For many people who come to Europe, especially Kenyan girls. Regardless of the reason why they came to Europe and whether or not they had a plan, most of the “wenyeji” will try and solve any problem you have with, “Olewa upate makara”. Let me first clear up that I have no issue with people getting married, I have a problem with people going mad, let me explain.
An Au Pair comes to Germany, at the age of about 19-24, most probably they were at a Uni in Kenya or had just completed a diploma but got the chance to explore greener pastures and they came to Germany. The girl considering is seeking for a better life for herself and also for her family, you’d expect her to try and improve herself which in Germany translates usually to getting more qualifications that will either allow you to get a job or start something as an entrepreneur. The first Kenyan she meets for advice tells her, “Huku kama hujaolewa, utarudishwa tu home”. The girl in panic mode, gets married to the first psycho she meets on the street or online.
Then the drama starts.
The guy is either locking her in the house and controlling everything from her movements to her activities. Then the advicers will say, “Hawa wazungu huwa hivyo, pata ball ndio makara iive haraka”. Little girl gets pregnant then gives birth. The guy is abusive not only to her but also to her kid. He hasn’t allowed her to learn any German or even interact with anyone other than the few “wenyejis” she meets accidentally along the street. The guy proudly reminds her that if she ever contemplates leaving him, he’ll take away the baby. When they argue, he threatens to go to the Migration Office and have her visa revoked.
Eventually, the guy gets tired and decides, “He’s not in love anymore”. He drops the girl like a hot potato. He divorces the girl and takes everything with him. Remember the girl doesn’t know any German, so she couldn’t defend herself during the divorce proceedings furthermore, she knows nothing about German law so the man continues to receive the Kindergeld and all other perks from the government while the girl is left to fend for herself. Or the guy divorces the girl and takes the child with him or even worse, he makes false claims against you and gets the child taken from the mother by the Jugendamt. He moves on. The Lady left without her child(ren) either goes mad, becomes depressed and/or turns to alcohol.
The story might sound like a Nollywood film gone wrong but it’s the reality for many of the Kenyan girls who get married for “makara”. The lucky ones had their makara ripen and they can testify to the wonders of this method BUT the many others that spend days in pubs because there’s no good reason to go home, those that can’t remain sober and remember their children were taken away and the most unfortunate ones who lay 6 feet under because the men decided it’s easier to just take them out of the picture completely instead of walk away, can testify to a different side of this method.
Mambo ya haraka haina baraka. That’s a saying a good friend of mine told me during my early days in Germany. Kupata ball or Kuolewa might sort that visa issue right now, but it might end up hurting you more in the long run. There are many organizations out here to help you make the right choices early enough so that you don’t have to resort to this quick fix last minute decisions.
It’s sad to imagine that tens of Kenyan mothers in this “land of milk and honey” sleep hungry and can’t feed their own children. It’s time we as Kenyans take time to tell others the truth instead of leading them astray. The saddest part in all this is that usually those who have gone through the worst are the ones who advice the new comers to follow the same path. We don’t have to all walk down the same path and perish.
As Kenyans we have a tendency to always hide behind, “Sisi kwetu ndivyo sisi hufanya” or the other famous line, “Lakini my friend amesema….” or “Lakini kila mtu hufanya hivyo…”. Who said you have to do what everyone else does? If everyone was jumping off a cliff, would you follow them?
I wish more people came out and told their stories, maybe it would stop the newcomers from going down the same dark road.
Check out the story about the Kenyan lady in Sweden who asked the government to help her get back her child. Her husband had made false accusations against her, leading to her arrest.
PS: This might sound familiar to many, but it doesn’t target any specific individual. These things are happening daily to many girls, not just you. Don’t give up, there’s a way out. Get help.