Wednesday, December 19, 2012


This is a long overdue post, but whoever said better never than late is a sore loser.
It is that time of the month, er, year. The buses are fully booked, and even Channia express has the guts to charge 1500-plus from Nairobi to Msa, up from 800 bob. By 24th Dec, it will be cheaper to fly to Mombasa!
Yes, many a Nairobian ‘worth his salt’, and those who have mastered the craft of saving, are headed down to Pwani for Xmas. It is a yearly phenomenon; much like the wildebeest migration. In Dec, people from the Coast head upcountry for xmas, while Nairobians and ‘others’ head down under. Little wonder then , that Onyango from Buruburu will be at the Kenyatta public beach, his preferred getaway, only to realize that Njoro the guy from the local is also there, snuggling with Hadija Waithera, and four other watu wa chama pia wako area! Nairobi essentially relocates to Mombasa at this time! Wanna try Mfangano Island?
But that’s beside the point! There is this group of people who will be coming to Mombasa si Pwani for the first time. These are the people this script is meant for. If you have never been to Mombasa, here is a quick guide on the places u might wanna visit, and a few do’s and don’ts. I have been resident here barely four months, so I am not an expert yet, but what the heck, this is only an introduction!

Here goes:
1.    Bella Vista: This is where 97% of party poopers, er, goers from Nairobi frequent. Don’t be surprised to find that ka-regular from Betty’s and Tribeka here, coz he/she too will be told about Bella Vista. It is located just off Moi Avenue, next to the famous Elephant Tusks where shagzmodos take pictures as proof that ‘nilikuwa Coast’ ( Pembeni is to Mombasa what KICC is to Nairobi, but without hovering photographers). Bella Vista has VERY GOOD music. DJ Bunduki is special.
2.    Casablanca: If Bella Vista is the Baptism,  Casablanca will be your official initiation. The two locations are only a 50-bob tuk tuk away. Casablanca comes with its unfair share of twilight ladies, who will stare you into submission. If you are the weak type, chapa chupa mbili kisha uhepe, ama utabeba! But the real secret of Casablanca is not the main bar, it is the inner Casanova Bar. For an extra 300 bob, strippers await you in Casanova. Another 300bob will usher you into Casanova’s V.I.P. section. And another 3000bob will lead you to a bunny-ranch-ish dungeon.         Watch out for their live show, which starts at about 2.00AM. That show is TRULY LIVE. No further details, I’m sure some kids are reading.
3.    Bobs: Oh, Bobs. This is the after-party after the Party. Once you do Bella and Casa in town, take a mat to Bob’s. Taxis are so unused in Mombasa. It’s another popular joint, frequented by both Nairobians and (Mombasanians?). By day it is a gated parking lot, by night it is a banging club. It’s a Party in a Car Park. It’s main advantage is the open-air setting which enables lots of natural air circulation, which is welcoming in the unforgiving heat.  But if it rains, you are doomed. Bobs comes with an extra pub, Murphy’s, complete with a separate DJ. The slightly more mature Bobs patrons and slightly more expensive escorts frequent that place.
That essentially is the essential A-B-C of Partying. But here are extras to sample.
4.    MTWAPA: You have never really gone to Mombasa if you haven’t been to Mtwapa. Mtwapa is essentially a collection of all cadres of clubs, pubs and brothels, rudely interrupted by other businesses to make up the township. Mtwapa is also probably the residence of choice for the Many Hadija Wairimus and Fatuma Anyangos of Mombasa. You know what I mean. If you don’t, ask a friend. Highlights of Mtwapa are;
a.    Club Lambada: A club that flatters to deceive. It’s like Arsenal. One day it’s off the hook, the next it’s a staggering disappointment. Its main attraction is the swimming pool, from where the resident DJ spins (cool, huh?) and where the clubs holds the climax of its midnight cabaret show.  Those ladies can tease in the water!
b.    Casuarina: The population of Hoes to Patrons is 7 to 1. Need I say more?
c.     Lollipop. The first thing you see when you step in is a horde of very-nearly-naked women doing bad things to a pole. Its compact size makes it look like 3D.
d.    Every 5 metres is a kibanda that plays exlusive music, from Rhumba to Ohangla to Kilunda.
5.    Kahama: If you love Sports, watch it in Kahama. It is located along the Nyali-Mtwapa Road. Extra large screens which can air nearly 6 different matches at a time. So even if Man U, Arsenal Man City and Chelsea are all playing at once, Liverpool fans will still get to watch their match.
THE following hangouts are recommended for persons who want to enjoy their drinks without annoying riff-raffs and under-18s spoiling the moment.
6.    Sheba: Located at the Nakumatt Nyali building. Rooftop. Entrance mostly 1000bob. Its redeemable, but the charge alone keeps off wasee wa mtaa na watoi (pun intended).
7.    Lounge: Same building as Sheba, but ground floor. No charges, but for some reason only mature peeps are found there. Love it.
8.    Il Covo: Beach bar after Kahamas. Play mostly Techno and Urban Music. Do not go there expecting to listen to akina  Nazidi Kuwapa Vidonge. You will be disappointed
9.    Noons: Right inside Nyali Beach Hotel. In Nyali, of course. Very Classy. Frequented by Wazungus. Enuff Said.
And finally…

10.                  Kenyatta Beach, or Pirates. It’s a beach. Frolic and drink the salty, frequently peed on water. It’s good for your skin.
11.                  Mama Ngina Park. Mombasa’s Uhuru Park. It’s by the Ferry. You can go there when you are finally broke and waiting to go back home. Located next to the ferry, you can while away the time watching ships come and go across the channel.
This list is not exhaustive, I have not even touched South Coast with its Shakatak and Fourty Thieves in Ukunda. But it should get you started.
And now, the basic dos and Don’ts
- Carry a cartful of money. Nearly every club here charges entrance fees. Charges from 200bob upwards peak. If you club-hop, you might just spend almost 2K just entering clubs. Make that 5k if you are the ‘sponsor’. And you haven’t even started drinking!
- Carry your swim-suit or that huge kaptula you sleep in for the beach. Nothing is as idiotic as walking along the beach with your tight jeans folded up your lower knee. Priss, styre up! You may also choose to hire those swimsuits, which everyone else has worn, from the beach operators. Afterwards see your dermatologist just to make sure.
- Book your ride back before you travel. Pesa itaisha Mombasa na hauna doo ya kurudi. Aibu ndogo ndogo nayo!
- Buy and carry your condoms, if you must do it. For some reason getaways to Mombasa also mean lots of casual sex. And Mombasa is sex waiting to happen everywhere you go. But u wanna go back home healthy, no?
-       Chips funga, if you have no extra change. In Mombasa, unofficial opinion polls reveal that at least 60% of ladies in the nightspots are selling- from Bella to Bobs to Mtwapa. Casablanca and Casuarina probably stands at 99.8 %. Listen, if there’s a stranger willing to go with you to your kichinjio, chances are he/she will charge you. This is not Betty’s or Hearts, the ladies here are not worth just three Smirnoff Ice...
-       Go with a beach-boy too far in the waters ‘ati anakufunza ku-swim”.  Legend has it that some beach boys will lead unsuspecting ladies deep into the ocean in the pretext of quick swimming lessons. When you go that far, they will threaten to leave u to drown if you don’t push aside your bikini for ‘access’. He will do his thing as you hang on to him helplessly, then guide you to a crowded spot and swim under to the other end. Utado? Avoid this scenario. Always be with a friend, and don’t go too far if you cant swim alone.

