By Mutemi wa Kiama
This really made me laugh today.
Once a while, I do visit my old constituency to acquaint myself with old friends. So today I visited Ruiru.
Among the very many stories I was told is about another old Mzee friend of mine called baba Mbugua.
Baba Mbugua is a very very quiet person. One evening as he was going home Gwa Gitambaya, a police swoop was being conducted where so many people are arrested at random and various misdemeanors or small crimes preferred upon many. Almost everybody was charged by being drunk and disorderly. But when they came to baba Mbugua, they charged him with the offense of riding a bicycle without a light in the front.
Remember he was walking home, not riding a bicycle.
When they were taken to court in the morning, and all charges read to each of them, baba Mbugua was accused of ‘riding a bicycle at night without lights.’
When the magistrate asked him whether it was true, he said, “yes your honour.”
Then he was fined Ksh 500.00.
Before leaving the dock, he raised his hand and the magistrate asked him what it is he wanted to say.
“Your honour I want to request you to order the policeman who arrested me to give me back my bicycle.”
The magistrate orderd by writing it on the charge sheet that the police man return the bicycle to the old man.
He bowed down and said, “thank you sir.”
I want you to remember that baba Mbugua was just walking home and he didn’t have a bicycle.
From the court, he went straight to the police station and informed the OCS that he wanted his bicycle which he was arrested with last evening without lights.
The OCS checked the OB and saw for sure he was charged with riding a bicycle without lights and indeed the duplicate sheet indicated as so.
So the OCS called the police office who arrested baba Mbugua and ordered him to “release” his bicycle.
The police officer posed for some moments and asked baba Mbugua that they go out of the OCS’s office which he agreed.
The policeman is called Wambua. So, Wambua asked baba Mbugua, “lakini Mzee nini mbaya na wewe?”
“Hakuna kitu mbaya na mimi,” baba Mbugua replied.
“Lakini Mzee unayua hukukuwa na baiskeri,” Wambua fumed at baba Mbugua.
“Basi, kama sikukua na baiskeri, kwa nini ulinistaki na kosa la kutokua na taa kwa baiskeri”?
It was then that Wambua realized the case was more serious than the joke he had the previous night.
Then, the OCS over heard the conversation and came out to inquire why the Mzee is not being given his bike.
The OCS asked Wambua where the bike was. He kept quiet and looked down speechless.
Baba Mbugua interjected and threatened to go back to court and report that police are refusing to hand back his bike to him.
Wambua called the OCS kando and he explained to him that after all there was no bike and that they didn’t know the Mzee was such mjeuri ( crafty).
The OCS told Wambua he had to organize a quick fund raising from friends, go to the shop and buy the mzee a bike, otherwise if he goes back to court and informs the magistrate about the loss of his bike or the truth be known that you charged him wrongly, you will be in hotter soup.
So the OCS and Wambua called baba Mbugua and told him to give them 30 minutes to get money to buy him a bike.
He waited. After 30 minutes, Wambua came running and told baba Mbugua, mzee let’s go to town I buy you the bike and please let the matter rest there. Baba Mbugua said its ok it will rest there.
They went and bought a good bike which Wambua handed over to baba Mbugua. Then baba Mbugua unscrewed the front light and gave it to Wambua. Wambua asked him what was the meaning of this. Baba Mbugau told him, my bike didn’t have a front light.”
He then rode the new bike and went home whistling and left Wambua holding the light and confused. Wambua went back to the Station and when the OCS saw him holding a bike light, he asked him what was going on.
“Afande sijaona mzee mjeuri kama huyo.”
After Wambua explained what happened in town, both the OCS and Wambua fell over one another in prolonged laughter.
Form that day, Wambua is very careful with his police work. The OCS told him as much.