Kenyans have celebrated Labour Day at Uhuru Park, Nairobi, going home with little to show as inflation bites.
The fete, led by the bubbly Central Organisation of Trade Unions boss, Francis Atwoli, did not fail to impress thanks to sideshows and odd, if not farcical speeches, by the politicians.
The tell-tale signs of drama began when a raucous group shouting praises and waving banners in support of Nairobi Governor Mike Sonko entered Uhuru Park interrupting a skit by comedians as the guests watched.
The show gained the momentum as Likoni Member of Parliament Mishi Mboko delivered a musical speech amidst silence later greeted by applause.
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Mboko’s speech was a trigger for the next rib-cracking joke as Atwoli hurled a jibe at Deputy President William Ruto’s supporter Aisha Jumwa. Both were not at the park but did it matter?
“That woman should be left alone because she is not of my taste,” said Atwoli.
“Achana na huyo mama. Apimwe na ruler, huyu mama hana kiuno na si taste yangu. Anacheza sana na Jina yangu,” Atwoli said amid laughter.
Aisha Jumwa has been attacking Atwoli after he said Deputy President William Ruto will not be in the ballot in the year 2022.
At a past function, the fiery Jumwa referred to Atwoli as a short man without a waist (Kijana fupi round).
SEE ALSO :Faya Tess, Nyboma to sing at Labour Day
She accused Atwoli of playing politics and challenged him to contest for the presidency if he (Atwoli) thought he was well-placed to become President than Ruto.
Speaking last month while in Lamu county during a fund-raising event for women, Atwoli claimed that Ruto will not be on the ballot come 2022.
After Mishi Mboko, Cherangany MP Joshua Kuttuny took to the podium with his mastery of Sheng -Kenyan urban slang- as he narrated the troubles of Kenyan low-income workers in the construction and manufacturing sector.
“Mimi nataka kuzungumzia vijana. Hata ku-marry imekuwa ngori…juu hakuna doh maze. Si mshahara ni shillingi elfu kumi na mbili, na ikitoka NHIF inachukua, na NSSF, unabaki na elfu sita. Sasa hujui kama ulipe keja, ama utashughulikia wife ama mtoi,” Kuttuny said
SEE ALSO :Hard times ahead as high cost of living leaves workers poorer
In English: “I want to talk about young men who find it even hard to marry because there is no money. Look, the pay is Sh 12,000, but when it paid NHIF and NSSF take their cut leaving you with Sh 6,000. So you wonder whether to pay your rent or take care of your or the child.”
Cheers followed as he proceeded with another comical yet cunningly formulated joke aimed at the Deputy President who has been losing some poultry products after it emerged his farm workers have been stealing eggs.
“Masikitiko yangu yangu bwana Secretary General, ni mtu akiiba crate mbili ya mayai anawekwa ndani na mwingine akiiba bilioni saba anaachiliwa…ni noma si noma, inabamba haibambi,” meaning: “What saddens me secretary general is that when one steals two crates of eggs, he is being jailed while the other who steals Sh7 billion is a free man,” he added.
And did you hear Nairobi Governor Sonko quote Karl Marx?
“Workers of the world unite for you have nothing to lose but your chains,” extolled the governor. A decade or two ago he would have in soup for that.
SEE ALSO :Sonko group causes a stir during Labour Day fete
And, what would have become of a Labour Day without the vintage Atwoli?
Somehow the workers got to know that his first girlfriend was a Kikuyu after they were treated to a performance by Congolese maestros Nyboma Mwan’dido and Wuta Mayi.
How can we forget songbird Faya Tess and the nubile dancers? And, for some reason, Wiper leader Kalonzo Musyoka could not address Nairobi governor as Sonko.
“I don’t know who gave him that name,” said Kalonzo.?
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