Thursday, April 17, 2008

Now What ......

The latest episode that has become the saga of our lives here in Kenya is now that we are being held hostage by gangs of thugs (- apart from those of our coalition government of course, although all being sworn in quite happily today with Uncle Kofi standing by, are still arguing - sorry, negotiating), but by a well known terror gang known as the 'Mungiki'.

I have mentioned them before as over the last few months, they have been shockingly brazen about revealing themselves and brandishing their weapons and tactics about, and this latest episode even has them holding press conferences.

What is slightly worrying here is that the police insist they are in control of the whole thing. Eric Kiraithe, the police spokesman, has been marvelous as always, and has told all Kenyans to get their arses back on the street and stop getting so excited about a few hundred pyromaniacs roaming the streets with their box of matches in one hand and machete in the other threatening people.

“But Hey Mr. Kiraithe, Pray do tell,

If it was your brother living in Muranga town innocently running a little shop making a few thousand shillings a day, who was then told “Open your shop today and the consequences are a ten thousand shilling fine (which he could not possibly afford), or being beheaded, would you be still telling him to get his arse downtown and open those doors?”

The government somehow does not seem overly concerned about the whole affair. I'm not quite sure if it's because they're still smarting over who missed out on being in the incredibly inflated cabinet that we can ill afford, or if its that they're too busy getting in their wish list on which car, house, office desk, etc they would like to have purchased for them now that they are all so incredibly important! But whichever it is, they do not seem excessively bothered by how many Kenyans have been burnt alive or executed, and how much more property has been destroyed just in the last few days.

I was talking to someone in the morning who lives in Dandora. Now personally I would have said that Dandora was really one of the better areas of Nairobi in which to live. Rents are far from being the cheapest and it is most definitely not a ‘bad’ area of town with minimal violence, thuggery or anything else going down there – even in the post-election skirmishes - but now it seems Dandora is not the place you wish to be calling “home” anymore.

Now it seems that if you live in Dandora, first of all, you’ll be lucky if you can find transport at all, as all the matatus (or mini buses) that run around the area into and out of town have been warned off the roads, and those that are operating are charging over 150/- (over US$2) per trip, which when most wanainchi make not much over that in a day is not exactly conducive to bother going to work at all. Then she tells me that all the ladies in the area have been given leaflets telling them what to wear.

It must be a skirt and the length must reach below the knee.

Penalty for not following the dress code is a humiliating stripping and public beating.

Last night, SMS’s were sent round all over saying that you must leave the city centre by 7.30pm or you shall be killed. Then this morning new SMS’s stated that all those who work in the Industrial Area should not go into work.

It’s all just fear mongering but hey how much is your life worth, and is it worth ignoring these warnings because by doing so ‘Eric Kiraithe’ says you’re doing the right thing ??

The public demands from the Mungiki are that they are mourning the death of the wife of their leader (who is currently inside being entertained at the country’s expense), who was shot last week together with her driver, and they believe the police were involved and should be brought to book for it, and that they want some police force group that has been formed to crack down on them all, to be disbanded.

However, the leaflets now circulating on the ground ‘explaining’ this reign of terror go with a slightly different, yet more realistic reasoning, and that is that the ‘Mungiki’ say they have not been paid their ‘protection’ monies from various government ministers for the last few months. They had no part in the general election and therefore gained no rewards from that, and now that the Kikuyu’s have not taken a majority in the parliament and just to prove how powerful they are, they are going to paralyse operations in Kenya just to show that ‘all is not normal’ just because a cabinet has been named and all is ‘apparently well’.

They also explain that they are the ancestors of the ‘Mau Mau’ and that they brought independence to Kenya and therefore all the land gained from the colonials is rightfully theirs and they now wish to be handed over.

In this leaflet, there were apparently some ministers actually named of who they generally receive money from quite regularly, and reading it seems to me to make quite a few other discrepancies in our world here add up a lot better.

I personally will keep that bit of gossip to myself as like a true Kenyan I like to do some serious stirring of the pot and then keep all the best meat for me !!


Anonymous said...

Stumbled upon your blog. Great post. And I agree 101%.

PS: Hope you don't mind- I'll be making myself at home.....

nuttycow said...

Hey Wildeyearnings...feel free to move in. You can join me, camping in MC's back garden.