Mombasa Yapapasa, Mombasa ina anasa. Have fun, but be safe.
Happy holidays. E&OE.


Sunday, June 24, 2012


The advisory did not mince words. The U.S. Embassy in Nairobi claims to have received information of an imminent threat of a terrorist attack in Mombasa. The US government officials  travel to Mombasa is now suspended till July  1st 2012. And its citizens advised to consider this information in their traveling planning. Translation: they are better off not traveling to Kenya.

         And the impact was instant. The British government, quoting the US warning, also advised its nationals to exercise extra caution and vigilance when considering visiting Coastal Kenya and much of North Eastern Province, and even parts of Nairobi which it described as ‘low income.’ They did not stop there, their citizens were asked to see their travel advice before traveling to any other part of Kenya.

This is a big blow to Kenya’s tourism business especially because the Coast attracts the bulk of Kenya’s tourists from the US and Europe. 2010 was Kenya’s most successful tourism year in history, with over 1 million tourists visiting. The government earned 73.68 billion shillings over the same period, and then tourism Minister set a target of 2 million visitors by the close of this year. This was a huge recovery since the 1998 bombing which literally brought Kenyan tourism to its knees.

To achieve this the Kenya tourist board has been aggressively marketing Kenya as a high value destination for high spending tourists and this has been paying dividends. In 2010 United Kingdom led in terms of arrivals with 174,051 followed by United States with 107,842 while Italy and Germany took third and fourth positions at 87,694 and 63,011. The status quo has largely been maintained in percentages. But the advisories hit Tourism where it hurts most- the numbers. The new US warning is an update on its advisory released on April 4th this year, citing  ‘potential terrorist threats aimed at U.S., Western, and Kenyan interests in Kenya, particularly after the death of Osama Bin Laden.”

The fact is Kenya has been attacked by terrorists mainly because of its perceived close relationship with the US and its allies. The 1998 bombing in Nairobi was targeted at the US embassy. Yet over 200 Kenyans died and at least 4000 were injured. 14 years later Many Kenyans remain traumatized by the worst terror attack on Kenyan soil. In 2002 at least 15 people died when a truck crashed through the gates of Paradise Hotel in Kikambala. The targets were Israelis, another close ally of the US.

Since then the US has issued sporadic travel warnings against Kenya time and again, as Kenya increasingly appeared a pawn for terrorists targeting US interests,  ever since the superpower they declared war on terror. And while the US takes every opportunity to shout from the rooftops about its strong relations with this country and declare its support, in Kenya’s bid to protect itself, there is little evidence of material support towards the same. The spirit of partnership was largely lacking when Kenya stepped up the chase for Fazul Abdalla, the key suspect in the 1998 bombings. Fazul later died in hail of bullets from Somalia’s National Security Agency in June last year.

The US has also been largely AWOL as Kenya waged a one-man battle against AL-Shabaab, who have publicly declared their loyalty to international terrorist outfit Al Qaeda. When KDF launched Operation Linda Nchi and entered Somalia to pursue Al Shabaab, the international community was largely mute. Now our army is one city away from conquering Al Shabaab with the help of AMISOM.

On that evidence the alleged US support to Kenya in the fight against terror is largely lip service. Yet this war, in the first place, is their war. The advisories do nothing more than spread unnecessary anxiety, not just to their targeted audience but also Kenyans, besides hurting the economy. Ironically, whenever the US itself has come under attack on its own soil, the government has always responded by vowing not to be cowed by cowards.
TWITTER: @FerdyOmondi

Thursday, June 21, 2012


It has been a year of mixed fortunes for Chelsea. Two trophies in the locker covered for the disastrous Premier League Campaign, which saw the Blues finish an unacceptable sixth by their standards. And after two seasons of largely recycling an ageing squad, it appears the Russian is flushing out his cheque-book for a squad revolution.
    The capture of Eden Hazard was a huge statement of intent, and with names like Hulk and Edison Cavani in the air, it is safe to bet that at least one more big name will wear blue next season. Winning the Champions League had made Chelsea very attractive.
   But the bar has also been raised, no doubt. And with the aim to improve on next season's performances, the temptation to get tried and tested players is very high. Revenue from the Champions League success has also made sure money will be spent without worrying too much about the financial fair play rules lingering in the horizon. However, this also means Chelsea can afford to "ignore" the academy players, which in my opinion would be a very bad idea.
   Abramovich has pumped millions of pounds into the Chelsea Academy. Wouldn't it only be fair if a product of that academy made his way into the first team? And I am not taking about those sporadic appearances. I mean a proper regular.
   The last such success was John Terry, but now in his 30s that is so history. Yet Chelsea has no shortage of potential replacements for the ageing players. Ryan Bertrand is really threatening, and after starting in the Champions' League finals, I see him getting a lot more playing time, which is good. Suffice it to say Chelsea need not buy a left back.
Josh McEachran was shipped to Swansea to get more playtime, but the team did do well Brendan Rogers kept the poor boy on the same bench he was trying to avoid at the Bridge! McEachran's potential is not in question. But he needs to play to realise it.

Does anyone remember Gael Kakuta? He is supposed to be the Black Zidane! The 4-2-3-1 formation suits him. Perhaps he could deputise Mata on the left next season?

How about Sam Hutchinson? By Grace he is back playing after that early retirement. The knee problem is gone. If Chelsea need a John Terry replacement, look no further than Hutch.

Then there is the curious case of Romelu Lukaku. Only at Chelsea would a player be bought for 20million pounds and then kept to in the reserves for an entire season. None other than Lukaku himself has been baffled at this move. Drogba is gone now. If Chelsea need to replace the Drog, Lukaku has all the potential. He is virtually alike-for-like replacement.

Its not possible to name them all, what with the likes of Lucas Piazon and Islam Feruz standing tall in the youth squad.
The bottom line is, can Chelsea afford to ignore all this talent while buying marquee signings? the answer is no. Kevin de Bruyne and Marko Marin are promising youngsters. Chelsea noticed them because they got playing time at their clubs. Bertrand is now a solid squad player at Chelsea. A long Ashley Cole injury layoff at the close of transfer window (Gor forbid) may not be so much of a headache as it would have been two seasons ago. THAT is because Roberto Di Matteo trusted him, gave him belief, and he delivered.
 Bosingwa, Kalou and Drogba are gone. Malouda and Essien could follow them out of the door. Out of five possible vacancies, Chelsea youngsters deserve at least two.

