“That old law about ‘an eye for an eye’ leaves everybody blind. The time is always right to do the right thing.” – Martin Luther King Jr When my colleagues and I at the Independent Medico-Legal Unit (IMLU) learnt about the disappearance in June 2016 of our comrade advocate Willie Kimani, his client and their taxi […]
‘The traveller whose name is not Annah remembers thinking about all the mothers she had seen on television, clutching old photographs, speaking of sons who never made it home. She wonders how it must have been for them – sitting, waiting, hoping that each knock on the door was from their son’s fist.’ These words […]
Nairobi, Kenya – THEY NEVER LEAVE YOU ALONE EVEN AFTER YOU’VE BEEN TRANSFERRED The call came at precisely 3.00pm. My interlocutor could have easily ignored the vibrating mobile phone that was swivelling on the table, but on second thoughts, he chose to pick up the Nokia feature phone. On seeing the caller’s address, my friend’s body […]
Cape Town, South Africa – APATHETIC MIDDLE CLASS TAKES TO THE STREETS President Jacob Zuma is not going anywhere in a hurry. However, a number of South Africans are battling to understand why not. As far as they are concerned, factions are rife in the ruling party, there are whispers and dark mutterings about private armies […]
Meru, Kenya – TERRORISM JOINS THE TRADITIONAL QUARTET OF WAR, FAMINE, PESTILENCE, AND DEATH Developments of the past two decades have elevated security concerns within every domain. Issues ranging from data to employment to identity now invoke the need for protection in some manner or form. Hot viruses and Biblical climatic events lie in wait. It […]
Cape Town, South Africa – PEACE AT ALL COSTS: BUT ONE DAY, YOU WILL HAVE TO PAY During an election year such as this one in Kenya, much is made by politicians, the news media and to a lesser extent, the voting public, of media objectivity and neutrality. The examples of how certain media houses and […]
Nairobi, Kenya – A WATER GLASS SHARED BY 200 ADDICTS In downtown Mombasa, a nondescript office sandwiched between multistoreyed buildings is busy as usual. Every five minutes or so, gaunt youths, eyes bloodshot, walk into the tiny reception and straight away dash to the water dispenser at the far corner. They refill the only plastic glass […]
Nairobi, Kenya – AGENDA NUMBER ONE IS POMBE In July 2015, Kenya’s President Uhuru Kenyatta summoned Members of Parliament from the country’s central region to State House in Nairobi. ‘We must agree we have a problem that needs immediate action,’ he told them, declaring ‘agenda number one is pombe (alcohol), number two is pombe and three […]
The war on drugs has failed. It has failed to stop, or even slow, the production, trafficking and consumption of drugs.
The really bold drug barons will set up their own banks to avoid all the hassle of bribing the numerous people from the police to banking officials; dodging the tedious procedures and the obvious scrutiny from government bureaucrats.