“I don’t care losing my position as a minister. This flag only helps me to clear TRAFFIC JAMS in the city,” said Sally Kosgei The Kenyan Minister for Higher Education. What a pity .
Kenya has become a tribulation, a tribalnation I mean to say. When major appointments are made, whether in government or private sector, the first question a Kenyan will not ask you is not whether the appointed person has what it takes to do the job, no. A Kenyan will ask you which tribe he/she comes from? Unfortunately the names of most Kenyans reveal which tribe they belong. There are very strongly held stereotypes that define every tribe and which Kenyans hold very strongly.
If you thought that this is the far that this perceptions go, then you are mistaken. A person confided in me of a story that happened to him the other day. He went strolling in town during Christmas in the evening and since an idle mind is the devils workshop, he landed on the way of a prostitute who was not afraid of revealing the goods she was trading. So, they went for the business and while she was fully ready and waiting for the man to begin, the prostitute paused and told the gentleman that he wanted to know which tribe he belonged to because she couldn’t offer the goods to a certain tribe. The guy had to lie to satisfy his lust. That’s how entrenched tribalism has become in Kenya.
The recent debate and divisions arising from the appointments in the judiciary have laid bare the very hypocrisy that is at the heart of our Kenyan society and social fabric. Why are Kenyans shocked that the President and the Prime Minister wanted a Chief Justice from their tribe? Why are we pretending to be shocked, and yet most of our institutions from banks, football teams, NGO’s, political parties, churches including marriages are tribal outfits? Are we not part of this problem and yet we do nothing positive about it but complain. An MP from North Eastern said on television that if the president had appointed a chief justice with a name that starts with letter O, the whole hullaballoo about appointments wouldn’t be there whether the due process was followed or not. Is this true?
Are we not part of this problem? From the places of our worship, to the football teams that we support, to the clubs that we drink, does it show how tribal we are? Do you have a problem with somebody just because he or she comes from a tribe that you hate? How can we help Kenya to get rid of negative ethnicity that politicians exploit especially during elections? Would you rather have a competent and qualified person in leadership who can deliver or you’d rather have an incompetent and corrupt person who comes from your own tribe? These are the hard questions that as individuals, as communities and as a country should ask ourselves if we have any desire or hope to remove this monstrous cancer that is deeply entrenched into our social fabric.
Isn’t it a big shame that only a tribal alliance can make one to win a presidential election and not the policies or issues that one stands for. #TRIBALNATION.
Are there Kenyans out there who can stand up, and who are ready to serve this country with pride and dignity without tribal inclinations? Isn’t it a big shame that since independence tribalism remains to be the number one topic in the national debate? What are you doing differently as a Kenyan, to fight tribalism?
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