ENTREPRENEURSHIP, THE KENYAN WAY
By Cosmas Mogere
At a time when Kenyans are struggling to make ends meet, creative entrepreneurs are reaping millions of shillings from simple business ideas scarcely known to most Kenyans. While shoe shining was once regarded as a fake profession associated with illiterate men in townships and cities seated on stools, the thought to modify it by introducing executive chairs is a bold statement.
Walk around the streets of Nairobi and other major towns in Kenya, these outfits paint the image of a creative entrepreneur reaping immensely from his intellectual effort. Now under the umbrella name “Tropical promoters Ltd”, the shoe shining firms duped “professional shoeshine centers” are common features in towns depicting the executive designs of chairs fully fitted with cupboard draws to store polish?
one of the shoe shiners in a modern bus shelter, Hurling-ham, Nairobi poses for a photo in the latest development of a modern bus shelters shoe shining hub.
Adorned in red, the brand colors of professional shoe shining, the chairs explains the transformative comfort clients are entitled to as they shine their shoes, unlike stools, which might poke a hole in one’s trouser or skirt, the executive chairs seeks to change the myth as one is treated to a parlor sitting .
Upon arriving in Nairobi, foreigners and tourists alike pose for photos as they sniff the ostensible moments of shoe shining. As if this is not enough, the job is not a preserve for men. Ladies equally embrace the job in open arms as their speculative features contribute to their extra coin.
Meanwhile, the story of professional shoe shining is not complete without mentioning its director, Oliver Omosa. His compelling story tells of a man that wafted in resilience and humility only to emerge a voice to reckon with in modern entrepreneurship.
Like any businessman, Omosa was driven by passion to increase the momentum at which entrepreneurship grew in Kenya. It is this aspect that forced him to undertake a Bachelors degree in statistics and masters in information technology, at the university of Nairobi.
Start from a scratch is the phrase that best describes Omosa’s humble beginnings into the exorbitant excellence he has accrued currently. He started as a photographer while in college, extended to freelance photography, featured in outdoor advertising as he secured branding deals with the likes of KIWI, Ken cell, Coca cola and other companies in Nairobi.
With this, Tropical Promoters LTD came to birth. It secured deals in the airport hence airport advertising, liaised with the city council of Nairobi to supply dustbins hence, dustbin advertising as wall branding, POS Branding and trolley handling followed suit.
Exhibits of tropical promoters are prevalent in major international Airports. Moi International Airport Harbors trolley handling as does Jomo Kenyatta International Airport. alternatively,its offices are in View park Towers opposite Anniversary towers along uhuru highway.
KIWI, the initial partner of this business venture cannot be left out. The company provided training to the first shoe shiners and branded the company Kiwi professional. Loaded with the influx of branding activities, Kiwi professional was rebranded thus, professional shoeshine centers’ came into existence.
Supermarkets on the other hand became the earliest recipients of these cumulative businesses. Nakumatt Prestige, Lifestyle and Mega, all located within Nairobi were the first Shoe shining hubs before a deal was struck with the city council and the Iko toilet Director David kuria to erect the facility behind the Toilets. Excellent steps by excellent people best describe these developments.
Like any business, Tropical promoters LTD has grown as new ideas chip in. Currently, Tropical promoters in partnership with the City Council of Nairobi have come up with the City beautification initiative that has seen the erection of modern commuter bus shelters.
The shelters, that will cover all major roads within Nairobi equally harbor the shoe shining business and a well-to-do landscape hosting flowers and planted grass. During its launch that was graced by his worship the major, George Aladwa and his ally, city clerk, Philip Kisia, the two hailed the far the city council has gone in its development agenda.
“Together with friendly partners, we are erecting commuter bus shelters in all major roads to not only facilitate travel efficiency to passengers but also secure them from scorching sun and rainfall that sometimes haunt them as they wait for vehicles” said Aladwa
Oliver Omosa on the other hand expressed optimism over the changes that city council is undergoing besides showing his long term partnership with the city council of Nairobi in its economic blueprints of making the city a save haven for all.
“For the last seven years, I have been supplying dustbins to the city council of Nairobi and I’m committed to breathing sanity in the general outlook of the city” Said Omosa
Despite the landmark achievements Tropical Promoters has recorded, it has had its fare share of challenges. supervising over forty outlets in the country besides getting goodwill to expand the business has been no easy task for the company. Also in the list is competition that has lately emerged within Nairobi Downtown.
Already, the shoe shining firm employees over seventy people across the country as Nairobi alone takes half of the total employees in the company.
Change tact and create a loophole in a non ventured business idea. Believe it or not, Tropical Promoters will soon enjoy a monopolistic business. In its new development agenda, the company is involved in erecting stage shops that equally harbor the bus shelter.
The idea came at a time when other companies tried impersonating tropical promoters in erecting bus shelters and setting the shoe shining business. In venturing where hawks dare, Tropical has accrued competitive appropriation and accreditation as far as business is concerned.
The latter business idea seeks to revert hawking into a licensed an profitable business. Think of the wild goose chase between the Council Askaris and hawkers and imagine of their autonomy. You will come to the conclusion that utilizing the available opportunity to re-invent a market strategy is a bold statement only the few wiser.
Halls of fame will not cease to hail the efforts of upcoming entrepreneurs in providing tangible solutions in the less inhabited markets. Like Oliver Omosa, another Nairobi based entrepreneur as secured a global competitive award in his efforts to decongest the city of faeces.
David Kuria, The Director and brains behind ‘Iko Toilets’, a toilet facility that covers 20 municipalities with a workforce force 200 employees was vetted the best upcoming entrepreneur 2010. Equally he received the Best practice Award –UN, 2010.
Last year alone, the IKO toilets facility served about 6.2 million people and Mr. Kuria is optimistic the number will increase to 10 million this year. But where did the IKO Toilet idea came from.
The need to control human waste in the city and cleansing the city into an admirable place to not only locals but also foreigner fueled the need for the facility. And with his elevation to the best entrepreneur, the demand for the erection of the facility has emerged everywhere. Already, the director has received bids and requests to erect the facility in Kampala, Uganda, Dar er Salam, Tanzania, Monrovia and Accra, Ghana.
poverty forces rural underage girls to prostitution
BY COSMAS MOGERE,
Charity kemunto, not her real name, struts, strides as she steal men’s attention with her coy smiles in Birongo Market Kisii Central District. Mini skirt, skin tight long trousers and see me through sarry dresses were her top wardrobe choice. In better descriptive terms, she is a victim of wardrobe malfunction.
The 17 year old mother of two does nothing better to boost her lifestyle but commercial sex. In disguise, She sometimes adorns herself in uniforms to appear a clean school girl and arrest the attention of the rogue-eyed men hunting for her type
Charity never plies her trade alone; she has several partners that motivate her to pursue her course. She is one among the many girls that opted for this illegal trade to see through her two siblings and other faculties relying on her as the breadwinner
With her character now stinky one, she is of late a victim of public defiance and social misfitness. Welcome to the world of desperate souls that turned scarlet women while guarding their menses upon lacking sanitary towels.
To begin with, charity; like her name, was a benevolent, obedience and ever dynamic girl. .Discipline best defined her as abusive characteristic were outside the outskirts of her lexicon. Though she commanded these qualities, her family background played the opposite.
Poverty was they way to go as their living standards would tell . in a mushroom like grass thatched house with a leaking roof, she endured life of hardship. Both of this was not long lasting as growth and development in her body cultivated fertile a seedbed for her drastic change of lifestyle.
Puberty played it all as charity would endure no shame of using a rag to control her menses. As fate had it lady luck with strings attached walked her way. Shamefacedly, she spoke her heart out as job promised to seal the gap in her life.
Unknown to her, he would only assist in exchange for sexual favors. With her condition, vulnerability and ignorance, she agreed to the offer while unaware of its consequences. The trend continued till her menses were no more. She was pregnant.
