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Love both the money and the source

Love both the money and the source

I read in this paper last week a piece about how you hate your Kenyan relatives in the diaspora but love their money.

Even when someone is qualified to do something, this irrational hatred is cutting off the nose to spite the face.

Unfortunately, the disease is rife in Uganda as well, where you can spend years sending money to your own flesh and blood to build you a house and come back to find that you no longer even own the land the house was supposed to be built on, let alone finding a complete structure.

Those in the diaspora should not feel alone or confused, this business of loving what you can get from people is a widespread vice.

Think of all those people who cannot be bothered to keep in touch with old boys and girls of their schools, but suddenly will locate your number when it is time to raise funds for a wedding.

They are not ashamed that they did not know they were related to you before the function and they will promptly forget you afterwards. In fact, it would be better if you did not attend it – just send your contribution.

There is another kind of love-hate relationship being played out on campuses across Africa: the dance of school fees.

You know you have no intention of having anything to do with a man after you graduate, but you will let the 'fool' pay your school fees.

If I had a dollar for every time I see a letter to an agony aunt complaining about this issue, I would be a zillionaire.

You feel like slapping the men who make this kind of investment without any contractual obligations. If you are expecting 20 years to life in exchange for school fees, then put it in writing and let us all know.

Do not pretend to be a benevolent donor or just spend in the vain hope that it will be different for you. Let me tell you now; it will not.

Even if you succeed in keeping her after the first degree, she could still boot you when she gets her Masters.

I have heard one such blood sucking wench tell her man without batting an eyelid: You were a ladder, and now that I have climbed you to your topmost rung, I have no use for you anymore.

Believe me, in the local language she used, that statement was enough to kill a man. I nearly died on his behalf.

You almost want to suggest that such men opt for working ladies – at least you are in no doubt what the transaction implies. This business of selling empty promises while wasting people’s time and potential is cruel.

When people are working hard in the diaspora sending their money back to you, have some pity on them.

I know the dollars seem like a lot when you convert them into Kenyan or Ugandan shillings, but they do not come easy.

Similarly, men will spend to impress you, but it doesn’t mean that you should take advantage of them, especially when you know that you are not emotionally invested in the relationship.

Some of these men are neglecting their own parents in order to spend on you, thinking you are their future.

The diaspora distance sometimes dehumanises our relatives – we cease to deal with a real person and now we are stealing from a disembodied voice on the telephone.

It makes it easier somehow. But you who are sucking the money and life out of someone you see every day – what is your excuse?

You are not a smart girl (or man, because I am aware that there are men who stick with women for their money); you are a few inches short of a psychopath.

In all your dealings with other human beings, you always know what you are getting and what the other party is hoping to get in return.

If you can’t give it, have some integrity and cut the cord. Otherwise the karma that will haunt you and your descendants on your way down the ladder will be award winning.