An Open Letter To Deputy President William Ruto
Dear Mr William Ruto,
I have heard many things about you the latest being that you are involved in a Ksh 28 billion hospital scandal.
A hospital scandal?
Someone must be spoiling your good Christian name. I am sure you would not steal from the sick. Let us hope that you can truly one day clear the air about all the grand theft that has been linked to you.
Remember in 2010, you were charged with defrauding KPL of large amounts of money through dubious land deals, notably through the sale of a piece of land in Ngong forest? Remember the maize scandal where it was claimed you sold our maize to Southern Sudan and left our people starving? Remember the 100 acres of land that they said you grabbed from an IDP?
I heard he took you to court even though you bought the land. I heard you returned the land to him and apologised profusely.
Remember someone tried linking you to the Lang’ata Primary School playground grab? How could they as your love for children is unmatched. The thought of a child with nowhere to play would make you shed tears, would it not?
I know, the Bible says that we should not be concerned with amassing earthly wealth, but who am I to begrudge you for owning a substantial stake in insurance, real estate, media and transport sectors. I hear you own Amaco Insurance Company, Weston Hotel at the Wilson Airport, and rental houses in Nairobi and elsewhere. I hear you have homes in Karen, Elgon View in Eldoret and another home and farm in Sugoi.
Well, I cannot dispute how much God has blessed you brother Ruto.
Sorry for not being concise but let me get to my point. I hear that you said Kenya has no room for gays.
Well, I am a Kenyan who is a lesbian, not a lesbian who is Kenyan.
This means I love my country and it breaks my heart that suddenly there is no room for me. I am a descendant of a Mau Mau fighter and my grandmother was one of those women who gallantly cooked for the soldiers fighting for independence. You should have heard her proudly telling me the stories. God rest her soul in peace.
As a young girl, I had to run away from Female Genital Mutilation and still put my little palms on my face to pray hoping that I would not be married off to a hungry old man. Millions of other girls walk these uncertainty everyday.
Do you know girls still get married as young as 10?
I am not sure what you have heard about lesbians. Maybe it is that we hate men and we must have had a bad relationship with our fathers? Well, I had a beautiful bond with my father before thugs mercilessly beat him to death for a watch and a pair of shoes.
I was 17 and my mother struggled to educate my younger brother and me. She sold, and still sells, cereals. I always told myself that I would work hard to at least repay her never giving up on me. She knows I love women and she has not banished me from home.
When I was in campus (they say I am a late bloomer) I discovered that I was attracted to women.
No, I did not start trying to kiss every woman I met and no, I was not ‘inducted’ in high school where my main concern was a reading Mills and Boons. Have you ever heard of the crime thriller novels? These were what I enjoyed.
Did I tell you I am very prayerful? God has seen me through some difficult times in my life and I always exalt His name. On campus, I played netball and basketball once in a while and was one of the environmental enthusiasts at campus. You see, I did not spend my hours thinking about sex.
That is what you think we do right?
Now, I am a banker and you know what? I pay my taxes. Can you tell money that has been touched by a lesbian if you saw it?
Just out of curiosity, you handle cash and go to the bank, do you not? Well perhaps I have handled cash you have handled. In case you plan to throw all your money away because you cannot determine if a lesbian touched it or not, I would be glad to have some.
On second thought no, I would not, but it would be lovely if you donated it to a palliative care hospital.
I might go on and on, tell you perhaps your children have been taught by a lesbian, you have been served at a restaurant by a lesbian, guarded by a lesbian, even sat next to a lesbian or even been given news coverage by a lesbian.
See, we are everywhere. We are mothers, sisters, daughter and even grandmothers.
We are taxpayers and we worry about insecurity. One of my lesbian friends was so bothered that she wanted to join the army. Unfortunately, she could not afford the bribe. As lesbians, we also wonder, like other Kenyans, why so many of our compatriots die in terror related crimes.
We felt the pain of the Garissa, Lamu, West Gate and Mpeketoni terror attacks.
We felt the pain of Baragoi massacres and the recent blood letting in Nadome. We too, were touched by the post-election violence of 2007. We lost families and friends and some of our relatives are IDPs.
One final point, that you might consider irrelevant, is I actually voted for the Jubilee Government. My vote may seem negligible to you, but it would be best to know that hundreds of lesbians voted for you too.
And like every Kenyan, we spent countless hours queuing.
Don’t get me wrong; we did not queue for hours because we thought you and President Uhuru would make ‘cute’ leaders. We voted, even if we know your record of hate against gays and lesbians. You once called us dogs, but we as good Christians we forgave you.
The reason we voted for you was because of your promise: that Kenya belongs to everyone and never again shall we let religion, tribe, beliefs or any other attributes that could divide us.
We are naïve to think you meant that right?
Honestly, the main reason we voted is because we wanted to fulfil our civic details. Yes, some of us were swayed by our tribal inclinations. We suffer from the same social disease that the majority of Kenyans need healing from. We rally behind our tribes for politically motivated reasons. However at the end of the day we are Kenyans and we understand that we cannot sit back and not be part of this great nation.
We have felt everything that every other Kenyan has felt, lived breathed and experienced the same. In light of this how can you tell me there is no room for me in Kenya?
A Kenyan who is a lesbian
P.S Are you waiting for my name?