants to know. His contact is [email protected].

****

SMOKING BAN. The ban on smoking in public places, which was enforced with a bang some years ago, has largely faded out, with the noxious habit now becoming more and more prevalent in the towns. Coastal resident Nigel Henson, who came face to face with it recently, says: “I’m in a restaurant. It has a fixed roof and three enclosed sides. The fourth side is an open window, not an entrance. It’s in a shopping mall in Mombasa. Why are so many people allowed to smoke? I thought restaurants were no-smoking places!” For the details, in case someone in authority is interested, his contact is [email protected]

****

DEATH NEWS. When American man of letters Samuel Langhorne Clemens (popularly known as Mark Twain) saw a newspaper report of his death, John Mukui recalls from his literary history, the man sent a telegram saying that “the report of my death was an exaggeration”. Later that day, he said that “of course, I’m dying, but I’m not dying any faster than anybody else”. Mukui concludes: “It’s useful to have people who remind us that we’re not immortal, regardless of their intentions. It might spur you to put your affairs in order to secure your legacy and the interests of your descendants.” His contact is [email protected].

****

REAL STARS. Following the exploits of the Kenya Sevens rugby team, which put up excellent performances in the recent Sydney and Hamilton Sevens tournaments, Robert Mukirae wishes the country could focus more on sports heroes and heroines, “who are the true ambassadors of our great, but troubled nation”, and pay less attention to the politicians. “Despite exiting in the Main Cup quarter finals of both competitions, the team’s form augurs well for the rest of the season. Let’s go, Kenya, let’s go!” His contact is [email protected].

 

Have a heroic day, won’t you!

or write to Watchman,

POB 49010, Nairobi 00100.