Kenya, other African countries can survive without Western visitors
Posted Saturday, October 5 2013 at 01:00
I condole with our Kenyan neighbours following another tragedy. Remember the 1998 embassy blasts! I also sympathise with our governments because terrorism has heightened their burden of responsibility to protect citizens. I feel sorry for president Uhuru Kenyatta for he has been welcomed by two consecutive disasters. Remember the Jomo Kenyatta Airport fire?
Leaving sorrows aside, I want to share what I learnt from the Westgate crisis. There is no best way to deal with an emergency situation except swearing to punish the invisible perpetrators and identifying with the wanainchi. I liked it when I heard president Kenyatta say to some hospitalised victims that, “we’re sorry... you will be fine”.
I sensed the duty to protect and feeling of responsibility in case of failure. I also observed excesses of dependency on the West when Kenyan leaders appealed to western governments to stop issuing travel advisories to their nationals. As if the world would come to an end without western visitors to Kenya.
On the other side the rushed travel advisories, instead of condolences, portrayed the issuing countries as ‘nice-time’ friends i.e. where there is disaster nationality superiority overrules. But these were originally the owners of the war on terror. Would they equally advise their nationals to vacate their homeland if the attacks were at home!
I am still wondering how best to punish the terrorists painfully that they aren’t accustomed to.
Julius Wasswa, email@example.com