Connect with us

News

Raila Odinga’s 1991 Dramatic Escape to Exile via Uganda

Published

on


This week, many were astounded  when Former Kenyan Premier Raila Amollo Odinga opened up on his epic 1991 escape to exile in Norway.

Until yesterday, many of his young followers were oblivious of the fact that at one point in time, the man they call ‘Baaba’ had to sneak through the eye of a needle to save his life.

Perhaps, this would not have happened hadn’t little known Robert Njura spilled the beans days earlier.

But in a typical show of statesmanship, ‘Baaba’ as he is affectionately known, decided to reach out to Njura, a then Senior three student at Makunda Secondary school in Budalangi who paddled him to safety.

In a tear evoking testimony, he recalled how he left Kenya as a Catholic Priest and left the Ugandan territory as a Muslim, in a Thursday August 28, 2020 Facebook post.

“For my flight to exile in Norway via Uganda, to avoid a fourth detention and possibly assassination, I once again honor Robert Njura for his steady hands on the boat,” Odinga extolled.

The Journey

Trouble started brewing in 1982 when a group of young malcontents within the army led by a one Hezekiah Ochuka Rabala attempted to oust President Arap Moi in a badly staged coup.

After subduing the plotters, a paranoid Moi went on rampage incarcerating political opponents and insiders who dared him.

By 1992, Odinga, who then was a thorn in the flesh of the Kenya African National Union (KANU), had already endured three prison spells and numerous threats.

However, around June 21, 1991, he received credible intelligence that state agents were planning to do away with him once and for all.

This prompted him to immediately take to his heels.

“I was evacuated from here following first; an attack by some goons who had been hired, they were following me. They had attacked me in front of my house and I was admitted at Nairobi Hospital,” Odinga recalled yesterday.

Under the stewardship of the Catholic Church, a plot was hatched to sneak him outside the country before the worse got to the worst.

“So I took off through the grace of the Catholic Church, one father, Mark Opio and a catholic nun, Sister Dianne from the United States,” Odinga retorted.

“The father was wearing a collar, the sister was wearing white and myself I was being carried with a collar. And my name was Father Augustine from Machakos,” he stated further.

Thereafter, the company proceeded to a catholic mission in Kisumu where they were served a meal before heading to Ranga’la Mission.

At night, Odinga was taken to a canoe at Sirongo beach located in Bondo and entrusted to Njura, who first steered him to a Lake Victoria Island known as Ndende.

On the waters of Lake Victoria, they came into contact with a boat being manned by Ugandan businessmen.

“These were businessmen, they were bringing timber and they would go back with manufactured products. They would take clothes, sugar, mattresses and so on,” he disclosed.

After acquiring fake Ugandan documents in the name of Joseph Ojiwa, they set off again and arrived at another island where they found only one resident, a man who was related to Foreign Affairs Minister Robert Ouko.

Their next journey took them up to an island near Iganga from where Odinga boarded a Jinja bound taxi and changed to another one which took him to Kampala.

“At the entrance of Owen falls Bridge, we found a road block and they were expecting identification. They saw my name Joseph Ojiwa Odero there and I had also certificates of tax called ‘emisolo’,” he intimated.

Raila Odinga meeting with Njura on Thursday.

Entering Kampala

After maneuvering through obstacles of all kinds, Odinga arrived in Kampala.

This time he was alone had parted ways with his fellow Kenyans who had helped him evade arrest.

Within a blink of an eye, he raised his long time friend, a one Shem Konga who came to his rescue.

On top of housing Odinga for the unspecified time he was in Kampala, Konga assisted him to get documents for asylum in Norway.

“They were again looking for me in Uganda and I had to be camouflaged again. Here I departed as a Ugandan Moslem with a kanzu and my name was Al-Hajj Omar, a Moslem who was going on pilgrimage to Mecca. And that’s how I boarded a plane from Entebbe,” Odinga explained.

Risks at hand

Whereas Government apologetics might claim that Odinga’s persecution was a hoax, media records say otherwise.

A 1992 British Broadcasting Corporation (BBC) “Focus on Africa” article written by Mitch Odero, who at the time a deputy editor of ‘The Standard’, offers some important leads.

Serial killings

In his article contained in the October to December 1992 issue, Odero recalls a series of mysterious deaths that gripped the nation starting with that of Kenya’s Foreign Minister Dr Robert Ouko in 1990.

Two years after that incident, Hezekiah Oyugi, Powerful Permanent Secretary in the Office of the President also followed suit.

