Of political hygiene in Africa
Of the books, the actual emblems of the intellectual vocation, the talismans of the trade, Professor Lumumba has many. He is copious, prolific and wields criminally lucid prose. There is a flourish of legal and political literature from his busy desk that the African academy cannot ignore.
Prominent in most of his books about Africa is the theme of “political hygiene” in Kenya and in Africa at large; on the same theme he has delivered many a fiery speech. For those students of history and politics in Africa that read their Africa well, the theme of political hygiene and political sanitation in the African continent is traceable to that African walking library, the late Ali Mazrui who in 1970 wrote a piece for the journal of African and Asian Studies demanding and describing “political hygiene and cultural transition in Africa.”
The interesting and also problematic political critique of Ali Mazrui is perhaps a subject for another day, its own good day for as he described himself Mazrui’s intellectual and political life was “a long debate,” he was a true supermarket of contesting and contested ideas and insights, he was simple but not simplistic.