Wednesday, November 14, 2007

The Trials of Brother Kajairo

Politics has beckoned and KJ, Kajairo and Mdomo Baggy have answered the call. Branding themselves as ‘Young Kenyans for Raila’, the three have been popular artistes in the nascent Kenyan entertainment industry that has just begun to show sparkling signs of growth. At some point I thought this was another industry stunt, akin to that of KISS FM in the previous election when the trio’s colleague, Nyambane, clowned around the city with his pilau party.

I think their decision to play politics is impulsive and retrogressive to Kenya’s artistic development. These young men had just begun to position themselves as models to other youth seeking to free themselves from dependency to crystallize their latent capabilities. To abandon this role suggests that perhaps they themselves were ignorant of their own potential to climb to a higher peak. To walk out on their fans is reckless. The ‘celebrity’ status has gotten to their heads and they are deluding themselves if they expect to transfer their stage charms to the political arena for leadership positions.

What is luring these young Kenyans to political leadership? To acquire fuel-guzzling road runners, saunter around with bodyguards, sleep at exclusive residential addresses? I most certainly hope not. It is nice to be young, but what advantage does it give one to manage the varied needs of a constituency? Unlike with fans at a show, interpersonal relationships here are of a complex design. It is one thing to charm crowds and ask them to “raise your hands and say yeah!” It is quite another to deal with the multiplicity of community wishes.

One can empathize with the frustrated feeling that the current parliamentarians have often let society down with their inability to solve or alleviate the extant hardships. But are political leaders the only ones obligated to do so? Celebrities elsewhere in the world are involved in mobilization of masses and funds, setting up projects and facilities for society and disadvantaged groups. And they do so much more successfully probably because of non-interference and involvement of parochial politicians. However, they are able to achieve this because they themselves first attain success in their careers. This is what these three should be working at.

KJ, Kajairo and Mdomo Baggy are not anywhere that can remotely be described as the peak of their careers. They are popular but they are yet to be successful. As artistes, they too have the capacity to mobilize for the implementation of whatever projects in their blueprints and still walk with their heads high, dignified and honorable. They do not have to go regaling the masses with political buffoonery and spewing unhelpful platitudes.

No comments:

Post a Comment