Wednesday, October 28, 2009

Burning the Weed – A word for Maina Njenga


Maina Njenga has been “saved”, but unfortunately, the country he helped rot has not. Not by a long shot. I had my reservations about the genuineness of his conversion to Christianity when I first heard about it. I suspected it was probably a publicity stunt designed to launch his political career or at least boost that of the Bishop who interceded for him. Listening to him testifying on Jeff’s bench, I begun to afford him the benefit of doubt.


Maina came across as legitimately transformed. He controlled the interview and it seemed like one of the easiest for the host. Mr. Koinange barely spoke. I guess there was so much to listen to from a man who has been in incarceration for the past approximate of five years. Maina is no longer a member of Mungiki and in his words, the decision “Has no appeal.” He has great ideologies about how to change the sect into a fresh new movement just as he has been born again.

But Maina appeared to be over confident in his ability to change the path or the pace of Mungiki. Even with his new armour of faith, I am taken to believe that it may not be as easy a task as he probably imagines. I felt I needed to share with the resigned leader of Mungiki about a concept of physics called inertia. Inertia, Mr. Njenga, is the ability for an object in motion to keep moving, or one that is at rest to resist movement. It is an aversion to change based on one of the laws of motion. Mungiki is a movement. Stopping it may not be as sudden or simple as you have taken it to be.

Allow me to remind you about the salvation of one Mr. Waruinge. You may remember him as the leader of your movement before you. He became a pastor and Mungiki definitely did not die. You are not even yet in pastoral garb so I suspect that if you rely on a similar strategy of expecting the masses in your organization to follow their newly released leader into Christianity, you may be burning the candle from the wrong end.

I would like to remind you that Mungiki has its owners. You mentioned an earlier belief that the Bible had been to you only an instrument for the entertainment of Europeans. Mungiki is quite like that. It is what the “athomi” use to entertain their financial and power needs through the “ahoi”. I learnt these terms from Mr. Mutahi Ngunyi. While you were away Mr. Maina, your children seemed to have acquired new fathers. The owners of Mungiki have continued to bank roll their activities and may have gotten themselves in one venerated Waki list. At a time when the 2012 election is drawing nearer and becoming more unpredictable, the “athomi” may not be willing to allow your flimsy attempts to disarm their mercenaries. Otherwise, how else shall they be re elected?

Mungiki will not die because you got saved. Martin Luther and Karl Max were assassinated and that did not end the movement for the emancipation of the blacks in the US. Killing Dedan Kimathi did not stop Kenya’s train toward the station of freedom. To avoid a futile campaign to preach to the Mungiki, I would like to suggest a more lasting solution. Mr. Maina, I believe that your position of influence has allowed you to be acquainted with the financiers of Mungiki’s activities. You probably know their names, banks and accounts. I am convinced that a certain Mr. Ocampo who is to visit our country early next month may be the best person to speak to. He may have great interest to know that you have recently been transformed and that you are willing to stop this menace that you were once such an integral part of.

Mr. Maina, your homecoming was quite romantic. Trip to church and sudden surge of the crowd et al. But this is not a fairy tale. Your new mission is farthest from romance. It is like planting seed on rock, thorn, or pathway where Jesus contends that it will not grow. You are a farmer and may appreciate how getting rid of “thangari” is quite difficult. The grass barely grows above ground but beneath it forms a complex and deep network of roots. Burning the ground does not kill the weed. One must dig up the earth, turn it over, break the roots free then and only then can the burning be used to destroy the adamant grass. It is the only way to deal with Mungiki. Turn over the roots. Put the names of those bank rollers in an envelope to be presented to that man Ocampo when he arrives. Let’s call it the Njenga Envelope. Expose them to the sun and let them scorch. Allow them to burn in the heat of their own guilt.


I want to believe you when you say you are not a trouble maker. You are a peace maker. It took five years to get you transformed after 20 years in the sect. Please accord the people in the Njenga List the same opportunity. This man Ocampo has a way to fit elephants in cells. He will take it over from you. How will burn the “thangari” roots that you have helped to turn over. The earth will now be ready for planting. Then you can start your preaching. You can plant your seed on fertile ground.

The Tin Man.


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