Loving, determined, hardworking and other sweet-sounding adjectives could not miss out in the eulogies read out at the funerals of the victims of the Ngong Forest helicopter crash. The plane in question, the Eurocopter AS 350 B3e, despite being credited as outclassing all other single engine helicopters failed to display its safety features after it claimed the lives of the six Kenyans. May their souls find eternal peace.
The notion that though we were created equal, some are more equal than others played its course in the manner the nation received news of the tragedy. Media stations led on this front treating the deaths as a two-man death as they technically focused on the two security chiefs, the late Prof. Saitoti and his counterpart Orwa Ojode forgetting that there were four other occupants in the plane at the time of the crash. Didn’t the pilots and bodyguards deserve to get a sizeable share of attention? Then came the actual burial days, where we witnessed politicians attend in person the funerals of the duo only to send representatives to stand in for them in the other four burials.
In most African communities it’s only in burial and wedding ceremonies where different people including adversaries get to share an audience. At Saitoti’s burial all presidential aspirants seemed to agree on the principle that there comes a time when the good of the nation takes precedence over personal ambitions. And that they were ready to drop their presidential ambitions if need be (this, only time will tell)!
That said, it is in order that our 6 fallen Kenyans get a sincere send off to the other world through a credible probe into the cause of the crash. Although many stakeholders in the aviation industry have drummed their support for the investigation process, the team under the flagship of Court of Appeal Judge Kaplana Rawal ought to be expeditious in their investigation and to give a clear report on the actual cause of the crash. The team should have in mind that Kenyans and the rest of the world are watching. Let the judiciary arm CEO, Dr. Willy Mutunga also remain true to his word to make public the report findings once the investigations are complete. Let this mark the end of an era where reports of commissions are only a preserve of a few .It should not be a carbon copy of the 1992 report on the mysterious death of Dr. Robert Ouko that up to date whatever transpired can only be speculated as there has been no official communication from the government. Enough said all the best and good luck to the team.
The demise of the six leaves behind several gaps that only they could fill. My heartfelt condolences to the close family and friends of all those affected.
Photo courtesy: aviationnews.eu