The Garissa Massacre: Is Leadership Getting Difficult For President Kenyatta?
By Albert Nyakundi AmenyaÂ
Last weekâ€™s Garissa campus attack by Al-Shabaab put a seal to whatever doubt which was remaining about the value of life in Kenya. Except for the so-called big fish who are never the primary targets of the Al-Shabaab, the life of the ordinary Mwananchi seems to be worthless. Surely, this juncture of insecurity in our history is a determinant of the future life of Kenya.
Before I proceed further, I wish to comment our courageous treasures from the RECCE Company for a job well done albeit I hear they were each rewarded with UD$5.5 (Kshs.500) ONLY. Sincerely, Kenyans owe them a huge debt of gratitude.
As vexatious as the attack was, especially with such a heartrending jumbo casualty figure, the government will as usual, carry on as if nothing happened. The ongoing high powered security meetings seem to be just what they seem to be: truthfully, there is nothing strategic in them. A few days later, the Garissa massacre will be nothing but a reference point in our countryâ€™s travails. Unsurprisingly, Kenyans can be sure of one thing: no lessons will be learnt by this administration; nothing in the way of thwarting a future recurrence.
Ours is a nation that is indeed very complex. For sinister excuses, a neighbouring terroristic sect has decided that the best way it can control our nation is through abduction and destruction of property and life on a gigantic scale. At will, these desperate men professing a purported crazy Islamic ideology pounce on the innocents and snuff life out of them, denying them their primary human right, the right to life.
Yet on the other hand, is an administration, whose primary responsibility is to protect life and property of its citizenry, but through sheer laxity and I-donâ€™t-care-attitude, its agencies have become a shadow of themselves, leaving the citizenry to a hopeless fate.
And Kenyans need not look further to discover why human lives have become so valueless to those whose job is to safeguard them. Our President was alerted by the Western authorities that terrorists were planning to hit our nation. They issued travel advisories to their own in Kenya. Ignorantly, our armchair Commander-in-Chief rubbished the advice saying Kenya is tired of the advisories, only to be attacked barely 24 hours later.
It is different strokes for different folks. We all remember how the entire city of Boston, United States of America, was shut down for a couple of days for the police to fish out the two brothers who detonated a bomb in the city. Let us juxtapose that with the manner and way in which the Garissa attack was carried on. One is where leadership is a serious business; the other is something else completely.
Here in Kenya, aside nepotism and corruption, it is politics that comes first in the minds of the Jubilee leaders. That is why folks from Central Kenya will continue to seat in their cosy offices and still be presiding over our nationâ€™s security meetings even when they are yet to explain to parents, relations and families how their loved ones ended up dead in the hands of a government that they pay taxes to.
Here in East Africaâ€™s Superpower, everything seems to be in disarray starting from the misled religious bigots to the textbook military that cannot show up even when the terrorists lay siege on a campus for more than 14 hours. It is unimaginable the duration it took the terrorists to fish out and massacre innocent students, while the military camp is less than two kilometers away from the campus. The great men and women of this nation unavailingly scampered for their lives, hoping their government could chip in and rescue them in time, only to frazzle as they realized they were on their own.
If Al-Shabaab has become bloodthirsty that only human blood can assuage them, at least I expect that an organized military are equal to the task to flush them out and deal with them decisively. Nonetheless, the ding-dong nature that the counter-terrorism has taken in our country suggests that Kenyans are in for rougher times.
Failure for the military to rescue the students made Kenya a laughing stock before the international community. Anyone would have thought that Kenyans would have been wise to manage their crisis and suffer their shame internally, but that singular act by the Kenya Defense Forces simply wrote us off as an unserious country.
President Kenyatta is now coming to terms that leadership is no joke. He is more concentrating on his PR than governance. How can the administration assign all government jets to politicians until there is none to fly the RECCE squad to a rescue mission? How can this administration award the RECCE Squad with only Ksh.500 each after such a deadly mission?
Lastly, I wish to remind this administration of Steve Jobsâ€™s wise words that â€œBeing the richest man in the cemetery doesnâ€™t matter, but, going to bed at night saying weâ€™ve done something wonderfulâ€ It must zip up and protect the citizenry.
The Author is Â aÂ 2017 Parliamentary Aspirant for Kitutu Chache North Constituency in Kisii County