Wednesday, 7 March 2018

Fate of the Chinese Standard Gauge Railway

 A few years ago, the government contracted the Chinese people for support to build a nation. They were awarded tenders to construct and develop the standard gauge railway as well as our poor road network, alongside other private investments such as malls and other covert investments inclusive of black market networks of drugs and arms supply the masses are not aware of.

Then, everything changed.

A good road network is a great improvement in a third world country but a railway network is a spark that may either tear a whole nation or build it.

Popularly known as the SGR, this railway network was an inspirational dream of a poor man to ease travel and time consumed, but a wealthy man’s dream of feeding into the poor people. Would it have been for transportation of people from place to place, then each man would be content with his own. Sadly, that’s not the case.

Our friends from the East alongside our wealthy politicians and heads of state, in association with the most corrupt institution in the country, the Kenya Revenue Authority, are changing the country in a pace that may end up ruining it as seen in history. Let us face facts here:

The oil discovered in Kenya is still under the British who are managing it; the Chinese people have a contract awarded to them to construct and manage the roads and SGR for a certain period; the Kenya Ports Authority is transferring almost all of its operations to Nairobi and as a result, transport of goods by trucks will reduce greatly; the government is making it mandatory for all goods to be transported by trains to and from the Mombasa port; transport companies such as Autoport, owned by the Mombasa Governor is closing up due to low business as a result of the mandatory rule by the government; Mombasa as a county and the second largest city is going to lose its status as most of the businesses are directly reliant to the port, et cetera.

As a result, all clearances will be done in Nairobi as the country awaits an inland port in Naivasha, which is ironically managed not by the KPA or KRA, but by a private investor. This will not only make him extremely wealthy, but it will also give him more than enough in case he decides to leave politics and focus on his life.

But there is a problem.

Due to the good nature of the new railway transport system, a great danger lies ahead for the people of this country: corruption, nepotism, unemployment and war. The country cannot be able to sustain itself in a few years with such people feeding from the same system that is to support the whole grid.
As the companies are closing down, and retrenchment facing the Kenya Ports Authority, and corruption seen in the Kenya Revenue Authority, it’s only a matter of time before we see the same SGR dream vanishes from our eyes. Many people will end up jobless, including, drivers, clearing firms,etc. Highway towns will end up fading due to low business turnout and most importantly, criminal activities will rise again.

The SGR dream will vanish before our eyes in the sense that, the rich tycoons running transport companies will plan on something that will wipe it out. Will it be a good idea? Yes.

A poor man will study hard, do well in school but since he does not know anyone, he will get a simple job at the port, owned by a rich man. The poor man will earn little cash and try to save it, but at the same time, a corrupt police officer will ask for bribe in order not to arrest him while heading home on a Friday night. The poor man will get home to his wife and demanding family, and end up slaving for the rich man in order to sustain himself. At the end of the day, he’s happy with the little he gets, the rich man is happy with his profits.

Then the government cuts this rich man’s transport and clearing businesses due to a railway transport that is miles from his head office. The corrupt officers at the port are also being retrenched and others reshuffled. So he has to close down or otherwise reduce, which will mean he runs at a loss. He fires the poor man who has been living in a rental house with several kids and the wife. Life gets hard on him with time, so he has to survive. He gets into crime. Soon, he and other friends of the same state start harassing the same rich people, and in the end, war erupts between the rich and poor due to inequality by the same government that lied to them, that is corrupt and that does not provide alternative solutions. The war affects all government projects including the SGR which it relied upon to make quick cash to the bigwigs in it.

All in all, a rich man will be sensible to forge a plan and destroy the SGR as it makes his business empire collapse. A poor man will be happy to fake the accident and make it real. A politician will be so comfortable to blame the Al Shabaab for doing it. The bigwigs will be so annoyed and arrest an innocent man and make him pay with his life.

The idea of a government deciding for its citizens is always a primitive one. The great masses are solely responsible for their own affairs first before agreeing to what it does. However, a corrupt system of leaders bars that notion which ends up affecting the citizens and depriving them of everything, including their livelihood, making them slaves to taxes and the same government they voted in. They call it democracy: of the people, for the people, by the people, but behind the picture is kleptocracy: of the thieves, for the thieves, by the people. The masses will always be subjected to deceit and lies, that is the great principle of a democraticgovernment.

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