The words of Johnnie Carson “choices have consequences” are becoming real every day when we wake up. These consequences are not emanating from the foreign countries as alleged before but from all our elected leaders.
When Johnnie Carson the then Assistant Secretary of State for Africa Affairs and former US ambassador to Kenya uttered the above words when addressing the media during the recent concluded election period, it sparked a harsh reaction from many Kenyans. At first I was burning with anger and asking myself whether we are an independent and sovereign state or are we still under the wings of the colonial masters. To confirm these fears I had to re-read our constitution, switch of the TV and then switch it back on to confirm whether the presenters are “white”, also I had to call a few friends whom I knew were in the city center and asked them whether they were walking with their ID cards hanging on their necks.
I opened my twitter and face book accounts and searched for the accounts of Mzee Jomo Kenyatta and some of the freedom fighters so that I could tweet or poke them and ask whether they truly completed the deal of liberating us from the so called colonial masters. This not being enough I sent a quick SMS with the subject line as “urgent” to the village too inquire whether my grandparents were still in the bush fighting for our independence. The answers I got gave me a relief and I truly affirmed myself that we were indeed an independent state having all our governance structures and institutions in place and all we were going through was just the normal election period conducted by any civilized country. Immediately I took my national identity card made a few copies and hide them anywhere I considered as safe. I waited anxiously and on the Election Day I was among the first to cast my vote to affirm my democratic right to elect any leader I want and not one that the so called colonial masters want me to elect.
I do believe many Kenyans voted for the same reasons as I did; to defy the colonial masters and also to let them know we are in charge. The Jubilee government was voted in despite the various threats from different quotas who kept reminding us on the repercussions of electing a government that is led by leaders who are indicted by the ICC on crimes against humanity. After the swearing in ceremony some of us went to make merry celebrating the fact that some of our so called “big boys” in foreign countries are mourning and that finally the message of being a sovereign state has been stamped on their minds.
The Jubilee government gave me an impression that we are going to have a little heaven on earth. Their manifesto based in three pillars which are Unity, Economy, and Openness. With these they promised that they are going to achieve free primary healthcare for all Kenyans, starting with women, expectant and breast-feeding mothers and persons with disabilities by increasing health financing from 6% to 15%. They promised tax breaks/holidays for the young people to encourage them to initiate start up businesses, and the introduction of tax incentives to encourage investment and growth in the manufacturing and service sector so as to enable them achieve the pledge of creating one million new jobs and many other promises which simply seem as mere utopia talk.
The VAT bill 2013 is just but a tip of the iceberg on what is going to happen. The cost of living has become extremely high that many people will not be able to sustain. Mr. President I believe you are relying on your advisors who are telling you to apply the principle of man cannot live on bread alone but on every word that comes from your government. Your Excellency the words from your government are becoming bitter. Even a simple tool of communication such as newspapers has increased in price making communication from your government unaffordable.
The effects of the words and policies from your government are affecting the unborn, the living and the dead. You have increased VAT on essential commodities such as milk, bread, eggs and many others that are a requirement on a daily basis and they need to be zero-rated. To the dead, after pushing them to the grave you are still following them by increasing the cemetery charges. Electricity charges have also gone up despite the massive promise from the deputy president that jubilee government will reduce cost of electricity. The manufacturing sector will be highly affected and at the end of it all the common “mwananchi” will bare the greatest burden.
You are pushing us to the wall and as a result we will react. We will try to get rich or die trying and as a result; crime rate will increase while corruption and under-dealings will be the order of the day. As our leaders travel to The Hague accompanied by their sycophant supporters whom we also elected we wish to let them know we will not be praying for them because we as a country are hungry and that we regret the choices we made because the consequences are painful.