Thursday, August 23, 2012
Shikuku: Peoples’ Watchman, Superlative Debater
Martin Shikuku was a unique and talented Kenyan politician. He could as well be used as a poster for dynamic and witty politicking. As a master of parliamentary standing orders, he will be remembered for living way ahead of his time.
He spoke the truth as it was as evident when he reminded MPs that there was no need to substantiate the obvious 'Kanu is dead'. Standing up to Jomo then needed real guts and balls of steel and Shikuku had both in abundance and eloquence.
Speaking of being modern and living ahead of his time what of his ready made-to-measure grave and coffin in Bungoma county. You cannot make that up on Shikuku.
Shikuku's preparations for after life has few equal/s. Not least from an African statesman born in a community where death is only spoken of in hushed low tones.
Evidence of Shikuku's superb brain can be found in numerous research papers by Cambridge professors who used him to recollect and record Kenya's history.
Shikuku needed not be a paper professor. His death is like a library burnt down. Fare well son of Oyondi.
...Adds Kumekucha Chris
A political analyst once said that the best person to be president of Kenya in a transition from the old to the new was one Martin Shikuku simply because all that Kenya needed was a true patriot who would have only one agenda; to put an abrupt stop to corruption. New ideas and initiatives would come later because this single mission executed successfully would transform the country immensely.
That spoke volumes about the manner in which Kenyans viewed this courageous politician. Standing up to the murderous government of Jomo Kenyatta was no mean feat and Shikuku is extremely lucky to have escaped with his life. His woes did not end with the death of Kenyatta and he quickly found himself in trouble with Moi too. In a bizarre and strange twist of fate Shikuku died on the exact same date Jomo Kenyatta died in 1978.
Shikuku was there right from the beginning and was in attendance for the famous Lancaster House talks in London that crafted Kenya's first constitution. Virtually everybody else there went on to use their public positions to amass vast fortunes. In his last days Shikuku had to rely on government handouts to pay for his prostate cancer treatment. That tells you a lot about what this man was about and what he stood for.
I was fortunate enough to meet hero Shikuku a few times in his twilight years. A very easy guy to talk to with a great sense of humour. Great intellect too. But what always shone through was his great love for the motherland. If fate were to be fair this man deserved to be president of Kenya much more than some cowardly fence-seaters I know.
Kwaheri bwana Shikuku Kenya owes you much more than will ever be revealed.
Another Update from Chris
The late Shikuku prepared dug a grave and bought a coffin in preparation for his death over 20 years ago to ease the burden on his family after he was gone. Amazing guy. Read the story HERE