“I lost my periods and thought it was a medical complication but upon asking my friends, I was told that I might be pregnant but seeing the doctor for confirmation would help” She says.
Imagining of being a mother at 13 was no flexible feat . Stress ,embarrassment and emotional deformity were the challenges charity was subjected to. As her anxiety grew further, suggestions of terminating the pregnancy flicked in as she embraced the idea just to conceal the shame.
But this was not going to be; for the indigenous doctor she visited only cheated her into more temptations. Instead of sorting her problem out, he deceived her that the medicine works upon a sexual favor. Too vulnerable to deny, she agreed to the favor as nothing happened afterwards
“He applied some concoctions and explained the immediate results upon arrival at home. I waited in vain as the pregnancy grew on. I admitted to sire “she quipped amid tears
“The fact that charity’s family was way below the poverty line, giving birth generated more problems. And with problems growing hundred fold, she had nothing to do except to follow her former route, hence the birth of romantic freelancing.
Charity is not the only one under such circumstances. Many of her age mates played the match excellently. Prematurely, charity dropped out of school long before the introduction of 300 million free sanitary towels to school girls programmed commenced.
And as the HIV/AIDS index grow rapidly, the likes of charity are breathing sanity to the prohibited vice. Alternatively, their venture has not only bred in streets but mocked bars within the locality.
SUCCESS IS A CHOICE, BUT WHERE IS THE INPUT
By Hussein Onsinyo
Choosing a success path is a prerogative of all people in the universe. However, the methods are different as are personal opinions, perspectives and revelation of life.
Dedicated teachers following their call never retire regretting but living their life to the fullest. Ustad Walla Bin Walla is a well known Kiswahili teacher nationally. He has authored comprehensive guides to sound Swahili grammar books, Kiswahili mufti.
On a regular notice, Walla Bin Walla attends Swahili seminars, receives invitations for talks, speeches, lecturers and workshops as Kenya seeks to embrace the national language, Swahili with utmost vigor. Walla has not achieved this lifetime career without strain. He is a bibliographer reading within the lines with an interest of rectifying errors, improving the past mistakes and making suggestions.
And this is a prerequisite of all the teachers regarding the profession as noble despite the paltry it earns them. Ali Hassan, Jack Oyoo Sylvester, Mwalimu Murono, Bakar and others have joined Walla in his effort to build a magical Swahili portfolio with a stark disregard to sheng, the urban slang with a ill intention of concealing conspiracies among youngsters.
As the reputation of Walla hits mountain peak, a few other individuals are working out ways of featuring in the writing limelight despite what they do. One such individual is Cosmas Mogere, a shoe shiner in Hurlingham. Upon alighting in Hurlingham D.O.D stage, he becomes the initial figure you notice. Like Walla, Mogere is an enthusiastically budding creative writer.
It sounds illogical to see someone read in his place of work amidst the exhaust fumes, Noisy vehicle honks and people in the stage. But to Mogere, this is a normal experience. He puts up with the noise for a worthy course, writing.
But what are the driving forces of this character, the passion to write, revoke the societal decay, curse the exploitative export of foreign traits which damage the image of our national heritage.
As such, Mogere has composed over eighty poems touching on male Chauvinism, feminism character decayance, corruption and the toxic western culture which he blames for all wrongs in Kenya. Though unpublished, the poems explicitly reflect the inner thoughts of this gentleman.
Like any creative writer, Mogere employs his creativity to churn out the content experessed his poems, critical works of art and up-to-date newspaper commentaries juggled in his exercise books. on the other hand, he reads any stuff coming his way just to gain the qualities of a writer and good writing habits.
Going by his job description, shoe shining, accessing daily newspapers is a routine this, he says, keeps him going as far as writing is concerned. As such, he is information savvy of the current affairs and other upcoming events. This is joint quality visible in any journalist.
While reading within the lines is a prerogative of any writer, Mogere never reads without a guidebook. In his stock is a writing handbook duped “The Complete reporter”. The book, authored by Kelly Loiter, Julian Harriss and Stanley Johnson Covers the fundamentals of news gathering, writing and editing thus defining the intention of the shoe-shiner, journalism.
Although Mogere has had a sound writing potential, attaining his childhood dream of being a journalist has been a mirage. The 22 year old orphan lost his dad aged five years in 1994. Ever since, he has lived from hand to mouth while under the auspices of his mother and six other siblings.
Besides his KCSE certificate he obtained in 2007 upon completing his o- level education, Mogere has a certificate in Computer applications. In retrospect, mogere is a student with the writers bureau and a content writer.
Armed with his form 4 certificate, Mogere has worked as a Primary teacher, Security guard, Cleaner and now a Shoe shiner. His varied experience, acquired knowledge and adopted lifestyle define his broader writing prowess.
SEXUAL ADDICTION, ANOTHER SILENT KILLER INCREASES AIDS.
By Cosmas Mogere
More often than not do medical practitioners, consultants and doctors concentrate on healing some diseases without prior identity of their cause? However, major causes get established in laboratory tests but minors are left unattended.
With this, diseases transits from epidemics, pandemics and finally scourges. One such disease is HIV/AIDS. When the first HIV/AIDS victim was diagnosed in Kenya, all and sundry were disappointed at the response of the white blood cells to syndrome.
Instead of fighting it, their immunity was tampered with hence inability to fight the virus. As such, AIDS came to birth and medical reports confirmed it a disaster with no cure. Indeed, AIDS has no cure to date.
Interestingly, the free mingling of Africans and Whites bred yet another tragedy. The class that existed in Africa continued as more other classes were introduced thus AIDS groups birthrition
Ever since, AIDS has changed from a disaster, an epidemic and now a scourge. The earlier mysteries of its existence in cities and major towns have now changed to everywhere.
The history of AIDS notwithstanding, its major causes including sexual intercourse, sharing of needles, sharp objects and blood transfusion are all common known. However, one minor cause has spread it hundredfold; sexual addiction.
Like drug addiction, sexual addiction has cost people their lives, broke marriage, relationships and hurt individuals on equal measure. Alternatively, the story of sex maniacs, promiscuous people has not only been twisted at the end but also deadly.
With many sex maniacs dying of AIDS, it goes without saying that the mental disorder has no medical stamp in any of the African countries. Unlike the western world where researchers are burning the midnight oil to find cure for sex addiction, in Africa and Kenya in particular, medical practitioners are working on improving ARTH consumption besides encouraging victims to join support groups upon knowing their status.
Many times before has the media played a leading role in informing the public on their health but the sexual segment is allocated a meager coverage.
As was record in the Sunday Times Magazine, America and Britain lead in the fight against sexual addiction. Already, there are clinics running in the US and Britain respectively treating addiction. One such clinic is pine grove in Mississippi America.
The clinic treated Tiger Woods and other celebrities that shared the magical journey of addiction. Established in 1983 under the auspices of Dr. Patrick Carnes, the health centre led to the proliferation of similar clinic within and outside America.
And with his never tiring journey of fighting the sexual addiction scam as nymphomaniacs as they call it, Patrick Carnes is an author to understanding sexual addiction; a book that cover the mystery behind addiction.
Having pushed the agenda forward, Britain had nothing to do them borrow a leaf from their American counterparts and opened fire such clinics. It is against this backdrop that America, Britain and the rest of the developed countries are holding addiction seminars, conferences and talk shows to get rid of the scam.
While psychologists, physiologists, and western scientist are battling it out to include the condition as among the mental disorders besides issuing a medical stamp in Kenya Keri and Armed are looking for the control methods.
That said, some of the sexual addiction cases included masturbation, lesbianism, sodomy, incest, bestiality and sexual indulgence with multiple partners. And just to update you on the behavioral characteristics of addicts the latter comes in two ways.
Women get not sexual satisfaction thus indulge themselves in no strings attached relationships, regularly use vibrators and depict a negative attitude towards men.