MC - I wouldn't be surprised if one Finance Minister was on the list of ministers owing?

seinlife said...

this is what happens when you sleep with psychos - makes me wish we were back in the days of Kenyatta so he can dish out slaps and clobber this mungiki sympathising ministers with his rungu in public!
This needs to be nipped in the bud...
- sack all the politicians implicated
- charge their MF a%&es
- round up these fools, load them up in a 'mariamu' & take them to Kamiti for good! LOL..maybe not but it's not like no one knows who they yes round them up + charge them.

Anonymous said...

Please please please post a copy of the Mungiki leaflets dropped around Dandora.
Also please tell me, when do they say that the IDP’s will get the money to start rebuilding their homes.

I don’t even want to mention the trauma of the IDP’s who have been raped. Who is going to help them with their psychological trauma?

Your blog has become a place that I have to visit at least once a day now.

Anywhere, USA

Anonymous said...



You are NOT fooling anyone with your cowardly emails. YOU ARE THE PROBLEM and NOT THE Solution to the Community’s terrible situation or the country’s equally terrible mess.

In the first place, you are Kibaki's sycophants and cheer leaders. You have blindly supported him on his journey to destroy the community and the country with his lack of leadership.

In the 2nd place you continue to divide the Kikuyu community into "haves"and "have not", Ngati na Itungati, Royal Families and Commoners.

Your sole mission now is to impose the children of those who have as leaders so that you can continue ruling the community from your graves. Your children are beneficiaries of the enormous wealth, which you have stolen from 1963 and before ’63, benefits given to you as bribes by the colonialists with whom you were collaborating. All these years, you have sucked our blood. You live on our sweat and you now have the audacity to style yourselves the saviours of our community!

In 1992, you conspired to stop Hon. Kenneth Matiba who cares for the poor and has no time for your class system from taking over as President. You, the “Royal Families” rallied behind Kibaki and formed D.P. at the 11th hour to split the Kikuyu vote. To you Moi was preferable to Matiba and his supporters who were “tumundu tutu” You do not care at all about the thousands displaced from their farms, businesses and properties. If truth be told, you do not care how many more are killed. All you care about is your hold on power to continue with your obscene accumulation. This is why even now you are leading the country to civil war and disintegration.

You have killed thousands of our young men whose only crime is being poor and unemployed on the pretext that you are “crashing”and wiping out “mungiki”. Only recently, you murdered Boniface Maina and his wife Elizabeth Nyambura in cold blood and dumped their bodies at Karura forest. Their young children are now orphans. And you entrusted the crashing to Kimendero the crusher to continue and finish the job he was doing in the 1950’s! You can rely on the pseudo mungiki youths who in truth are merchants on hire claiming the brand name mungiki.

Before on behalf of the Community we confront those in the country who think they can isolate and exterminate the Kikuyu community, we shall sort you out first. You are the Traitors to the community. Your stomachs is your only concern. When you are issuing your threats; do NOT for one moment think that you have the monopoly of violence. What you have is the wealth stolen from the masses and we shall come for that too. Do not ostracize one of your own Charles Mugane Njonjo because of his personal differences with Kibaki. He is one of you. The others are Emilio Mwai Kibaki, John Njoroge Michuki, James Njenga Karume, George Kamau Muhoho, Uhuru Muigai Kenyatta, constituting the House of Lords and the recently constituted cast of Maina Kamanda, Amos Kimunya, Martha Karua, George Thuo, Dick Wathika, Lee Muchiri, Beth Mugo, na kanda cianyu cia moko, Murathe, Muigai Njoroge and Kamau Ngunjiri. There are others. We know them all.

Inyui Inyuoothe ni-inyui thaata cia Ruriri na cia Bururi.

aims said...

MC? Are you in danger because of this blog? Is there a chance that might happen in all this craziness?

That leaflet has me worried more than ever for you.

Anonymous said...

@ aims
the above leaflet is not addressed to Mzungu Chick. It a copy of one of the many leaflets that have been found dropped is some places in kenya. The people mentioned in the leaflet and their families are the ones who should be worried.

Anonymous said...

I came accross this in one of the blogs and thought I'd share:-

"Mungiki are listed in the encyclopedia of anthropology as direct descendants of Muturapithicus, a tobacco chewing, tree-dwelling species that roamed the forests of Mt. Kenya more than 20,000 years ago. The species is characterized by a sloping forehead, an overhanging brow, discoloured teeth, laboured intelligence and deep-seated hatred for anything female."