Thursday, March 15, 2012


Thursday was a morning like any other. Well, not exactly. I had slept only three hours- You see, the previous night I was shouting my voice hoarse in a club, cheering on Chelsea as they made an amazing come-back, overturning a 3-1 deficit to thump Napoli 4-1 at the Stamford bridge in a Champions' League knockout match. Being a Chelsea fan lately has been like supporting Arsenal in the past 6 years (pun VERY intended); too much promise, too little delivery, and bile from Manchester United fans. I nearly developed ulcers in our 3 torrid months- how Arsenal fans have survived 6 years of migraine-inducing now-we're-good-now-we're-dead football is very nearly an act of God, in my humble opinion.
        But I digress. So, I wake up in the morning, feeling light-headed. I shower, dress and head off to work. At work they all know I support Chelsea, and the congratulations I received might have made one think I scored the winning goal myself.  I then sat down, checked ma mail,  gloated some more about Chelsea on twitter, then the assignment editor informed me that some Kamiti Prisoners were set to testify against some judge at the Judiciary vetting. Destination; Anniversary Towers, 21st floor.
    I quickly assemble my gear; Pen: check, Notebook: check. Tapes- ah, I need tapes. Quick trip to Library, where I spend a few minutes haggling with the librarian over unreturned requisitions. Anyway, the matter is soon settled and off I go.
    At the anniversary towers we find the first available lift. There's a bunch of people representing the disabled fraternity, headed 20 floors up with us as well. They probably have a bone to pick with another judge. We all crowd in- no one wants to be left behind. We must have filled that lift to capacity- I think we were thirteen-to-fifteen. The lift beeps endlessly, because someone's garment is still in the sensor's zone. He squeezes in, and it's time to ascend.
    We went as far as the mezzanine floor. The lift suddenly bumped violently, twice, and stopped. Cue Total Darkness. There was a second of total silence, followed by a "Gosh, sasa ni nini?" The answer sank in three seconds later on all of us. We were stuck in a crammed lift, thanks to a power blackout.
    This was the first time it had happened to me. So was it for several of us, going by the hysterical whimpers that followed. I jokingly thought of the movie "Devil", the 2010 horror flick set in a lift, which starts with a stalling, and ends with all but two occupants dead at the end. Like I said, I thought about it jokingly.
    But that wasn't the case for the ladies in there. We hadn't been there 3 minutes, and panic had set in for some.
    'ai yay yay! Aki tumekwama, this is very serious!" quipped one.
    ' You know we can suffocate," said another
    "Pigia Saitoti!' added a third,
    Yes, you heard me right. One was asking for the Internal Security Minister to be phoned. Granted, it sounded like she worked in his ministry, but getting stuck in a lift isn't exactly a matter of national security, is it?
    I could have agreed with the one who quipped about suffocation. When our phones shed light in the mini-prison, the small opening at the lift door revealed a wall. We were stuck between Ground-floor and mezzanine. Oxygen was therefore about to be premium. But the yapping women and chatterbox man next to me were eating it all up so fast!
    For someone with respiratory problems, I knew I owed it to myself not to panic. So I breathed slowly. But however slow I tried, within five minutes I was turning my head in all directions, trying not avoid breathing in the breath of the man breathing out next to my nostrils!
    I sent out a text to my assignment editor informing him of the situation.
'Stuck in a lift in Anniversary Towers. Blackout." it said. Guess his response?
'we are praying for you' . The joker.
    My notebook earned a new designation as a fan, at least to circulate the hot air burning my nose. The heat was beginning to sear all over. Never underestimate the carbon dioxide you exhale. Our combined heaves, huffs and puffs were turning this dark lift into a boiler. I loosened my tie.
    Just when I thought we should now really be quiet, two women heard footsteps above us and yelled at the top of their voices.
'Tunajua, kuna mtu anakuja,' was the calm response from above.
'FANYENI HARAKA, TUNASUFFOCATE!' the woman was getting hysterical, and very pissed.
'Ah, Hapana!' retorted the guy.
That evoked laughter. The woman wondered how this 'idiot' had the nerve to say we werent suffocating, while we WERE the ones trapped. The chatterbox beside me didn't help matters by suggesting we write a will. Granted, I laughed at that 'joke'.
    When 20 minutes passed by, now I became concerned. This help wasnt coming. Since my office knew, I went on facebook (Where else). That way I'd reach many people at the same time, with the possibility of sharing my post spreading the message further. Just in case. The response ranged from pieces of advice (okoka sasa, do not panic etc) to downright ridiculous comments ( ile 30 bob yangu ni aje, confess now you never know, bla bla bla)
    30 minutes. I could hear death in the voice of one lady. If we did not get out soon enough....she did not want to finish. By this time, all porous parts of ma skin were pespiring. It was like having steam-bath in suit. No amount of hand-flapping was helping any more. Then suddenly, the lift jerked to life.
'Haiya, what's happening now?'
Help had finally come. I guess some winch was slowly taking us down, in little jerks. The door half opened above us, and with it a rush of oxygen. What relief! But it lasted all of three seconds- the technician slammed it shut again. You can guess what the panicky lady said...
We endured five more down-ward jerks, and the door opened again, this time at our feet. we were hanging at least a metre above the basement floor. Our instruction was to jump to safety. And we did.
    As we walked up the stairs to the open air on the ground-floor, I took time to reflect. Some of the things we ignore, and which we get so free, are so vital to our well being. Like the air we breathe.

Tuesday, February 7, 2012


This is one post that I must begin with a disclaimer.

I feel very, very, awkward writing about this topic. First of all, I was raised conservatively. My mother never discussed sex with me at any cost. All through my adolescent years, any question with a sexual inclination to was met with a template response, "we penja penjo mofuwo go," - don't ask me those stupid questions, or, 'dhi ipenj mbasni"- go ask your peers. As for dad, well, let's just say we hardly spoke. I thus had to learn about sex and sexuality the hard way- from the streets. And boy, did I learn! I might just be a guru. And I am not talking about the act. Though I wouldn't mind if I was thought of in that light...Ok, too much information.
Another reason that makes me write this with eyes wide open at the back of my head for flying objects is the fact that I am a Roman Catholic. Some of What I am about to share challenges every fibre of my religious beliefs. Finally, I am a journalist with followers from different dimensions of the sexual Prism. I recognize that. So please, read this with an open mind. The views below do not necessarily endorse my own beliefs.
Now, where were we. Ah, sex. The past week has been orgasmic, so to speak. It started with Nairobi Mayor George Aladwa suggesting that commercial sex workers may be given a license to operate freely. Commercial Sex workers. Yeah right! As if that makes them morally at par with mama sukuma-wiki. Yet, Call Them prostitutes and politically correct hypocrites will come for your balls. or nipples.
Anyway, The ripple-effect of that proposal would have made Jesus very, very proud. If only the protests were reflective of society. Everywhere, from the streets to tv to radio to places of worship, Aladwa was temporarily given a seat beside Satan himself for even thinking of such a heinous proposal. Why, legalizing commercial sex would be apocalyptic, Kenyan morality would go to the dogs!
Hellooooooo! Kenyan morality is already at the Dog Centre! Legalising commercial sex would not change anything. Well, the only change, in my humble opinion, is that the City Council would get more revenue, and that City Council askaris and the Police would have to find other ways to harass the CSWs for money or solicit sex from them- probably by arresting them for tax evasion.
Why so much bile? Technically speaking, if you are not a virgin, and are not married, and have had sex with more than one partner, YOU ARE A HOE. Now, before you cock your gun and point your barrel, hear me out. Many dictionaries, and I have just cross- checked, define prostitution as either :
(a) having sex for money, OR
(b) having sex with multiple partners.
None of the ones I checked combined both as a prerequisite for fitting in with the definition of a hoe. Now think about it, 'multiple' is basically more than one. and sex for money, methinks, mustn't be as direct payment. Favors, presents etc for sex fit in that category of sex-for-money too.

