David Ndii, an economist and Twitter government critic, caused a stir on Twitter by admitting that he cooks more than his wife. David Ndii(pictured above) is one of those characters on Twitter who are always criticizing the current government and its leaders. He is seen by many as a voice of the people and in his numerous rants and criticisms, has become Twitter famous. He is known for speaking his mind and being very adamant about standing by what he says, or rather, tweets. Ndii caused a stir when he said that to keep a career woman, men should cook for their wives. The alternative, according to him, is to find a ‘class 8 leaver bimbo’ to impress with not cooking or expecting her to be a ‘housekeeper’.
The topic of marrying and caring for a ‘career woman’ is a heated one as is that of men cooking at home and for their wives and families. We are Africans after all, but that does not mean that a man cannot or should not cook. The bigger question is whether men have to cook at home and for their wives for the marriage to last if they are married to a career woman. David Ndii seems to think that doing otherwise is part of ‘toxic masculinity.’ He says that it is un-African to be toxically masculine in this day and age. According to Ndii, real men should cook for their wives and be willing to do housekeeping work. If not, then they should find a less educated and less achieved woman to impress and expect her to be the housekeeper. It is not only an issue of education or having a career, in my view, but it is also the issue of whose responsibility it is, in a family setting, to do housekeeping work.
In the 21st century, most families have both the man and the wife working and I think it only makes sense that men be willing to take off some of that load from their wives’ backs. If you and your wife are at work all day, then it would seem unfair to expect her to do all housekeeping duties, including cooking, by the end of the day. Marriage is a partnership and partnerships are, in essence, the sharing of responsibilities while supporting one another to achieve their goals and grow their careers. Even in the Gikuyu Marriage System, husbands are expected to help their wives out, in what ways they can, to ensure that the family becomes prosperous and everything in the homestead is taken care of.
However, there were also gender roles and expectations that responsibilities such as cooking and housekeeping are solely meant to be accomplished by the wife or wives. Polygamy was an option and that also meant that there were more labor and more hands to take on the different roles and responsibilities in the homestead. Therefore, I do not think that men have to cook for their wives to ensure the marriage lasts but I think it would be good and gentlemanly for the man to help out in cooking once in a while or whenever they can. Men should also help out in housekeeping activities. It should not be that a man expects his wife to take his laundry to the dry cleaners while he can simply do it on his way to or from work.
Read the Gikuyu Marriage System article below.
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David Ndii is one of the most famous Kenyans on Twitter and he owes that to his voice in tackling topics such as social justice, condemning corruption, and criticizing president Uhuru Kenyatta’s government. He is, however, not in the right to try and impose his marital standards on everyone by declaring them as the only way to be in and sustain a marriage with an educated and well-achieved career woman. In my view, being a career woman should not have implications on the role a woman has as a wife. Women are consolidators and a wife should not wait for her husband to take care of the house and put her feet on the table simply because she is a career woman. On the other hand, men should also not do away with menial roles and tasks and expect their wives to do everything for them. The future is female and women need to be empowered and not bogged down by unrealistic expectations of shouldering all roles and responsibilities in the family setting. Follow us on Twitter for more.
It is the responsibility of both the husband and wife to tackle the responsibilities of the home. A marriage is a partnership and both parties should lend a hand to each other on top of doing their individual part and role.
Kenyans on Twitter are a tough crowd and David Ndii has received quite the criticism on his remarks. It is funny how one day, Kenyans on Twitter are supporting you on numerous issues and standpoints, and on another, are throwing insults at you. I call it the ‘social media phenomenon’ where people on social media are like waves that push and scatter without order or comprehension. David Ndii’s stir is also a culmination of what Twitter has become; a platform for voices, big and small, to speak their minds on topics ranging from marriage to social justice, politics, and governance. No wonder local and global political leaders feel that they can use Twitter to voice their remarks of intolerance, opposition, and even sometimes hatred. In this age where Kenyan politicians are comfortable fighting in public, very little is surprising on how the who’s who behave and act.