Death is searching for us. Death has been looking for you and me for a while now. Haven’t you noticed? Death has been around the corner waiting for you to pass by. Death will grab you by the shoulders, place his bony arms around your neck and strangle you as he lets out a grimy laughter. You will choke and spit at first. He will tighten his deadly grip, your jugular will burst and some blood will come out of your coughing mouth, then Death will take you. Death has been searching for you and me, he comes likes a thief, and I know his name-Al Shabab.
So before death comes for me, let me say something to the world. I walk the streets of Nairobi each day and I fear. Every single person who talks to me is a murder suspect. If not, he’s a robbery with extreme violence suspect. Every Kenyatta Avenue and Jogoo Road I take I see death. When I go to South B and Roysambu, unlike Njoki Chege, all I see is Death napping. Like a lion, waiting. There was a time not more than a year ago when our Islam siblings were ostracized and avoided. People disembarked buses when a Muslim passenger boarded. We have since become better informed, that is not the face of the Death; they too are targets. The point is, we live in fear-the fear of dying. Because death is lurking around, doing rounds in Westy, Coasto, North Eastern, Kapedo and who knows where next. Right now he has taken 28 people from the Kenyan population.
Does any of you know someone in Mandera? Well, I do. I have my sweet niece and my aunt and uncle who are teachers in Mandera. They are lovely people who travelled 500 kilometres through dust and acacia trees to impart knowledge to some young ones in Mandera- some 20 victims came from further. They always joke that when they journey to Mandera, the drivers invent routes through the bushes because when it rains, roads are swept away. I fear that the next time they take a bus to Mandera the driver will invent a road that leads directly to an Al Shabab camp. There, they will find Death cracking jokes with the mujahideen as they roast some wild antelope. But who knows, death could be driving right now into Nairobi on a KBS bus. And why not? Ole Lenku is an hotelier who doesn’t know anything on deaths, wars and killings. He only knows if dessert comes first or last. He can tell you how best to spread the bed or bread and how many ways you can serve wine. So I can’t blame the poor chap for being made to leave his culinary surroundings to lead a battle.
If I die young, it will most likely be because Al Shabab were hired by Death to kill me. It will be sometime in March I guess, when we have all forgotten about Mandera and Al Shabab, the convenient Kenyan way. I will be aboard a spanking new mat from Rongai, a new Fergie with a CCTV camera and speedy WI-FI. I will download a game that’s better than Candy Crush as I Whatsapp my mother. The music will be loud and booming, Tupac for sure. Once I alight the bus at Agip, with Tupac still rapping in my ears, a bullet will take me on the knee. I will go down on one knee as blood spurts out of my now shredded knee. The pain will start to build up as screams from women running away colonize the air. But they won’t outrun the bullets. Some will be caught squarely in the back as they try to cross Haile Selassie Avenue. Some won’t feel the bullet enter through the medulla oblongata and exit through their screaming mouth. I will hear one of the gun-wielders shout “Allahu akbar!” I will know he means “God is great”, but I will also know he doesn’t mean it, he’s just a crook wearing the mask of Islam. The second bullet will find my stomach. I will double up and fall on the dusty Nairobi pavement. The newsstand will be in my view. The headline will condemn the stripping of women in Mathare. I will think of how Kenyans forget fast. I will feel alone. I will feel the cold feet of Death next to me, ready to drag me to the beyond. I will start spitting blood and the mujahedeen will realise I am not dead Blood will be choking me, filling my lungs and quickening my slow death. The mujahedeen wrapped in a headscarf will walk over to me and with a cursory glance at me-not even looking at my face-will plant a final bullet through my chest. I will wince a little. Then I will see a white light and walk through the golden gates. I will see a few more Kenyans on the white road. Many will be women who couldn’t run fast enough. At the golden gates, Angel Michael will inform us that Kenyans had become too many in Heaven we had exceeded our quota. We would live in a refugee camp. I will tell Michael how different he looks in Dominion. I will tell him who I blame for my refugee status. Guess who I will blame for not protecting me? This one is on you Mr. President. You should have done better.