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We learnt to pay attention

17 Oct

As someone who sends money to Kenya on a regular basis, you are probably now quite familiar with some remittance related jargon that at some point seemed like “jibberish” to you.  You find yourself glued to the screen every evening, keeping track of money markets and foreign exchange rates.

More importantly if you are like me you have probably become more aware and interested in politics, economics, and all that boring geeky stuff that is … well, “absolutely irrelevant to the average person”- but then again, you are not an average person.

You see we have learnt the hard way, to not only listen but be critical when the Reserve bank governor gives his budget at the beginning of the year. Apparently government spending has a ripple effect on all sectors of the economy, whether you are in the private or public sector, rich or poor; a decision by the governor to spend less on civil servants’ salaries actually has some, if not a lot of bearing on salaries paid to anyone in both the private and public sectors.

For example, a teacher in the private sector expects to be paid much more than a teacher in the public sector. If the government decides to give teachers an increment, that will push the salaries of teachers in the private schools up; inevitably that will push school fees up, and we all know that that will put pressure on every other sector to keep up with the spiralling costs.

The point I am trying to make is that we all learnt, (the hard way) to pay attention to politics and financial news; to those boring debates on how many more millions (or less) to spend on education as opposed to public service simply because, it will all come back to haunt us!

So instead of being reactive when the economy back home is finally thrown into turmoil thanks to a few senseless decisions made by a few unintelligent men who we have trusted with the future of our beloved country, it actually helps to pay attention!


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