Alternatively, men too rarely afford a marriage commitment, devotion and passion to their prospective partners.
As reported in the Sunday Times Magazine, some of the self diagnostic tests of addiction are sexual daydreaming, overindulgence in pornographic materials, involvement in conjugal talks inappropriately, secrecy in sexual behavior besides flirting.
While the latter is a routine to most men, to innocent women, it subjects them to trauma, stress and a fable belief that someday the characters of her spouse or partner will change.
It goes without saying that failures of this nature are rarely given a broader scope in either our medical or media fraternities as private hospitals have equally shown concern on tackling the vice tackle.
On the other hand, the local media only gives a few stints on the vice but little has it done in sufficiently addressing the grievances of the silently dying victims of sexual addiction.
In better descriptive terms, sexual addiction can be referred to as a silent killer. Indeed, many addicts acquire AIDS regularly as their activities go unnoticed.
And if online reports on sexual addiction are anything to go by, America leads the world in sexual addiction. 9 million victims are addicted in the US. Talking of American victims, Kenyans in Diaspora are no exception.
As ABC news reported, a Kenyan man was arrested in Hatfield township apartment’s penyslyvinnia for sexually molesting six minors.
Wycliffe webukhulu videotaped minors involved in a sexual activity in the bathroom and kept the images in the up skirts mobile phone. Upon arrest he confessed and confirmed to the police that he was a sexual addict.
Webukhulu addiction notwithstanding, the court accused him of sexual abuse against children, invasion of privacy, possession of childhood pornography among other charges.
Though released on a $5000 bail, the image of the Kenyan addicts in Diaspora relayed to the world a poor image of Kenyans.
With webukhulu case study serving as a warning, many Kenyan youth are alleged to be the prime victims of addiction. Indeed many of them posted comments of their inability to abandon the act as others praised the hypersensitive conjugal act as a sign of sexual sanity.
“Whoever does not show the sign of sensitivity is dull” confirmed one of the guys who sought
Although America has the largest number of victims, many nongovernmental organizations, philanthropists and broadcast journalists alike have marshaled weapons to conquer and subdue addiction.
John and Lyn, Michael, Piura St. piere are the brains behind the war against addiction in the US. While john and Lyn are parents of former addicts, Michael and tyra banks are specialists and a journalist speaking their minds out in YouTube.
For the last one year, Paula St. Pierre and Michael, the addiction therapists have had more than 80600 viewers in their u tube video clips. To be point blank, most of their viewers are addicts seeking professional opinion on how to leave addiction while other view for precautionary measures to their siblings.
Unknown to many, sexual addiction will soon be an epidemic, pandemic and ultimately as scourge. Already several stripes clubs are proliferating in Nairobi and other towns, prostitution is on increase and AIDS spread on an upward swift.
In spite of this, the control and local governments are doing little or nothing to curb the vice. As was reported in the weekly citizen last year, school girls and other teens are victims of addiction circumstances.
Just to hint on gymnastics in stripe clubs, the schoolgirl’s stripe naked and follow the DJ orders in dancing and sitting at a rear position with their feet apart. And if moral decadence is anything to go by, then this one defeats logic.
Alternatively, online sources convey that celebrities especially in the music industry lead in the number of victims of addiction most of them post their nude pictures online besides subjecting youths to voyeurisim or watching them
POLITICS OF BETRAYAL, KITUTU MASABA WAY
By Cosmas Mogere
While trade is defined by profit, loses, running costs, capital and management; politics is defined otherwise. Lip service, use and dump, propaganda and selfishness fill the table of politicians.
The latter tells the complete story of Gusii politics with emphasis to Kitutu Masaba constituency. Since birth, Kitutu Masaba constituency remains iconic with several untold stories, influence of the national politics, poor infrastructure and the most recent, fielding the highest number of contestants in the 2007 general elections.
And with the growing number of political aspirants in the constituency, theforeshadow of the 2012 victor in the parliamentary election stands unpredictable. Let’s sample the possibilities of who will be who in the next August house.
In the just concluded by-election, Walter Nyambati remained the man to beat in this year’s election. But the unorthodox means he applied to win the election have cast a shadow in his next victory. Fact file convey that the G7 alliance, Gusii incumbent and current politicians pitched tents in different polling stations with nothing better than buying votes.
Voter bribery, as the act is described was widespread in Rigoma area under the jurisdiction of Sam Ongeri, Nyamakoroto and Esani under the auspices of Omingo Magara, Nyambati’s backyard under the leadership of Dr Gesami and the rest a theatre for the G7 militants.
And if the aftermath of the by-election is anything to go by, Nyambati would have been several miles away but was held steady fast by the revolutionary wave of the G7 alliance, PNU and ground politics. To be point blank, his scheming, now in public domain is an eye opener for this year’s voting.
Just to hint you, Nyambati managed soliciting for 5,000 votes from innocent citizens who were camouflaged by a few coins. 1000/= was the amount offered for softers as stubborn people pocketed 200/=. Alternatively, the voters were advised to vote early to avoid last minute rush that might compromise the outcome of the by-election.
As if this was not enough, PNU marshaled 30 million as an arsenal to safeguard the seat as the fundraised resources equally accounted for 25 million. In total, Nyambati had 55 million rounds of ammunitions to fight his opponents. Indeed, his weapons carried the targeted onslught with his ultimate victory.
The analytical perspective of Kitutu Masaba Constituency brings us to yet other aspirant, Timothy Bosire. Unlike Nyambati, Bosire flew on an ODM ticket and exhibited confidence that ODM would carry the day.
Although the ultimate decision proved him otherwise, the difference between him and the victor cast yet another shadow to the competitiveness of ODM in ground politics. As such the political bearing of ODM in Kitutu Masaba was spelt out.
However, another surprise upward swift in the constituency, Shad rack Mose of Kenya National Congress (KNC) was third against all odds. The weather of Kitutu Masaba’s voting system proofed favorable to the Nairobi lawyer turned politician.
And if defining a vision by justified acts was anything to g by, then Peter Kenneth; KNC presidential candidate managed selling Mose. like his Gatanga Constituency, the soft spoken politician convinced the voters into voting overwhelmingly for Mose so to extol the CDF to maximum for the benefit of Mwananchi like he has in Gatanga.
While the history of Kitutu Masaba upholds the principals of voting the obviously popular figure, the latter proofed otherwise. Unlike Walter Nyambati and Timothy Bosire, Shad rack Mose tested the ground for the second time. Thus, changing the flow of the constituency’s current.
Before the controversial 2007 elections, Walter Nyambati had failed 4 times since1988. His counterpart, Timothy Bosire had too failed twice before 2007. He lost to George Moseti Anyona of Kenya Social Congress in 1997 before losing again to Mwancha Okioma in 2002.
Reliable sources revel that the secrets of Mose Shad rack are the obvious, staying close to common Mwananchi, readiness to air grievances of his constituents in the city besides responding to calls at all times. The latter explains the system at which the tree of progress is watered.
Interestingly, Nyambega Mose, another critical spanner in Kitutu Masaba’s assembling industry moved from position 2, which he held in 2007 into position 6 with a party 2000 votes. His maiden appearance tied with his Nairobi based lawyer, Shad rack proved fertile in 2007 but imperative in the November 2011 by-election.
Like many politicians before and after him, Nyambega made preliminary mistakes that cost him his votes. He was the first person to file a partition against election of Nyambati in 2007 and the first to withdraw.
Alternatively, he busied himself in legal matters while forgetting to say thanks to the constituents for a job well done. On the other, he rarely participated in communal and constituency activities, a secret that his fellow lawyer employed to gained ground.
Although there are many unaddressed issues in Kitutu Masaba Constituency and the entire Gusii, one critical one is unemployment with Kitutu Masaba leading with hosting popular political figures solving unemployment index are meagle.