“He died with vital information about the people who murdered Kenya’s Foreign Minister Dr Robert Ouko in 1990. Mr Oyugi was in charge of internal security and provincial administration,” Odero writes.

At the time of his death, Oyugi was interrogating circumstances that led to Ouko’s sudden death but all of a sudden, a judicial commission appointed to this matter was disbanded a day before he could tender in evidence.

Instead, he was named as a suspect in Ouko’s death, incarcerated and died shortly after being released.

“A former International Police (Interpol) Chief in Nairobi, Nehemiah Ombati who had arrested Mr Oyugi and Mr Biwott, died at a Nairobi hospital a day before Mr Oyugi was buried,” Odero further intimates.

A week later, Forum for Restoration of Democracy (FORD) Vice Chairman Masinde Muliro, a close friend of the Odinga’s followed suit.

In an intriguing twist of events, he passed out after returning from a foreign trip where he had met a dissident, a one George Luchiri Wajackoyah.

“A week before Mr. Ombatti died, the vice chairman of FORD, Mr Masinde Muliro collapsed and died at Jomo Kenyatta International Airport, Nairobi. He had just returned from London where he had met a former police officer, George Luchiri Wajackoyah,” the article stipulates.

Wajackoyah had reportedly run to London with a cache of evidence incriminating top Government Officials on the murder of the Oyuko.

“Wajackoya had fled to London early this year, claiming to have in his possession highly damaging information about leading politicians gained when he tapped their telephones as a member of the police ‘music box’ unit,” Odero further alleges.

Coincidentally, Moi’s total man, Biwott, had travelled on the same flight with Ouko to and fro but absolved himself saying it was mere chance that they boarded the same flight to the same place.

Perhaps what sums this conversation is an interview of (Raila’s) father Jaramogi Oginga Odinga that is contained in the ‘Law Magazine’ issue of January 1992.

Asked whether the President’s advisors were to blame, he replied, “He cannot be a good person. Advisers go according to your feelings; behave according to your feelings. If they know that Moi likes this or the other thing, then they advise him in that direction.”

“Kenyatta was more humane and at the same time public opinion influenced him. He tried as much as possible to meet people halfway. Moi’s regime is quite ruthless,” Oginga juxtaposed.

At the time, Oginga was interim Chairman of FORD, having parted ways with the ruling KANU as early as 1966.

 

 



Source – chimpreports.com

Advertisement
Click to comment

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

News

Court Dismisses Appeal by Former CMB Employees

Published

on

By


A panel of three Justices of the Court of Appeal have dismissed with costs a case filed by three representatives of 1,568 Uganda Coffee Marketing Board workers who were retrenched between 1992 – 1998 and were entitled to payment as per the Auditor General’s report of 13th November 2009.

These rushed to the Court of Appeal challenging High court decision in which Government was ordered to compensate them but they disagreed with the interest rate awarded.

The three applicants (now appellants); Basiima Kabonesa, Solome Adumo and James Musoke in 2014 dragged the Government (Attorney General) and the Management of Uganda Coffee Marketing Board (under liquidation) to court on behalf of 1,568 other workers seeking to be compensated with more than Shs 10Billion with damages and costs

On 22July 2015, the parties entered a consent Judgement where it was agreed that the plaintiffs shall be paid a sum of Shs 10,330,013,506 as total terminal benefits with an additional ten million shillings each as damages

Court then granted this sum, which was to be shared equally by all workers with 10% interest per annum on the Principle sum from date of consent Judgement up to full payment and 6% on aggravated damages from judgment date up to full payment.

However, the petitioners were not satisfied with the total sum of aggravated damages awarded to them as well as the interest on Principal sum which they described as low.

On top of that, they claimed that the trial judge erred when he awarded interest on Principal sum from judgment date to full payment instead of running from date of retrenchment to full payment.

In their unanimous judgement, justices Remmy Kasule, Godfrey Kiryabwire and Monica Mugenyi noted that the trial judge was within the law by awarding interest on terminal benefits from date of judgement.

The justices also concurred with the High Court decision of awarding the plaintiff one billion shillings as costs that have to be shared equally by all beneficiaries since the trial judge based on the condition that the consent judgment was against the Government.

Each party was ordered bare its costs at High court while the appellants were ordered to pay the costs at the appeal level.

The post Court Dismisses Appeal by Former CMB Employees first appeared on ChimpReports.



Source – chimpreports.com

Continue Reading

News

Court Dismisses Appeal by Former Coffee Marketing Board Employees

Published

on

By


A panel of three justices of Court of Appeal have dismissed with costs an appeal filed before them by three representatives of 1,568 workers who were retrenched between 1992 to 1998 and entitled to payment as per Auditor General report of 13th November 2009.

