By Timira Bishar
It was many years ago, destiny had that I meet Ali Bunow Korane, the Garissa County gubernatorial aspirant; unplanned accidental meeting of two completely different people; a young girl just out of school with only a piece of academic paper to her name and a powerful former DC, a PS and an MP hopeful. All the same, I gathered the courage to wave at him when he came to our neighborhood on a campaign trail, to be a member of parliament for Dujis.
Many conflicting almost scary thoughts were running in my mind; negative in the main; ”he will brush me aside and move on with his main objective of campaigning” said a voice in me”, another negative thought whiling in my mind says ”a young lady of no consequential input to my electoral prospect, poor and no voice within the community seeking for assistance from any well-wisher to pursue her education waving at me!” He wont give a second thought and may see me as a distraction to his grand plans to meet important members of the community and voters………..the trail of negative thoughts continued raging in my mind!
Mr Korane proved me wrong! despite the large entourage, he stopped, waved back at me and called me to his side. Mesmerised and lost in thought, I naively walked towards him unsure of what to say and how to capture his attention to quickly communicate what at that particular moment was ailing my mind and heart. I murmured silently, almost in a hushed voice; sir I need your attention, trying to hide my admission form under the veil lest my intention preemptively revealed.
I was tongue-tied, couldn’t manage to say anything for the first few seconds, partly overwhelmed by the many onlookers surrounding him and the contrasting awe of his humbleness. I supposed his fatherly instinct nagged him and he started the conversation, how are you? I am fine I replied and gathering some courage continued I need your assistance sir, he asked me what’s the help that you seek ? I told him I have to be at University for my 1st semester but lacking the fees to go. He asked ”do you have any document with you?” Yes sir, I handed him the admission form. He flipped through it and asked how much is the 1st semester fee? Ksh.65,550 I replied. Give me your number and I will call you tomorrow he replied. Never in the wildest figment of my imagination did I think I will get that call. ”Not from a politician” a small voice was confirming my thoughts.
Mr Korane proved me wrong a second time. The tomorrow came, and a text message from unknown number reads, ‘come over to Mnara junior academy. Ali Korane’! I met him at the school and he simply said. “Asalam Aleykum, Prepare yourself and we will go together on Wednesday, do not worry, I will help you to the best of my capability he added”
I thought it was a dream and prayed for a longer night. A sweet dream this was. I could not believe my ears, only 12 hours ago, I lost hope of pursuing my dreams of higher education, just a day later this powerful man who knows neither my parents nor myself and whose attention very many were seeking is promising to help me out! Could it be true I soliloquized, oscillating between positive assurance and negative thoughts. I went back home daydreaming of possibilities. Looking forward to a different daybreak.
A new day and beep a text message arrives. It reads ” Salams,we are leaving at 10 am tomorrow, please prepare for the journey” I sat up reading and re-reading the message! Just to be sure it was coming from him! Alas he kept his promise and how on earth he remembered an inconsequential fee-seeking student despite his heavy schedule befuddles me to this day. A rare gem, I mused to myself, where keeping promises even by ordinary mortals is rare.
Until the day came I was not sure I will leave with Mr Korane to university but Alhamdulillah the journey started on the designated day. It was one memorable journey, a journey I will live to cherish and remember. Yes the fact