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August 8th Marks The Birth Of JOHOism In Kenyan Democracy




By Leon Lidigu

President Uhuru Kenyatta couldn’t help it too but made Joho get re-elected early enough. He loves the man. He loves Joho secretly. Imagine someone coming to your own home many times while ignoring you then has the audacity to ask ‘ unanifuatia nini ? Kwani we ni bibi yangu ? ‘ I wouldn’t lie to you that Emir Sultan Ali Hassan Joho doesn’t fascinate me too. He’s what we call in my village ‘ Imbuli yumutakhaa ‘ Find Senator Khalwale @Kbonimtetezi and ask him what it means, he’s one too. I am not a pretender and those who think that journalists like myself shouldn’t have a political opinion can go hug a cactus. First, we are Kenyan citizens who love our country before we become journalists. Secondly, our constitution gives us the privilege of voting.

Before I vote as a journalist, I need to know who am voting for and why am doing so. Back to business now. When you look at Africa without further ado , Moeletsi Mbeki was not damned for stating that ‘ major political reforms bring important changes in the lives of ordinary people, sometimes for better but other times for worse ‘ Lumpen radicalism is a political tradition of unruliness – and at times resistance – in which fantasies of male power, control and desire have always been deeply entangled with ‘ war envy ‘ and an almost insatiable appetite for money, luxuries, and women .

It is a direct product of the influx-control system, the mass forced removals and relocations and the relentless and all pervading social and economic insecurity that have for long been the hallmarks of the common mwananchi experience.Our politicians have taught us that power is first conquered on the streets, burial ceremonies where populist characters thrive and cannibalize on the vulnerability of emotional mourners, Harambee, and even local soccer matches if not bullfighting ceremonies then translate into the domain of home and formal institutions.

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A life of shame, social humiliation, and dishonor is thought to be retrieved from abjection through conspicuous display and consumption of wealth. Question is, is the Kenyan youth ready? Wait a minute, who exactly is the youth in Kenya? The old goons Uhuru Kenyatta keeps dragging out of retirement for the mere fact that they have overwhelming experience when it comes to thievery of public funds and does an awesome job leaving behind ‘ without a trace scenarios? ‘ Young people wake up! Smell the coffee. The ascendency of the youth, its attempt to wrestle power from the older generation and to take charge of these adults is known as #Johoism.

It has for a long time coincided with periods of intense fracture of the youth life experience and the concomitant crisis of fear and imagination. What exactly are the youths afraid of? The assassination of the late Jacob Juma is still fresh in our minds. Would such have happened in say South Africa, do you think South Africans would even have imagined of ‘ accepting and moving on ‘ before burial? We have a serious accept and move on disease in this country. Just another way of saying ‘ you are cowards ‘. We must stop burying our heads in the sand and wake up! I love getting back to The Soweto Uprising whenever am discussing this. It remains the most notable episodes of all that took place in the 20th century around the world. It gave birth to the phenomenon of the ‘ Comrades ‘ in the 1980’s when the apartheid state’s hold over the township in South Africa was weakened by none other than young people. In Kenya, the signs of entropy are there for all to see.

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They are particularly dramatized by the dilemmas of unemployment and the expansion of spaces of vulnerability in all arenas of everyday life.Despite the emergence of a struggling middle-class, a rising superfluous population is becoming a permanent fixture of the Kenyan social fabric with possibilities of ever being exploited by the haves. Would you blame them for turning to Sports Pesa as their most cherished source of income? Now the haves who have been busy gambling with their lives since independence want to kill their only source of income. Truth is, most young people in this country are barely holding onto the ledge. They are likely never to get full-time formal employment or enter the proletarian economy. Stuck in the field of blighted possibilities, they scavenge to live or simply to get through the day – so many bad jobs available to so few in one of the most ethnic unequal countries on earth; so much rage, almost no future.

For those in survival mode – and who know too well what it means to experience social humiliation first hand – A heart of A Lion is all you need to stand up and say enough is enough! And this time round our lion is none other than #Simba001, Emir Sultan Of The Republic Of Kenya. Go Joho go! Save Kenya while you still can.

Note: Writer is a journalism student in India, views are his own andnot necessarily of Kenya Insights 

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Kenya West is a trained investigative independent journalist and a socio-political commentator on matters Kenya and Africa. Do you have a story, Scandal you want me to write on? Send me tips to [[email protected]]

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