On the way to Southern Africa

Last preparations for my trip to Southern Africa (Mozambique). Had contact with friends in Maputo and one of the people who are involved in the Limpopo Trans Frontier Parc. A village of 20.000 people has to be relocated because the project has to proceed. They do not have an alternative.

Businessman shot at roadblock

The sun is back in Nairobi today. Papers, strong black morning coffee and the newspapers. Clashes yesterday in Uhuru Kenyatta’s home town Gatundu. A businessman was shot at a roadblock. The man was innocent, they say. This murder was not an incident. Kenyans are used to this kind of news headlines. ‘If your competitor or business rival becomes too strong, you hire thugs or pay the police to shoot the guy’, says a Kenyan friend. Recently I had an experience of police that came into a bar around 1.30 at night. They grabbed a crate of beer, put it in their car and started arresting the staff, without any reason. ‘Business rivalry’, somebody said. My respect for the average Kenyan is growing. They keep smiling in a society where sometimes there seems no difference between citizens and law offenders.

Mama matunda disappeared

After Swahili lessons this morning would meet a friend at Mama Matunda (‘Mama Fruit’). I go there for a bowl of fresh mango, pineapple, melon and avocado almost each day. Healthy and cheap lunch. But today, mama’s stall was not there. I asked a man who was standing there. Where did she go? They chased her away, because of security reasons, the man said. They destroyed her stall because thieves are hiding inside? , I asked the man. He was laughing, in a sad way. ‘The thieves are winning from this government.’ It is the same story as some weeks ago. Nairobi’s City Council keeps on chasing away honest Kenians like mama who try to make an income to survive with their families. A few weeks ago, i took this picture. Mama was happy by then. She told she had to pay her license on a daily basis, 25 shilling,

Rain in Nairobi

This morning the rain was pouring down on Nairobi’s streets. Rain completely disturbs society here. Bad roads, bad drainage are the main reasons of the streets changing into rivers. Matatus get stuck in the mud in areas where most people live, people reach their work too late. Near Kisumu a town on the coast of Lake Victoria, huge floods make people drown. Thousands of children cannot go to school because of the floods. The floods in other parts of this country have to do with deforestation and as a consequence desertification, among others. People cut wood because they prepare their ugali (maize) on char coal stoves. At the same moment a short story went straight into my heart this morning. Last week a total of 18 children were found in town. Even after identification parents did not want their children back. For me it shows what poverty can do with

Medical staff on strike. They want 600% pay rise.

The staff of kenyatta Hospital is on strike. They want a higher salary. People are dying in front of nurses who say they are not on duty. If doctors go on strike in Holland, at least somebody is taking care of the people. Will visit the hospital tomorrow, most probabely.