Walter Nyambati is a no go zone to his constituents. As many as testified, Nyambati is a champion of deception, a master of neglect and a schemer of giddying. When job were advertised in the office of the prime minister, all and sundry presented their application.
Kitutu Masaba elite group was no exception in this category. And as the national anthem continued to hit, no one succeeds without a brother to hold the hand. Through opportunistic, Nyambati did the otherwise despite the influence he had as PSC (Parliamentary Service Commission) chairperson. As such, he held nobody’s arm not even his accomplices. This cast yet another shade to his next election.
Following the footsteps of their predecessors have been the characteristics of Kitutu Masaba Mps. George Anyona Moseti used his influential propaganda, threw dust into the eyes of voters that the earnings of tea leaves would be improved in vain.
On a regular basis, Anyona blamed the government for failure to address the deteriorating education in Masaba, scholarships for performers, poor infrastructure and even the fall of pyrethrum in Gusii .Besides this, cajoled along several women whose sexual favors he explored at will.
Unlike his predecessor, Mwancha Okioma initiated several dispensaries with CDF funds, ploughed funds into improving sanitary conditions in several schools, construction of new CDF structures in schools besides reviving the dying streams.
Like his former ally, Anyona he barely address the issues of road with LATF funds and unemployment, instead, he followed the footstep of Anyona in marrying a record of six wives, alternatively he spared scholarships to furthering his studies to the PHD level.
Though this elevated him from the unscholarly class he belonged to elite group where he is, its substitutions of the scholarships that were to benefit the entire community throws down his score cards.
Meanwhile this articles is not meant to campaign for anybody, but tell the untold stories in Kitutu Masaba and if winning the souls of Kitutu Masaba is anything to by ,then addressing the insuffiencies in infrastructure, sound education and job creation will see a leader stand and be counted gone are the day popularity defined an M.P.
PASSION, A DRIVING FORCE TO SUCCESS
By Cosmas Mogere
The entire media fratenity has before told the story of Njenga Karume countless times. Social networks alternatively have added some salt in the tale of success, Njenga Karume way. Other social forums have too thrown in some spanner in the workshop of success with reference to Karume.
And in their writing, Inspirational and Motivational books, authors have been exceptionally citing Karume’s story in sharpening the minds of their readers on positive thinking, wisdom and its application to achieve career success.
The media, social forums and motivational writer’s notwithstanding, passion has been the driving force behind Karume’s success story. From rags to riches as his rise to fame is often reffered to describe the journey to success of any given man.
The brains behind Virgin Atlantic Richard Brandson, Microsoft CEO Bill Gates and Iphone 4 CEO the late Steve Jobs are also some of the people whose success have been by passion.
Despite the job description, Karume endured charcoal burning until he became a business icon in his home yard and Kenya at large. Though Karume’s etymological genesis highlight not his educational background, his friends, accomplices and relatives confirm that he never went beyond STD.8.
But his desire to build a business empire grew on. As such, he did all he could to define his future. Decades after this spirited effort, Karume is a household name in Kenya’s historical archives, a brand name in the success journey and a living testimony of the oral tradition, passion.
Apart from Njenga Karume, Richard Brandson, Steve Jobs and Bill Gates, passion equally drove Jack Oyoo Sylvester into what he is today, a sports presenter in KBC. Passion leads employers into finding employess, business men into identifying their niche and professionals into achieving their set goals.
In retrospect, Jack Oyoo Sylvester was a teacher with a passion for sports. with his sports passion; he admired sports broadcast hence chirped in as a sports amateur journalist during sporting events. The latter ploughed fertile seedbed for KBC to identify him. And his career as a teacher ended as he wore radio presenter brand new attire.
Kaka Jos, as he is well known, is not alone in this passionate journey, many other individuals are what they are through passion. One such individual is Walla Bin Walla. Armed with a passion for books, professor Walla sought to rectify the errors made by ancient Swahili writers, make some grammatical changes and criticized the absolete techniques used to draft ‘Ngeli’.
Without haste, Professor Walla demonstrated his understanding portofolio in the Swahili Mufti standards 1 – 8 series. Besides redefining the Kiswahili grammatical sanity, he justified why he is not a critic by writing several Kiswahili essays (Insha) guides.
Alternatively, he provided new translations to words like Television from Televisheni to Runinga, computer to Tarakilishi among others. Later, his new acquired vocabulary was a recipe for the Swahili dictionary (Kamusi).
Ustad Walla Bin Walla, as the don is known is the most sought after Swahili expert in East and Central Africa. He has also attended local, regional and international workshops, conferences and seminars addresssing the basic improvements in the laguage.
Currently, Walla is a Swahili lecturer, University of Nairobi. Meanwhile the story of Walla can be copy paste to that of Hassan Ali, Radio Maisha presenter, Makoa (Vitimbi), Omosh ( a character in Tahidi High), Mwalimu Murono (Swahili tutor and author to Tadubiri Za Insha) amaong others.
While the litany of people driven by passion into realising their goals is long, it would be imperative if super stars like Dennis Oliech; AJ Auxere, striker, Macdonald Mariga; Real sociedad striker and his brother Wanyama also an international player is left unattended to.
Teaching, football and film industry notwithstanding, there are many other people whose passion has filled the ground for their existence. One such person is Chinua Achebe. The Bard College Emeritus professor never dreamt of achieving a literature writing trademark. But his passionate desire to make a breakthrough in writing made him start writing short stories.
While at the university of Ibadan, the then 18 year old Chinua wrote the ever popular book on African response to missionary work, the Igbo Way, Things Fall Apart. Becoming an instant hit, the book sold over 7 million copies and was translated to over 150 languages.
With this acknowledgement, Achebe secured an unwarranted job with Nigeria Broadcasting Service (NBS), became the pioneer of African writing series besides writing two sequels to Things Fall Apart and the aftermath of the 1965 coup detat. While No Longer at Ease and Arrow of God complete the missionary encounter series in Things Fall Apart, A man of the People criticizes the Nigerian coup detat.
It is against this backdrop that Achebe sought asylum in the US to avoid confrontation as his ally Wole Soyinka went underground. Alternatively passion drove Ken Saro Wiwa into scripting critical literature in 1992. Africa Kills her Son as the story chronicling his death was titled led to his ultimate statement “Literature and Politics cannot be separated, I will remain radical to the end”
And with this, the ever passionate writer was executed despite international outcry. The story of passion is incomplete without mentioning one of our own writers, James Ngugi WA Thiongo. The university of California based literature research fellow defied all odds and scripted his first novel despite the perspective at which Africa was referred to; a literary desert.
Students in Makerere doubted his creative work saying that achieving such a feat was a big deal. But when he finally released his first book, Weep Not Child, the lecturers and the entire student fraternity acknowledged his potential. The book was quickly followed by The River Between which too sought to reveal the African decaying character female genital mutilation [FGM].
Ngugi’s passionate radicalism continued as he further went a notch higher in criticizing corruption in government in his book jointly with his ally Ngugi wa Miiri, we will marry when we want. Although the book culminated to his arrest in 1978 by Moi it called on the international outcry for his release. As such, Ngugi left for the US only to return 20years later after the end of Moi regime.
MORE THAN JUST A SLUM
By Cosmas Mogere and Charles Bett
Beyond the dim image of informal settlements kibera stands tall in the most successful slums overall in Nairobi as explores Mogere journalism web content team in its first issue in the. More than just a slum series
Whenever the word informal settlement is mentioned the tinted imaged of kibera, pumwani, kawangware and kayole fill the lips of many. Books written on slum life draws us into yet another real object poverty and better living condition
Visitors describe the corrugated iron sheet houses as cottages yet others find no kind words to portray the image of slums that calling them kennels. Welcome to the voice of slums from kibera point of view.
unlike any informal settlement ,kibera slums is the earth of devils and angles sharing a meal .political fanatics, football fans and fanatics, successful traders, criminals, deceptive pastors, churches and school defines the population of kibera.
