Art is not a mirror held up to reality, but a hammer with which to shape it. The German Poet and Playwright, Bertolt Brecht coined this phrase to show the power of art and an artist to affirm and glorify life and humanity. This is a nugget of wisdom that Eric Omondi understands very well. It has been at the center of politics, governance and leadership in ancient democracies like Roman Empire and Greece during the era of great people like Plato and Aristotle, just as it is currently in developed worlds like America. In Kenya, the political class expects politician to check and drive political and leadership agenda, forgetting how art and artists can question and save us from all forms of slavery that engulf us to submission and oppression in our land.
Eric Omondi, is a household name in Kenya. He took time to establish himself as the king of Comedy. He is seen as comical in all decisions and actions. This is because is among the pioneers of this genre in Kenya. Today, his tastes of fashion, event organisations and stern stand on the fate of segments of this industry and key players has made him seen as the most controversial and polarising artist of our time. His activism cannot be seen as mere clout chasing. It is realistic, evidence based and voice of the silent majority. Eric Omondi feels the gap that representative of the people in both the lower and upper houses, devolved units and Non-Governmental organisations have deliberately assumed. His current call on the government to address the skyrocketing cost of living cuts across the political divide. Government apparatus can be on a mission to silence him, keeping all factors constant, this is a wild goose chase.
Robert Kyagulanyi, alia Bob Wine , the leader of opposition in Uganda was a musician and actor and Volodymyr Zelensky, former comedian and actor, is the president of Ukraine are just but a few examples who graced the screens for some time, curtesy of their talents, before joining active public. What these great minds have done in to achieve good leadership in their countries is commendable. The same reason for this change in social position among these artists is behind Eric Omondi’s endeavor to be a mouthpiece of the voiceless. The match to parliament ground air public grievance, the call for the jobless but trained to assemble their CVs to communicate the state of joblessness and the plan to match to state house, to address the president has position Eric Omondi to a hero in the making. The youths are being awakened to address issues affecting them without fear of intimidation from the ruling class.