In short, you know you are a hoe if;

- Someone pays your bills, or house rent, or school-fees, other than your husband/wife or close relative/guardian. They do it in order to lay you. If sex is involved with your relative or guardian, well HOE YOU ARE TOO, and a twisted one at that!
- You are in and out of relationships faster than you overhaul your wardrobe. especially if you lay most of them.
- You have ever chips fungad or been chips fungwad. You hardly know this man/woman, apart from the fact that you offered/accepted that drink and had a banging night at the club, which ended with the crowning moment at his or her place. At least the chick in K-street goes straight to the point.
- You have hooked up on social network, and it did not end up in marriage. Facebook-funga is an open secret. Facebook has nearly driven premium hook-up sites out of business. It is free! All one does is send friend request, inbox, chat, and voila! If you are lucky, it can all be done in a day. Hoe!
I hear even twitter, which for so long has been about issues, has taken cue. No, we are turning twitter into another hook-up site. I hear DM has a Swahili acronym. Hint, D stands for a verb and M is for Mtu. If you don't know, find out and see how your eyes pop out like mine did when I first learnt about it.
- You have accepted that bus-fare/ fuel money in the morning after.
- You got that job by parting your legs. Or if you got that promotion in the same way. By the way, you may climb up so fast through sex, but when your godfather/mother leaves, that ladder will crash down faster than dominoes and take you down with it. Unless you start banging the new boss too. see? say it with me; HOE!
- you are addicted to porn. Why, you masturbate indiscriminately with many virtual partners. You selfish twit, share for Pete's sake!
- Your are married but simply cannot keep it in the den. Even after earning that coveted license at the altar, meaning you can choke, spank, pull hair or bitch-slap your partner without worrying abt your mind singing "God is watching you", you still had to join this band by banging someone other than your marriage partner. Disrespectful hoe.
Sex is good. It is meant for both pleasure and procreation ( says the Bible). But it comes with a rider, your partner must put a ring on your finger. Bottom line, if you are having sex and are not married, you are a prostitute of sorts. The difference between you and the call-girl is that you don't walk around with the tag pasted on your face or lifestyle. Either way you lose your blanket NO vote against legalising commercial sex on moral or religious grounds. For both of you have loose morals, by moral standards. And for having pre/extramarital sex, you surely cannot cast the first stone.
Sex sells. Just ask Classic 105. They knew how twisted the mind is and capitalized on it. We castigate Radio Africa for talking "shit" in the morning, but who tunes in? who gives them the ratings? Is it the high-end escort, the K-street sex worker or the low-life harlot in Sabina Joy? No, its you and me, student, parent, preacher, professor, doctor, "normal' citizen of Kenya. And who gives those 'stranger-than-fiction" stories? Husbands and wives. And please don't give me that they-are-doctored-stories drivel. Majority are true, and would put the conventional whores to shame.
The liberal world knows this, and have embraced it to their advantage. The Porn Industry now generates 10-14 billion dollars annually. Porn Stars are celebrities in their own right. Hollywood has made block-busters that glorify casual sex. Netherlands have the Red-Light District, and it's buzzing with tourism, creating many off-shoot jobs and generating millions for the Dutch government. Playboy is among the best-selling magazines at a time when electronic media is sounding the death-knell for print. And the Bunny ranch is a "prestigious" place to go- not every Tom, Dick and Harry can afford a 'shot' there.
The up-shot of legalizing sex trade is that we spare these CSWs stigma, frustrations and even violence. Regulating commercial sex ensures it is done in an orderly manner, where it can be monitored for monetary, security and health benefits. It could be a win-win situation for worker, 'workee' and regulator.
Because let's face it. Prostitutes are alive and well. No amount of arrests, beatings, bribery and rape in detention will deter them. And if you cant beat them, hell, join them! I am not advocating for legalization of commercial sex. But I am against sweeping the topic under the carpet. Give dialogue a chance. Prostitution is the oldest profession in the world, and you can bet your liver it will remain alive till Thy Kingdom Come.

The topic above brings me to a related, but more taboo topic in Africa. Homosexuality. Recenlty a national TV Channel ran a feature series that opened a can of worms and epitomized just how much the Kenyan Society is in in denial. Male homosexuals are selling their bodies too. And who are their clients? Your brother, your father, your boyfriend, your husband or your favorite pastor.
I am a strict heterosexual. I am not homophobic either. But I'm not here to discuss to be or not to be gay. What I cannot understand is the behavioral traits of some of these guys. So you are a man who hates women? Prefer fellow men? So why on earth do you walk, talk and act like a woman??? Make up your freaking mind! Some of us straight guys don't even like women who behave like that, three fingers wagging in the air while you talk and all!
And one more thing, if you are gay and are going to hit on a straight person, have some decorum. I don't seduce a woman with an opening line of "I'd love to sleep with you." In the same breath, it is extremely repulsive to start a chat by offering to suck my d*ck. The thought that a fellow hairy-chested, penis-carrying, two-balled, bearded man is hitting on me is unsettling enough. Don't make it worse with the etiquette of a chipmunk.
*grabs a sick-bag*

Twitter: @Fomondi

Wednesday, February 1, 2012


Forget circumcision. Forget the removal of six lower teeth. Forget the fancy body tattoos. Heck, forget killing a lion. In Kenya, a man is not a man until he has spent a night in a Police cell. Ask me, I have been there. Nothing in this world prepares you for adulthood more thoroughly than a night in a Kenyan Police Cell.

Not that I ever saw it coming. But then again, neither do the thousands of others who also have a certificate of initiation courtesy of Utumishi kwa wote like me. Raise the topic in any group of hobnobbing Kenyans. Chances are that four out five have had a brush-up with the cops, and probably two of them ended up jumping into the dreaded Mahindras in the 90s, Lorries or Land Cruiser pick-ups of the latter years, and eventually spent a night that could be well be the theme of a proper Riverwood script.
Speaking of Mahindras, they must have been one of Baba Moi's biggest practical jokes on Kenyans. Now, I was not old enough to be a police target when they were in operation, but I understand that the The Indian Version of the Jeep was so slow a suspect on foot could actually outpace police cops driving one! That might be an exaggeration, but they weren't the fastest or most efficient of police-vehicles. I do remember the Mahindras being as noisy as a posho-mill, meaning criminals could actually hear police approaching from a mile away, giving them more than ample time to take off. In the present world, Mahindras would be the cross-breed of a Probox and a Tuk Tuk- Ugly as hell and durable as Sandak.

But that is a story for another day. When I was ferried to a cop station to be a guest of the state, it wasn't via a Mahindra or a Maria. It was via a Datsun 120Y, owned by the then OCS of Oyugis Police Station. The events that followed would leave me with a permanent emotional scar, but which I now carry proudly as the badge of a most unconventional initiation into Kenyan adulthood.

It was one evening in Oyugis town. I was spending my post-KCSE and pre-college days as an actor, with a group called YOFAK. Youths Fighting AIDS in Kenya. Ours was a noble cause, doing HIV-AIDS-related theatrical pieces to attract crowds, and then our sister organization, the good people of Tuvumiliane Senta, would give real-life testimonies about their lives as people living with AIDS. We were agents of behaviour change. I believed in this cause so much that I walked 8 kilometers thrice a week from my Gamba Village to Oyugis town, where we did our rehearsals ahead of weekend performances.
After rehearsals I'd normally take a matatu back home, since it's an up-hill journey back. Our Village is virtually part of Kisii Highlands and the landscape is very good for practicing marathoners, not actors.

