Tuesday, January 16, 2024

They all fall, eventually

The member of the National Assembly for Mumias East is a spectacularly unpleasant character. But he is not unique. A former member of the National Assembly for Gatundu South is just equally as unpleasant. They are not unique. They are not even unique in the nasty, overbearing, narcissistic and hubristic way they go about generating publicity for themselves. They are just extreme examples of their fellow parliamentarians, who, whenever the opportunity challenges them, can be as nasty and unpleasant as these two worthies.

There is something in the water they drink over there that transforms usually decent hum beings into uncouth, ill-mannered, reckless, unpleasant parliamentarians. Well, not exactly the water. But something. The day they are sworn in, they are instantly swaddled in an extremely comforting and isolating cocoon of privilege and power. They have instant access to millions of shillings in the form of a mortgage, a car grant, and an annual salary that is many multiples of what the lowest paid Kenyan earns.

Wherever they go, doors are flung open and red carpets rolled out for them. Whenever they speak, serious members of the chatterati and civil service pay keen attention. Whenever they demand things, the great unwashed masses bend over backwards to accommodate them. It matters not that they treat their constituents like shit. Now they are mheshimiwa, and mheshimiwa's wish is our command.

Whatever selfish and narcissistic tendencies they posses are usually amplified to the nth degree. They, almost to a man, believe that they deserve to be where they are, that they are there because the people adore them, that they are cleverer than the rest of us, that they are God's choice because the christian bible says leaders are chosen by God. Arrogance and contempt are their watchword. Not even the judges of the High Court or the Inspectors-General of Police can corral their ambitions, power and vision.

As a consequence, it no longer occurs to them that they cannot ride roughshod over is without facing electoral consequence. They cannot scoff at the law without, eventually, made to face the long arm of the law. They are immune to the lessons of political history: eventually, they all fall, and the harder they rode roughshod over us, the harder the fall is. Very rarely will we sympathise with a former mheshimiwa. More likely, we will make them taste what they shoved down our throats, and if they happen to be financially at sixes and sevens, we will make them regret the very day they chose to adorn themselves with a power that wasn't theirs.

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