Friday, June 08, 2018

The functional illiteracy of the nawabs

The most corrupt people are the ones who vote for us. When you go to the village they ask you, “Sasa utatuacha aje?”
The Woman Representative of Murang'a County in the National Assembly is an interesting person. When she accuses her electors of being the most corrupt merely because they ask for cash handouts from elected officials or candidates seeking political office, she betrays a staggering contempt for her constituents and a glaring self-delusion about her own culpability in the machinery of political corruption. She, and her fellow elected colleagues, have consistently been incapable of  articulating political messages that inspire and have always relied on campaign war-chests to buy votes from desperately poor voters.

The Woman Representative and her colleagues have reduced political activity to attending funerals and other social events that offer them an opportunity to "offer something small" at which they spend very little time speaking to how their constituents can play more constructive roles in the development of their constituencies but, instead, engaging in the worst forms of Kenyan politicking including sledging their rivals, defending the indefensible, and making false promises with an ease that sociopaths would appreciate.

She has engaged in most, if not all, the activities politicians in Kenya engage in when seeking votes or fighting to retain their seats and it is amazing that she would not only accuse her constituents of encouraging the graft that many of her colleagues routinely but that, somehow, this is sufficient grounds for insinuating that the people have endorsed political graft of all forms. It is a simple thought experiment: the next time she is asked for handouts while performing her political act, she should say no and let the chips fall where they may. If she is half the politician she thinks that she is, then she should persuade her constituents that despite her tight-fisted ways, she truly has their interests in mind and that they should re-elect her (and not elect her rivals).

The Murang'a politician is member of an assembly that has singularly failed to protect the welfare of the people by allowing the national executive to load up the public service with such a heavy debt burden that, regardless of the mellifluous songs about the "Big Four Agenda", it is almost certain that the personal circumstances of her constituents will not improve for a considerable period to come. When her personal circumstances have been affected, she has not hesitated to personally intervene with high government officials to seek redress. She doesn't seem to have translated that zeal for problem-solving to assist the constituents of Murang'a to ameliorate their straitened circumstances. Instead she chooses to insultingly accuse them of great corruption.

In any decent republic, the people make demands of their representatives. It is what representative government is all about. The Murang'a politician seems incapable of making the connection between her incredible capacity for not doing her job to the demands for cash handouts from her constituents. If she and her colleagues did their jobs properly, the number of beggars in Murang'a (as in the rest of the republic) would dwindle to only the most needy because the Government in which she serves would see to it that public policies encouraged wealth creation for all, thereby doing away with the need for the political classes to grace funerals with baskets of cash for the bereaved. She is an example of the functional illiterates we have sitting in the national legislature who continually refuse to acknowledge the depths of their ignorance and, thereby, fall to making wildly unreasoned accusations.

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