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Archive for November 19th, 2010

Many wearing brave faces in far away hell

Posted by Administrator on November 19, 2010


It has been tale of bloodletting, pain and shock. One man killed his wife and their two children in a flash, while another drowned his only child in a bucket then tried to commit suicide.

In another brutal attack, an assailant on a revenge mission murdered a 47-year-old Kenyan widow and her two daughters. In the neighbouring state, a young man was jailed for stabbing his girlfriend to death. In the same State where a Kenyan killed his wife and three children, a young university student committed suicide.

Chilling, or is it not? The Kenyan community living in the US is grabbing news headlines for all the wrong reasons.

The US authorities have sounded the alarm and Kenyans with relatives in that country are worried.

Wide-ranging interviews with Kenyans living abroad and those who have spent parts of their lives there, paint a picture of people living on the edge.

Jared Omariba, who has lived in the US and Canada, says the rise in domestic violence among Kenyans in the Diaspora is not surprising.

Dr Omariba, now a lecturer at St Paul’s University in Nairobi, says financial stress, social and marital problems were driving Kenyans into homicide.

“Nearly 70 per cent of Kenyans who migrate to the US with their spouses end up separating or divorcing. The economy is stressful and the laws stringent,” he says.

He adds: “The law favours women and children and most Kenyan men find themselves on the wrong side even for scolding their wives or slapping their children”.

“There is a serious problem out there. Many Kenyans fear the law is discriminative and opt for instant revenge.”

“There are Kenyans who are ashamed of returning home and their relatives may not be aware. Some have no homes and have been dodging authorities for years after their immigration papers expired,” he tells The Standard.

The long working hours have impacted on families resulting in divorce and violence,” he says.

Last month, President Obama condemned domestic violence against women and children and promised more help for victims. His speech came only days after the murder of a Kenyan woman and her two children.

He said: “The bottom line is this: nobody in America should live in fear because they’re unsafe in their own home… And no one who is the victim of abuse should ever feel that they have no way to get out.”

Although they work hard and remit billions of shillings back home, a number of Kenyans in foreign countries, especially America, are going through hell.

While some are successful and wealthy, others are trapped in frustrating and stressful lives worsened by culture shock, stringent laws and elusive dreams.

The endless struggle to survive in a highly competitive job market is pushing many against the wall. They have to work, go to school and send money home to justify their presence in America.

Ironically, Kenyans in the US are the most enterprising, well educated and with some of the best work ethics compared to those from other countries, according to a US census report.

But things appear to be getting murkier as more Kenyans scramble for the Land of Opportunity.

Last year, Gideon Omondi, was jailed for life after he killed his four-year-old son after separating with his wife.

Last month, another frustrated Kenyan grabbed media headlines for killing his wife and two children (See separate story).

He told the police he hit his wife with a golf club and strangled her with an electric wire before turning his anger on the children. He suspected his wife was cheating on him.

Details obtained by The Standard show that many Kenyans living overseas are facing serious social and economic problems.

Experts say the many crimes involving Kenyans reflect the socio-cultural conflict in which many find themselves in when they arrive in America.

Martin Omuga who lived in America for fifteen years says high expectations from relatives at home also drive many Kenyans living in the US to financial frustrations.

“The belief is that there is a lot of money in the US and woe unto you if you don’t make remittance home,” says Omuga.

Sources who spoke to The Standard said the Kenyan Government should identify and bring back those facing frustrations in foreign countries.

“Let us face it, there are Kenyans who have failed to integrate into the American society and are suffering. The Ministry of Foreign Affairs should compile data of such people and help them return home,” says Omariba.

According to a Kenyan living in Texas, Mr Antony Karanja, life in the US for a Kenyan on a student visa can be daunting.

“For all the success stories that some Kenyan students can share in the US, there are thousands of told as well as untold stories of students suffering as they try to make ends meet,” he wrote in a social web site.

Source: http://www.standardmedia.co.ke/InsidePage.php?id=2000022590&catid=259&a=1


Posted in Diaspora News | 3 Comments »

Alabama A&M Student Running for President of Kenya

Posted by Administrator on November 19, 2010

George Muumbo

George Muumbo

Huntsville, AL – During the day, George Muumbo is always on the run.  He begins with a call to family in Kenya followed by a full day of class at Alabama A&M University. 

 Then, he makes time to fix computers.  But, his day is not over just yet.  Muumbo said, “Then I go to my night job, where I work the graveyard shift until the next morning and I start it all over again.”

A man always on the run, but always with a purpose, Muumbo expects his long days and long nights to translate into lots of experience as he makes a run at president of Kenya in 2012. 

In his spare time, Muumbo uses the airwaves to send a message to voters in Kenya.  He says the number one issue for the country is the Economy.  “A good leader will find out the one thing that needs to be transformed so that it could affect positively the variety of things that depend on it.”

Muumbo is also a cadet in the Army ROTC at Alabama A&M.  He hopes being well-rounded will help him become commander-in-chief in 2012.

Source: http://www.waaytv.com/news/local/story/Alabama-A-M-Student-Running-for-President-of-Kenya/1HDuISJ2DkeEjAfw1hcwZw.cspx

Posted in Diaspora News | 22 Comments »

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