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Politics of the Scriptures: Reading between the lines

Apparently, the narrator, who was traveling from Dar es Salaam to Arusha by bus, had his money stolen enroute. He discovered this when wanting to pay for serves at a hotel. Lo and behold, a Good Samaritan ― identified in the narration as ‘Cosmas Siame’ ― ‘gave’ him 90/- with which to cover the hotel bill, his brief stay in Arusha, and the fare back to Dar! Ninety shillings in those days is roughly the equivalent of 100, 000/- today, the narrator avers.

The benefactor expected the beneficiary to repay the rescue package in due course and, to that end, gave him his firm’s name and location in Dar. As the Sisters of Fate would have it, the Good Samaritan and his wife died in a road accident near Same Township after they left Korogwe ahead of the bus.

Their 3-year old son who was also in the car survived and lived to tell the tale! As it happened, the narrator didn’t realize at the scene that the casualties were the Good Samaritan who had so smartly stepped in the financial breach the narrator had found himself in at Korogwe! He came to realise this when he read a report of the accident in the newspapers two days later!

The report contained details of the victims, which enabled the narrator to readily identify them as his benefactors! Virtually instinctively, he made a cutting of the report and accompanying pictures, filing same with his records… A bazillion questions arose, which defied answers, explanation(s), rhyme or reason. Why did this have to happen? Why did, would, a person give so much money to a total stranger who hadn’t even appealed for (his) help?

How, to whom, should he repay the ‘loan?’ Was there the (invisible) Hand of God in all that? Perhaps instinctively, perhaps by invisible/inexplicable divine power, the narrator found himself in tears, kneeling down to pray for answers… As the Holy Scriptures pontificate, ‘every knee shall be bended before the Good Lord, and every tongue confess…’ [Isaiah 45:23; and Romans 14:11]. Let’s hit the Fast-Forward button and come to the crux of the story…

Years down the Road of History, a boy of about 17-18 years turned up at the narrator’s workplace in Dar in 1995, seeking help. Apparently, the boy had been turned out of secondary school in Morogoro for lack of the requisite wherewithal, he said, revealing that he was (sort of) being brought up by his aunt...

And, as fate would have it, the aunt was down with cancer which had reduced her to an invalid. In that regard, he was living in paucity, and couldn’t even raise the fare to school… The narrator’s response was harsh and peremptory. Why didn’t his parents come to his aid? When the lad responded that his parents had died in a car crash near Same ― revealing that his father was named ‘Cosmas Siame,’ that rang a clangorous bell in the narrator’s mind! Cosmas Siame? Car Accident? Same Town…?

Quick as a flash, the narrator rifled through his records, came out with that cutting of the report on that accident ― and, ‘PRESTO!’ His earlier aggressive attitude melted away, and he instantly became the lad’s foster parent, thereafter taking care of all his needs of those of his ailing aunt.

The rest is beautiful History… However, there’s a twist in the tail/tale… Two, twists, in fact. One: I’m not sure the narrator was the one and same person who lived the tale! Two: if the saying ‘tenda wema, nenda zako; usingoje shukrani…’ is founded on the Biblical fable that the Lord Jesus Christ cured the ailing and didn’t expect gratitude, then in my view, anyway it is misrepresented. Look at it this way…

THERE are a lot of lessons that can ...

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Author: KARL LYIMO

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