Kenya’s Jubilee and the image of ‘old man-child’

Life, some say, begins at 40. But, whatever that means by the time you hit 50–whether you like it or not–the decline to the other side of life will have begun. Even for those in denial, any signs of youthfulness will have evaded their wrinkled faces at 50.

There is usually nothing much to worry about for those who have lived their lives to the fullest and made their footprints on earth and in the hearts of mankind. But for those who squandered and a made a mess of their lives, 50 is the age of teeth-gnashing and regrets.

Kenya is celebrating its 50th birthday this year. And although we have a lot to shout about, we also have a lot to regret about, just like an aging man who rues the prospect of his sunset years after wasting away his youth.

 We are like the old man-child in Ayi Kwei Armah’s “The Beautyful Ones Are Not Yet Born” who completes all stages of human life in seven years. By seven, his dreams have been completely dashed. In our case, our hopes have been dashed year after year for decades. At 50, Kenya is still a crawling baby, thanks to corruption, nepotism and their kin and kith. Happy birthday Kenya. May you live to blow 1000 candles!

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What do women really want?

Some men say women are from Mars. Although I know that women are actually from Korogocho, Mosoriot and Shamakhokho and every corner of Kenya, Mr Kiarie Peter has almost convinced me that women are indeed Martian. Hear him:

“Women have been complaining of men who do not know how to treat them well: Men who are not loving, caring, sensitive, mindful, thoughtful, concerned, gallant, attentive, understanding, open, supportive, responsible, available. Men who do not buy them flowers, who’ll never make sacrifices for them, take them out, compliment them. 

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“When faced with such Neanderthal men, women yearn to meet Mr Right, Prince Charming, a knight in shining armour, “Romeo”, whatever you call him. However, when presented with such a man who’ll do and be all of the above and more, ladies still do not know how to handle him. Yes, many ladies just don’t know what to do with a nice guy. They’ll leave him quickly, with all manner of excuses: He’s pretending, he’s boring, I won’t add any value to him, I won’t make any difference in his life. And in case they date him, they take advantage of his chivalry and walk all over him!”  Sisters, what do you really want?

Of customers and valued customers

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The Companies Registry at Sheria House has become one of the best centres of incompetence in Government service. That’s the harsh verdict of one their customers.

Mr Murimi Mwaure alleges that clerks who handle companies’ returns, a mandatory requirement for all firms, are arrogant, rude and painfully slow.

“They are painfully slow because for every file they handle for the customers on the queue, they handle five others brought by their own clients,” he explains. What exactly do you mean by “their own clients”, Mr Mwaure? Are there government employees and individual employee’s customers?

He expounds further: “They are arrogant to the extent that if a customer has five returns for the same company, they insist they can only accept one or two at a go, meaning that having waited on the line for four hours to file two returns,  you need to queue for at least ten hours to file five returns.”

He suspects the Registrar is either fast asleep or has no clue about these goings on. “We expect the new bloom of Jubilee government to sweep clean and make the cost of doing business both efficient and friendly,” concludes Mwaure. His contact is [email protected]

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Government Ayi Kwei Armah Kenya