Dear Mobster-By Edward Maroncha


Receive warm greetings from this end. I hope you are doing well? I presume you are because the last time I saw you, you looked just ok. And I haven’t heard any news about any earthquake since. And that was not too long ago. It was actually last week, in an online clip where you appeared to strip and lynch a lady. To be fair, I will admit that I cannot ascertain the clip’s authenticity, nor when you did the act if indeed the clip was genuine. Nonetheless, knowing you, it’s not really beyond you. That clip was so gross that I did not watch it to the end.

You had been relatively quiet before that. I know it’s probably because the media gave you a black out. They probably did not think that the work you have been doing is worth reporting. Whatever the case, the last time I had heard from you  you were stripping women naked and sometimes taking advantage of the moment to “have a feel” of their bodies. Much was said about the stripping, and I have no wish to repeat.

But let’s talk about that woman that you appeared to lynch. What had she done to warrant being stripped naked, stoned and set on fire? Was she a serial killer? A witch? Did anybody have proof or someone just suggested it and you jumped in to do what you do best? To be honest, dear Mobster, sometimes I do sympathize with you. Sometimes the system does let us down by allowing criminals to roam around and terrorize us probably because they bribed someone or had a smart lawyer who clung on some technicality of the law to get them out, most likely because of shoddy police investigation. I understand the fear and sense of helplessness. But really, most of the things you do are out of this world.

Dear Mobster, take for instance the senior citizens you were lynching a while back on accusations of being witches. I know you don’t like their wizened faces and gnarled fingers and toes-a combination of age and poverty. But you see, my dear Mobster, neither do they. Given a chance, they would have preferred to age gracefully like Comrade Bob Mugabe, winning elections with ease because the nation adores them, and having youthful spouses who frequent the best malls in Hong Kong. But no, they seem to have been destined to a life of poverty, and fear of people like you who want to end their misery without their consent. Come to think of it, if these elderly folks had the powers you accused them of having, you wouldn’t be able to kill them. They would cast a wicked spell on you and you wouldn’t be able to distinguish your children from your goats. But the fact that you seemed to kill them so easily suggests that they actually do not have those powers. But what do I know.

Dear Mobster, I am sure you have complained at one point or another about insecurity in this country. Or road accidents. Why?  I always thought that we complain about these things because human life is precious and is to be protected. It is not to be snuffed out at the whims of a few reckless individuals. That the same reason we dislike robbers and murderers, no? I mean, they seem to snuff out life with too much ease. If that be the case, why would you snuff out the life of a woman so grossly?

There has always been a debate about extra-judicial killings. Activists condemn the police of butchering people like goats. Those who defend the police argue that the police face hardened armed criminals who have no time to negotiate about arrests. It is either they are killed, or they kill our gallant officers. From my little perch up here, I can see both have a point. Policemen should not just kill people anyhow. But at the same time, policemen should not be killed as they watch helplessly. Basically they are saying the same thing in different words: human life is precious and should be protected.

Dear Mobster, whenever you get to work I am certain you have a reason. You must have accused this woman of doing something. Was she a witch? Had she stolen someone’s child? But seeing as it is that you stripped her before lynching her, I suspect it was something to do with sex. Prostitution perhaps?   But you see, dear Mobster, you do not just kill people who do things you do not approve. If we all did that, we would wipe ourselves from the face of the earth.

Take terrorists for instance. These people actually think they are doing a great thing: wiping out infidels. I hear they want to establish Caliphates on this planet. After the Garissa attack most Christians were understandably scared. I was scared too, dear Mobster. I mean, these characters were popping up everywhere: churches, malls, schools, etc. Yet, dear Mobster, when one morning I went for a prayer meeting and the preacher was encouraging Christians to form militias to turn the heat on Muslims (and especially Somalis), I almost walked out. I only stayed because the pastor of that church grabbed the microphone from the preacher and started preaching peace.

I wanted to walk out for two primary reasons. First, if Christians were to take arms, we would turn this country into a Nigeria, with a national hobby of burning churches and mosques. This would result in more deaths than the terrorists would have hoped to achieve. Further, even the good Muslims would be driven by fear to join the terrorists for self-preservation. I am not even mentioning the political hoodlums who would take advantage of the chaos to gain cheap political mileage. In other words, we would all be helping the terrorists.

The second reason I wanted to walk out is that I have met many good Muslims. A case in point is the guy who was my seatmate in high school. He was not exactly Somali, he was Borana. But he was Muslim. In fact, he was the head of the Muslim Community in the school while I was the Christian Union chairman. I can tell you for sure, this was one of the best souls I ever met. We formed a friendship, based on mutual respect. Would I take a gun and kill this guy because he does not acknowledge Christ to be the Son of God? Certainly not. Even Christ would not approve.

Besides, I have many “secular” friends (I lack a better adjective). They do things that I consider sin. Yet, dear Mobster, I can assure you that most of them are actually very good people. Of course I wish they would get saved and join me in the Christian faith. And I preach towards that end. But would I kill them just because they do not share my worldview? No way! In fact, I do personally like most of them. In any case, some of them think I am a lost case. Some of them don’t like my “Bible thumping”. Yet they put up with me. So you see, dear Mobster, if we are killing people who do things we do not like, they would also have plenty of reasons to come for me as well. It would be a question of who got the other first.

I know you will tell me that the people you kill are criminals. But the very idea of crime is created by the law, which also sets the punishment for it. My dear Mobster, there is a reason we have courts. It is to ensure we have order in the society. Justice meted out in the bush is always a recipe for disaster. No, courts are not the creation of the white man. My community had a judiciary. I am sure you have heard about our Supreme Court, the Njuri Ncheke. We had High Courts called Mwiriga– the clan. And local courts called Mbari-family. So you see, dear Mobster, if in the olden times I was accused of committing an offence, I would be taken to the elders of Mbari ya Ndiga, which is my extended family. If it was rather serious, I would be taken to the Mwiriga-the elders of my Rukinga clan. If it was very, very serious, I would be taken to Nciru to face the Fathers of the Ameru people. Point is, a few trouble makers couldn’t just wake up one morning and set me ablaze on flimsy grounds. Order has been the essence of the society since the olden days.

Yea I heard you. You said judges are corrupt. But come to think of it, how come you have not stripped and set ablaze a single judge? Or politicians who are milking our country dry? Let’s be honest with each other here, dear Mobster.  The real reason you lynched that woman is because she was vulnerable. Defenceless, so to speak. And that is very unfair of you.

I know you fear being slaughtered like chicken. That is why you made noise until the very gentle Ole Lenku disappeared from the Cabinet. I also know you dislike being humiliated.  That is why you keep whining about bosses from hell. I have some news for you. We all hate those things. So then, instead of moving around lynching people and stripping women, how about we use that energy to change our society and the system? Instead of blindly worshiping the many clowns that form the political elite, we can use that energy to think of creative ways of making our society better. A more organized system of dealing with law breakers. And while at it, we protect each other’s dignity and right to inhale oxygen. How about that, dear Mobster? Ok, fine. Right now I am not sure how. But I know if we all got together we would come up up with something. And I also know your idea killing people as you please based on suspicions and flimsy grounds is wicked. So think about I am saying.

Please pass my warm regards to your colleagues. Kindly read this letter aloud for them. I have a feeling that might prove useful. And by the way, I hope by the time we talk again you will have changed your name. I keep biting my tongue whenever I say “dear Mobster”. Please get yourself a more pleasant title. At least for the sake of my tongue.


Yours sincerely,

Edward Maroncha




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