So, one such evening after rehearsals, I walked to the bus-stage and boarded a mat. At that time they were the face-me-propers. You know, those ones that have passengers seated on two rows either side, you sitting while facing a passenger opposite, literally forcing you to look into that face which could be unfriendly, callous, ogling at your cleavage (if you are a woman) or which has saliva vaporing from the side of the mouth. When the mat moves, the passenger next to you is likely to outstretch a hand to hold onto the metal rail in the middle for balance, exposing an armpit as bushy as Maasai Mara in the rainy season and consequently unbottling an odour that would make Dandora Dumpsite smell like Galito's.

So I boarded this mat, which happened to be the last for the day. It was already full. But you surely remember the matatu golden rule of the Pre-Michuki rules- matatu haijai. I sat on the edge of one seat, the driver unleashed the hand gear, pressed the accelerator, then made an emergency brake. The force squeezed all passengers towards the front and voila! There was space for one more! I fit in snugly.
A few men climbed up the body. Satisfied that we were overloaded enough, the conductor whistled. It was time to head home.

But wait. One more potential passenger happened by. It was an elderly woman, in her mid-seventies probably, trudging along with the help of a walking stick. Obviously we had to make space for her. Now, African tradition demands that young people show respect to the elders, and that includes giving up your seat. I happened to be the youngest passenger seated, and from the corner of my eye I spotted several pairs of eyes giving me that "simama mama akae" look. The woman also looked up at me imploringly. I did not need any other cue. I alighted.
" Ero kamano nyakwara, nyasaye biro gwedhi," she muttered in Luo. It means "thank you, my grandchild, God will bless you,". And with that I climbed up the body and perched myself with the luggage and passengers on top.

How I wish God heard her prayers immediately. I wouldn't be writing this now. But things did go differently, God was probably in a closed-door session with Agnes Gonxha Bojaxhiu. Don't Wikipedia her, you know her as Mother Theresa.

Up top, I had just turned a sack of sweet potatoes into a seat when I spotted the ubiquitous Datsun 120Y some 100meters away, driving towards us in patrol-mode. Slow But Sure. I knew that was the OCS approaching. And I guessed he wasn't just going to drive by. My first instinct was to jump off the mat and Usain Bolt myself to safety. My second instinct was to jump off the mat and Houdini myself in the shop corridors by the roadside. My third instinct was to pretend I hadn't spotted the Datsun, calmly get off as if I had only gone up to inspect my luggage, and then mingle with the bystanders nearby. I chose the latter.

As I was about to jump down with a semblance of innocence painted all over my face, I saw an out-stretched pair of hands, and a voice spoke to me, "shuka pole pole tu, usiumie, acha nikusaidie".
It was a plain-clothed policeman. About four of them had walked ahead of the Datsun, and surrounded the mat. We were cornered. He duly helped me down, and politely asked me to walk with him to the Datsun. I was in a spin. One second I am headed home, the next I am under arrest.
There were about seven of us atop the matatu. We were all huddled into the pick-up. I looked pityingly at the driver, then at the conductor, who incidentally wasn't arrested. I was hoping against hope that he would follow us to the station and bail us out, or even get arrested on our behalf. He sped off, of course.

On our way to the station, one policeman verbalized a litany of charges they would file against us. Half-dazed, I couldn't hear anything. All I heard was what he said at the very end, "Total fine ten thousand". I had a whopping 100 shillings in my pocket. I knew I was fried.

At the station, we were ushered into the reception, and our names duly written in the occurrence book. One policeman whispered that whoever had two thousand shillings would be set free. Then he said, 'kama hauna bond, toa belt na viatu!"
Two had the money and were set free. Another one negotiated his freedom down to the entire 600 bob he had in his pocket. I was the richest of the four of us who remained behind. 100bob wasn't gonna cut it. I took a glimpse at the crowded, poorly lit men's cell jus behind the OB desk. I could have sworn I saw expectant eyes lighting up at the prospect of 'fresh meat'.
With belt and shoes off, alongside other valuables we had, the cell door cranked open. And the policeman said, "karibuni nyumbani"

I slowly stepped in, one hand holding my loose trousers. Suddenly a repulsive smell hit my nostrils like a wave of Tsunami hitting the poor coastline of Sendai, Japan. I actually nearly fell. It was the smell of decaying human waste, akin to the unattended City Council toilets of old. I took two more steps, and my soles felt something sticky. The entire floor was sticky, and needless to say, they were not breadcrumbs on the floor.

There was hardly space to manoeuvre. I thought I'd sit next to the cell door for fresh air. Then a booming voice commanded us, "Ingieni huko ndani bwana! Mamono hukaa karibu na choo.".
I looked in the direction of the voice. It was a solidly-built, mean-looking unkempt ruffian, pointing towards the darkest corner of the cell. We did not argue, and made our way there, amidst warnings from the seated cell-mates, "mad inyona, ibiro yie", which means step on me at your own risk.

The toilet at the corner that the cell prefect was referring to was actually a black 200 litre water storage container that acted as the urinal and dumper rolled into one. It had no cover, and its sides had those tell-tale marks of its function. My digestive system instantly malfunctioned. There was no chance in hell that I was gonna help myself there, so help me God.
I made sitting space for myself some 2 meters away from the crapper. I could hardly breathe by now. As an asthmatic, my chest started filling up. I was sure I was gonna die. I struggled, I heaved a little. I cant remember how I eventually settled down. But I somehow did.
In a cell, newcomers normally spend the first one or two hours cowering. What with all the stories out there of bullying, beatings and, in some cases, sodomisation. Thankfully in my case, all I did I was introduce myself, my residence, my clan and explain why I was there.

By nightfall all was calm, except for the occasional joke from the regulars. I got to know about a few of them. But I remember two outstanding cases. There was this man who had wounds on his soles. He lay on his back all along, and was the only one with a mattress (once inch) and blanket that had seen better days. He had been there two years, I gathered. He was a murder suspect who's case seemed to drag forever. He was shuttled regularly between Oyugis and Kisii, where the High Court was. He winced every moment someone as much as grazed his soles. He cried that he had been tortured all day to "confess", and demanded for more space get some undisturbed rest in readiness for what he called another day of torture. The prefect saw to that.

The other case was this man who kept talking to an invisible wife and daughter. One minute he would be singing her wife's praise, the next he would be castigating the woman for her inability to maintain the homestead well.
"Ma dhako mofuwo manade, nyaka ne ichak tedo nyuka no pok ochiek? Be ing'eyo ni adenyo?'
Essentially the man was rambling about this woman who was apparently taking too long to serve him porridge. He would then threaten to kill this woman if she didn't pull up her socks. I asked what was wrong with him. A cellmate told me he had indeed murdered his wife and daughter, and then went bonkers after that. His hallucinations were as pitiful as they were funny.

Deep into the night, probably close to midnight, I had adjusted by sheer willpower. I was at home seated among these men, innocent and guilty alike.I couldn't smell the pungent odor anymore- I was part of it. We were a family brought together by justice or lack of it, and as we heard one another's stories, laughed or empathised accordingly. In between conversation, a few men went and helped themselves at the corner. One was a long call. We all behaved as if nothing was happening. The night was becoming bearable. But trust nature to throw a sadistic spanner in the works.

