What should take priority? Have we ever taken teachers and schools seriously? In the last elections a promise for a free laptop for every young student was made. Considerations about electronic dumping on Kenya were disregarded. As the world moves to smaller gadgets, there are big size laptops to get rid of.
Some schools do not have a roof over them. There are still pupils learning under trees. There are pupils who already have laptops because they come from middle class families. There were many other things not considered. How do politicians see the needs of Kenyan people? Why did we take so long to resettle 500 000 Internally Displaced People http://www.knchr-idp.org/since the violence of 2007 which we agreed to sort out at the Hague's ICC?
Why are those who lost life and limb so forgotten now in 2013 when those accused seem to want to shun the process rather than follow up their election pledge that they would cooperate with the ICc and rule Kenya on Skype? For indeed that is what Uhuru Kenyatta and William Ruto who are among those accused told the Kenyans as they campaigned.
Kenyan teachers are on strike again. Students are at home, anxious. It is laptops that have now become like lollipops or is it the teachers' salaries? is a crucial time of the year for schools in Kenya. It is not holiday time. It is not summer, if anything it is close to the hard work days of the coldest season. Leaders are busy addressing Obama who is not visiting Kenya on his words of acceptance of gay people. Moralising him here and there and reminding him of his traditions. Of course we have no such people here, we are Africans. Gay did you say? Traditionally you know, here we do not have a word for such people. Even in Uganda they do not exist... and I mean it. Africa is clean. And praying we go Lord our souls!
On many things we are still taking sides depending not on the objective picture but on what we think should make our political divide happy. We are hopelessly divided. We are ethnically inimical. At least the people who are talking on the streets and on social media are revealing much hopelessness. But even these thoughts of the blogger and the desperation of others would be boxed in as reactions of not wanting to support someone politically and many Kenyans will say to them "Move on!" These have become the two most common words after the contested election as Raila Odinga went to court on the results and the Supreme Court of Kenya ruled that Kenyatta had won the election and he was sworn in as President whilst Ruto became the Deputy President.
I recall a woman coming to us on a street in Nairobi, and she asked me if as human rights activists we defended people who had joined Mungiki from being killed. I told her we defended humans but not evil deeds. She said that was good but that we should agree that some people be killed if they are guilty. I told her there was a court of justice for that and it followed due process. And I knew many of those young men would never see a process such as that. Many were eliminated by police and that means many innocent people too were killed.
"Mungiki is not simply a law and order issue. It is a socio-economic issue. Everybody knows that Kenya is one of the most unequal countries of the world. I have never supported Mungiki's excesses but let us not just treat symptoms, let us appreciate the disease." And I hear a voice ask too '... and where were you when so many people were dying?
Oscar and GPO Oulo were assassinated for giving legal support to victims on March 5th 2009. Their assassination was meant to send fear to human rights defenders and it did. Many of us had experienced police brutality. Now it is no better in Kenya 2013. There is fear to speak out. To oppose. Civil society as known in Kenya before is a pale shadow. Yes, there was a protest of pigs and blood outside Parliament by Occupy Parliament led by Boniface Mwangi but the focus was on MPs salaries. Fear leads many not to focus on the issues of the day and stand together as a national voice.
"Activists say this climate of fear among civil society has increased sharply since the new government took over in April," writes Tom Maliti in The Africa Report. Witnesses to the ICC have been intimidated. The Prosecutor says many were bribed. Mutula Kilonzo was so right. It is not practical to expect people to board the same plane home or bus after testifying against their won presidents. Was the election of the two out of fear too? Intimidation of witnesses is done by people who are unknown. It was written about before.
And we are listening and spending time in churches as Christians with all this blaming Obama for laws in his country and the ICC for looking for hunting down Africans for its corridors. We are off to the African Union to beg them to stand against ICC and before that it was to Gaddafi to ask for help Kenya and get the rest of the AU to support the accused without asking where are the victims.
This is about gross injustice. It is about us not facing ourselves. Uhuru Kenyatta and William Ruto must allow due process. So many words do not make sense. Replay Mutula Kilonzo.
Even in USA and Europe there are still people wondering if gay people are people. Just like people asked the Pope in the Catholic church if it was alright to baptise people with a dark skin. Did they have souls? And on this not all have moved on either! We read history and the Bible too.
There are certain limits we do not surpass here. We are not the Creator. We feed all our children equal food. We shall respect all people. Gay people are people because they are people.
*Update was on the news of 12.01.2015 and on IDPS.