Some years ago,I found myself working with Committee of Experts-the body that drafted Kenyas current Constitution. Since we didn’t have our own structures, we rode piggy back on the then Provincial Administration to do Civic Education and distribute the proposed Constitution to Wanjiku.
That’s how I found myself in this baraza where the area D.O. was introducing a newly appointed Chief in his area. It was a cold morning with the hills wearing necklaces of white mist. The locals vehemently opposed her appointment. I have a natural instinct for the scandalous so I noted that most of those who were opposing the new Chiefs appointment were women. You know those ‘dada katika Yesu’ mamas with Women’s Guild and Mothers Union headscarves covering even their ears? The ones that start every sentence with ‘bwana asifiwe?’ Those ones.
We were in one of those remote hamlets in the tea zones of my home county. The yearly bonus which is paid around November has this habit of making local men go berserk.When those crisp notes get into their pockets, the hormonal soup in their loins starts hissing-looking for an outlet like those hot geysers of Olkaria. Well, money has a way of making some men glands speak louder than their brain but here it was more of an epidemic.
And that’s when the newly appointed Chief came in.Local grapevine had it that she had mastered all the headquarters of a man’s pleasure well. Thus she made old geezers spin like gyroscopes till they hobbled home dry, their knees knocking against each other gong gong gong, bereft of any sinokio fluid. At this point, their pockets would be even drier-and the entire bonus gone.
The area DO tried to cool the irate women to no avail. You can’t stop women’s idea when its time has come. So he told the crowd that he will raise the matter with the DC. The women ululated.
In the next baraza, the DC came with a big entourage. The women brigade was winning this battle, so they thought. The DC happened to be a non-sense man who listened keenly and smiled gently as the locals explained why they rejected the government’s choice of the chief.
When the DC took to the dais, the women brigade was sure that he would nullify the selection of the woman chief and call for fresh applications. After the usual state mumbo jumbo about maendeleo, the DC laid it on the line.
‘The government is not interested with what its officers do with their waist downwards.’ He said.
The area Mothers Union Chair lady removed her big reading glasses. The wazees in the gathering edged closer to the microphone.
’It is only interested with what an officer can do with his or her neck upwards’.
With that he promptly inaugurated the lady as the new Chief. Madam Chief then executed a neat salute after which the DC handed her her new official uniform and flag.The DC then boarded his white Land rover and left.
In the distance, where hills jutted into the skies like upright titties of a randy giant female, the DCs Landrover raised a cloud of red dust. Then it snaked down the curvaceous slopes as it sped towards the District Headquarters. Down in the Valley, River Mathioya gushed its way into the sea, leaving a wet trail where the hills met like nature’s groins.
In one of those hills, the new chief hoisted her brand new flag and got down to work.