Yesterday, I left the office at 5.39pm and was reached town at 6.40pm. Grabbed a few things in Nakumatt then I headed to Railways to pick a bus to #NgongKeren.

I found a huge crowd of people so I gathered there were no buses and I had better chances of getting one at Ambassadeur Hotel but luckily I saw a Compliant MOA right outside Zetech College Church House campus. Now, maybe a this point I should explain that I have lived in #NgongKeren all my life and I know when there are no mats, at whatever time, the fare goes up from 70/80 to about 100/150/200, so knowing how many people were at Railways I got into the Compliant MOA without negotiating with the kange.

The Compliant MOA hadn’t filled up so we went to Railways to pick up more people. The kange obviously looking like a clown shouting ‘100 stage zote’ but somehow the bus filled despite people’s reluctance.

As usual, I plugged in my iPod and bobbed my head away to DJ Protégé’s house mixes on max volume. The kange collected fare and I think at the back of the Complaint MOA there was a guy who had refused to pay up. I unplugged my earphones to listen to what was going on.

Kange: ‘Mzee, tafadhali lipa gari. Si umeskia nikisema mia moja!’

Unidentified mzee: ‘Kazi yenu ni kudhulumu watu. Silipi na silipi’

Kange: Mimi siwezi bishana na wewe. Basi nitakupeleka police station ukawaelezee huko’

I heard and seen this kind of drama before so I plugged back my earphones and the journey swiftly continued.

When we reached Karen, instead of stopping at the stage, the Compliant MOA turned into the Karen Police Station. That’s when I even switched off my iPod because I thought cops had boarded the Compliant MOA without my knowledge and we were being arrested for God knows what. I should also point out at this stage that Compliant MOA are notorious for bad driving and even murder.

Just as I plugged of my earphones, the kange was asking the unidentified mzee to alight and explain his case to the 2 cops who were now already waiting outside the Compliant MOA.

Kange: ‘Mzee shuka ueleze afande kwa nini unakataa kulipa gari’

Unidentified mzee: (alighting) Leo mtanitambua mimi ni nani.

Cop 1: Mkubwa kunaenda aje kwani?

Unidentified mzee: Hawa watu ati wanalipisha gari mia kutoka town. Sio hio ni kunyanyasa watu

Kange: Kila mtu amelipa gari lakini wewe ndio umekata kulipa. Unaniharibia kazi na unachelewesha watu

Unidentified mzee: Unajua mimi ndio mkubwa wa polisi kwa hii station an nimesema silipi. Hizi magari kila wakati ni kunyanyasa watu. (Walks towards the driver’s side who is still in the bus. One of the cops and the kange follow him)

Driver: (to kange) Kumeendaje?

Kange: Ati amesema halipi juu yeye ni polisi

Now identified mzee: Hio ni kunyanyasa mtu. Mia moja?

Kange: Lakini kila mtu amelipa gari mia moja

Now identified mzee: Wewe ni kabila gani?


It is at this point I was like ‘WHAT?!’ A whole cop was about to bring tribalism into a conversation that had NOTHING to do with it.

Now identified mzee: Juu kama wewe ni mKisii hio ndio kazi yenu.

That’s when he hit the wrong nerve.

The cop actually went ahead to insult the kange because of his tribe!!! REALLY?

Long story short, the cop didn’t pay the fare simply because he is a cop and we know how matatu guys are forced to suck up to cops for them to continue with their work with minimal ‘road blocks’ along the way.

After 9 minutes, we left that police station and I was left feeling very…what’s the word? Unhappy? No. Disturbed. No. Shocked? No. Disappointed? YES!

I couldn’t fathom how after all the things Kenya has and is going through, someone..wait..a ‘senior cop’, can utter such words. Niliona ameturudisha nyuma sana. The fact that he cannot respect someone else’s work moreso I don’t remember anyone at Railways being held at gunpoint by the kange being asked to board the Compliant MOA. I was kind of disgusted by his actions. I should have said something to him but I chose not to.

How would I have changed the cemented mindset of a cop who didn’t seem to understand humility and reasoning?

This experience took me back to a video (below) I had watched sometime back by Just-a-Band



© Ng’endo Machua

About The Writer

Ngendo Machua is a copywriter, tech fan and a communication lover.

She TWEETS, she BLOGS & we Q&A’d her sometime back.