Celebrating East African Writing!

Mr. Cabinet Minister by Peterson Mutua


My name is Mr. Cabinet Minister. When I was appointed into the cabinet position, my God-father or my boss, whichever suits you well, was elected on a platform of change. We all were but we don’t change. At the time, everybody was very happy to have, at the very least, managed to get a new kind of leadership and that in itself represented change. Change is as good as a rest, so they say. They just never specified what kind of change.

So as usual we, by “we” I mean all of us at the helm of power, give the mwananchi a period of courtship, a very near perfect form of leadership. Within no time they are all praising us for a good job done. In courtship couples are perfect. It’s a game that people play the world over and it works just fine to all parties involved

But when that is over, it’s time to get into business to do what we know best, ‘eat’, and ‘eat’ we do. I mean, if we don’t ‘eat’, then we are not in government. When you are in government you have to get the national cake because you don’t know whether you will be in it next time. Some of us get caught, others don’t and that’s the way life is, those are the rules of the game. 

Before you judge me, I will pose you with a challenge. Is there any person around here who is wealthy and is not corrupt? Come on, show me one person who is wealthy and not corrupt and I will show you a thousand of them that are filthy rich and corrupt to boot. So it’s not my fault that I  ‘eat’, I am just an actor following the script of a play called ‘how to be wealthy in this of the world’. I am just following the script that the script-writer wrote many years ago. To put it straighter I am playing a catch-up game with my predecessors. 

 Anyway that’s that.  I got caught accidentally courtesy of a loud mouthed colleague, a junior MP, who never made it to Cabinet and hence had no chance to ‘eat’ but sometimes he occasionally gets the crumbs so I don’t know why he is yapping that much!!!! As usual, I resisted and claimed that I was innocent, that I didn’t know anything about that saga, even if the processes occurred in my docket. I also claimed that it is a ploy by my political foes to tarnish my name. I even added that people from our community are being witch-hunted for no apparent reason.

As usual, my people support me and say that they will not take it lightly to see their leader being persecuted for no apparent reason. These people of mine, I like them. Even if you were to tell them to kill for my sake they would and why not? I am their leader. I get a motion of no confidence and of course my juniors envy me so they pass the motion unanimously, some of the few things they ever do unanimously besides fattening their accounts, it’s a rare show of unity I tell you.

I consequently resign in public and in reality I have only taken a sabbatical leave to let the crowds cool down. I will be back and to prove that it’s only a sabbatical no one is appointed to take up my slot in the Cabinet. Another cabinet colleague is appointed in an acting capacity to my slot. See, I told you it’s just … know a prolonged leave to ‘eat’ what I have gathered. Nah so this world!! Wonders will never cease!! Wapi pengine… where else does one person serve two positions in cabinet when there are so many qualified individuals to fill the slot. Kwani wamekosekana???? But this is this side of the world my friend, those are the rules of the game.

A commission of inquiry is appointed to investigate me but I know this is just PR, trust me I know it is. After two months the findings of the commission are given to my seniors who let it gather dust in a dingy corner somewhere in the office. Who cares anyway, its public money and its supposed to be used. Tumia pese upate zingine!!! After six months I am back in the Cabinet. I told you it was a sabbatical and by the way the findings never found me involved in any way, so legally, I am clean. Did I not tell you I am a law abiding citizen?? Indeed  I am!!!

But I fail to understand the citizens. We give them so much money during campaigns, kwani how do they expect us to return it back??? Nothing is free my good people, you pay in one way or the other and this is the prize you will have to pay for accepting my bribes of brew and singing “yeye tosha”  to all things I said no matter how stupid they were.

I also have to cater to other issues, you see I am a “mheshimiwa”.  I will have to live in the upmarket areas, go to holidays in Honolulu plus my two mistresses have to stay in Kileleshwa and Lavington,  my wife will to go shopping in Paris and my kids oh I love my kids!! They can’t study together with the ones of wananchi, they have to study abroad. This all costs money; tell me Mr. Citizen how am I supposed to get all this money if I don’t you know…….reap it somewhere?? Just ponder about that for a while, in the meantime I am off to my next “project”.


3 comments on “Mr. Cabinet Minister by Peterson Mutua

  1. Osas
    February 20, 2009

    Reality is sometimes better than fancy. Let me just quote from the Hansard:

    Mr. Waititu: Mr. Speaker, Sir, I seek your indulgence with regard to this Question. This is because the Member who has grabbed these 1,000 acres of land is in the forefront in this Parliament trying to show that he is fighting corruption, while he—

    Mr. Speaker: Order, Mr. Waititu! The Standing Orders do not allow you to discuss the
    conduct of a … Read moreMember without bringing a substantive Motion. So, you will have to refrain from continuing on that line of questioning.

    Mr. Waititu: Mr. Speaker, Sir, I have a copy of the title deed of the grabbed land in Ruai. I also have a copy of the letter that shows that he has taken a loan of Kshs1.6 billion from a bank in—

    Mr. Speaker: Order! You cannot table those documents! My direction still stands; that
    you cannot discuss the conduct of a Member without bringing a substantive Motion. So, you cannot table documents which are supposed to be evidence that some hon. Member has grabbed land.

    (Hansard of 17th February 2009, p. 11-12)


  2. Wairimu
    February 24, 2009

    I like your article because of its chronology of events.Like all else, the state we find ourselves in is a process that once understood MUST be shortcircuted.


  3. wanjiru
    February 26, 2009

    i find it funny how every election petiod, we kenyans make ourselves a nice sticky web and jump right into it, then spend the next five years agonising about the dicomfort of the web.come the next general election we weave ourselves an even stickier web and hop right into it!!!!i’m starting to think soon we’ll start electing guys from kamiti…i mean heri the thief you know than the one you dont,because come rain or sunshine it will still be a thief. at least we can lock up the kamiti fellow if he gets tricky!


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