, NAIROBI, Kenya, Dec 20 – “People really need help but may attack you if you help them. Help people anyway,” this is a quote that aptly describes the driving force behind former legislator John Mututho.
Though well recognised for the Mututho laws, the former Naivasha MP who is now the chair of the National Authority for the Campaign against Alcohol and Drug Abuse (NACADA) seems to be a villain to bar owners, alcohol companies and users.
His stringent laws against misuse of alcohol and his persistent campaign have become a controversial discourse in bars, on social media and other platforms.
He has been criticised for making efforts to curtail people from over indulging especially during festive seasons.
But this has not stopped Mututho from pushing forth his agenda driven by his passion to see a drug free society.
Born in 1955 in a shanty home in Naivasha, Mututho grew up as a squatter grappling to free himself from the jaws of poverty and struggling to get a better life than most of his age mates.
“I have grown up as a squatter. Squatters are people of their own character, they live by the day, it was impossible to be alive during the colonial days,” Mututho recalls.
Despite the rough and tough childhood, Mututho was determined to find better life and he knew the only way was through education.
He was lucky he got educated by the government and managed to scoop scholarships that saw him study in the West.
“For the 21 years I have been in school – several universities – I have enjoyed government scholarships, they identified my potential,” Mututho said.
The gratuity extended to him by the government is one of the reasons why he is determined to help young people make a better future as a way of thanksgiving.
“It is time for me to pay back… it is time for me to make Kenyans understand what is ailing them,” Mututho asserts.
According to him abuse of alcohol and other drugs are potential plagues that could hijack their dreams of success.
His inspiration to fight for a drug free Kenya also comes through lessons he learnt while studying in Australia.
“Through the sponsorship, I have been in over 70 countries and I know what they are doing. It is people like John Mututho and others who are supposed to cause change and protect the youth,” he says.
He believes the responsibility of protecting and inspiring younger people in the society is having people with experience becoming their shield and defender especially in a world that is drug saturated.
“Even hyenas protect their children. In a perk of hyenas only two do the breeding, the alpha male and the alpha female and when puppies are born, hundreds of hyenas come to celebrate and feed the puppies, they don’t kill the puppies,” he said as he wondered why animals can protect their young ones yet human beings make minimal efforts to protect their own.