Mob Justice in School Uniform

Now.., if Ferdinand Waititu slept in his bed last night, and not in a police cell, there’s something wrong with our police force. Far as any blind person could hear, disHonourable Waitutu’s remarks yesterday should be deemed as incitement to ethnic hatred. If anyone should argue otherwise, then please explain why the public reacted as they did – targeting their perceived anger stupidity at the Maasai community living in Kayole.

Perhaps the police standing next to the MP are both blind and deaf. Or like their seniors, they are afraid of going to the Hague. Perhaps, like his seniors Kayole’s OCPD is waiting for a cabinet directive to do his job. If a cabinet directive is not forthcoming, well then Mr Waititu may sleep in his warm bed tonight.

A few questions if I may:

  1. Now that Waititu was caught on camera saying Maasai’s be flushed out of Kayole, or that unspecified area of Kayole, would it be wrong for the Maasai in say Kajiado, to flush out other communities living there, if only to avenge the humiliation and ethnic targeting their brothers underwent yesterday in Kayole?
  2. If that were the case, would the police move in to deal with the situation in Kajiado or would they stand by and enjoy the (if you want, call it small) ethnic violence they overlooked oversaw in Kayole?
  3. How is it that the police did not arrest any of the people that took part in the mob justice and looting and instead only arrested those alleged to have been involved in the killing of the alleged chicken thief/ garbage collector?
  4. Finally, why didn’t the police arrest Hon. Waititu?

But if you think Waititu is the problem, then think again.

Go back to the clip and watch the kids taking part in the looting and mob justice. Look at the ones looting charcoal. Think for a minute. Why would kids loot charcoal? Where does charcoal rank in a child’s order of thinking? To me – no where. The way I see it, someone sent those kids to steal. Someone who would benefit from the charcoal. Someone like a parent.

Back to the clip again to time stamp 0.04. Watch as a young girl in school uniform viciously hurls a rock at a Maasai man, proud to be taking part in what she probably thinks is “adult-like” behavior. Where did this girl learn to mob people? Who is her mother? Who is her father? Who is her neighbor? Did any one of the adults in the crowd report her to her parents?

Who is her mentor?

See, Waititu isn’t the problem. He’s an aging man. Soon, he’ll be gone and forgotten, hoping of course he doesn’t end up being governor of this Maasai land called Nairobi.

But the girl in school uniform, who is barely 15, is the problem. She is the problem because she is the future. She could be the future that will form a third or two-thirds of parliament. Otherwise, she will be the future voter.

If at her tender age she can be so incited as to hurt a fellow human being – an adult for that matter- what does that mean for her and the rest of her peers who are yet to attain a voter’s card? Most importantly what does that say about us – her parents, her siblings, her neighbours, her teachers, the police officers who watched her, the viewers who only saw Waititu in the clip and not her?

More importantly, what does this imply about the state of the country just five months to the elections? Didn’t we learn anything from the post election violence of 2007/8? Didn’t we learn anything from being incited by politicians? Didn’t we learn anything about tribalism and ethnic violence? Didn’t we learn at least one lesson that we should have taught our children by now?

“Regional Balancing” and the Bastardization of Kenya’s Constitution

There is no doubt that the Government is the single largest employer in this country and I am but one of the many faceless public servants behind the scenes doing my bit to help run this great nation of ours. Beyond being a public servant, I am a Kenyan and it is in this capacity that I stand on this here DR Soapbox to denounce a dangerous practice slowly institutionalising itself within the Public Service.

Two words: Regional balancing.

In its simplest form, regional balancing is about public officials and administrators making final decisions on the composition of government offices based on the ethnicity of prospective and current staff.

The relevant legal provision underpinning this practice is found under Article 232(1)(h) and (i)(iii) of the Constitution:

“The values and principles of public service include… representation of Kenya’s diverse communities and affording adequate and equal opportunities for appointment, training and advancement, at all levels of the public service, of the members of all ethnic groups.”

So on the face of it, one can clearly agree that regional balancing is important in that it allows for greater representation of people from various ethnic backgrounds in matters of exercising public power and decision-making. However, I believe that this notion is being distorted much like ethnicity is often used negatively by politicians to antagonise and divide the populace along tribal lines.

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Daily Dozen: 21/02

‘Happy Birthday, Mr. Dictator’ [AllAfrica]
Africa is not poor. But She must spread the wealth! [Economist]
Kenya’s object lesson to Cairo on how hope can be raised and then crushed [DN]
Is the rest of Africa ready to revolt? [BBC]
Some Resort in Garissa. Apparently [Wordpress]
2045: The Year Man Becomes Immortal [TIME]
Where dictators go when their time’s up [M&G]
Letter to Luis Moreno Ocampo [TLR]
Negative Ethnicity [Wyndago]
Kenya’s Mobile & Internet, by the Numbers [WA]
Partying Amid Poverty Stirs South Africa Debate [IHT]
Facebook Rolling Out Gay Friendly Relationship Status [TM]

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