Honestly, i can`t stop laughing and my ribs are and have been aching since i read this. I was reading the encyclopedia of anthropology this morning and never found any information about that.

Baba W&M said...

The Mungiki is a politico-religious group modelled around the Mau-Mau fighters of the 1950-60s. The group was initially created in the late 80s, early 90s as a local militia to protect the Kikuyu against disputes with the Kalenjin and the Maasai that had to do with land. During this time the politics in the country favoured these two communities and the Kikuyu did not feel that they could get a proper hearing from the government.
Because of the poor economic conditions of the country during this period and the serious disparities between the rich, particulary the politically connected, and the poor (ref. Goldenberg was at this time) many of the Kikuyu youth particularly in the areas around Nakuru, Molo and closer to Nairobi felt (and actually were) disenfranchised. At that point even getting a job depended on which part of the country you came from even entrance to the various universities and bursary allocations had a tribal skew.
These young fellows found a brotherhood in the Mungiki and as barbaric as they look and sound there were a few clever chaps within. Their leader, who is currently a guest of the state, would have been in his early 20s at this time.
Due to the politico-economic situation at this time various things happended, we had the slums growing exponentially, crime abound and due to an increase in the population in the capital a chaotic transport sector, this was an opportunity for the Mungiki. If you consider there are approx. 100,000 matatus in the country. If these guys are collecting Kshs 100 from only 20% of them per day that is a cool Kshs 2,000,000.
Some of the people within this organisation (because this is what it is) realised the potential created by the governments lackluster attitude towards taking care of these issues.
Since then Mungiki has grown both economically and politically to the extent where they are almost untouchable, they own houses from Mathare to Westlands, are in the extortion business from the Kiosk owner in Banana to well heeled Mobile phone airtime distributors. In the previous goverment and this one too (not much change) they have minsters in their pockets who ensure they are not touched. An example is a large group of them who were arrested during the skirmishes witnessed recently. The prosecution put forward such a mediocre case the judge said that he felt justice was not served. The prosecutions main argument was that the accused were found without underwear !!
As usual the government will wait until the problem is exacerbated, then they will run around like headless chicken.
This is a serious problem and cannot be taken lightly, particularly now that these guys who mistakenly think the represent the Kikuyu feel that they have been let down in the current government.

MC sorry to blog on your blog.


Wildeyearnings - Karibu, pull up a chair.

Nuttycow - finance minister not a name I've seen on any list so far

Seinlife - good idea probably but you know one that will never happen

Chocolateeurydice - Your wish was granted (see Anonymous below for leaflet), and as for the IDP's, no-one's really quite sure when they will be returning home but there are a lot of aid agencies doing their best right now trying to help them out physically and psychologically and meanwhile the government keeps promising money too.

Anonymous - thanks for posting that leaflet for us.

Aims - As Anonymous says below, this is not directed at me at all, but more at the members at the top of the food chain that's called our government.

Anonymous - thanks again for explanation there

Anonymous - interesting Mungiki listing probably in the "Luo's version of the encyclopaedia of anthropology".

Baba W&M - You go fellow. I have no qualms of others blogging away in these parts. Great explanation of what it's all about I think.

Anonymous said...

Does anyone else outside Kenya feel disgusted and hopeless when they read the hateful stuff being posted on line?!!!

I had hoped that the folks out here would be the slightly better educated and exposed.
Lost Chick this is why I fear that when I return, I won’t recognize Kenya.

Anywhere, USA

Anonymous said...

I don't feel hopeless... I have hope but there's alot of inequality - the few stinking rich and the majority very poor. Once this is addressed and sorted out, I bet you all the hatred will fade away...I know we all can't be equal but the gap between the two groups should not be as it is right now.

Anonymous said...

"I personally will keep that bit of gossip to myself as like a true Kenyan I like to do some serious stirring of the pot and then keep all the best meat for me !!"

Uh, hum...We learned it from the Brits. They take the pot as well.

William Deed said...

Rather than me stay with you, I think you should come stay with me.



Chocolateeurydice - you'll recognise it I'm sure because after all this nothing has really changed.

Anonymous - I totally agree. There are some major issues to sort here.

Anonymous - We shouldn't pick up bad habits!

Will - Think you might be right there. :-)