Wednesday, February 28, 2007

Made in Kenya

While addressing Kenyans in Minnesota, our MPs Raila Odinga and Omingo Magara attributed the rise in crime to unemployment. It is ironic that they used the same forum to sell custom made attire made by Mr. Odinga's personal tailor in Abidjan, Ivory Coast.

That simple action speaks volumes about Kenyan leaders who preach water while drinking wine. Jobs are not a creation of the government but as a result of trade. The government’s role is to stimulate growth and create an environment that is conducive for free trade.

There are many tailor in Kibera Constituency who will be more that happy to serve their MP Raila Odinga. There is a possibility that one among the thousands of tailors who call Kibera slums their home can do a better job than Raila’s personal tailor in Abidjan. I think it will make sense if Raila and his wife give Kibera residents a chance to work.

But I cannot whip Raila too much over this. The belief that foreign made stuff and foreign services are better than Kenyan goods and services is prevalent among our leaders and financially endowed citizens. When Kibaki was involved in an accident, he took a flight to London for treatment denying Kenyan doctors, nurses, pharmacists etc a chance to make a shilling. Recently Moi took a trip to Germany for treatment after being humiliated by the UK government. Moi’s family was denied UK Visas making it impossible for him to seek treatment there.

It reminds me of the Chadian PM Pascal Yoadimnadji who recently died of a cerebral haemorrhage a Paris hospital. It is a shame that Chad had no hospital to take care of the problem forcing him to take a long flight to Paris.

What is shocking is that those selling the ‘buy made in Kenya, make Kenya rich’ launder their suits in London. Without shame, they brag about it. Some Kenyans are known to import drinking water from abroad!

The mentality that foreigners are better than Kenyans drives our government into dishing out engineering jobs to foreign nationals at the expense of their own citizens. Little known to government officials is that there are many successful Kenyan engineers abroad who would be jobless had they remained in Kenya.

I think it is time we dealt with these notions of ‘International Standards’, ‘Foreign Experts’ etc. We should build our own institution and give our people a chance to work. Mama Atieno in Raila Slum, Nairobi, Kenya will be honored to tailor clothes for Raila and Ida.


Omogesangi said...

I take it you are writing not just to Kenyans but from Kenya and in a Kenyan language as well? No matter, none of us would stand to the scrutiny of our consciences nor stand being judged by the standards we judge others by as you have so eloquently demonstrated at more levels than one.

niatrading said...

very funny site.

if you would like to get into a new kenyan site looking for writers like you just email me.

but it's true raila with his foreign designer promoting kenya.hehe.

Engineer Brown said...

You totaly have no point heremy guy