Our problem isn’t corruption, It’s lawlessness

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Apparently King Solomon was one of the wisest kings that ever lived – according to the Bible anyway. He asked for wisdom, because when he became king after David, he was young. Very young- what many people do not know (or selectively omit) is that he was not the first born son, he was not an obvious selection. David had promised his mother that he would be King and rightful heir.

The story that always fascinates me is the two women and a crying baby. This is the case that apparently sealed the deal for his people to prove his discernible wisdom. Two women come
to him, with one baby, claiming to both be the mother. As we know how the story goes,
Solomon asked for the baby to be sliced in half, since both mothers were more than
Convincing to prove that indeed that is their son.

So when a swordsman is called to slice the child in half- one screams out in anguish let her have the baby- the real mother. She would rather see her son live than die. It has been a road of meandering hills and valleys these past few weeks of protests. Not just in Nairobi but in other counties as well. We have seen 6 people lose their lives. Also, hate speech flooded our social media platforms and some action was finally taken on the members of parliament.

It has been gruelling and tiring to say the least. This battle that appears to be happening
between two parties: Jubilee Alliance and CORD. Just like the story I began with, Kenya- we are the baby being dangled in front of Solomon (Parliament). CORD states IEBC commission members (about 9) should resign.

The last elections that were held were not credible and they have every constitutional right to petition. Claiming that there were inconsistencies and also traces of corruption and irregularities. The agreement between the Jubilee Alliance and CORD on the motion to establish a Parliamentary Joint Select Committee on matters relating to the Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission (IEBC) are set to occur in the coming days.

But looking at the situation. Perhaps we may not have a problem of corruption as we loudly
proclaim. We have a problem with the law. A nation is only as good as the laws that govern
her and this include those who enforce and follow that same law. See, laws are supposed to
bring order, they are supposed to be for the greater good of majority, which unite us,
then discipline us, and then translate to respecting our nation, which should translate to
love.

Our constitution is well written from behaviour of leaders of integrity (which are not
followed) to the accessibility that every Kenyan has a right to access. We admire first world
countries so much (not all of us, but most) because of the order, where there is a red light in traffic, people actually stop, the small things.

Laws are so ingrained, not because someone is watching but because of the discipline to
follow. Where there is a service to be provided, it is almost automatic- there is no way to
bribe your way through things. There are less ways of cheating your way up a ladder or having access to things through the back door. Then we come home, everything you do is expected to be followed with a bribe.

Then those who enforce law, enforce it on some- really depending if you can afford your way-out. This reminds me of Animal Farm, where some are more equal than others… Or our
school systems, we cheat- bypass what is morally right and within the law.

What we do is do anything to omit our law. People will bribe a policeman, even though they were speeding because they do not want to deal with the court system. And I have seen those who follow the law, and you look foolish! A case can take years and it is more taxing than alleviating. The system almost makes it unbearable to follow.

We have no respect for rules. Then not only are we doing it at home, we have passed borders! Tanzania can not fathom the level of corruption we propagate and President Magufuli openly criticizes it or news reports of Kenyan’s stealing from the office of the President of South
Sudan. If we followed our law, there would be less rampantly obvious corruption.

Our law says that corruption pays. And like IEBC, if we followed law- there would be no
Monday’s on the streets and we may have not even been here at this moment. But as we are
dangled between the two “mothers”, because that is what it looks like- it is time we woke up and realized we are not a baby anymore. We can actually speak and say where we would
prefer to go. And perhaps choose, for our own health- it could be none of the mothers.

Nerima Wako

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Nerima Wako

Nerima Wako Nerima attained a Bachelor’s degree in Journalism and Sociology from Jacksonville State University (JSU) and her Master’s degree in Public Administration with a concentration in Emergency Management. Co- founder and Executive Director of ‘Siasa Place’ she is also founder of ‘Visionaries Aloud’ an organization that focuses on creating African docu-series; especially focusing on social and political issues tailored to the youth to enhance civic education and participation. She is a flamboyant pan- African who loves writing. Something that she hopes and continues to work toward is having an engaged youth. Youth who are passionate about the issues in their countries and are bold enough to come up with solutions.

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