The poor men right next to the makeshift latrine jumped up with a start, shrieking. The bloody tank was leaking, one of them yelled. Their behinds were all wet. They wanted to move. But where were they to go? They were the 'form ones". The cell was full. The best they could do was stand, right there.
Within minutes a quarter of the cell was buzzing. Apparently the effluent had seeped slowly thru the cell unnoticed. I rose a little and felt my behind. It was wet. I cursed and squatted. My ass was so numb I hadn't realized my trouser was absorbing fresh sewage. My calmness left me.
In no time people were shouting at the police woman on duty. We demanded for a new container. Then we asked for a new container. Then we begged for a new container. The police woman simply laughed. Some three cellmates were however relentless, and begged the policewoman to show her motherly side. She coldly reminded us that we she wasn't our mother, and threatened to pour water in the cell if we didn't keep quiet. The three didn't listen.
They were still loud when suddenly, the policewoman appeared by the cell-door with a bucketful of water. Before we could yelp "Oh NO!', she had hurled the contents into the cell! No doubt we all raised our voices in disapproval and anger. She responded by refilling the bucket and splashing the water on us again. She dared us to continue talking. We all shut up, shell-shocked.

Now I was wet not only on ma behind, but half my body, The water also moistened the sticky floor surface. I might have as well been thrown into a latrine altogether. I wondered how I ended up here in the first place. It all came flashing before me. I recalled how I was looking forward to going home. I recalled how I had secured a seat. I recalled the haggard woman who I left the seat for. What was conceivably an innocent act of compassion had rewarded me with my darkest day on earth so far. I felt the huge lump in my throat growing by the second. Tears welled up in my eyes. I couldn't take it anymore, I broke down.
Now, you don't just break down and cry in a cell full of testosterone. You are a man, and such an act could have repercussions. I sat back in the sordid muck, tucked my head between my knees and let the tears flow, heaving uncontrollably while letting out as little sound out as possible.
Fives minute later I relented. Then I looked up. In the partial darkness I caught the fixed gaze of the cellmate seated opposite me. We stared at each other for about ten seconds, then he looked away. I knew he understood.

Tears have such a soothing effect. My entire body relaxed once again. I was at one with my environment once more. Somehow i caught some sleep.

I was woken up sometime later by the mad man in the house. He was hungry, and demanding food from his wife. Some naughty character was convincing him that his porridge was ready a long time ago, all the while pointing to the crapper at the corner. If you are weak hearted, please skip the next two paragraphs. The naughty character then offered the mad man a cup and told him to go ahead and take a sip. At that point I found my voice and shouted, "no!'' Other dissenting voices joined me. But the hungry mad man was convinced that the crapper in the corner was indeed a pot of porridge. He moved there and scooped it. I looked away in disgust. I heard two people urging him on. Many others told him to stop. But no one moved in to stop him. Then I heard the familiar sound of a sip.

I didn't want to look. I felt like vomiting but couldn't bring myself to. I prayed my ears were pulling tricks on me. But then I heard the mad man say,"it is not ripe enough yet.' I knew he had indeed taken a sip of semi-solid human waste.

The rest of the night was largely uneventful. In these surroundings you learn to readjust fast, and by six AM were were ourselves again. Hell, I was hungry! The only thing that was gonna keep me from feeding was if the breakfast was anything close to the descriptions i had heard before on prison food. But when it did arrive at about six thirty, I was pleasantly surprised. It was pretty well-prepared porridge and two slices of buttered bread. I gulped down my share with gusto. The cops on morning shift were kind enough to allow contraband; a few of us even smoked.
After breakfast there was time for one more drama session. The plastic latrine had to be emptied. As is customary, that task is always done by freshmen. One cell-mate pointed at me. I said I'd rather pay them money. It was my lucky day. Two hapless freshmen were then cuffed to the container, which they carried outside and emptied. They then brought it back uncleaned.

By nine, the cell started emptying as friends and relatives bailed us out. I wasn't even sure my people knew. When I was arrested I alerted no one. In the year 2000 mobile phones were as common as Ferraris on Kenyan roads. I could only pray and watch as the cell-door opened and shut repeatedly.

Then at 10AM, my name was called out. I literally flew to the cell-door. Then I saw my grandfather at the OB desk. That familiar lump returned to the throat, but I fought back the tears. He asked whether I was ok, I could only nod. Then the cell-door cranked open again. I was free.
I put my belt and shoes back on. But I couldn't get my 100 shillings back. Suddenly the policeman who kept our money could not be traced. We left my receipt with the OCS and walked away; I couldn't stand the sight of Oyugis Police Station any more.
My mom, who had also come to have me released, explained to me that one of the men who bailed himself out the previous night delivered news of my arrest. You see, in the village, teachers are held in high regard. My mother was a celebrated teacher, and everyone knew her family. I was lucky. I would otherwise have been ferried to Kisii Remand Cells that very morning, a much nastier place to be, she said. I wondered just how nastier it could get.

I got back to the bus stage with mum. This time we found a mat in a hurry to fetch passengers from the village since it was market day in town. we were thus the only passengers, plus a boy. As we sped away, I enjoyed the fresh air beating my nostrils. For a moment I forgot my troubles, until the conductor started hurling insults at the boy.
"unanuka sana kijana, kwani huogangi?'
all the while he cursed and cursed, insisting that the boy smelt like a toilet. Then it hit me, I was the one smelling like a toilet. I confessed, and explained where I was from. The manamba could only say, 'pole sana'. But he couldn't help lifting his nose in all directions looking for the elusive fresh air.

Eventually I got home. The first thing I did was throw the long trouser and underwear into the latrine. Those could not be saved. However, the shirt I was wearing was one of my favorites, and I soaked it. Then I took several bucket-fulls of hot bath.

The smell of that cell would haunt me for months. But I found solace in the words of a friend, who told me after hearing my ordeal,
"Worry not my friend. By spending a night in a police cell, you have finally become a man."

Thursday, January 26, 2012



Mr. Shabeer: Mr Speaker, I beg to ask the Justice Minister the following question by Private Notice.
Why hasn't the Special Programmes minister been compelled to strip naked as she promised
(b) If she wont do it, why has she not been arrested for giving false information and misleading Kenyans?

Justice Minister Mutula Kilonzo: Mr Speaker, Sir, I beg to reply. As we all know, the honorable Minister For Special programs promised, or threatened if you like, to strip naked if the ICC confirmed criminal charges against Uhuru Kenyatta. Well, the ICC called her bluff and did exactly that. But it has only been a week. I propose we give her one more week to see whether she will come good....

Mr Khalwale: On a point of order, Mr Speaker.

Speaker: What is it, member for Ikolomani?

Mr Khalwale: Is the minister in order to give Esther Special treatment in the house? it is not like the ICC will reverse the decisions.

Mr Khalwale: Order, Mr Khalwale! The ICC may in fact reverse the decisions. The member for Gatundu South has indicated that he will appeal the decision to confirm the charges.

Mr Khalwale: Mr Speaker Sir, to end impunity in this country, Murugi must strip. To teach other loose-mouths in the government a lesson, Murugi must strip. to reassure the public who were misdirected into buying big-screens for the strip-tease without adequate information, Murugi must strip!
Speaker: Order, Member for Ikolomani! Proceed, minister for Justice.

Mr Kilonzo: As I was saying, Murugi should be given one more week to come good, failure to which I will appeal to the President to appoint a tribunal to investigate her conduct.

Health Minister Prof. Anyang' Nyong'o: May I ask what measures the government has put in place to ensure that the health of Kenyans is not compromised if and when the Member for Mathenge decides to strip? Kenyans could get traumatized....

Speaker: Order, honorable minister! You are the minister for Health, and indeed an integral part of the government structure, shouldn't you be asking yourself that question ?

