Day of reckoning is here for ‘one-term President’

Ruto has united the country in protesting against tax slavery

In Summary

• Gen Zs have nothing to lose and are crossing tribal lines to #RejectFinanceBill2024

Anti-finance Bill protesters take to the streets of Mombasa to demonstrate on Tuesday
Anti-finance Bill protesters take to the streets of Mombasa to demonstrate on Tuesday
Anti-Finance Bill protesters taking to the streets of Eldoret on Tuesday
Anti-Finance Bill protesters taking to the streets of Eldoret on Tuesday

I’m not one to relish in saying ‘I told you so’, but the fact remains… I did warn you.

On June 7, 2022, I wrote:

The mob took over the streets, causing traffic. I watched them thinking, ‘One day these same men will wake up and realise that the Sh200 doesn’t even buy flour, and they will be marching in the opposite direction.’ 

This in an article warningly titled, Politicians should never underestimate the people’s power, citing Sri Lanka as a cautionary tale.

On November 18, 2023, I penned A new low for the current regime in response to the November 6 Gazette.

At some point, the nonsense perpetrated by this government will break our backs as Kenyans. I have written so many times about the dangers of pushing citizens to the brink of where they have nothing else left to lose. As the wise men have always said, ‘Fear a man who has nothing left to lose.’ 

I can pull up many more examples, but the common denominator is that in most of my articles addressed or responding to the antics of the current administration, I often warned of the impending consequences of pushing the people too far. Some days, I felt like the prophetess of doom, always foreshadowing the day of reckoning.

But that day is here. Today is the day the people have said enough is enough. Today is the day we fight back!

It has been a proud week for every Kenyan watching the brave, determined youth take to the streets, demonstrating against the Finance Bill 2024. The determination and willpower the young people have shown us this past week is unlike anything we have seen in a long time. In fact, their courage was so impactful, it sent messages of hope and restoration of the people’s power to youth groups all across the continent!

You see, the Gen Z are the people we talk about when we say ‘have their backs pushed against the wall’. They have nothing left to lose and clearly very little to gain. Unlike us, the millennials who were forced to shut our mouths by accepting difficult situations because of ‘competition’, the Gen Zs are the people who will be the most affected by every stupid decision made by every leader in the last two decades. As the people with nothing left to lose and nothing left to gain, these youngsters are armoured by their lack of fear.

Their valiant fight is for all of us. Which serves as a reminder to every Kenyan watching the world over that this is not just their fight, it is our fight, too! To the millennials and older generations, do not just watch the Gen Zs fighting from your screens; join in the movement and #RejectFinanceBill2024. To Kenyans in the diaspora (myself included), we need to find ways of mobilising our support to rid ourselves of the tax slavery that will also affect those of us who do not reside in the country.

Kenyans should not work to pay taxes. We should not have to work to take home meagre amounts after deductions. I should not have to fear bringing home gifts for my family when travelling inside the country because of greedy customs representatives. I should not have to pay for the loans Kibaki took from China and Uhuru took from France. Let them sell off their multimillion-shilling properties to pay back the loans.

Our backs are broken, our reserves have dried out. There’s only so much you can milk from the common man.

To the Parliamentarians who voted “Yes” to the Bill, know this: You are part of the people. The increased cost of living will not only affect you but every member of your household, including your employees. To the policemen who teargas and water-canon peaceful protests, we say, we protest so you can take care of your families with the little the state pays you.

To the man himself, the self-proclaimed doctor, the captain of the skies, the tax collector and the fifth President of the Republic of Kenya, we would like to thank you for uniting us in our common goal.

If it wasn’t for you, we would not have awakened the power of the people. If it wasn’t for you, we would not mobilise ourselves and come together regardless of tribe or religion in our honest dislike of your governing. We would also like to thank you in advance for making history as Kenya’s first one-term President.

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