Kenya is one of the warmest and welcoming nations in the world.
Foreigners easily blend in, settle and even start businesses. We have seen some adopt the Kenyan culture but some, well, bring with them a little bit of racism.
Racism is an ongoing struggle. It has been with us for centuries and will most likely be with us more years to come.
What bothers me and should bother you, is, what is threatening about the black skin?
Away from the white folk, did you know a light or brown skinned person is likely to get better treatment at an establishment more than the darker skinned folk? We should also ponder on that.
Anyway, today we will focus on racism back at home. On our radar are Kenya’s 44th tribe, the Indians.
One is most likely to find them in areas around Parklands, Lang’ata and obvioulsy some of Nairobi’s posh estates.
While Indians in Kenya have continued to create employment, some are still treating those of different ethnicities with disdain.
Take for example, Shiksha Arora, a K24 TV news anchor called out her own people who refuse to rent apartments to other ethnic groups.
Apparently, Indian Kenyan landlords would rather have their houses empty rather than lease them to other non Indians.
Their excuse, they do not rent homes to non-vegetarians. Laughable, to say the least.
“Many Kenyan Indian landlords especially in Langata & Parklands would rather leave their units empty rather than rent to certain ethnic groups. The most common excuse is “This house is limited to vegetarians only”. Those posting #blacklivesmatter can you look inward first?” Shiksha posed.
“Some Kenyan Indians who own residential properties are known to have turned away individuals based on their ethnicity. There’s a lot of hypocrisy around this. Why call out racism in America while practicing anti-blackness in your own country? Don’t turn a blind eye to such cases,” she continued.
Some Kenyan Indians who own residential properties are known to have turned away individuals based on their ethnicity. There’s a lot of hypocrisy around this. Why call out racism in America while practicing anti-blackness in your own country? Don’t turn a blind eye to such cases
— Shiksha Arora (@shikshaarora_) June 4, 2020
Her tweets attracted over 3,000 retweets and 7,300 likes on Twitter alone.
She also encouraged others to come forward with their experiences. Rapper Khalighraph Jones recalled wanting to rent a place in Lang’ata but could not be allowed in, well, he was not Indian.
The same thing happened to comedian and Radio presenter Oga Obinna but over in Parklands.
While we join black Americans over in the US, #BlackLivesMatter, as they protest against the death of George Floyd in the hands of the police, we should also take a look at how we treat those closest to us.
Do you recall in 2018 when an Indian woman referred to two Kenyans as “Black Monkeys” in Westlands?
Or when a Chinese restaurant manager beat up a Kenyan worker for arriving late to work early this year?
When we forget, the oppresser wins. It should not matter the ethnicity, race, colour of our skin, class, we are all equal.
Martin Luther King once said, “Injustice anywhere is a threat to justice everywhere.”