Pwani Si Kenya (The Coast Is Not Kenya)!

These were the cries that greeted the streets of the county and shocked the country a month or two ago when the MRC dusted themselves off and came back into the limelight and the countries consciousness. Their rather extreme cries for secession elicited different reaction from the county and the government. With some of those in the county in agreement, others firmly opposed and other still with no opinion at all. But the government was firmly opposed to the group which they firmly and swiftly outlawed and refused over and over again to converse with!

The Mombasa Republican Council lament in their Manifesto that: “This country (Coast) has become a field of Kenyans looting our wealth,” and demands the removal of Kenya’s administration and, ultimately, independence.

Secession is the act of withdrawing from an organization, union or a political entity.
This has been the MRC’s goal since its own creation has been to secede the Kenyan coast from the rest of the country. At first the government, were against the group and swore that they would have nothing to do with the group with the President and Prime Minister being (for once) of the same unrelenting exacting frame of mind, publicly stating more than once that “Kenya is one nation and any attempts or calls for secession should be rejected and shall not be tolerated, specifically, the Coast region has been part of, is part of and will remain part of the Republic of Kenya” said President Kibaki.
“If we as Coastals decide that we want to go our own way, and then Western and the Northern Eastern regions did the same, will we have a country called Kenya? So today, I have rebuked their actions which I often said they are violent and terrorist like. They should be dealt
with in the full force of law,” said the Kaloleni MP.  Their lamentations over the land seen rather unwarranted as the government previously tried to solve the coasterians disputes in 2007 when at meetings with the people to ask those who owned land produce the required documentation which would allow the government to repossess pieces of land without genuine owners then transfer it to those locals who did not posses land.

The About Turn:
But this past week our leaders seem to have undergone a light bulb moment, and a realisation of sorts as some underwent a 180 degree turn as concerned their once negative opinion of the MRC, taking a step back to reconsider their strategies and with the upcoming election fast approaching PM Raila Odinga could not have chosen a better time to have a change of heart, When he chose to go from: “The government will only talk to MRC if they renounce violence and stop secession calls.” To: "MRC is speaking my language". "MRC are our people, our youth and our brothers. We shall sit down with them to discuss,"!

He was not the only one to proclaim his support for the illegal group (does that mean they’re no longer illegal?) The PM former ally also added his voice to the melee while throwing mud at his former party boss he was at it accusing him of ‘mishandling the MRC issue, instead of finding a solution to their grievances’ Stating at a press conference: “Why tell people you cannot hold talks with them because they are outlawed. This is unfair. MRC and any other group has a right be listened to because they are Kenyans," adding that: "While everybody has been saying the challenge of MRC needs attention, nobody has broken the impasse between national leaders and this group."
William Ruto a presidential candidate with his UDM party and one of the ‘Ocampo4’ whose trial date will be set next month said that he too was ready to give the group a listening ear saying: "It is possible for us to unite and resolve our issues. The solution is in election leadership that understands the problems Kenyans face."

Martha Karua also a presidential candidate (how many do we have now?) and NARC Kenya party leader earlier this month asked leaders to listen to the groups concerns "and should not use a big stick to whip them". While some at the coast like lawyer Abubakar Yusuf advises those in the MRC and locals to form an alliance with any leader who will "sincerely address" their issues.
 Rafael Tuju –another presidential candidate- rejected the PM and DPM’s calls for talks saying: “MRC should be treated as illegal and dealt with. The government should protect investors. There are widespread historical injustices all over Kenya and coast should not be exceptional. It should not be reason for secession.”
Adding that: “Their demands can be addressed and resolved without having to resort to secession. Land ownership, job opportunities, resource management and marginalization can be tackled. I don’t think we can secede because the government is in control.”

Pwani Ni Kenya:

I don’t think that self governance for the coast is a viable solution, chief among the many questions I have is would the coast be able to govern itself as a country autonomous of the rest of Kenya and can we be truly dependant of the other counties that secession would extricate us from? Will we be able to elect our own president, who would lead us for four years? NO! Each part of Kenya is dependant or reliant on the other counties around the nation, I think we need all the sum of the parts to make Kenya a functioning whole. Yes there are grievances and problems with unemployment, the low standards of education, land grabbing and its illegal ownership, marginalization of a single group and a drug menace that seems to seep into every crevice of the county that doesn’t seem to go away, but that doesn’t mean MRC should proclaim themselves no longer part of a nation that has been in existence since the beginning of time and independent since 1963! There is more than one way to skin a cat!


Popular posts from this blog

The Big car syndrome

When Decorum Flies The Coop

Everyone's Scared & Running Away.