MRC: The poison that's cooking
25 June 2012, 13:08
The greatest wealth to ever be owned by man is land, since time in memorial. This ‘fixed asset’, as my fellow business-school graduates would love to call it was and still is the title of a man since the days of Adam and Eve.
People literally fight for this piece of wealth so hard that scores are lived to be remembered for their course in leading communities, kingdoms and troops of soldiers and even churches to battle in conquest of a section of ‘land’. You may call it a whole country, a state, a province, a region, an island the fact remains; it’s all land. Now I hope you can see the whole load of title and respect a man gets from owning vast pieces of land in any area of this world; be it the Arctic lands or Sahara regions, all a man will want is land.
Enter our nice beloved country Kenya to the picture. Suddenly the mess created is overwhelming. Being a colonial state for a period of over 65 years, the colonialists had already settled in very many parts of this country and thus became settlers. However they acquired that land it’s only the government of Kenya and the Queen who know.
Turn to the politicians and that’s where everything blows out of proportion. After independence, the senior politicians at that time were very few and labour was alike. Therefore no clear records were able to be kept by Africans since those offices were formally for whites who had now left the country. There was no one to draw up contracts of some sort in order to favour the country even in the long term so as to ensure proper efficiency.
In this state at that moment or rather period, the state became the property of the top elite political class who had achieved at least a certificate or diploma either from abroad or within. It became a mess as the took out vast lands that lay bare due to the scarce population of about 7 million people at that time. Hectares and hectares of land were taken by this class and this created a shortage of land in many parts of the country. Welcome the Mombasa Republican Council (MRC) and the mess turns to a ghost that may turn out to be not so good after all.
At the Coast province, huge chunks of land were grabbed and indeed this has stirred up a deadly soup for Kenya and its government alike. The MRC is a lot of people who have been fed up to throat and food can no more be tasty and thus have resorted otherwise to size to dine with its leaders. You all know what that calls for, a rebellion of some sort. That is how every rebellion or uprising starts and whether for good or bad they all end up really bloody and messy.
A good list of examples but let’s start of just around the corner, South Sudan. The Sudan People Liberation Movement/Army (SPLM/SPLA) started of as a hum in the ears of the Sudan government; it viciously wanted autonomy and independence. This hum turned into a loud noise that the government could no longer shut it out and thus the government’s eardrum burst leaving Mr Government without listening aid. This resulted in the SPLA/M turning to arms and with their spirits they achieved their goal come 9th July, 2012.
The MRC has shown some rebellion against the government already. By simply standing on Kenyan soil in any corner and saying that ground is not Kenya, means you are invading the sovereignty of the senior most organ of any land, the government. If the government should see this sense then we can be able to avert a very deadly poisoning in our soup. The MRC have been charged and still continue to get charged in order to prepare for a fight to death scenario that may occur on its path to full realization. It may take years, maybe ages but as long as the government doesn’t attend to it, the poison may mature and before we know it, something we can not contain will surely be starring at us.
Internal Security minister or not, top government officials should seat the president down and advise him on how to contain this group and actually ensure no ideologies are being spread around concerning secession. The only way to do this is by simply addressing the issues that MRC is facing that is leading it to believe in contrary opinions other than Loyalty and Patriotism. A very bold and large answer stares down when you ask that kind of question; Land matters. The Coast people feel that they have been treated as if they own nothing in that so sweet a region.
It is in the open that many senior political figures and families alike own large pieces at the lucrative Coastal province. It is only fair that the government negotiate with these families and individuals so as to allow for reverting of the land through maybe a compensation package or alternative agreement. Through this means, the government can acquire all the land at the Coast and therefore go to the table with MRC’s demand at hand and discuss the terms and conditions of transfer and ownership that is laid out in the constitution. As the government acquires the land, the Internal Security minister should ensure that peace and stability are maintained in the area and no unacceptable ideologies are being spread.
You can argue that handling of such a matter can be dealt with differently and I will heavily oppose you. There is no way Land problems can remain a constrain and you pretend to ignore. It turns out later or now into a beast that eats you alive. MRC should be re-assured that they are in their homeland and this can only be done through giving them a place they can call home forever and not be ever called a squatter. This is all they seek but if the government does not address this at this stage and address it adequately, ten maybe fifteen years to come and you will be fighting a whole revolution of some sort.
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