Feature on Solomon Munyundo, a.k.a Solo 7
It seems that anyone looking into anything sensitive in Nairobi is subject to threat these days. This will be a good test of where things stand on impunity. If people can make death threats against people dispatched on behalf of the U.N. Security Council without getting arrested it wouldn’t seem to bode well for the rank-and-file journalist, lawyer or activist.
“Ironically, nearly all the time, the role of Government has been to pull back the population through embezzlement of their tax contributions in immoral, treacherous and unbelievable corruption scandals. Mismanagement of public affairs and general destruction of the economy, sleaze and ineptitude have been the hallmarks of Government. . . . The standard of life, therefore remains woefully low. . . .
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[T]he democratization ‘achievements’ so far are both superficial and deceptive. . . . the ability of the Kenyan people to hold the Government to account–whether through the National Assembly or through electoral action, or through civil society action–is so severely constrained that Kenyans find themselves helpless even in the face of an offensive regime that is also characterized by broken promises such as a new and desirable Constitution, a commitment to fight crime, creation of employment, fairness in allocation of all public resources and an end to corruption. . . .
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Corruption is the hallmark of senior officials in Government. . . .Corruption has reached such levels that it threatens to write off the future of our country. It has bred such disorder in our society that rules are disregarded and national wealth squandered at will. . . . I repeat, the problem with Kenya is simply and squarely a matter of bad leadership and poor governance.”
Kalonzo Musyoka, on the Kibaki Administration, in 2007
This is what the now-Vice President of Kenya had to say in the campaign booklet he gave me when I went to meet with him the first week of June 07 when I arrived in Nairobi to step in as the Resident Director for the East Africa office of the International Republican Institute.
Credit to the artist, Solo 7, for the painting in the header image from Toi Market, Nairobi, January 2008.