Medical Services Minister Beth Mugo: Mr, speaker, I have put all government ambulances and and clinical officers on standby, should the people of Kenya get shocked by the sight of her nakedness, and in case some Kenyans faint in the process.

Finance Minister Uhuru Kenyatta: My ministry has also dispatched 12.5 million shillings to Murugi's Ministry. As the minister in charge of Special programs, she has initiated an operation-badilisha-wardrobe for her naked stunt. Mr Speaker, we have approved her proposal to overhaul her underwear. She shall replace her old Mothers' Union panties with sexy lingerie, at a cost of 400 000 shillings per g-string.


Karua: On a point of order, Mr Speaker.
Speaker: What is it, member for Gichugu?
Karua: Mr Speaker, is the Finance Minister in order to use public funds to overhaul the wardrobe of a Murugi? This is a private affair!

Odhiambo: we also have our privates....
Speaker: Order! Order honorable Millie, you are out of order! Minister for Finance, you may proceed.

Kenyatta: Mr Speaker, the Honorable Murugi is a government minister. she represents the image of the government. therefore, her actions are a direct influence on the government's image and the government must take responsibility and act decisively.

Speaker: Is 12.5 million decisive enough? I though the government would be more sufficiently philanthropic.

Kenyatta: I have also set aside 5 million shillings for the hire of a secure and decent place for her to strip. Mr Speaker, we propose that Murugi conducts her strip-tease in Liddos' Discotheque, to be aired live on KBC. We have also contacted a popular porn website (name withheld) for space...


Speaker: Order! Order honorable Members! Can we please calm down and air our views one by one. Member for Ugenya, what is your problem?

Orengo: Mr Speaker, this is an outrage! ODM was never consulted in this matter. PNU must recognize that we are equal partners in the coalition. This is very disrespectful.

Mr. Musyoka: Will I be in order to ask for funds for round 3 of shuttle diplomacy? The international community needs convincing that this is indeed a noble act and not in any way meant to spite the ICC...

Speaker: Mr Vice President, that will not be in order. You will need to file a motion to ask for funding.

Khalwale: And how did the Finance Minister arrive at the decision to award Liddos the lucrative contract? How was the tendering done? What is the problem with other strip-clubs, for example Apple Bees or Tahiti?

Kajwang: Yes, Mr Speaker, there is no strip-o-meter! How did he arrive at the conclusion that Liddos is the best place to strip?

Kenyatta: Mr Speaker, this is an emergency. A special program. Tendering will take weeks, within which time she may be arrested for providing false information.

Mbuvi: Point of order, Mr Speaker.
Speaker: Yes, Member for Makadara?

Mbuvi: Ni aje vijanaa hawako kwa hii plot. Manze mkibuy mangodha za ngiri soo nne bila kuinclude vijanaa kwa mpango, hizo ngodha tutachoma! Vijanaa ndio majority, tunajua kustrip poa baada ua kupractise na zile song ya bend-over, get down, wezere, kila siku wasee kuchips-fungana kwa club, twitter na Facebook, experience tuko nayo kushinda wazae despite age yetu....
Speaker: Order, member for for Makadara! A point of order is not a debate!

Bifwoli: Endi why has chender palance noti peen consiteret in this tepate! iko wanaume wengi wanawesa kutoa suruali pwana!


Speaker: Order! Order, honorable members! Member for Bumula, you are out of order! You know the standing orders well, at this juncture you can only speak on a point of order or point of information. No one gave you permission to speak.

Bifwoli: I am chust tellingi the truth. Hata sisi wanaume tunawesa kutoanga suruali. Wakoli Bifwoli can also wear underwear worth 400 000. Mupunge msima kama mimi hawesi shinda amefaa kaptula za Gikomba! Hata uchi nitatembea, kwansa nimenyoeko....

(loud laughter....applause)

Speaker: Order! Order member for Bumula! You are out of Order!

Bifwoli: In facti nikisimama uchi, na Muruki asimame uchi apo kando, am sure nitapendeseko kumshinda.

(more laughter and applause)

Speaker: Order! Order Honorable members, order! member for Bumula, you have gone too far. That's it. I order you to leave the floor of the House immediately. Sergeant at Arms, could you please escort Wakoli Bifwoli out of this House!

Bifwoli: (walking out) Uuuuuwi! Uuuuuwi! Marende Pooole! Pole! Marende is a tikteta!!!


Anchor 1. And so, on our opinion question tonight, we ask:
Anchor 2. Should Esther Murugi strip naked? I repeat, should Esther Murugi Strip naked?
Anchor 2. SMS your yes or no opinion to 6-BLONDE-QUESTIONS-6 and we shall sample some of your responses at the tail-end of this newscast.

I hereby step aside to allow for further investigations.

Monday, January 16, 2012


Politics, it seems to me, for years, or all too long, has been concerned with right or left instead of right or wrong.  ~Richard Armour

It is that time of the season. Our beloved politicians (please take that word 'beloved' with a pinch of salt and glass of vinegar) are at it, 'repositioning' themselves ahead of the forthcoming general elections.
Which is alright. Problem is, I cannot remember a single period since the last elections when the entire August House, the crest of politics as it were, was ever in position. That bunch has been offside from the moment one Samuel Kivuitu announced controversial election results in an even more controversial manner - while hidden at a bunker like a state witness mouthing out sensitive confessions under armed guard, with the promise of witness protection.....
What followed was a showdown between two people, promptly dubbed 'protagonists' by Kenyan media, a showdown which eventually led to the loss of at least 1000 lives, displacement of many more, a side-hustle for Koffi Annan (read peace-broker as head of Eminent Persons) and eventually the formation of a very uneasy coalition government. Well, we all know how well that government coalesced.
The coalition government brought to the fore a hitherto under-appreciated term, very familiar with civil servants but otherwise secondary to the others- protocol. The closest many Kenyans have come to appreciate the significance of protocol probably at school, where dramatic presentations were always preceded with a mandatory rendition thus; ' The Guest of Honour, honorable adjudicators, distinguished guests, ladies n gentlemen,...''
Or, for those who attended the public holidays of the Nyayo era, the timeless MC, Sammy Loui, would croon out a chronology of names and portfolio, starting from the Honorable President and his accompanying titles- EGH, MP, Commander in Chief of the Armed forces, bla bla bla, down to the common mwananchi roasting under the scorching sun on the open terraces of Nyayo Stadium, otherwise referred to as 'ladies and gentlemen'.
The significance of the noun 'protocol' made no much sense to Wanjiku, until the standoff between Vice-President and Prime Minister made it a monolith in the coalition government. For so long protocol placed the VP right behind the President. Suddenly there was a Prime Minister, who according to the Peace Accord was equal to the president in stature. The bureaucrats were left scratching their bald heads, careful not to rock the boat, the Kibaki Camp insisted Kalonzo was above Raila, the Raila Camp regarded Kalonzo as an opportunistic nonentity who should not have been part of the government of national unity in the first place.
come to think of it, Kalonzo 'alipita katikati yao'. He was not involved in all the Pre and post-election Chaos, he finished a distant third in the presidential race, became vice President by design, and lay low as the tigers fought his war. Good times.
Eventually Raila won the protocol standoff, and some semblance of peace was restored. But the loose strands of the coalition were further stretched by the acrimony generated in the post-referendum of August 2010. William Ruto's big NO to a document fronted by a government in which he was a Minister created the first real cracks. Then came the ghosts of the Post-Election violence. A mysterious envelope nicknamed 'Waki" which until then hung over the powers that be like the Sword of Damocles, was the last straw as Luis Moreno Ocampo opened the Pandoras Box. It was no longer a crack. It was a glacial movement that separated the various continental entities in government.
As is wont in Kenya, The ICC pre-trials were politicised and their main objectives dumped in the cellar. Suddenly the entire process was all about the 2012 succession. One enigmatic man was using the process to secure a highway to the House on the Hill, a politician would intimate. People who lost loved ones in the 2008 violence and whose souls were crying for justice were forgotten. The Internally Displaced persons, who lost their property, dignity and lives were only mentioned in passing. Even "Men of God" joined the fray, praying for the accused, while cursing their perceived 'enemies'. Dear Pastor/Bishop/Reverend, There is a fine line between an intercession and a loud, lop-sided opinion blared through the speaker in the format of a prayer. God have Mercy on you.
These are but some of the Litany of issues that bedeviled the coalition government. Don't even get me started on the 'fight against corruption.' That ship pulled a Costa Concordia eons ago.
And so, here we are again. General Elections are back, or around the proverbial corner as it were. I will assume that the protagonists will have the presence of mind to give us the elections in December. Political wheeler-dealing has started. New parties, or 'political platforms', are being formed right, left, and centre. The politicians are regurgitating the old promises from five years ago, and, sadly, some of us voting folk are swallowing their cud.