Alternatively the railway line and sound medical facilities add to the glamour of kibera but behind this dim cum bright images are several untold stories .Stories that resonate around success despite challenges.
One such story is the complete of a technical training institute,laini saba primary school and Christ the king parish the three structure build under the auspice of Christ the king catholic church define education in all perspective
Besides the institute perish and primary school is a community library which is within the precinct of Christ the king church the library which stock all kind of books puts a smile in the face of residents
Although the lyres of idleness continue to echo across kibera slum , master of biography settle for reading them idling as such the daily beehive of activities is controlled with the ever increase readers visiting the library
While social amenities define the well being of a society laini saba primary school fill the avoid of education as a social amenity the school whose population is drawn from laini saba, mashimoni,Soweto and silanga sub-slums has a qualified staff and equivalently organized class to avoid overpopulation
Other than the denominational educational facilities and medical facilities amref health centre is the next big thing in the health centre in kibera located at about 800m from mbagathi road the medical foundation server all and Sunday in kibera.
Some of its programmes are supply of nets and related kits to help combat the infant killer, voluntary male circumcision and guidance and counseling among HIV/AIDS victims.
Alternatively the foundation partners with inhabitant .pcl,kemri and welcome trust to fight AIDS and associated venereal disease other odds and obstacles not withstanding kibera has some feather in the cap of its ever enterprises population
In the enterprising industry of mercharnts,traders and hawkers characteristic the better part of kibera vegetable dens, supply chained whole sales, boutiques, salon and shops join in the splendor of entrepreneurship the slum way.
Kaloki wholesale and depots is the chief supply chain in the entire kibera located near laini saba central market the Kaloki wholesale sub chief supplies soda and related beverage in the entire slum’s y and large ,the ondiek egg supply unit a 100 joins in the chicken egg supply industry in the wider laini saba and Soweto sub-villagers in kibera slums
Beside egg supply, shop keeping and boundaries, the entertainment industry cannot be left out many CD collection centre have proliferated in the last five yrs the facilities sell original and duplicatedCDs at discount prize
Kikwetu music stores is one such facility located at the upper entrace to high-rise C3 apartments the shop deal in gospel cum secular CDs, dvds,VCDs.compacts and other music related stock
In yet another twist to the entrepreneurship industry, salons fill the litany o f self –employed, the woman way. Although there are several salons and beauty parlors, Mama Maggie salon is outstanding in its services located next to Kikwetu music store, the beauty parlor deals and weaving, curl kit, braids, threadlocks and other women plaiting styles. Also in its stock is the weaving machine and blow-dryer to mention but a few.
Others are: pink salon, mama Hedo salon among others. Apart from hairdressing and beauty therapy is the electronic dealer shop. As MR Mupia enterprise as the shop is known as deals in loaning of electronic items, lending and leasing.
Located at the entrance of C3 high-rise apartments, the green painted shop has helped all and sundry to maximize their use of electronic gadgets. Other than selling and loaning the gadgets it also deals I selling phone accessories, phone coversheets and keypads, this is ne among the many enterprising businesses between the slum.
BOOKS TO LOOK OUT FOR IF WRITING SUCCESS IS YOUR PATH
By Cosmas Mogere
Any trader needs the stock, capital, subsequent running cost and profitability. While profits and loses define a trader books and culture defines the author. That said, any successful author must have taken the stock; read the intended stuff and ultimately indulge in trade, writing.
Welcome to the world of books that define an author and his pathway to success in the writing jungle.
To begin with, nobody turned a writer without embracing the writers approach to life. Alternatively, like any successful writer could tell you, Bibliography is a prerogative of all script writers, journalists and authors.
Let’s sample some of the books that all creative writers have embraced to make writing a success. The Lost Art of Reading David L. Ulin describes how modern reading and writing can be done in this digital age. According to Ulin, the traditional forms of reading have lost the taste with the introduction of computers in technology. Other than reading manually, many people prefer e-books which they easily do in the computers, mobile phones and other portable gadgets in their possession.
The Great Gatsby and Ulysses are some of the vital stock any artist can’t afford missing. Going by David. L. Ulin’ word, ”reading a good book can collapse the distance, bring us into not only just thoughts but also the perceptions of the writer, allow us, however fleetingly, to see things literary through his or her eyes.”
And for those wishing to capitalize on the screen, Essentials of Screen Writing by Richard Walter is the book for you. The 400 page book covers the art, craft and business of film and television writing for amateurs and already established writers.
Walter seeks to effectively tackle the complexity involved in the screen writing. However part one and two of the book that unearth the art of writing and craft are vital for writers of other genres of literature author of novels, short stories, magazines and non-fiction can as well find their niche here.
The only difference between writing screenplay script and other scenes is the merging of sound, visual and audio coverage. The writing has to meet the motion picture, animation and audio sounds by the cast.
Alternatively, Thinking like an Editor, a book by Susan Rabiner and Alfred Fortunate has excellent chapters on proposal writing, Workshop writing besides the convictions in the copy editors desk. By and large, any writer cannot afford self-publishing as an easy penetration option in the publishing jungle. In 2009, of all the books published, self-published books accounted for 73% of against traditional publishing. This was according to the publisher’s weekly magazines.
Print on Demand (POD) as this genre is commonly referred to as its fare share of challenges, through avoidable ones. Selling, marketing and proof reading are the prerogative of the author. On the other hand; layout, editing and printing costs are equally incurred by the author.
Although there are many benefits of self-publishing, he traditional publishing is still honored for quality work. That means not that the self-publishing stuff is not as such competitive but insisting on the relevance of traditional publishing.
It is however note worthy for any creative writer to study the work of Helen Gallagher, author of Release Your Writing, Book Publishing Your Way. Hellen opted for self- publishing using print-on-demand and succeeded in her endeavor.
What’s more, Elmore Leonard, author of 10 Rules of Writing and a fiction writer of 44 novels including Valdez Is Coming and All Quiet on the Western Front can as well built the portfolio of any creative writer. For a man that ventures in full time writing at 50 and made a success, the latter shows that writing considers no age.
While my focus has been on creative writing, writers of general interest are no exemption in this capacity. For those targeting the media, The Complete Reporter by Julian Harriss and The Forest for the Trees by Betsy Lerner are vital materials to guide their way through. Juliana Harriss for instance touches on the fundamentals of news gathering, Writing and editing; the ingredients any reporter needs to make a breakthrough in the media fraternity.
The forest for the trees also gives advice to writers direct from the editor. Published by riverhead books, the copy covers the submission of unsolicited work without query letters which sounds a bitter digest by editors and prone to no answers.
While attending to an interview from Luke Lynolds, a New York based editor of two anthologies. Dedicated to the people of Darfur and burned in, Charles Baxter an author of The Feast of Love and other novels, suggested two books for any writer. Aspect Of The Novel E.M Forster which has an insight into characterization and David jess’s Alone with All That Could Happen that covers convectional writing and the craft effectively.
As writer, Charles Baxter cannot leave his fans wandering in Down the House and The Art of Subtext. Having achieved fictionally trademark, Baxter drafted the two books to serve as prelude to fiction characterization, their realism. With Baxter, writer blocks or literary fatigue find no place as pleasure in writing gain momentum on equal measure.
Wow, creative writing has no end but less people to comprehend. One aspect of it that appears daunting, sentimental and emotional is poetry. It’s a path travelled by a few but commands achieves and philosophers alike. Whether scholarly or academic the tree of poetry grows on.
That said, poetry is a pressure for a few and an exceptional dislike for teachers, editors and critics alike. The reasons for the natural hatred are personal yet it’s a teacher in society. Let’s look at the exceptional poems by great thinker like William Shakespeare, Okot B ‘Tek, Cahill Graham among others.
