POOR GOVERNANCE

Sonko arrest: How pirates have become our kings

Kenya will continue being led by criminals, thieves and other miscreants unless we change our mindsets and undergo a complete paradigm shift on leadership qualities

In Summary

• How did a self- confessed criminal, alleged drug baron, jailbreaker get clearance from the DCI, the IEBC, the EACC and run to become MP, senator and governor of Kenya’s largest metropolis?

• In the words of columnist Mark Bichachi, Kenya is in the grasp of a “Medellin Type Cartel” that held Columbia under drug baron Pablo Escobar.

Nairobi Governor Mike Sonko is escorted by police officers after his arrest, at the Wilson airport in Nairobi, Kenya December 6, 2019.
Nairobi Governor Mike Sonko is escorted by police officers after his arrest, at the Wilson airport in Nairobi, Kenya December 6, 2019.
Image: REUTERS

Following the arrest and arraignment of Nairobi Governor Mike Sonko, the city has found itself in a legal conundrum as there is no substantive deputy.

The government and the Jubilee Party are running around like a headless chicken in an attempt to solve what is threatening to become a constitutional crisis.

The billion-dollar question is how our beloved country got to this position. How did a self- confessed criminal, alleged drug baron, jailbreaker with no known means of making money or education manage to get clearance from the DCI, the IEBC, the EACC and run to become MP, senator and governor of Kenya’s largest metropolis?

 

To add insult to injury, he secured more votes in Nairobi than President Uhuru Kenyatta and ODM stalwart Raila Odinga.

This whole saga points to a failed state, a nation devoid of morals and or values and a populace that worships handouts and freebies. When you see a group of MPS from both sides of the political divide, Senators who are supposed to be watchdogs of public funds, the PA to the Deputy President come to court as defence counsels and in solidarity with a suspected thief who has allegedly stolen hundreds of millions in public funds, then you must conclude the ordinary man/taxpayer is on his own.

In a show of force, the system has come out to defend its own and the possibility of a conviction is a mere mirage. They have come out to publicly mock us.

Kenya is currently held in a suffocating embrace by modern-day Robin Hoods. The only difference is that these modern-day musketeers work in reverse and rob the poor and then use the same funds to enslave them.

In the words of columnist Mark Bichachi, Kenya is in the grasp of a “Medellin Type Cartel” that held Columbia under drug baron Pablo Escobar. When he was eventually arrested, people in his hometown were heartbroken: Their hero, the one who rescued them in distress and gave them handouts, was now a criminal and eventually a fugitive.

Kenyans need to change their mindsets quickly and re-evaluate their value systems before it is too late. The youth, in particular, worship corrupt politicians in return for measly handouts.

The majority of our politicians have perfected the art of stealing from the poor in secret and then turning around and publicly praising God and then showering another set of poor people with gifts to sing their praises. Until the day we denounce handouts we will forever remain the slaves of our political masters.

 

Kenya will continue being led by criminals, thieves and other miscreants unless we change our mindsets and undergo a complete paradigm shift on leadership qualities. In the past, political role models such as Martha Karua, Musalia Mudavadi and a select few others have been ignored by the electorate in exchange for those engaged in largesse and conspicuous consumption but look at where this lapse in judgment has left our city and country.

There is virtually nothing functional in our capital city. The roads, water and sewage systems are in a deplorable state and if we are not careful, Nairobi will drown in its own filth in the near future and to the corrupt barons, what is the use of owning state of the art vehicles without roads?

Kenyans must stop playing court-jesters to politicians and pray and cry for their children who are facing an uncertain future. As a person who grew up in Nairobi in the 1960’s, this writer recalls with nostalgia when everything worked like clockwork: Immaculate roads cleaned with Omo every evening, pure hygienic drinking water, operational sewage systems, almost perfect City Council schools and a Kenya Bus Service that ran like clockwork on timetables and excellent security. Houses were not burglar-proofed.

My ex-classmates from St Georges Primary and Lenana School, particularly Dr Melvin d’Lima who literally forced me to pen this article will bear me out.

I weep for my children.