As a social norm, it has always been proper for children to take care of their parents when they clock old age, as gratitude for the sacrifices the parents made in raising them.
However, in Kenya, a 73-year-old Mzee Gideon Kisira Cherowo was compelled to file a lawsuit against his 48-year-old son, whom he has accused of leaving him to languish in poverty after sacrificing what he owned to pay for the son’s education.
Cherowo complained that among other things, he sold plots of his land to cater for his son’s education till university level. But after his son got a job, he got caught up in Nairobi city life for 17 years, leaving the old man in the village struggling to take care of himself.
In the suit, Mzee Cherowo demanded that he get 20% of his son’s monthly salary as upkeep, for the sacrifice he made in ensuring that his son gets a better life.
On the Fatboy Show, Fatboy said that if a child doesn't appreciate their parent’s sacrifice in raising them, then parents have the right to sue them.
“Well, if a child doesn't acknowledge the fact that as a parent you make sacrifices to invest in their education, then I agree to suing them. Why is it okay for wives to demand a share of their husband’s money when they get a divorce and yet a parent can't demand for their child’s money once they succeed?” he reasoned.
However Olive, who decided to play devil's advocate, argued that a wife decides to be with a man unlike a child who doesn't make a choice to be born to their parents.
Furthermore, she added that some people argue that it is not a must for children to take care of their parents when they age, since it's not the child’s fault to be born and yet it’s a parents responsibility to take care of their children.
In her opinion though, she felt that it was heartbreaking for a child to abandon their parents even after selling some of their assets to create a bright future for them.
“You might have not chosen to be born, but if you come from a family like this where the man said that he had to sell his land and property to see that at least one of his children goes to school, it's very unfeeling and unempathetic of you to abandon the family after school and getting a job. You don't have to give them everything you have, but at least give them a helping hand,” she said.
However, Fatboy said that instances such as these may arise from the relationships parents create with their children in their upbringing. He said that parents might make sacrifices to take care of them but if they don't create any emotional bond with them, when children get done with their education they maynot want anything to do with their parents.
The Fatboy show is hosted by James Onen aka Fatboy, Olive, Sarah and Lesham every weekday from 6am to 10am on RX Radio.