Biko Zulu, Are You Out of Your Mind Attacking Kenyan Diaspora?

You have touched a raw nerve my brother. How could you spend time to disparage a whole 1.5 million army of Kenyan immigrants spread from Swaziland to Switzerland, Oregon to Christchurch? What wrong did any of them do to you?

Ati we whine and call abroad home and splash the dollar at mama pimas, blah blah blah, on and on you went with your vitriolic diatribe.

Well, allow me to educate you and anyone who thinks they can poke the eyes of innocent, hard working Kenyans spread in all four corners of the universe.

Immigration has been and will continue to be a reality in human history. The same reason that made you leave Uyoma for Nairobi, or Kapenguria for Likoni, Mombasa, is the same reason that made Akinyi leave Ugenya for Adelaide, Australia or Kamau leave Thika for Buffalo, New York.

Were it not for man’s endeavor to explore and move out, Columbus would have remained in Spain, or Italy, or wherever he came from. Abraham was told by God to leave his motherland to move to an unknown place where he found his blessings.

Give us a break man! While we are at it, as the horde of your supporters clap at your hate speech, have you asked them the last time they visited their rural homes? Did you know there is a category of urban Kenyans who never sleep in their rural homes?  When they visit with vehicles larger than the village path, they troop to the nearest town in the evening to sleep in dingy motels for fear of jiggers and night prowls.

How many Nairobians call home to ask if it has rained and postpone their visit to the village because they do not want their Subarus getting stuck in the village path? And you dare raise a finger at us. You also live in a glass house. Usituletee!

Did I hear you castigate us for acquiring some foreign accent? And what will you say if you visited Mpeketoni, Lamu, or Kisumu Ndogo, Kwale where Kikuyus and Luos settled among the locals respectively and acquired their mannerisms?

When two cultures meet and collide, there is bound to be some layering, otherwise known as acculturation.

You say that our facebook pages are breathless streams of political consciousness tinged with Machavellian teachings. In the same breadth you accuse our politicians of not reading. Mamayo! The last time I checked, the Kenyan political landscape is filled with PhDs and professionals who have veered off to politics. And even if they do not hear, at least somebody said it.

We are bound to compare how things are done abroad with the sickening status quo at home. How long will Kenyans continue calling police stations only to be told the only police car has no fuel? Who will speak on behalf of that school girl I saw on Citizen TV who uses chicken feathers and dirt during her monthly period? In the meantime, our leaders are dipping their fingers into the cookie jar. And Mr. Biko Zulu wants us not to twit about it. We will continue to make so much online noise until the day our leaders will stay awake all night and realize that all is not well mashinani.

While you brazenly tell us that there exists a class of Kenyans who dine at the Tribe Hotel and sleep in Laikipia, there is nothing to celebrate about that. It only shows that the gap between the rich and the poor is wider than the Rift Valley. One can only give thanks that an immigrant working at a local McDonalds can easily afford to eat at the same restaurant with the city mayor and ride in the subway with Jay Z. Why? You ask, because the system is set to work for anybody with a sense of work ethics.

In the meantime, Kenyans abroad will continue to be patriotic. They will continue to support positive change back home, they will participate in the great debate to make our motherland a better place, and yes, when they come home they will point a few things that need to be done in a better way. They will forever be tired of the lethargic approach to work by some civil servants. They will forever complain about endless traffic jams, and that corrupt traffic cop. They will not fail to notice that the law states three passengers in a matatu seat, or that the County General Hospital has no beds.

For if they do not, their fellow compatriots may think that is the way things should be.

By Peter Gaitho |



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