Before delving in what I am intending to write, I must happily congratulate Kenyans on their choice for changes and development. Thanks for giving us a new constitution, the move by which other countries in the region with bad constitutions will ape and follow. Now let me go where I intended before the joy of a new constitution overwhelmingly took me.

Have you ever asked yourself a simple question about the “Excellency” of African rulers? Almost every African president has the words “His Excellency” to his name. Excellency for what? For a free person who says he is ruling equal people? “Monkey see monkey do”, the sage has it. They saw white colonialist using all nonsensical braggadocios and they wholesale imitated.

No doubt. The US president is the person commanding higher and mightier office on earth. But he is highly respected despite being shy of the plethora of “Excellency” nonsense appended on his name. He knows. Using such titles is colonial and archaic mentality.

When white colonialists invaded and occupied Africa, they cheated us that they were excellencies whilst they were but mere thugs. Sadly though, we blindly took and swallow this bunkum! Now sixty years down the line since we achieved our “freedom” we are still using the same nonsense they abandoned when they gave us our shoddy freedoms! What a shame!

When you raise the flag, they’ll go gaga and turn tables against you as an enemy of the people, whilst they actually are the enemies of the people. Telling them the truth they know but don’t want to hear is treasonous and breach of peace!

One would think, excellency if needs be, would befit a person that has excelled in his performance, delivering his people but not a stinking and small one like those we see nowadays in power. Apart from Mwalimu or teacher Julius Nyerere, the founder of Tanzania who preferred to referred to Ndugu or brother and Nelson Mandela, former South African president, show me any African mumbo jumbo that excelled in delivering. All of them pay no tax. They live like babies on the shoulders of poor tax payers, yet they want to be referred to as “Excellency!” For and in what? Corruption, dictatorship, manipulations and lies?

To African kleptomaniac rulers, their countries are but either their private estate or animal farm from which they can pick any animal or produce and use it the way they deem fit. They reap where they did not sow. Yet they make us believe they deserve to be referred to as “His Excellency” so and so, citizen number one. They feed us all floods of insensate stuff to get away with it.

What a self cheating way of thinking… even going banana! Call it a daydream or whatever next to it. I feel bad when I hear say a professor like Aboudulaye Wade being referred to as “His Excellency”, whilst his being in power is outshone by even our former African chiefs, who did not use such abracadabras like magicians who prefer to be referred as doctors and professors whereas they have nary attended any class for the same.

If presidents with many degrees under their laps like Robert Mugabe, John Evans Atta Mills and others feel at home to be referred as thus without reckoning, isn’t this the sign of academic bulimia in the first place? I would think that educated rulers would differentiate themselves from semi-illiterates like Yahya Jammeh, Joseph Kabila, Paul Kagame and others, who have chains of hoo-has appended after their names. But when there is no boundary among them, mark my words, our so-called freedom means nothing but a bad joke.

I stand to be corrected. Show me any African ruler that is humbling himself and I will stop writing right away. They rig elections. They tamper with the constitutions that brought them to power. Refer to what Mwai Kibaki, the so-called ace economist did in 2008, so as to usher in perilous-post-election chaos that claimed over a thousand lives of those he calls his people and voters. Let’s not forget professor Wade who elongated his term in office.

More often than not, our rulers are lazy when it comes to toiling for achievements. But again, despite not being ready to toil for achievements, they still get it illegally though not all. It recently came to light that suspicious online and non-existing University of Educational Development Worldwide, based in America, duped some of African rulers. The beneficiaries of these suspicious honorary degrees are Ugandan president Yoweri Museveni and his wife Janet, former Nigerian president Olusegun Obasanjo and former Mozambican president Joaquim Chissano. 

Others who recently received their infamous honorary degrees are Jakaya Kikwete who likes to be referred to as Dr. Kikwete despite having one degree (Tanzania), Pierre Nkurunzinza (Burundi), who reciprocated by appointing professor Clyde Rivers honorary ambassador, speaker of Kenya’s parliament Kenneth Marende and the vice president Kalonzo Musyoka.

Our rulers like to be awarded degrees they have not toiled for. But why don’t we see western leaders being awarded as well? Unfortunately, western institutions knowing the weakness of our rulers, induce them easily and get away with it.

To know how lubberly this thing is, it came to light that the said con university is represented in Kenya by kiosk seller, former Nairobi one-time former mayor Nathan Kahara, who signs correspondence as a “Professor” with a string of abbreviated titles after his name. On this fake university, the Daily Nation wrote: “The college’s founder, Dr Wisor, said the “college” was able to operate anywhere because all the courses it offered were conducted online.”

He also admitted that the college did not have a physical campus. His wife, Dr. Dorothy Wisor, at first was hesitant to speak, saying she didn’t know much about the college’s workings because she’d only recently landed the job as its head. She said she was married a little while ago to Dr Martin Wisor, named on the college’s Web site as the college’s founder.

Like gluttonous hyena, our rulers did not bother to inquire about the viability and credibility of the university. There’s is to receive cheap-gotten degrees.

Out of the topic, this selfishness plus blindness, if anything, is the source of our rulers entering thuggish contracts with investors that have turned to be another anathema to our people.

Tanzania is among giants when it comes to precious minerals. But her economy is outshone by those of Kenya, Rwanda and Burundi thanks to having blind and selfish self seekers in power. They just enter stupid and nonsensical contracts that have cost Tanzanians dearly. Methinks, Tanzania is among leading countries when it comes to having members of parliament and ministers with fake doctorate degrees. I once wrote about this.

Nkwazi Mhango is a Tanzanian living in Canada. He writes regularly for “The African Executive” and also has a blog entitled “Free Thinking Unabii”. He is a regular contributor to AfroSpear.