Friday, February 13, 2009

Excerpts From Kwani? 5

Truth does not set you free. Instead, truth sets loose. It risks what we hold dear. And there are no assurances.
Daring truth entails risking all we might want to preserve. It means daring to break with family and friends. It means disturbing the fragile peace we inhabit by having difficult conversations. It means telling our mothers, fathers, sisters, brothers, lovers, and friends that their political choices are unpalatable.z

When I speak with truth it creates opportunity for everyone. -Excerpt from ‘Daring Truth’ by Jeremeiah Okongo.

I saw someone being killed in town at the matatu station called Kalenjin airport because the matatus there carry people heading into the North Rift. The IDPs who had been evicted from Eldoret were very bitter and were going around looking for Kalenjins to avenge their losses. They came to Kalenjin airport because they knew that’s where most of them board matatus to go home. Unfortunately, one man was caught by the group. They beat him up and stabbed him to death. I was not noticed because I look like a Kikuyu.- Kevin Koros, a 20-year-old actor from Lakeview, near Nakuru.

When my uncle saw some people approaching his home, he called the chief again who didn’t answer the call. When the Kalenjin youths reached my grandparents’ compound they said they were looking for my uncle to kill him. When they spotted him running away they tried to shoot him with arrows, but luckily none hit him. My uncle and grandparents moved to Nyahururu to start a new life. - Gladys Maina, currently living in Kikuyu, Central Province.

We spend most of our lives listening to every word of those politicians. That’s why we are suffering, especially the middle class and poor people. The rich from Westlands, Lavington, Runda are very safe. -Alvando Msamani, electronics salesman. Dandora.

I was born in Baringo. I’m a Kikuyu, but I learnt Kalenjin before my mother tongue. Most of my friends are Kalenjin. But today I don’t want to see any one of them. I really hate myself for saying that.

I cannot go back to Central Province. The language they speak there is totally different from the Kikuyu I speak here. When I speak my Kikuyu there, they start laughing at me. And when I go to Baringo, where I grew up, they look at me as a foreigner. If I don’t belong in the Rift Valley, where else can I fit? I am married to a Luhya! - Jesse Njoroge, Nakuru