The Star (Nairobi)

18 June 2012

Kenya: Universities Promoting Negative Ethnicity - Koigi

Former MP Koigi Wamwere yesterday said universities have been turned into bastions of negative ethnicity. While addressing MKU students during a lecture on Politics Negative Ethnicity In Institutions of Higher Learning, the former Subukia MP said universities are no more sacrosanct institutions. He said they have become resources to be scrambled for by the elites.

"Once a university is conquered by an ethnic elite, it will be owned by the elites communities at the expense of the others. Once in the hands on ethnic elites, they use them for their exclusive benefits. Jobs go to elites of the vice-chancellor on principal's communities. Once the VC, principal and lectures go ethnic, students also go ethnic,' said Wamwere.

Wamwere, who spent many years in detention and exile for his criticism on former regimes, said once students embrace negative ethnicity, there is no more hope for the country. "Poisoning students with negative ethnicity is poisoning survival in the country," Wamwere said. He said the peril of negative ethnicity to the country and our people must be slighted. "It is our curse. It is the atomic bomb for our self destruction," he said.

Wamwere said in Africa, negative ethnicity has killed more people than atomic bombs in Nagasaki and Hiroshima in Japan. He said in Rwanda, negative ethnicity caused a genocide that killed over one million people. He said in Kenya, negative ethnicity has sparked tribal clashes and has polarised the country.

The former MP said the worst propagations of negative ethnicity are politicians, universities, churches and vernacular radio stations. He pleaded with the universities to lead the war against negative ethnicity. Wamwere said Kenya politics of nationalism are on the decline where politics of negative ethnicity have been on the increase. "Without class or nationalist ideology to compel with it, negative ethnicity has become the ideology of our politics and even economics," he said.

He said he was impressed that MKU had successfully shrugged off any temptation on negative ethnicity. By seeing all students and staff equipped and more so as Kenyans and Africans in full disregard of their tribe, creed, religion, colour and origin. Truly MKU is true face of Kenya." said Wamwere.

He said his lectures to address negative ethnicity in another University had been cancelled twice. "I thank Mt.Kenya University for daring to invite me," he said. He said tribe has killed our nation. He said politically we are no longer one people on one country. Thoroughly balkanized by politicians and vernacular radios, we are now a nation of tribes and ethnic kingdoms and kings.

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