Marylyn L. Taylor, author of eight collection of poetry including subject to change described poetry as ‘expressing the inexpressible in her poetry review to the writer magazine. Indeed, in poetry, poets tend to express the inexpressible peak on behalf of marginalized people and strongly air their grievances.
Okot B’ Tek, the 1974 East African Testimony that the region was not a literary desert as asserted by the juba born American scholars, and literature expert, Taban Lo Liyong, Crafted a poem titled Atieno Yo’ that clearly did air the grievances of maids in regard to the physical maltreatment they undergo under their bosses.
Atieno cook food
Atieno wash the dishes
Atieno spread the sheets
PROFILE:WRITING AS AN INBORN TALENT
BY HILTON CHELAGAT
All his life, Cosmas Mogere had been known for his sharp tongue, short temper and complete lack of humor, but there was one thing that never missed to bring a smile to his otherwise grim face, embracing the lifestyle of writers to define his dream.
He admired great emperors more than he did for his parents, he was amused at th simple utterance of life dedicated to writing than he could to a beautiful girl. This was the routine of Cosmas Mogere , the ever ambitious writer.
Like many writers before him, Mogere became a subject of ridicule within and without his community. Friends and relatives exclaimed at his otherwise strange characteristic to have been realized in the entire lineage. Discussing fictional excellence and the solitude writers underwent at their initial appearance to the writing jungle were top in his stories.
Though strange, many learnt to listen to them. As such, suggestions to his future career became practically undefined. while it is easy to comprehend literature literature, coming to terms with it while in standard 7 is a novelty story to be told.
But to Mogere, this was obvious for he read the first works of Chinua Achebe, Things Fall Apart while in Primary, Siku Njema by Ken Walibora and Mui huwa mwema by Ali Mazrui followed suit at that very time.
His anxiety and unquenchable thirst to be a writer grew on .Ten years ever since, Mogere still looks forward to launching his writing career with nobody's help. He has authored a complete unpublished volume of poetry a short novel and now runs a news disseminating website, www.mogerejounalism.com
alternatively, he has some sensitive features in his face book wall. To him, writing is the only baptism a talented creative mind has to undergo if earning a living anything to go by.
“Sydney Sheldon, David Baldacci and Robert Kiyosaki are my inspirations Sheldon achieved great through writing as did his ally Baldacci whose books sold several millions of
copies and Became New York times' best seller” he says.
An on growing a potential talent into an enterprise, Mogere looks up to Robert Kiyosaki. In his first book Rich Dad Poor Dad Kiyosaki became an household name in the walls of New York as his book became a best seller in New York Times and the wall street journals.
Now an infopreneur ,Kiyosaki has accrued a lucrative future from the simple success principles in his books, Rich Dad Poor Dad and the Cash flow quadrant.
“Writing is a great investment. But the tools required in the writing workshop is what has left many writers poor and disappointed. I am no exception having earned nothing out of all I have in store” he says.
On government policy to promote budding writers, Mogere is so pessimistic about the Kenyan government in regard to upcoming writers with a poor financial background. other than setting aside subsidies targeting writers promotion, it embarks on Already established writers.
“Like Kenya Bureau of standards, Kenya literature Bureau gives approval on books to sell into the school based curriculum while failing to include a package fro upcoming writers with a desire to be self reliant” says Mogere.
Having lost his father in 1994 at a tender age of 5 years, Mogere has wallowed through a ragged terrain to become what he is today
In retrospect, Mogere was a sugarcane porter from his upper primary through high school . He trekked over 10 kilometers to carry sugarcane for his mother and sisters to sell. The little earned from this venture gathered for his clothing, exam fees and other preliminary chores.
“Weekends and holidays were my prime times to carry and sell sugarcane I did this over and over but still had time to read, critique and perform averagely in exams” He says.
Perhaps walking on foot is a folk tale to city dwellers and the contemporary, but for Mogere the latter was an obvious in his entire primary.
“I walked on foot in my entire primary school (1995 – 2003) except weekends when I have slippers to avoid the bitter sting from the morram roads sandy” he quips.
Despite all this, Mogere was able to complete his secondary education in 2007, pursue a certificate course in basic computer packages and enroll for a distance learning course in creative writing.
However, the journey to define his dream has not been an easy one. He endured a meager income of sh.1500 a month only to pursue a certificate in computer applications. A paltry pay in writing but managed seeking publishing contracts.
“Shortly after high school I secured a job as an untrained teacher her in King Hassan Academy and Rejoy academy with a meager salary of 1,500 a month” he says.
Ever since, Mogere has wafted through jobs but remained objective to waiting. He worked as a teacher in the entire 2008, a freelance journalist with The Nest in 2009, a security guard and a cleaner respectively in 2010 and finally a shoe shiner in 20011 to date.
Born in and bred in Nyaibasa village, a hilly and chilly highland in Nyamira Country, Mogere has not allowed the turbulent force, in his community to disrupt his writing career, but soldiered on in changing the face of his community.
“I look forward to changing the perception of our family since my father died in 1994. The ever honorable family of Mr and Mrs Christopher Onsinyo Osugo must live to its past glory. Although my father was a teacher, I will redefine his dream by becoming a successful writer” says Mogere.
Working as a cleaner, a guard and a shoe shiner is no side in the park. The jobs consume much of your time but Mogere still finds time to trace his passion ,writing.
“Finding time to write is a prerogative of all and sundry and I am no exception. In fact, if you are a writer, you'll always find time to put your thoughts on paper and this is what I do continually?''Says Mogere.
Although accessing markets for his writing has been a challenge, Mogere believes that someday lady luck will come his way and his talent will grow hundredfold as unlimited exposure will walk his path.
“Like paradise where death, sorrow, genocides will be bygones, I will someday exclaim at failure as success will be my portion” concludes Mogere.
JUSTICE STILL AN INBORN CHILD IN KENYA
By Cosmas Mogere
Whoever quoted the promulgation of the new constitution as the new dawn must have had misplaced prioties, day dreams and nightmares on equal measure.
While Kenya has achieved immensurable milestones in constitutional implementation, the word justice still remains an inborn child 12 years preceding moi regime.
We have an increased democratic space but justice barely survives with court decisions still angering Kenyans by day. The presidential polls of 2002 reflected what justice is but the 2007 and the 2013 one depicted the opposite.
Massive irregularities were reflected in 2007 and repeated themselves in 2013. But one thing remains clear, the court couldn’t resolve the 2007 impasse culminating to the post election violence.
The 2013 polls were no different despite the essence of peace during and after the elections. However the Supreme Court failed Kenyans by ruling that the elections were free, fare and transparent even when massive irregularities were reflected in as many as 180 constituencies.
Like Keith kilonzo once asserted during the court proceedings that the friend of court ought to have been the director of public prosecutions other than the AG whose arguments on constitutional interpretations were flawed.
And if the definitions of the words free, fare, transparent and accurate elections are anything to go by, the 2013 elections were inversely proportional to the words. It is unjust for the Supreme Court to declare elections free and fare when form 34 missed in 10 of the 22 polling stations chosen for retally.
Alternatively, it is unjust for the Supreme Court to dismiss the petitions launched by the parties when elections announced in county tallying centers differed significantly with the ones announced in Bomers of Kenya.
Like I have argued before, Kenya justice will come to birth when the current crop of leaders are nonexistent.
It could be suicidal if I end this argument without mentioning the prime ministers last words on Saturday that Kenyans are yet to know what justice is. The definition of the words remains as opaque today as it was 20 years ago.
THE IDEA OF YOUTH TALENT IS TIMELY
By Cosmas Mogere
At a time when Kenyan football is at its deathbed, creative coaches can afford retracing its routes and give it a lifeline
One such coach is Adel Ambrouche. The no nonsense tactician is in a mission to plant Kenyan football in the global map. He has set up structures to nurture upcoming talents in different categories.
When he recently announced that under 17, 15 and 14 leagues should come up, not many took him serious. A few days later everybody is exclaiming at his idea.
