An Open Letter to the People of Marsabit County


Dear Ardha Sakuu,

Good people of my native land, today my crystal ball is telling me that I should write this letter to you to have a word or two.Ardha Sakuu how are you faring in this global village? The truth is; am sad and happy at the same time. I’m happy that am writing to communicate and I’m sad. Very sad indeed because of “some things” getting on my hot raw nerves. These things literally sit squarely on my shoulders. Allow me to get them off my chest for the first and very last time. But before then, I’ve a question for you. If your twin brother forgets your birthday, what will you do?

My people, if you ponder this question well as I do and see as I see! Yes, we are not perfect! We’ve made bad decisions and wrong choices at times, but we are what we were. We’ve have said both the wrongs and right things about ourselves because we are what we were. We might not like everything we have done for ourselves, but we did it because, we are what we were. We loved and trusted the wrong people and hated and wrongfully scorned the

Right people, just because we are what we were. We missed the three basic points – Past, Present and Future. For any normal person; looking back 30 years ago will put a smile on his face, 10 years ago a frown on his face and more years to come; only our name will exist!! Sema kujimaliza wenyewe! That’s the word.

In my entire life, I’ve never thought of writing such a dictum. Today with gusto of optimism and poignant of regrets I surely do. History is my witness because the entire generation is in deep shit and occasionally we’ve willingly chipped-out ourselves! As per today Turkana county is hundred times much better than us; not that we lack resources because nature has favored us but we lack LEADERSHIP. Sue me if you so wish, because I will tell you this in black and white and in a broad daylight. No one; absolutely no one left the leadership cage and left Marsabit an inch better than it was but worst than almost its entire existence! That’s a fact. The fallacy of blaming nature is not justifiable. It is just a hit below the belt and the proverbial monkey tale sums it up all. Remember what the monkey said when all the effort was in vain to get a ripe fruit?!…

My people, oftentimes, the lives we lead are a far cry from the ideals that we cherish either as individuals or as a community of nations. Yet, it is within our power to not only change our world but, more importantly, our attitudes towards it and towards fellow humankind.ironicaly, though many of us abhor what is ugly, unjust and acceptable in our world. Today we contribute to the rot by our lack of willpower to do the right thing, our fear of seizing the moment when opportunity calls and our indifference to the suffering of ourselves! I wonder what ails humanity? Why do we allow inequality to flourish when we can do something about Marsabit County? What is the cause of our unwillingness to develop? And above all, what is the role of the individual in modeling Marsabit County to approximate paradise?! We are behind in everything. Behind even in the word itself!!

As Marsabit County, are we proud of the worst infrastructure system? Where you only trout on Lorries and busses plying the Great-northern road! Can we smile off to use below per medical facility? Where for medicine you are advised to get them from chemist? Can we just afford to seat back and watch our education system deteriorate by day? Where a class seven pupil can hardly read, write and construct a simple English sentence! Just for how long can a 20 liter jerrican of clean water go for Kshs 5o/=?? For how long can our youth rot in chang’aa dens and Miraa stores? For how long can we tell the tale of bandits and cattle rustling amongst ourselves??  Can we opt to watch and listen as all these happen in front of our eyes passively?! Can we for heaven sake rise to the challenge and come to our senses! If ever we have one!

Ooh, my good people; it’s disheartening to see all these happen in 21st century. What will I tell my grandchildren? It seems that the more things change the more they remain the same.Infact it worsens! Our leaders must learn a lesson or two from the past mismanagement of resources. It’s time to take charge of ourselves. It bits the odd for Marsabit County development issues to always put to political ploy because our priorities are upside down! Because we have misplaced priorities.

Drum beasts of war is known to all and sundry; I dare say, in Marsabit County, gun rules. I don’t need to take you down the memory lane. You are the witness i don’t have to remind you of the ugly face of July 12, 2005 Turbi massacre and the unfortunate Kofia Mbaya plane crash…behind all this there is a sign that defines-who is who to tell what’s what!!

We need to put our priories right even if it means cutting our nose to uplift our face. We are our own enemies and it’s only fair to taste the depth of the river with both our feets. The warlords are our brothers, friends, uncles and cousin –they lived among us. We live ‘together, yet we burn midnight oil planning to kill each other along tribal lines. Politicians is just a politician – the same politician in US, is in Kenya, Tanzania, Mali… we can’t see because of the poli-tricks they have employed on us. Their mists of lies weigh the same across the global. It’s you who will bereave with me when I lost my friend and a family member; it’s we who will intermarry with each other, we school together and work together why then should we roll up our sleeves to fight one another?! Sometimes I wear my broken heart proudly hoping things will get back to normalcy, but it never does!

My BP is heating up as I put this pen to paper. Everything about our life is pathetic! Pathetic enough to believe even a poor witchdoctor who promises us wealth! For how long can we carry the tag of “our people”… is that what will put food on our table? And pay our bills? Is that what we should embrace for the rest of our pathetic lives? Is that what will improve the sorry state of our roads? We still languish in poverty with over 92% record, our children are malnourished, call them walking skeletons! That is what they were!!

The tribal game can hide us but not for long. Our suffering is more than just what meet the eyes; we can opt to be friends in public and enemies in private but every Ali, Mamo, Shanko and Lekesike of Marsabit County is one and the same person! We can’t run away from that. We are dead scared of our very own self! Why? Explain to me as if am a two year-old kid – maybe I missed the point…

Don’t think of me as pessimistic.  It doesn’t augur well with me. Pessimism is not my cup of tea – far from it. But let’s shun the old carrot way of doing things. Still water runs deep. Brightest future will always be based on a forgotten past. You can’t go on well in life until you let go of your past failures and heartaches. I’ve done so, but it still lingers and rings in my distorted mind…

Enough said my people!

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