Citizen TV new anchor Jeff Koinange’s home is set to be auction over loan repayment default, literally he is about to be homeless with the looming auction of his 200m home. This Economic crunch really hit the big names, long before Corona hit us.
By Joshua Odhiambo
In the luo community you’d not be allowed to take over/ or sell a brother’s only land when you are still well endowed despite the debt he owes you. The elders would admonish you, saying, “thuol odonjo e koo” (a snake has slithered into the family milk gourd). Do you pour out the milk or break the gourd to kill the snake? They would also advise you, “en be en mana nyodo” (he is part of the family).
This is our socialist orientation. It protects the weak against the strong. It ensures that family cohesion takes precedence over capitalistic ventures. It prevents the Shylock from cutting off a pound of flesh from the Merchant of Venice’s breast, lest the family blood is spilled.
Some however blame it for our inability to accumulate capital and therefore invest together. They say it sets off a vicious circle in which we have no respect for that which is owed to others, especially close relatives. They explain that this is the reason we cannot build chamas, cooperatives and banks. It makes people fear having their relatives close to their resources.
We had a chance to discuss this with my brothers Hon. Ngunjiri Wambugu and Malik Mureu. We would sit the whole night trying to understand each other as we engaged in inter-ethnic dialogue as youth leaders after theb2007/08 PEV. At the end of the day, we concluded that we are a nation of diversity.
Whichever way you look at it, “thuol odonjo e koo” for the Kenyattas and the Koinanges. Will they pour out the milk or will they crush the gourd?