Politics gets dirtier as my key opponent poisons teachers

Mwalimu Andrew

We resumed the meeting at 3pm. But shortly after, some teachers asked where the toilet was. Within a few minutes, there was a queue to the toilet.

Photo credit: Nation Media Group

What you need to know:

  • I initially planned to host 40 teachers, but over 80 teachers had confirmed attendance.
  • I am having a hard time convincing the teachers that I meant well for them.

When Fiolina, the lucky laugh of my enviable life, packed and left to Kakamega, enemies of development led by Tito, whom I kicked out of the school’s BOM, started rumours that I had bowed out of the parliamentary race.

Sponsored by the current MP, who has been having nightmares ever since I announced my candidacy, Tito has become a thorn in my flesh.

“He has no money, he has no wife, and even teachers are no longer with him,” he told patrons at Hitler’s last Monday.

“All he has are Green Kaunda suits!” he added amidst laughter.

That hurt.

Nyayo and Alphayo tried to defend me but with nothing in their pockets, they lost the argument. You see, the MP had funded Tito and Rasto, enabling them to buy drinks.

I decided to prove to Tito that all teachers were supporting me. I invited them to my home. My brother Pius, a strategic communications expert who calls himself a PR consultant, drafted for me an invite message. It read:

“Mwalimu, how are the holidays coming along? Mwalimu Andrew (B.Ed, B.A, CRE, Esquire, KISW) cordially invites you for a Teachers’ Consultative Forum to discuss salient matters affecting the teaching fraternity at his state-of-the-art Home in Mwisho wa Lami Village on Friday, March 25, 2022 at exactly 11am. Lunch and drinks will be served. Dre: Tried, Tested and Trusted.” 

We shared the message in all teachers’ WhatsApp groups. I had initially thought that I would host just about 40 teachers but as of Wednesday, over 80 teachers had confirmed attendance. They could not fit in my house as originally planed and I decided to hire tents. I also had to think about food.

I had planned to prepare strong tea and mahenjera (boiled mixture of maize and beans) but Pius advised me against that, saying that was a sure way of losing votes.

“Teachers are opinion shapers so treat them well. And their love for soda is legendary,” he said. He was right — fights over soda are common in staffrooms countrywide. Pius promised to buy seven crates of soda.

Pius recommended that I make matumbo and ugali. He committed to buy 10kgs of matumbo. Greens were not difficult to find, and I had enough maize to turn into flour.

With both Rumona and Anindo around, I did not know who to invite, for I could not invite both at the same time. I talked to Anindo, who accepted to come over and help cook while accompanied by two other people.

Pius had talked to Maina the shopkeeper and seven crates of soda were brought in my home early Friday morning. By 10am, I had taken three bottles of Stoney. Anindo and her team had also taken at least two bottles each.

The first teacher arrived at 9.30am. and by 10.30am, bicycles and motorcycles were parked all over my compound. I welcomed the teachers and ushered them to the tent for an informal catch-up over soda. 

True to my fears, almost all of them took more than one bottle of soda. To avoid problems, I called Maina, who agreed to deliver three more crates – on credit.

Reverend Apostle Elkana opened the meeting with prayers at 11.20 am. I then told my colleagues I was considering running for MP and that unlike my competitors who already had solutions, I wanted to listen to teachers’ issues so I could address them when I become the MP. Teachers opened up and talked to me openly. I would have shared the issues raised here but I don’t want my political opponents to use them in their campaigns.

A few minutes to 2pm, the tempting sweet smell of ugali marinated with the delicious alluring aroma of matumbo accompanied by the natural, tantalising scent of fresh kunde hit our nostrils. Shortly after, I did not need a calculator to know that no one was concentrating. 

I asked Anindo to serve. She had set up a service area outside the tent, and teachers lined up to wash hands. Anindo had overdone herself. The ugali was well made, the matumbo soft and tender while the kunde was so delicious. I saw at least two headmasters go for a second serving, but I kept quiet.

We resumed the meeting at 3pm. But shortly after, some teachers asked where the toilet was. Within a few minutes, there was a queue to the toilet. Those inside were taking long, forcing others to make do with the maize plantation behind the toilet.

“Dre kwani umetupikia nini leo, it is like Russia and Ukraine are fighting in my stomach!” said Kizito, a HM of a neighbouring school.

“Mine is even worse,” said another teacher. “Nuclear bombs are exploding in my stomach.”

He then released pungent, nuclear fumes. Several teachers left immediately. To cut the long story short, the meeting ended prematurely. 

As for me, I did not have any issue since as a true son of Mwisho wa Lami, I always walk with a packet of ENO, which came in handy.

Word about what teachers had gone through in my home spread far and wide, and one HM accused me of trying to kill him so I could be made HM. I am having a hard time convincing the teachers that I meant well for them.

It was only later that someone asked me where we had bought the matumbo. We had bought it at Joram’s butchery. Joram, our current MP’s chief campaigner, was heard celebrating at Cosmos Bar how he had messed up my meeting with the teachers.

If the MP thinks I will be cowed by his dirty games, I want to let him know today that I am a man on a mission with no space to retreat or luxury to surrender!