Saturday, November 22, 2014

Pain as tall as Kenya's giraffe: Don't cross, not even if you are a zebra!

We have to conserve our wildlife, to save Kenya, Photo by P Ikonya

The story broke last month. Kenya Defence Forces were accused of having business dealings with Al Shabaab. How can Kenya cross that line?

We cannot afford to doublespeak about so many things. To do strange business both as citizens or leaders...but for the Forces to be in this is to say or to force one to say this is a real failed state! But many do not want to hear that.


This morning 28 persons were killed near Mandera Kenya and they join the list of very many others who have suffered untold agony in attacks.  Among those who died were 17 teachers. Al Shabaab has claimed this morning's attack. It was gruesome. 

People were divided into those who are Somali and those who are not. Those who could answer a few Koran based questions survived. The others were sprayed with bullets from different types of guns. Survivors in full trauma recall details that would make anyone shudder.

You are not this, so I kill you. You are not my religion, so I kill you? You are not able to speak my language so I kill you? This cannot be. It certainly is not a command of any God and therefore, let us stop using teachings of Islam to try and cover our shame and nakedness. This is complex but it must simply stop. 

Of late, Kenya has been talking tough to the world about her goodness. To the UN, to the UK about tourism and other matters. Many have recently commended Kenya. She deserves to be heard of course. 

We have to first save these animals for their own sake, not just for tourism. To save our country. Tourism is secondary to that. 

Kenya wants tourists to keep coming and for that there has been a flurry of activities including last week's great effort to get travel bans lifted from Kenya by the UK. And Kenya won. Huge conferences on Tourism are scheduled. So it would seem that we are doing well. 

And terror is everywhere anyway? But certain things are so telling on Kenya's compromised situations. It goes back to the same departure from basics that cannot be contravened if we want security and growth. 

No matter how much they hit us, let them not find us killing both wildlife and people, divided and lacking in so many ways. Greed and corruption growing. Money from poached wildlife, charcoal sales finding its way to help Shabaab militia.

Kenya cannot afford to play the politics of greed and compromise. Everything that makes us weak must be thrown out now as in the way things are tossed out to save a vessel threatened by a storm.

This not only for politicians but for all of us. No Fund can help us, no money will redeem us. We have to go back to our own drawing table. Right from homes to counties to the whole country. For every time corruption grows wildly we are all more insecure. 


The story about Kenyan military officers involving themselves in business with Al Shabaab is frightening. The reality of what is happening to the elephants and other wildlife appalling. It gets worse.
How crass can this be! Giraffe remains from Northern Kenya
photos of Rabia Haawa
I cannot sleep tonight without sharing what Hawi Odingo via Rabia Haawa posted on Fb today. Who will stop who in Kenya? 
Who will be secure? Forces dealings with Al Shabaab?

 Look to the left. Look to the right. And don't cross. It is Kenya. Soon the zebras will be crossed regardless of zebra crossings!
Temple: Open skies and Zebras on a Sunday morning Pic by Philo Ikonya
On an early ride through the Nairobi National Park, I felt like I was in a temple. 

It is difficult to watch wildlife and not feel as if someone, bigger than all, an artist, has not been there planning and placing things in a beautiful way.

How can we save ourselves from being endangered by endangering animals? It does not work! Did I say endangering? Annihilating!

Tuesday, November 18, 2014

Contradictions 3 : Kenyan women should wear military gear, not minis and other choice things, love from Nairobi's Hell's angels

Well dressed women camouflage in Kenya.
Source Nairobi news in Photos... here... http://goo.gl/M0jwSk

Fundamentalism in more ways than one. Some men, some Matatu touts, in Kenya have become the Chief Inspectors Commanding Women Wear! CICWW...

Demonstrations are in order. However, we have to remember that women have been stripped naked in rural Kenya, including girls in trousers were stripped. This mainly happened between 2001-2009. The women in these areas obeyed the 'rules'  and some even moved from certain areas to be safe.

Stripping was done often by some people who said they were Mungiki militia. They called for women and all to return to some traditional practices including what they call circumcision. They effected this from time to time on old women. For this to happen, a woman has to be stripped naked and her genitals cut.

So, stripping women is not new. Stripping them of short clothes, tight trousers or miniskirts is not new but recent, 2014, stripping of women in mini skirts in the city has caused a furore. Are we reaching the roots of it all?

Maybe the strippers have been hotter in the last few weeks because a man who argues that men are so oppressed in Kenya formed an organisation called The Development of Men, Maendeleo ya Wanawake and has been hard at work. 

He parodies Maendeleo ya Wanawake, that had a strong name in working for women until politics destroyed it over the years.
The leader of Maendeleo ya Wanaume last week called a sex boycott by men because, he said, women are too violent and are beating up men at home. 

His NGOs copies activities of women organisations so that he can get the ear of donors and he does. He does not speak about the quality, the lack of it, of fatherhood in Kenya. All is well. He speaks about women as the unbearable breed.

He said, that men should not touch women as they are so vile. In fact, he added, they should wave at them in the air... the greetings of the air, ciariera! they are called in his Mother Tongue and never shake hands with them.

 Now men are not just touching women. They thrash them to death at times. And other odd things happen. Like being asked why they wear what they wear. They never heard anything like I wear what I want. 

