MARIGA: A hustler or a dynast in disguise?

By the way folks, is MacDonald Mariga really a hustler or a son of a different kind of dynasty; a football dynasty?

Just look at it this way.

The former Inter Milan player and the first Kenyan to play in the UEFA Champions League belongs to the larger Wanyama family, a footballing royalty by all means.

In the 60s, during the early years of independence, as founding President Mzee Jomo Kenyatta – the son of peasant farmers from Nginda, Kiambu – was cementing his space in Kenya’s political space, as Jaramogi Ajuma Oginga Odinga – another son of peasants from Kang’o, Siaya – was pioneering Kenya’s opposition politicking, as the two built what, emerging self-proclaimed ‘class experts’ now call Kenya’s pioneer dynasties,  Mariga’s father, Noah Wanyama was also busy establishing a very similar but slightly different dynasty; a football dynasty.

Actually, Senior Wanyama confesses football is his world. It is a bond he shares with his seven children. A language they all speak. All of them, including his daughters, have played football at some point.

Mariga’s younger brother Victor Wanyama is also a professional football player, who is currently playing for Premier League side Tottenham, while his other brothers Thomas and Sylvester are also footballers in the Kenyan Premier League. Their younger sister Mercy was the captain of the Lang’ata High School basketball team, and previously played football and netball.

Therefore, if Uhuru Kenyatta, Raila Odinga et al are dynasts, how else would you define the son of a man who, at a time when very few Kenyans were aware of the exploits sports and talents, was already a left-winger playing for A.F.C. Leopards, and later the national team, a venture that has eventually given birth to the Wanyamas as we know today?

Folks, as the hustlers vs dynasties frenzy catches up with the upcoming Kibra by-election, is hustler the right way to define MacDonald Mariga?

Or, if I may politely ask, didn’t growing up in the Wanyama compound render Mariga equally privileged (though in a different area) just like growing up in Ichaweri rendered Uhuru Kenyatta privileged, or growing up in Jaramogi’s compound rendered Raila Odinga privileged, politically, at least if we are to go with the hustler –dynasty narrative being thrown around?

Is it just right and fair to refer to Mariga as a hustler? Has being born in privilege, which is none of your own making, suddenly become such a crime to warrant people to denounce their real identity?

Just asking.