Bungoma Township Ward aspirant Hon Ben Ben Karuga reaches out to residents to preach peace. (PHOTO: Simiyu Simiyu).
By Simiyu Simiyu
The clouds are gathering faster than the word fast itself. The sky
is watching us down with sypmathy and sorrow. The wind is running away as
we near the next general elections in 2017. The ever-watchful sky is
worried not because we are nearing the August polls but because it’s
approaching faster at a time when tribal hating is escalating with every breath.
But is this not time to reflect on this big far we have come?
We have lived together as neighbours, brothers and sisters. We’ve never
chosen neighbours nor rejected tenants nor landlords because we do not
share the same tribe.
We’ve conducted businesses together, exchanged goods and services without
hitches. We never turn away customers who are not from our tribe.
We drop our kids at school in the safe hands of our hard-working but shyly
enumerated teachers. We never request the headteachers to bar some teachers
from attending to our children because they do not come from our tribes.
When terrorists attack our dear country, they don’t chose who to shoot.
They don’t chose a tribe or a community. When we get injured, we never
question the tribe of the good Samaritans before ‘allowing’ them to rush us
to the nearest medical centres.
When we reach those hospitals, the medical staff rushes in haste to attend
to us. Whether unconscious or not, we don’t have time to ask them whether
they share the same community with us so before allowing them to treat us.
When still in those delicate situations needing blood transfusion, we never
order the nurses to vessel us with blood donated only by members from our
Those of us who own beautiful cars (somebody remove me from this list
please, thanks) can testify. When your car breaks down in the middle of a
journey and passers-by stop to help re-start the engine, you never ask them
to spell their tribe before accepting them to give that free, helping hand.
As an artist -a comic scriptwriter and stage director, how I cherish this
field of theatre is amazing.
When scripting, I chose a particular setting, creat my own characters
assortedly reflecting various communities. I never ignore to highlight a
particular ethnicity bacause it doesn’t belong to me.
During auditions, my crew and I pick the best talent to star in our
stage-plays. We never sideline certain actors and actresses because they
are from a tribe our politicians don’t “agree” with.
Our fans call, visit and order advance tickets from all corners of the
nation. On the material day, they flood our social hall like a river that
has broken its banks. We never turn away members of the audience from particular tribes or
communities. Nothing inspires me like seeing hundreds of friends,
relatives, families, communities- all hords of humanity, storm our
auditorium to watch, laugh, laugh and cheer a play I’ve scripted.
You always want to know how special they treasure you for your plays to
attract such amazing attendance. I’m overcome by emotions. I just secretly
wipe those tears of joy as I congratulate myself and crew for using our
humble talent to unite the nation is such a manner.
Come Sundays, we share the same churches, sing the same hymns and dance to
the same Almighty. Faithfuls can walk out of a surmon to attend to an
emergence call but not because the brethren preaching on the pulpit is not
from their tribe.It is amazingly wonderful how we can’t do without each
other as brothers and sisters.
Yet our political leaders obsessed with cruel power want to take away what
belongs to us- the word PEACE- that we have enjoyed every sunrise we have
The power they want is not for us. It is for them. They want power to grab
more public land and protect their already grabbed ranches in the outskirts
of the cities.
They want this power to loot public funds meant for you and me besides
coming from the tax you and I pay.
This political power, to them, is their free world to escape their heinous
thuggery and political assassinations.
With power, they can kill you and I, rape your sister working as
their secretary, impregnant your wife and children, close up their zips and walk
back into their free world, looking for more sins to commit. No one can
touch them, even the constitution they claim to follow.
Once they lie to you and I to turn against each other, their heavy
security whisks them away to their palacial hotels they acquired through
looting the tax you and I pay, leaving you and my family in shackles of
bloodshed and shambles of poverty, not knowing where to start from.
The love we had that led us to inter-marry and the friendship we enjoyed is
no more. They women we married (I’m talking from the male perspective) and
the “tribeless” children we gave birth to become the most innocently
Fellow Kenyans, and fellow world reading this article I’m writing from a
corner in the kitchen because it is two rooms away from where the tv set
is to concentrate on this piece of writing, we will be judged by how loyal and obedient we were to our murderous
We will lose nothing by turning against each other the same we will gain
nothing by turning against each other.
Never shall we again allow what happened in Germany in the 1940s during the
Holocast where over six million Jews were butchered, nor lately in South
Sudan where over ten thousand were hacked to death following power conflict
between President Salvar Kiir and his Vice President Riek Machar nor in our
own Kenya where 1,133 civilians lost their precious lives after disputed 2007
elections nor in the famous 1994 Rwanda genocide where nearly a million Hutus
and Tutsis massacred each other in tribal clashes.
It’s possible to say, “NEVER AGAIN” and continue belonging to each other as
we’ve always. LONG LIVE KENYA. Long live fellow Kenyans.
NB: This article was first written for Blazing Magazine,a product of Churchblaze Group Org where this writer is a columnist.