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Maandamano Mania: A Trendy Way to Protest In Kenya

Karibu Kenya! The land of diverse cultures, breathtaking landscapes, and now, “maandamano mania!” Yes, forget about the classic safari adventures, it’s time for an experience of a different kind. Participating in the trendiest peer pressure activity sweeping the nation – Maandamano!


Maandamano is a Swahili term for protests, strikes, and general street chaos. And trust me, you don’t want to be the odd one out. Whether one is participating in it or talking about it, missing out on all the trendy actions is considered unpatriotic. Just like that latest viral dance challenge, joining the masses in the streets, either physically or virtually has become the in thing.

A Kenyan woman holding a “Ruto Must Go” poster during the ongoing maandamano in Kenya. Kenyans are tired of Ruto’s regime and want him to either repeal the Finance Bill or be impeached from office.

Kenyans are known to take political fashion very seriously. It’s no longer about wearing the coolest clothes or having the latest gadgets. It’s all about sporting the best protest hashtags, complete with witty slogans and artistic illustrations. Who needs Gucci or Prada when they can don a placard demanding change? “Ruto Must Go!” It’s all the rage!

A Kenyan TikToker and content creator showing his unwavering support for maandamano while expressing dissatisfaction with politicians against maandamano.

Here’s the catch. Not only do protestors get to show off their artistic skills, but also have a chance to enhance their athletic abilities. This is because maandamano isn’t just about standing around. It’s an endurance sport! It involves getting ready to run from tear gas, dodging water cannons, and perfecting high-speed sprints when the authorities come charging. Forget marathons, this is the adrenaline rush Kenyans seem to have been thirsting for!

Let’s not forget the social aspect of maandamano. It’s also the perfect opportunity to meet new people who share similar passion for whatever the protest is about. Who cares about striking teachers, fuel prices, or government corruption? It’s all about bonding over the shared experience of chanting slogans and expressing your outrage.

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Now, some might argue that these protests actually have a purpose; To bring attention to important issues and demand change. But come on, let’s be real. We all know it’s more about the hype than the cause. It’s like a massive street party where you get to scream and shout your heart out and feel like you’re making a difference. While in reality, all these theatrics do is boost one’s social media following.

A TikTok video of young Kenyan Youths during protests in Kenya. It is a growing trend among Kenyan youths to turn up for the ongoing anti-government protests with cameras in search of social media content

Basically, youths who feel left out and like they need to upgrade their street cred, hop on the maandamano bandwagon! Giving less care to what they actually know about the protest. To a majority of protesting Kenyan youths, it’s all about being part of something bigger or rather something that looks big on TV.

However, before diving headfirst into the world of maandamano, here’s a word of caution. Beware of the police and their rounds of live bullets. It’s all part of the thrilling “adventure”, but it’s best to be prepared for the unexpected, death.

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Esteemed experimental Kenyans! It is not a crime to embrace the maandamano mania and ride the wave of peer pressure protests. However, let us go about this rationally and through peaceful and proper channels. Also, let’s not forget the essence of it all – being part of a collective voice demanding change. Or at least a good selfie, devoid of traces of violence, to post later. Happy protesting!


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