Is Kenya Milking a Dying or Dead Cow?
Stating that the Kenyan milk cow is dead may sound too harsh. But I will not be kind with words and say that it is a dying cow, nay. We used the reference of a dying cow some years ago, Nowadays, a majority of us agree that the cow died somewhere along the way.
I am speaking in a coded language, but I am sure most people already know the point I am trying to pass across. Last week, the minister of interior security and coordination of the national government of Kenya Prof. Kithure Kindiki in a gazette notice published hefty costs to be borne by the citizens of Kenya seeking government services.
In a bizarre change, some costs shot up by more than 200%. In honest terms, a good number of those services are supposed to be accessed by the citizens free of charge. The reason why people pay taxes in the first place is to ensure there is money to facilitate access to those government services.
Unfortunately, the government has been revising and adding new taxes to an already burdened populace on top of introducing new fees for accessing services which they are entitled to without pay. It seems the government is keen to ensure that even the dead cow is eaten altogether.
It is not a secret that Kenyan citizens are going through tough times. Failing to acknowledge that fact is akin to burying one’s head in the sand and hoping the danger will go away. But then, it is not surprising that the president is unaware, he is hardly in Kenya. And even when he is there, he is rarely in the office. The state makes him comfortable, it is their obligation, and it is his time to “rule.”
Not to sound very pessimistic, let me remind him that he is obliged to work for his employers. The people of Kenya have a right to be listened to. I know it is not possible to overhaul systems and make things work at the same time, yet we are entitled to a proper plan on how things will be made to work to lower the cost of living.
Some other things can be worked upon immediately. Things to do with the new punitive charges published by Kindiki need to be done away with as soon as possible. It is pointless to continue milking a dead cow. The options are somehow limited but I, on the other hand, think that the cow is holding on to some little life on a string on the optimistic side.
Instead of hammering the last knock on this cow, to its imminent death, a veterinary is needed to nourish it to life again. From the look of things, Ruto promised the people of Kenya to be the perfect veterinarian, yet everything points the other way around. He isn’t feeding the cow before he can milk it. Even without the feeding, he still whips the cow with imaginary milk targets out of reality.
So, the Kenyan cow has been throwing the kicks of death and the veterinarian, though oblivious of this, has been busy giving the cow a stare of death. On the side, his generals have been asked to ensure that any cow sighted with breath, should be milked properly as well.
The cases of Kenyans and tourists being mishandled at the Jomo Kenyatta International Airport (JKIA) are worrying. If there was any vitality of life at the airport some while back, it has been long gone. Coming back home for those in the diaspora is a nightmare. Sometimes Kenyans are manhandled aggressively even though Kenya is their home.
In other countries, the citizens are given priority and treated with dignity. And with all that mistreatment the country boasts of foreign exchange earnings the diaspora brings home. The paradox though, is that it is the same diaspora people that are being harassed middle left right and centre.
The most worrying thing about this whole narrative is that there is a huge crop of Kenyans and some faction of leaders who don’t want to appreciate that things are bad. They play the role of a silly cow. The silly cow stands and laughs at the kicks of the other dying cow being milked while it’s, itself, being driven to the slaughterhouse. The laughs and stares at the dying cow obscure its sensory nerves to a level where it cannot smell the blood from the slaughterhouse a few steps away.
Whether it is the silly cow(s) or the dying Kenyan cow, something must be done. It is either the people are listened to, and their pleas addressed, or a revolution gets sparked. It is not possible to lie to all people all the time and get away with it. There is how far someone can get away with some of these things.
Even then the revolution ought to be objective. As the cow throws its final kick and breathes its last (unless something drastic is done and done very fast), the emotive sombre mood once the cow is dead will be the whistle of the revolt.
For now, the cow is dying.