While Ambrouche has coached many African countries where such structures are in place, the conceptualization of youth talent search is not new in world football. Five times world cup champions and four times confederation winners Brazil did not create their outstanding dream team in a day.
Instead, they embarked on in the construction of football academies both private and public with football as the common denominator.
Moreover, the litanies of world class footballers are created in the South American state. Ronaldo Samba, Ronaldinho, Kaka, Rivaldo as well as the latest star Neymar defines Brazil’s philosophy of producing world beaters.
Just like Brazil, Spain and England, Kenya can too nurture a world class team that will not only adorn itself in African nation’s colors but also world cup trophy.
Trophy laden Egypt did not find its way to the African cup a record five times in a day. Its government laid foundational structures among them keeping local talent local.
So far, Egypt boasts of top African club. Zamalek, Alhal and Ismailia to mention but three, are the Egyptian clubs with more achievements that any other
Alhal for instance has dominated confederation of African football for many years. Last year, it finished fourth in world club football after cruising to the semi final only to lose to Chelsea, a top English side
Interestingly, Mexico, the world Olympic Gold medalists in soccer, like Spain had youthful structures that singularly propelled them to glory. And with names like Javi Hernandez aka Chicharito, Mexico has achieved a lot in soccer
Whereas Kenya Secondary Schools Sports Association (KSSSA) is an ideal destination to forge out t talent, left footed league, ligi ndogo, league 1A and B, besides provincial leagues cannot be ignored. The above leagues are a rapporteur of youth talent for the Kenyan future
And if football academies are anything to go by, setting up as many will define the future of Kenyan football. As such, our local league will be as attractive as the English premier league
The outstanding names Kenya boast of like the France based Dennis Oliech, Italy based MacDonald Mariga and now the Southampton base Victor Wanyama will be no more in days to come if youngsters are not inspired to follow in their steps.
KENYAN’S POST ELECTION VIOLENCE
IS YET TO MOTIVATE TODAY'S WRITERS
By Cosmas Mogere
While it is true that all writers are motivated by events around them to write, modern Kenyan writers don’t seem to be walking this path.
The 2007 post election violence was likely to create an enabling environment for creative writers to explore their writing potential. Instead, just a few found some thing to write
Despite the many topics like corruption, land demarcation, grabbing, tribalism and hate speech, still current writers are lost in wonderland on what to write about.
Unlike in pre and post independence when the then writers had more than enough to put down, modern writers seems to have lost the zeal in the writing jungle
The litany of writers that clearly talked about the colonialism, post colonialism and neo-colonialism is infinity. Ngugi WA Thiongo, Marjorie Oludhe Macgoye, Meja Mwangi among others penned their first books under the banner colonialism.
In Grain of Wheat for instance, Ngugi talks about events before and after independence. Collaborations and resistances to mention but two are the themes Ngugi explores in Grain of Wheat
Marjorie Oludhe Macgoye is no exception. She too tackles the issue of pre and post independence in her book Coming to Birth with lots of confidence. Although other themes like infidelity in slums and discrimination pipe into her writing, her authority in story telling is electrifying when she talks of the transition period in Kenya’s pre independence to post independence.
Other than Ngugi WA Thiongo and Macgoye, other writers motivated by events around them are: Mwangi Gicheru, John kiriamiti, ole kulet, Grace Ogot, Margaret Ogolla among others.
When he did across the bridge, Gicheru thought about the whole idea of locking girls in houses in the name of protecting them from predators. While that is a good idea to parents, overdoing it does not resonate well with the child hence indulgence in wayward activities to please the parent
The mantle is not limited to Margaret Ogolla. The nurses cum researcher, the late Ogolla never shied away from raising the feminist voice in tackling the whole issue of girl child education as was explicit in her book The River and the Source.
In one instance, she says that a house without girls is like a spring without a source. This is how far ogolla went in passing her message
Across the borders, Chinua Achebe was motivated by the Biafra and the military coup to write his book, A Man of the People just like he did with his first book, things fall apart and its sequels. Like in things fall apart, the missionary antagonism with the traditional belief blended the story well.
ACADEMIC WRITING TO REDUCE UNEMPLOYMENT
By Cosmas Mogere
Although writing is loathed by all and sundry, it is a lucrative field jobless graduands can capitalize on to earn a living. Millions of lazy students globally are looking for academic writers whose services they hire and pay for accordingly.
While visiting online sources, I was dismayed to find many companies searching for fresh ideas graduands can easily provide. Whether you pursued a degree course in mathematics, economics, bio chemistry, engineering or law, several online organizations require your academic writing skills at a fee
Hundreds and thousands of dollars are earned daily from busy academic writers yet several youths are tarmacking with decorated cvs and envelopes dropping applications almost in all companies they know of to no avail. Thus, they demonstrate their ignorance of the already existing opportunities.
While not all graduates are computer literate, most of them have at least a certificate in computer applications. Basically, this is all one needs to get started.
Alternatively, social networks are sound recipes for marketing your skills other than indulge on less important tasks like chatting, dating and romance; you can market your skills on the sites and stand a chance of getting hired.
Linked in for instance is as platform where employers meet employees. More often than not do I receive job offers which supersede my potential? As a journalism student in one of the local colleges in the city, I balance my time between work, 8 projects a month and study is this not a sufficient requisite for a job seeker.
Apart from social networks, blogging sites and academic papers, indulging yourself in income generating projects to bolster your academic writing is vital. From such ventures, you can get cash meant to assist you visit a cyber to do your assignments
Nowadays I have a busy schedule until I have o time for academic writing. Waking up at 4.30am prepare for my work which takes almost the whole day till 5pm when I attend an evening class in Kenya institute if media and technology.
I think if I am free, there is more to do than walk around with my cvs and keep blaming the government for not creating enough jobs
AXING 18 PLAYERS FROM TUSKER PREMIER LEAGUE UNJUSTIFIED
By Cosmas Mogere
The Kenya premier league nest might be expensively and beautifully assembled, but it has its far share of misfortunes with persistent sacking of coaches and players on equal measure leading the profile.
Interestingly, the dismissal of coaches can be justified but the axing of the ever enthusiastic players is an ill founded testimony. Tusker FC, the 2012 Kenya premier league champions, their counterparts Gor and sofapaka have edge out a total of 18 players, making up for a whole national team.
The defending champions lay off 9 players as Gor and so edged out 5 and 4 players respectively.
Inasmuch as the winning philosophy, strategy and assembling of a star studded squad is all the top teams are looking forward to next season, sacking players is not the way to go.
If emulating English football is anything to go by, the big 5 teams of Arsenal, Chelsea, Liverpool, Manchester united and Manchester city have had disappointing players in the last three seasons but none has been sacked. Instead, the players have been loaned and transferred respectively
The litany of players that have depicted no signs of improvement and top form goes unabated in England. After failing to deliver in Manchester, Michael Sylvester was loaned to arsenal as did Nicholas Anelka from Chelsea to Xinhua of china and eventually Yuso Benayoun who, like Anelka was loaned to Arsenal, stayed shortly before taking off to Fulham.
While English football shows a lot of maturity, our own Kenya premier league continues to lose momentum with the axing of the players leading in discouraging a troupe of Kenyan fans to the local league in contrast to English football.
It is therefore a responsibility of FKF to ensure that the sacked players get absorption that going to football oblivion and ending their careers at infancy. Alternatively, Kenya like England must adopt the strategy of transfers and loans if realizing our footballing dream is anything to go
LITERATURE IGNORES CHILDREN BORN OUT OF WEDLOCK
By Cosmas Mogere
At a time when paternity rows are in the rise across Kenya, literary icons can afford ignoring children born out of wedlock in their literary works
The discrimination these children face is unabated yet a handful of writers have given this topic some significance. Despite writing passionately, john kiriamiti only tackled crime in his two sequels, My Life in Crime and My Life with a Criminal
Kiriamiti is not the only writer to ignore this topic. Giants in African literature like Chinua Achebe too gave little attention to the topic. In his first two books, Thing Fall Apart and its sequel No Longer at Ease, Achebe only tackles African encounter with the white missionaries.
