Get rich quick, by Alfred Mutua, really?

Posted: September 17, 2010 in Issues, News, Personalities, Releases, Reviews
Tags: , , , , ,

Ever since I heard that Kenya’s government spokesman Alfred Mutua has written a book on, wait for it, How to be rich in Africa, I knew something was amiss somewhere. With all due respect Mutua was the last person I expected to write on such a topic. He must have hustled his way to a top position in government, but he is not the ideal example of a wealthy person, leave alone claiming to advice people on how to make money.

I firmly believe what he has achieved is largely due to his influential position in government and not as a result of any any business acumen. But that is not to say that he is not a brilliant man. I will however refrain from going any deeper into the book before reading it. My interest in his book was renewed after I read its review written by Evan Mwangi in the Business Daily today. This is one of the most interesting reviews I have read in a long time. The reviewer pulled no punches.

“I bought my copy of his (Alfred Mutua’s) How to be Rich in Africa and other Secrets of Survival in Africa in a fancy bookshop in Nairobi and got disappointed immediately for spending my Sh600 on such a book,” writes Mwangi. “My instinct was to throw the book in a trash can together with my used paper towels or return it to the bookstore without claiming my money back.”

That is harsh you might say, but then wait till you hear this; “My ultimate take away lesson is: never let any shilling from your grasp. If by mistake you happen to buy a useless book, don’t be tempted to throw it away in anger. Review it for the best-paying newspaper before selling it to recoup some of your losses.” – emphasis mine.

You can read the rest of Mwangi’s review here.

Unlike Mwangi, I am not willing to risk my sh600 – I have better use for my money – I don’t have much! A colleague has promised to lend me his copy. I will go through it and post my review here. so watch this space…

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Comments
  1. Sa Naa says:

    Mwangi was harsh with his review….but…rightly so.

  2. eric mwenda mutuiri says:

    prof mwangi review is just too harsh in my opinion though a lhonest one. such a review by a rekno0wn literary scholar and a critique, will simply kill m.any of would be potential readers of the book i being one. the tone .of the review exposes like a kind of personal vendetta with the good govt spokesman. as he dreams to make his millions, mi wish him well

  3. mutiso says:

    why do i feel like you miss the idea ngunjiri? This guy (he is wa musyi- this means?) He made 6 reds out of you and a number of other gullible kenyans who bought and will keep buying this `so called trash’ just to see what the trash therein is. that ought be the biggest lesson youve learnt if not from the txt, then from me. sasa… si u pay?

  4. People, lets be kind on the government spokesman! At least he has done something most of us have not – to get up and write!

    I have just finished reading the book, and would like to throw in a few words. First, I don’t think Dr. Mutua is a man who should write a book on how to get rich in Africa – well, as Ngunjiri says, he is not rich himself. But Alfred does not claim to be rich. In his book, he merely says that he has discovered the way to being rich, and he is headed there.

    I didn’t find the book very very interesting, but I found out that this man Alfred is a hustler like no other. He describes his experiences as he tried to eke out a living, and the many things he has been able to do. I feel that his experiences could inspire some of us to do all we can.

    Alfred’s book is revolutionary. He approached various companies to place adverts in the book – which significantly reduced the production and marketing costs. In principle, out of every 600 bob he sells the book for, he makes 600 bob. This is definitely something other writers and publishers will definitely think about.

    Dr. Mutua is a jack of all trades – a karate expert, film producer, magazine producer, hotelier in the making and government spokesman rolled into one. He may not be a master of any of his trades, but tell me one other government official who has done what he has done.

    And I do not think he owes a lot of his achievement to his position in the government – some of the things he has done started way before. For instance, Golden Dreams, his flagship company, was started more than 20 years ago when he was just 21.

    I am not saying that ‘How to Get Rich in Africa’ is a great book. The writer should have engaged with real editors who would tell him what in the book to throw out. But personally, after reading the book I went to my laptop and refreshed my business plan.

    Alfred’s book was not a great read, but it spurred me into action, and that is what, I am sure, the doctor wanted.

  5. kevin says:

    I beg to defer well I haven’t read the book yet, but I think we should cut Mutua some slack. At least he’s done something unlike the Professor who clearly hasn’t or simply just can’t comeup with anything to help society! I’d challenge the professor to publish his and not to go around trashing other people’s work…where did this guy get his title???-it clearly puzzles me!! When making reviews about someone elses’ work, some language should be avoided…he sounds personal! And 6 reds, really?? That’s about as fair as it gets, that’s less than $10 and ya’ll still complain?? Something exponentially wrong with you kenyans!!

    As for Mutua, keep up the good work, atleast you’re making an honest living not stealing from the public coffers!!ut I think we should cut Mutua some slack. At least he’s done something unlike the Professor who clearly hasn’t or simply just can’t comeup with anything to help society! I’d challenge the professor to publish his and not to go around trashing other people’s work…where did this guy get his title???-it clearly puzzles me!! When making reviews about someone elses’ work, some language should be avoided…he sounds personal! And 6 reds, really?? That’s about as fair as it gets, that’s less than $10 and ya’ll still complain?? Something exponentially wrong with you kenyans!!

    As for Mutua, keep up the good work, atleast you’re making an honest living not stealing from the public coffers!!

  6. kim says:

    It’s no wonder this blogsite’s dead! Where’s Kevins comment from earlier on??

  7. Lee says:

    hi, why do you feel that way bout the book?whats wrong with it?

  8. Omengui saviour says:

    Sir,i like ur book ” how to be rich in africa, i need a copy,how much does it cost & where can i get it in Nigeria or in kenya. The book has open my eyes to see & take advantage, by the help of God i will get star soon.

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