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Editorials

EDITORIAL: Public officials must take responsibility for mistakes

soliciting bribes
The police, needless to say, are still busy soliciting bribes. FILE PHOTO | NMG 

Wednesday’s bus crash that ended 55 lives is a clear reflection of the rot that is killing our society. The accident was a perfect storm waiting to happen, on a day that everything that could have gone wrong went wrong.

From the passengers who agreed to be herded into the bus like sheep, to the menacing driver and bus conductors who rudely repressed any voice of protest.

The witness accounts being narrated by survivors of the accident are not occurrences that should be happening in a civilised society.

Yet the sad reality is that the same factors behind Wednesday’s accident remain largely the same, despite the tough talk by politicians and safety agencies.

There is still wanton overloading of passengers and goods, bus drivers and conductors continue to suppress their customers’ voices of protest, and visibly unroadworthy vehicles are still on the road.

The police, needless to say, are still busy soliciting bribes.

As soon as the victims are buried in a week or two Kenyans will forget and move on to other issues; both petty and important.

There is a collective resignation that we are not capable of doing what is right as a country.

The breakdown in law and order is replicated across all levels of the society.

From the sale of poisonous sugar, to massive losses occasioned by burning of schools, dysfunctional hospitals and wanton looting of public resources just to name a few.

The common denominator is that in a country where money is worshipped and morals are eschewed, no one is held responsible for their actions.

And therein lies the biggest problem.

The only thing that can make a difference is if all those responsible for Wednesday’s death of more than 55 innocent souls are held responsible and made to pay for it to the full extent of the law.

Kenyans must have lost count of the countless number of times when the National Transport and Safety Authority (NTSA) suspended licences of public service vehicles involved in grisly accidents.- They must also have grown weary of the number of times the police go after owners of buses that cause accidents, only for the cases to go cold soon after the news is out of the front pages.

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