Take our politicians:  they're a bunch of yo-yos.  The presidency is now a cross between a popularity contest and a high school debate, with an encyclopedia of cliches the first prize.  ~Saul Bellow

Everyone is already dreaming and strategising on how to take over State House once Kibaki retires to his goat-farm in Othaya. Meanwhile, IDPs remain unsettled. The repugnant smell of corruption and impunity is still emanating from every nook and cranny of the political class. Past injustices remain unaddressed. I wont event mention that the very 'repositioning' taking place is a clear disregard of the new constitution, which they promise to protect while they are already flouting it!
It goes without saying that we will dutifully vote back the same people we are chastising now. One reason is that its unlikely that a new, deserving face will prop up and win our trust in time for the ballot.
But the real reason is that at the end of the day, we will always vote for the politician we dislike the least, or who serves our interest most, however short-sighted. Oscar Ameringer, dubbed the 'Mark Twain' of American Socialism, aptly said that Politics is the gentle art of getting votes from the poor and campaign funds from the rich, by promising to protect each from the other. 
Be not fooled with a new political party. What we need is a new politician. Politics is too serious a matter to be left to politicians. Stop complaining and do something about it. I laud the likes of the late Prof. Wangari Maathai, PLO lumumba, Ringtone, John Kiarie, Mdomo Baggy and Councillor Mongolo for stepping up. It is these baby-steps that will eventually deliver a full walk. And be warned, there shall be stumbles and fumbles, a la Simon Mbugua and Mike Sonko!
Kenya needs a political revolution. However, a revolution in the political class can only be attained by an evolution of the political players. It is time for new faces to step up and challenge the status Quo. After all, it was Che Guevara himself who asserted thus; The revolution is not an apple that falls when it is ripe. You have to make it fall.
I rest my case.

Tuesday, January 10, 2012


Cough! Cough! Choke! *clearing throat*. A sneeze here. Eyes tearing there. Handkerchief swats the stuffy air. The guest takes off, probably never to be seen again in that dust-infested enclosure, or hopefully to be seen again....

And that, my friend, is my imagery of what visitors to my blog have been subjected to, thanks to a tweet and Facebook comment I received from two friends, bearing an eerily similar jibe, "Feddy, your blog has gathered dust...."
And who can blame them? The last time I wrote on this blog, Africa was still reeling from Asamoah Gyan's painful penalty miss that saw the Black Stars miss out on the chance to become the first African team to make the FIFA World Cup semis. Last time I wrote this blog, Luis Suarez was only hated for the handball that denied Ghana a direct ticket to the semis in the first place. Last time I wrote this blog, Wikileaks was all the rage....
All that was back then in 2010. Since then, Gyan is no longer Africa's most talked-about striker. That, in my humble opinion, is one Demba Ba who has almost single-handedly made Newcastle United genuine Europa League Contenders. (I'm sure followers of the French League will beg to differ. Indulge by all means.) Since then, Luis Suarez is twice as hated, and this time not just by Africa, but an entire legion of dark-skinned Homo Sapiens, as well as a good number of those who do not entertain racism in any form. (thank you, Patrice Evra, for complaining. You will never walk alone...)
And is wikileaks the hot topic of the moment? Your guess is as good as mine. At this time I don't see any earth shaking discussion of the moment that matches the proportions of wikileaks. But America has its Republican Presidential Nomination campaigns, North Korea is still mourning Kim Jong-Il, China has added a ban on any form of 'western' entertainment (no, seriously. check it out) on top of Facebook, and Kenya has just released a sequel to the 2000 blockbuster "The Way of The Gun", featuring one Nancy Barasa. Ok, I might be exaggerating the latter. And as I write this, Sumatra has just been struck with an earthquake measuring 7.3 on the Richter Scale.
Since 2010 there has been so much to blog about- my transition from the Sports Desk to my exploits around the country in NTV's weekly news magazine the County Edition, The referendum, The ICC process, Railamania/Railaphobia (depending on which side of the horn you are blowing), The 'Ugly Car' showdown pitting the Vitz against the Probox, Fernando Torres, Gor Mahia, Mike Sonko, Twitter, Miguna Miguna.......the list is endless.
But what did I do all this time? I thought about it, I compiled it in my head, slept over the idea, woke up the next day to blog, made no time for blogging, witnessed another event which I'd think about, compile in my head, sleep over the idea, wake up the next day to blog,... ah well, you get my point.
That paragraph can be summed up in one word- Procrastination. It is probably why I haven't bought my own house yet. I have wasted time, which is essentially money, whose loss eventually leaves me still paying a lot of rent to one Kahiga Muigai.
As the year 2011 drew to a close, a good friend of mine, a Norwegian-based gentleman going by the name Oguda, launched his blog. I was among those he asked to comment on his debut post. Apparently he was very impressed with mine, after braving all that dust as he sifted through the archive that is That was November 29th. Since then, has five posts already. Talk about fast off the blocks!
An avid reader in every sense of the word, Oguda's enthusiasm relit a dying ember within. I will not let this man become an avid writer too as my blog gets mummified. I am the journalist here, for chrissake!
I do not make many resolutions at the turn of the year. But this time I have three realistic ones, two inspired by this man Oguda.

1. Dust my blog. If not for me, but for the daily visitors who stoically come back hoping that this (insert noun) will wake up from his slumber and spew out another good read. 9 views today (and counting) before i posted this, 93 last month, 1,464 since I went AWOL. Never again.
2. Read more books. I earned my language stripes by reading widely, albeit novels and story books forming the bulk of my literature. Addiction for movies robbed most of that enthusiasm. I wish to start over with a book a month. Or a chapter a week. Or a page a day. Cue Joel Osteen.
2. Cut down the procrastination. Heck, mummify it altogether. If I achieve that, 2012 will bear more significance to my future than it already is. Much more significance than starting this year single again. Much more significance than my expected new contract, now that I am saying goodbye officially to the sports desk. Much more significant than the fact that this year I attain a very, very important age. Richard Branson says"screw it, let's do it". Ditto.

The process has begun, with a post that clears the dust off this blog. Long may the momentum remain.
Feddylicious is back.