One day I paid a visit to some Diaspora mdosi working for the government in his Nairobi office. I told him I thought people going abroad were in an underprivileged position and should be approached in this manner. He laughed at me because the image that anyone conjures about people living majuu is that they are rich, they have it easy and were lucky to leave Kenya in the first place. You know those annoying summerbunnies with accents and dropping dollars in Sankara.
Over the course of having this blog, one topic I have not touched on is family relations. This is taboo to talk about.
In May, I had a very lively discussion with people discussing the Emmanuel Adebayor and his family issue that was played out on Facebook. Most people commenting were in Diaspora and took Emmanuel’s side because they had all experienced something similar with their families.
Yet for fear of being attacked or condemned , no one dares talk about it.
The first person to address this without fear of the repercussions is Sister She in Germany. I like this chic. She was once homeless and has found success and goes back home to help the less fortunate. I think that’s the real definition of a celeb…someone who gives back and remembers where they came from, not the normal trend of look at me, my life has changed, now I can afford a Range Rover, travel to Seychelles, me, me,me……. I seriously digress.
Anyway Sister She made two videos where she was calling a spade a spade. The chic has guts. This one is my favorite..about family and being cursed if you complain about them.
Today on Facebook Clifford Oluoch of Homeless of Nairobi (my favorite new charity….. helping the most faceless people in our society) mentioned in a post that the boys end up on the street because of family. Family, again.
I wrote a post thinking people went to Saudi because they were naïve or plain stupid. I mean even after a million horrendous things had happened to Kenya who went there in search of work.
I had a lively discussion on Facebook and was schooled that you could be so poor in Kenya that the risk of dying in Saudi Arabia is something you would actually take, and your family could send you there in order to raise its economic standards. I was shocked. I had no idea people knew what happened in Saudi.
In short they know, but send you and make you a sacrificial lamb for them in the process. Making their lives more comfortable is more important than you loosing your life.
So this Martha Nyaguthii story came out a few days ago. The story is epically sad because the care she is getting in Saudi can’t be trusted. After all the people giving her medical attention are made of the same DNA as her employer.
People are pointing fingers at the usual culprits. The government, Foreign affairs Cabinet Secretary Amina Mohammed, the savage Saudi employers, the shady recruitment agencies that got Martha the job.
But I wonder, when a girl realizes her life is in danger, does she not reach out to her family first? I’m really clueless to how things work in Saudi, I just think a little responsibility should fall on the families side. They are present when a shady recruiter contacts you and they should simply say “No”. Before expecting the government to send a RECCE team to rescue you in Saudi, your family should just not allow you to go. Or has money taken over the importance of a person’s life?
I think as a country we need to reconsider our values.