Are we really ready?
For a nation as small as Kenya, I'm stunned by the magnitude of corruption going on. In a span of less than two months, various degrees of corruption have been revealed to the public. But by far the most troubling remain the shenanigans that went down at the Kenya Pipeline and at the Tourism Board. I single out these two because the nation is on track to lose billions of shillings to cartels that have blatantly worked with government officials to line their pockets at the expense of the Kenyan people.
How could thirty five million shillings have been paid to a company that never delivered services? And just how could Permanent Secretary Nyoike have failed to notice that Triton was teetering on the brink of collapse at the time the Ministry of Energy was pumping billions of shilling in awarded tenders to them? Something is gravely wrong in a nation where within such a short time billions of shilling are lost...and apparently without much of a fight from Kenyans.
But if you thought these are bad, consider the growing evidence that the hunger and starvation being experienced by many Kenyans now is actually the work of a cartel within the Ministry of Agriculture. These sleazy folks have consciously decided that the mass starvation of Kenyans does not mean anything to them as long as they make a little money. How can these guys sleep at night? What do they think when they watch the emaciated bodies of little children and the withering breasts of mothers who can't feed those helpless Kenyans? Martha Karua, if you truly know who these folks are, let Kenyans know with you. Then let us collectively ask how such cruel people can remain in office.
Then there are the people we call the police. I have never seen more blatant corruption in my life. These guys have perfected the art of grabbing money from the hand of a tout into theirs in the twinkle of an eye. I've even heard stories of senior officers who have worked a deal with the matatu owners so that for a fee of about one hundred shillings per day, the lucky matatus will never ever be stopped. The troubling thing about this state of affairs is that Kenyans seem perfectly okay with what's going on. Nobody is complaining. Just how did we come to sink so low?
But even in the face of such blistering corruption, I have hope that things will get better. I have seen a lot of Kenyan youths who are eager to take the helm and help steer Kenya toward what her real potential is. Before we stake our claim to leadership, however, we as the youth must answer a fundamental question: Are we any different than the people who have brought Kenya to her knees? What will we do about the police? What will we do about corrupt men like Okungu and Achien'g? Will we be content to just jail them, or will we go a step further and make them return the money stolen from Kenyans? And finally, what will we do about these cartels that are making life a nightmare for Kenyans?
Fellow Kenyan youth, are we any different?