Kenyans recently flooded the page of an NGO with comments on their dissatisfaction with how their country as represented. The NGO runs an education program for refugee children fleeing from war and persecution.
The NGO had showcased photos of the four countries that had benefited from their program in one frame. Greece, Turkey, Syria, and Kenya. All the countries, other than Kenya of course, were exhibited remarkably.
Even Syria (the second most dangerous country in the world, according to the 2020 Global Peace Index report) depicted an aura of zen and elegance.
The organization had excitedly shared their intention to start an institution of learning in Kenya. This project, estimated to be complete by the end of the year, would be a ray of hope for the underprivileged children in the slums. Kenyans were still having none of it. It is during times like this that the true Kenyan spirit of togetherness reflects.
Lest they forget, my country people are the boldest keyboard warriors on these online streets! Kenyans flooded the comment section with their preferred photos, while a majority demanded the photo be taken down. Some went to the extremes of reporting the post to Facebook based on hate speech under race and ethnicity. Dramatic much!
The frustration did not only come from the Kenyans. The comments from other Africans and the world at large accused the organization of using this photo to attract donors. “I see someone using Africa to raise money. My friends, this narrative needs to end. It looks like your Nairobi team is not telling you the truth, or there is no Nairobi team at all, and you are just using the narrative to cover your tracks. But I am glad you have apologized. My friends, may this be the last time you use Africa for your boardroom charity work.”, one comment read.
We all know what it implies if a Kenyan refers to you as ‘my friend’. You can be as sure as day what comes after is a warning.
Another discontent comment read, “Stop using photos of the worst places in Kenya to drive your agendas. I understand you are in business and as such, you need to draw the largest number of donors to whatever good deeds you claim to do. But why didn’t you use the worst photos from those other places? Stop playing into these stereotypes of African and Africans. This is also Kenya.” Followed by this stunning photo of Nairobi.
This week we celebrated The Day of the African Child. And Boy! Has the African child learned how to stand up for themselves!
Take a look at some of the comments.
Author: Violet Mwihaki
Head of Entertainment, Fursa Africa.
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