I do not like to talk about Kenyan police. Let me forget a certain chapter for it includes me and my friends and remember someone else...

 A woman Police Officer

A woman police officer was summoned for wearing a tight skirt. She was supported by Kenyans who stood with her. She nearly lost her job however, and even now some people would like to whisper into her ear that "Security should not be this tight". That was a kind of a bad joke that ensued in the situation. She was on duty when people from State House were visiting her area and her skirt was splashed in the media instead of the clothes of the dignitaries. She got invited to a media show and she stood her ground. She won.

Still I know many, who would tell her to prefer to wear trousers and to hide her curves. It is not so long ago that women in Kenya moved around their world, with short slit skirts. Traditional. And some with practically nothing. We had no men running to dress them up. Granted things have changed. I mean in Kenyan style, not that missionaries have come and done their thing, no, I mean that many preachers have come and stolen both the women and their songs and clothes in God's name. Some thieves come all the way from America to do that. Fundamentalism is burning.


But to show how tight security should be in Kenya, I saw these pictures. http://goo.gl/KmmZGu Then I heard the Commander In Chief, CIC, say when some army persons were killed in Kapedo, very sad as they were calling for help for 36 hours, that it is as if some people want to say there is no Government in Kenya.
Pic from Nairobi news in Photos... here... http://goo.gl/M0jwSk

When the CIC put on army gear, the donning of the gear sparked a debate. Why and why and why? Finally like with all things, such as the results of the election and the authority to be in office, this died down. Calmly. The gear discussion I mean. 
                   
November 2014

The General Elections of 2013 and of 2007 are undying and keep appearing like certain snakes that are visiting a man in Kisumu, in his house. He ought to be happy but he is scared thinking they are ghosts. He needs help from the Kenya Wildlife Services but instead he is calling a pastor in old rosaries and some strange clothes ( No one is checking too much it is not a woman) to exorcise his house of ghosts. 

Women know what to do with their bodies. Our mothers stripped for power in Nairobi, The Mothers of Freedom Corner. Now the men rip women's clothes to teach them how to dress! This is unacceptable! #MyBodyMyChoice! 

The act of stripping a woman naked because she is wearing a short skirt is unfortunately not new in Kenya. It is illegal, however. Length and width are all she needs to be a good woman. Not to tempt like a snake. Everybody goes to school in Kenya, it is a rule. Many students suffer finding clothes to wear for school. It is a fact. It may be easier now but it has not always been. Do we have to shove clothes issues on women and not to be proactive on so man other issues?

And why is the Big Bad Wolf so scared? It is not fear. It is a show of power! Power that breaks bones on its way to more power. There are still many bare- breasted women who are not disturbed by anyone where they live in their rural zones. But it is not about breasts or zones. A 93 year-old woman was raped in Nyeri this week. And this is not the only case. Babies have been raped too.

 It seems that some men in Nairobi are missing women who are clad in bui bui or hijabs and are beginning to make a point. I do not know why they have not started at the coast. Maybe there women's dress code is adhered to. Just wondering. Whose dress code?

It goes like that apparently. One man looks, sees, tells another or the other and his 'friends' decide that she is showing what they do not like it, she is helpless. A militia mind makes rules. Touts and Mungiki were never far away. Now, then, is it all touts who are stripping women in Nairobi?

HER. Men can and do decide to strip her of her clothes in public. They can jeer at her, beat her up to. But you see men who do this are angels. Hell's angels in Nairobi. Their work is ridiculous. The assumption is that men have no muscles. You can never, ever see them in tight trousers, shorts or even shirtless. And why should you bother? They are sure impunity is on their side, even if they are arrested. Sixty seven of them were rounded up but what will happen to them? Still another woman was stripped as Nairobi women demonstrated.

 MEN in any clothes: They are invisible and that is why no woman ever, ever speaks about their clothes, how they show off their chests. Women have no such eyes as to see such or respond in any way. Women are seen as objects and to prove it is not hard. Women have to cover up their curves all the time. Also in the homes older women ask younger ones not to wear short clothes and that includes anything that shows that a woman is attractive. It is not good for men.

You see, that is why women need those kangas around their waists to make them pass of as meek and humble and well covered. And it has nothing to do with breasts and neckline. This many women going around Nairobi have pretty good exposure in the sense of a good low necklines. Nobody puts their finger or throws too many eyes there.

We do not name our lower regions. It is the legs and the back and the waist that cannot be visible and should never, ever show because as one man put it, his children should not show him their legs, their underwear. All the area around the waist and behind is so terrible. It is like an intruding venomous snake. You see women are supposed to be trimmed in such areas and made as invisible as possible, if necessary and often they are cut there so as to learn.



Snake that sees woman

Tonight there is a man renting a room in a hotel in Kisumu. He is sleeping there alone, not with all his family. Not with his wife. He says his wife sees snakes, she calls him, they are killed by the public. She is at home with the snakes and neighbours. 
He is in a hotel room until the creatures go away. 
He says he has called for prayers because his house needs to be exorcised. 

Very fortunately, his wife has not been beaten up by him yet. A neighbor has. This neighbor claimed that the snakes will not cease coming into the house. The owner of the house, the man of course, beat him up. How does he know where the snakes are coming from, he demanded to know? Violence will solve all your psychological seems to be a well selling ad in Kenya. So might the clothes you wear.