Letter to friends and fellow Kenyans


Friends and Fellow Kenyans

The happenings of early this week, i.e. the \’homecoming \’prayer\’ rally\’ at Uhuru Park on Monday; the insults from Uhuru and Ruto\’s people against Raila… the silence from Raila and his people, the complete annoyance with the general public with what\’s is going on, especially their views on the event all remind me of three stories that are shared in circumstances such as they find themselves in as regards how one navigates around their \’friends\’, \’enemies\’ and themselves.

Friends to Avoid:
\’How the Monkeys Saved the Fish\’ (A Tanzanian Folk Tale)
"The rainy season that year had been the strongest ever and the river had broken its banks. There were floods everywhere and the animals were all running up into the hills. The floods came so fast that many drowned except the lucky monkeys who used their proverbial agility to climb up into the treetops.

They looked down on the surface of the water where the fish were swimming and gracefully jumping out of the water as if they were the only ones enjoying the devastating flood. One of the monkeys saw the fish and shouted to his companion: "Look down, my friend, look at those poor creatures. They are going to drown. Do you see how they struggle in the water?" "Yes," said the other monkey.

"What a pity! Probably they were late in escaping to the hills because they seem to have no legs. How can we save them?" "I think we must do something. Let\’s go close to the edge of the flood where the water is not deep enough to cover us, and we can help them to get out." So the monkeys did just that. They started catching the fish, but not without difficulty. One by one, they brought them out of the water and put them carefully on the dry land. After a short time there was a pile of fish lying on the grass motionless.

One of the monkeys said, "Do you see? They were tired, but now they are just sleeping and resting. Had it not been for us, my friend, all these poor people without legs would have drowned." The other monkey said: "They were trying to escape from us because they could not understand our good intentions. But when they wake up they will be very grateful because we have brought them salvation."

Enemies to Watch Carefully:
How FDR fought off the Union Party:
In 1935 some in the US had grown discontented with President FDR\’s reforms, known as the \’New Deal\’. They decided to work together and form what came to be known as the Union Party, to galvanize this discontent. Within this group was Huey Long, a populist, charismatic Senator, and Father Coughlin, a catholic priest with a popular radio program.

Their attacks on FDR began to have effect.  His poll numbers went down, and they became even more aggressive and relentless in their campaign. In the midst of this FDR remained mostly silent, letting them fill the air with their charges and threats.

His advisors panicked: they felt he was being too passive. He was however sure that the public would get tired of the shrill attacks against him.  He also believed that the factions within the Union Party would begin to fight against themselves as the election neared. He ordered all his people not to attack these men. At the same time he went to work behind the scenes and undermined each of his rivals. As he had predicted the party splintered, and he went on to win the 1936 election in an unprecedented landslide.

Personal Circumstances to Look Out For:
The Day of the Monkey
This saying was used to indicate a case where there was no defence, and the Kikuyu say that: \’Muthenya wa Ngima Uligukinya, Muti wothe ni mutenderu\’ (i.e. when the day of the Monkey reaches, every tree it tries to climb is slippery).

 This saying is derived from the saying that a monkey dies on the ground, and that when its day to die comes, whichever tree it tries to climb is slippery … leaving it on the ground, to die.

We hope they have come across these stories and will heed the lessons therein: & avoid the outcomes.

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