2 June 2006
Much Ado about Madaraka
We have all heard about them, the great heroes of kenya’s independence.
Koitalel Arap Samoei, Mekatilili Wa Menza , Waiyaki Wa Hinga Dedan Kimathi
Harry Thuku, Ezekiel Apindi ,Mzee Jomo Kenyatta ,Ronald Ngala ,Oginga Ondinga
James Gichuru, Daniel Arap Moi, Tom Mboya.
Yesterday I got to watch the usual independence documentary that they show on KBC, as that went on I got to think of the unsung heroes. Those whose names didn’t make the cut yet they were part of the struggle and gave up their lives for me to enjoy the freedoms that I have now.
What about the wives who had to raise children alone?
What about the children who had to live without daddy around?
What about the house helps who acted as spies knowing that if caught it would mean death?
What about those whose loved ones died at war and they never got to say goodbyeor even at least bury their dead?
What about the women who risked their lives while taking food to the warriors in the bush?
What about young men who never knew youth who had to be men before their time?
What about these people and all others whose recognition and the pat on their backs have gone to the dogs?
What about them?
I wonder what all these great patriots would think of this nation at these moments, 43 years later the nation they once shed blood, tears and sweat for.
I wonder how it felt the morning after Madaraka day, waking up a free man truly that is one feeling that we will never comprehend in totality.
So this late post is a tribute to all the unsung heroes of independence…
Last but not least “ in his book, the bridges of Toko-Ri, novelist James Michener writes movingly of heroes who fought in the Korean conflict. In the book’s final scene, an admiral stands on the darkened bridge of his carrier, waiting for pilots he know will never return from their mission; and as he waits, he asks in the silent darkness “where did we get such men?”.
Now 43 years plus later I muse to myself “where did we get these men and women?”
They say life begins at 40 I wonder if that also applies to countries if so we are lagging behind…
After all is said and done gotta say: Niu nkugwirua kutherwa mukenya meaning am proud to be Kenyan.