Its been a while since we have written something here. Well, we too, just like you, have been waiting with bated breath to see what the face of the Kenyan cabinet in the coalition is going to look like. We have let it out now, though not in full. Concerning the cabinet, The Nation and The Standard have a comprehensive listing. What is really heartening is the 13 women that are in the cabinet, the most Kenya has ever seen. Kudos to the both sides for that.
Lets try looking forward, now that the past is being pushed aside for newer memories. Lets look at the face of the world and not forget Kenya. World Bank head Robert Zoellick warned that 100 million people in poor countries could be pushed deeper into poverty by spiraling prices. From Mexico to Pakistan, protests have turned violent. Rioters tore through three cities in the West African nation of Burkina Faso last month, burning government buildings and looting stores. Days later in Cameroon, a taxi drivers’ strike over fuel prices mutated into a massive protest about food prices, leaving around 20 people dead. Similar protests exploded in Senegal and Mauritania late last year. And Indian protesters burned hundreds of food-ration stores in West Bengal last October, accusing the owners of selling government-subsidized food on the lucrative black market.
You do not need a crystal ball to predict that Kenya is on its best way to join this list. There have been starving people in times where Kibaki’s government took the credit for being East Africa’s most successful economic-forward-moving government. But with Kenya’s economy shredded, still thousands of displaced persons and fields in Rift valley neglected during the violence, the country is facing a whole different situation, almost impossible to solve without foreign help. With 100 million people facing the crisis and only some hundred million from the international community, Kenya will find itself at the end of the list if they do not shape up now and let any bits of yields from the economic restructuring trickle down to the people. Otherwise, we are going to be one hungry, dissatisfied people very soon. I have my ears on the ground for anything they do towards this.
The BBC special report takes a look at the facts and figures behind rising food prices across the globe.
With Kenya’s wheat and maize production severely tampered with due to the unrest, one can be sure that this is going to hit Kenya harder than the rest of the world. One thing though is for sure: At least 42 cabinet members are not in fear of being hungry. Kudos to your pockets, oh ye soon-to-be-hungry Kenyan taxpayers!
Berthold Brecht wrote: “However much you twist, whatever lies you tell, Food is the first thing, morals follow on.” and Bob Marley sang: “A hungry mob is an angry mob”. Haiti prooved them both right. It is time for action now, so Kenya will not turn into a Haiti like situation. While the post election violence slowed down when the political leaders saw their chances to get their share of power, a hungry mob cannot be called to order: In the Rift valley violence pangas, spears and bows were used, in the cattle fights up north, kalashnikovs were used instead. Do get going, our dear Leaders.
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