Though he has the reputation of Africanizing everything he did including the African regalia, he still had no kind words for children born out of wedlock or illegitimate children.
Back hone, Ngugi wa Thiongo thematic concerns were only limited to the language like he writes in his book, Decolonizing Mind. Although he achieves passing the message, he still frowns at the whole issue of illegitimate children. Not even in his short stories has he talked of the issue. Instead, he discourages the habit of initiating girls commonly referred to as female genital mutilation
A topic he also talks of in The River Between. In his many essays he has done, none mirrors illegitimate children.
While the above writers all ignored this emotive topic, ken walibora found some taste in reciprocating from what others do to display the nakedness of illegitimacy. In his book, Siku Njema, the popular Swahili elite boldly spoke out
Using the main character, Msanifu Kombo alias Kongowea, walibora showed how children without fathers are scorned at, mentally tortured, mocked and denied a sense of belonging. The uncles too are not spared as they seek to capitalize on the situation to disinherit the child born out of wedlock
And if there are reasons to believe in stigmatization, walibora remains the only outstanding figure to explore the green field of outside wedlock children
While the creative writing scene is broad, the net has to extend to literature teachers and organizers of drama and music festivals to incorporate this topic in their yearly topical submissions
In as much as the current music festival is concerned, holiday tuition, the laptop project and other current issues were tackled at length but this topic was also given cold feet. Last terms drama festival too was no exception. Children born out of wedlock were given no airtime in plays, poems and choral verses.
The controversial play on resource distribution, Butere girls’ play Shackles of Doom, like its title spelt doom till the ministry banned it temporarily only to reemerge later courtesy of Okiya Omtata
But outside wedlock children issue was ignored. When will this topic get airplay if it’s avoided in all circles of literature?
KENYAN PUBLISHERS SHOULD SUPPORT UPCOMING WRITERS
By Cosmas Mogere
While poor reading culture of Kenyans has been blamed for the lack of interest in writing, publishers are to blame for failure to motivate upcoming writers
In the western countries for instance, there are people who have made an impact in life doing nothing but writing. However the situation is different in Kenya. A close look at our creative writing industry, only a select few like Ngugi WA Thiongo, Mwangi Gicheru, Yusuf k Dawood, ken walibora have fully enjoyed the fruits of their writing.
Even so, writing to them is not full time as they have to engage in other economic activities to earn a living other than relying on annual royalties from their books. When he wrote his first book for instance, weep not child Ngugi was still a student in Makerere University but his later works were done while he was a lecturer at the University of Nairobi
Mwangi Gicheru on the other hand was a government chemist when he did his first book, Across the Bridge. The litany of writers who did their works while in service are many thus the question, can writing be a full time profession in Kenya? My answer is a resounding no.
Consider the loyalties given to writers at the end of the year. Jomo Kenyatta foundation award for instance gives only ksh 50,000 to the best creative writer per year. Wahome Mutai foundation is no exception as it too gives a similar amount to the best writer in the year. Is this amount worth the effort the writers have taken to compile their work?
Poetry is a dislike to all and sundry. Not even literature teachers want to be associated with it. Yet creative poets come out of their hands. Incidentally, no one is there to guide them. On trying their luck in publishers all they are given re disappointing responses. Thus, they lose concentration in poetry to focus on other things.
If indeed, this is the pace the Kenyan publishers will be moving at, then there is a crisis in the writing industry.
Old is gold so goes the saying, but dueling so much in the past denies the current generation a cutting edge. This is the path our publishers have taken. Instead of promoting upcoming writers get a literary exploitation, they recycle the old writers whose topics barely resonate with the youth. How the n does publishers expect the young g generation to learn the art of writing by having one of their own published.
In the last five years, the ministry of education in collaboration with Kenya literature bureau and Kenya institute of education have been promoting foreign stuff. The Whale rider for instance is a book by a foreign author. Although it has thematic semblance with our current affairs, it would have been better to have a local youthful author writing in the same capacity.
This is not the only foreign book done in Kenya. Previously, similar books were in our syllabus. In 2007 for instance, I did two foreign books in my high school literature: Merchant of Venice by William Shakespeare and Homestretch by Velma pollard. Although the thematic concerns of the books were centered in love, usury, discrimination of African in the west, the themes did not resonate well with most students.
Usury for example was a new ideology to most students including myself .yet our teachers expected us to grasp such idea and apply it in passing exams. Alternatively, Merchant of Venice is written in archaic English which made many students perceive the book as a complex set.
Currently, the play Francis Imbuga’s Betrayal in the city is a set book in secondary schools. Written in the 1980’s, the book tackles topics in the current Kenya. But it could have been better if a young writer of the late 90’s or in the early 2000 too enjoys royalties coming with set books selection in high school syllabus
Kwani has great creative minds looking for a chance to experiment their potential with books that are rich in dot com content. When will these writers get a cutting edge in the jungle full of old folks?
KENYA YET TO WAKE UP TO DETECTIVE WRITING
By Cosmas Mogere
Creative writing seems to have stagnated with a few books produced since the millennium came over forcing some writers into asking what the millennium really means.
Even so, writers still are locked in traditional writing styles with none taking the route of detective work as does David Baldacci.
In Total Control for instance, Baldacci surgically examines the deception in the information communication technology supremacy battle to own vast market share. As such, they have to outdo each other by poaching top brains owning ideas into the success of their opponent.
Alternatively, his book The Simple Truth is a compelling investigative fiction that not only exposes the rot in the army but also several assassinations to conceal the truth. In Kenya such things are common when a detective is following leads into scams.
Currently, detectives that hunted down dreaded criminals either died mysteriously in the line of duty or were shot by colleagues. So far over five police officers in the feared Eagle Squad have died with the last dying in Machakos.
KTN investigative series depicted the death of anti narcotics police officers who were investigating the drug barons and importation of drugs. Yet no police officer is bold enough to write a detective series.
The Seal Six that brought down Osama bin Laden did a detective novel, The Mystery Seal, using all stylistic devices to decorate the story to create coherence.
Hard Target is a movie done in America and made a lot of sales across the continent and beyond. Yet in Kenya only Cobra Squad tried a failed mission. Using star actor Jean Claude Vandamme, hard target achieves its objective as a crime movie of men chasing for Vandamme in vain.
While Kenyan writers were concerned with independence in their writings, the British novelist, John Le Carre composed a detective series spying into the cold war. The Spy Who Came in from the Cold, a book that made sales across Europe gave birth to his later sequels, Murder of Quality and The Looking Glass War.
Receiving literary accclolades and critical reviews ,the book became an international best seller and selected to be among the best 100 detective novels of all times by Time Magazine and best spy novel by Publishers Weekly in 2006.
The Spy Who Came in from the Cold was adapted into a movie in 1965 by Martin Ritt as the Director and Richard Burtin as the Alec leamas, the burnt out protagonist in the book.
Josephine Tey may have died young but her prolific detective novel The Daughter of Time lives on. Giving accounts of a modern police officer investigating crimes committed by King Richard III of England and how tyrannical the king was, Josephine demonstrated her writing prowess in not only the book but also the latter works.
Looking at the mobile industry market, supremacy battles are a common denominator as Apple and Samsung are each claiming to have started the market of smart phones. While this phenomenon is new to Africans, such writing reflects maturity of thought in the creative writing industry.
Our local crime writers have only given us detailed account s of how the police had to chase for them, their wayward tricks to overcome the police and prison experience. What they do not tell are the forensic methods the police deploy to nap criminals.
Whereas Kenya’s Criminal Investigation Department (CID) ranks top in Africa, its detectives have failed to translate their knowledge into art form thus, failing creative writing at large.