These rushed to the Court of Appeal challenging the High court decision in which Government was ordered to compensate them but they didn’t agree with the interest rate which was imposed on the said money.

The three applicants (now appellants) Basiima Kabonesa, Solome Adumo and James Musoke, in 2014 dragged the Government of Uganda (Attorney General) and the Management of Uganda Coffee Marketing Board (under liquidation)  to court on behalf of other 1,568 workers seeking to be compensated more than ten billion shillings with damages and costs

On 22nd July 2015, the parties entered into a consent Judgment where it was agreed that the plaintiffs shall be paid a sum of ten billion three hundred thirty million thirteen thousand five hundred six (Shs 10,330,013,506) as total terminal benefits with an additional ten million shillings each as damages.

High Court would later okay this decision in which it awarded the plaintiffs aggravated damages totaling ten billion shillings which had to be shared equally by all of them with 10% interest per annum on Principle sum from the date of consent Judgment up to full payment and 6% on aggravated damages from judgment date up to full payment.

However, these were not satisfied with the total sum of aggravated damages awarded to them as well as the interest on the Principal sum which they described as “very low.”

The appellants also claimed that the trial judge erred when he awarded interest on Principal sum from judgment date to full payment instead of running from date of retrenchment to full payment.

In their unanimous judgment, justices Remmy Kasule, Godfrey Kiryabwire and Monica Mugenyi noted that the trial judge exercised under the law by awarding interest on terminal benefits from date of judgment.

“In terms of provisions in section 26(2) of the CPA for award of interest from date of suit, it seems to be resolved that so far, as the consent Judgment resolved, the dispute between the parties inter-allia leaving out the claim of aggravated damages and terminal benefits, the date of consent judgment redefined as between them,” reads part of the judgment.

The justices also concurred with the High Court decision of awarding the plaintiff one billion shillings as costs that have to be shared equally by all beneficiaries since the trial judge based on the condition that the consent was against the Government and  already made concessions involving colossal sums of public money.

Each party was ordered bare its costs at High Court well as the appellants were ordered to pay the costs at the appeal level.

The post Court Dismisses Appeal by Former Coffee Marketing Board Employees first appeared on ChimpReports.



Source – chimpreports.com

Continue Reading

News

Britain’s unequal troop commemorations due to ‘pervasive racism’ | Racism News

Published

on

By


Inquiry by Commonwealth War Graves Commission finds Black and Asian troops who fought for Empire were not properly memorialised.

As many as 350,000 Black and Asian service personnel who died fighting for the British Empire might not have been commemorated in the same way as their white comrades because of “pervasive racism”, a report has concluded.

The inquiry commissioned by the Commonwealth War Graves Commission (CWGC), in its report released on Thursday, says that between 45,000 and 54,000 individuals of predominantly Asian, Middle Eastern and African origin who died during World War I were commemorated “unequally”.

“A further 116,000 casualties [predominantly, but not exclusively, East African and Egyptian personnel] but potentially as many as 350,000, were not commemorated by name or possibly not commemorated at all,” the report said.

The CWGC works to commemorate those from Commonwealth forces who were killed in the two world wars and to ensure all those killed are remembered in the same way, with their name engraved either on a headstone over an identified grave or on a memorial to the missing.

It issued an apology in the wake of the inquiry’s findings.

“The events of a century ago were wrong then and are wrong now,” said Claire Horton, head of the CWGC. “We recognise the wrongs of the past and are deeply sorry and will be acting immediately to correct them.”

‘Watershed moment’

The CWGC commissioned the report in December 2019 after Unremembered, an investigative television documentary presented by opposition Labour Party MP and shadow justice secretary David Lammy.

The Unremembered investigation found that Africans killed in World War I had not been treated equally and revealed an example of a British governor saying: “The average native of the Gold Coast would not understand or appreciate a headstone.”

It also uncovered how African soldiers’ graves were abandoned in Tanzania, while European officers’ resting places continued to be maintained.

According to Thursday’s report, another officer, who later worked for the CWGC’s predecessor – the Imperial War Graves Commission, had said: “Most of the natives who died are of a semi-savage nature”, and concluded that erecting headstones would be a waste of public money.

The inquiry said decisions that led to the failure to commemorate the dead properly – or even at all – was the result of a lack of information, errors inherited from other organisations, and the opinions of colonial administrators.

“Underpinning all these decisions, however, were the entrenched prejudices, preconceptions and pervasive racism of contemporary imperial attitudes,” the report concluded.

The United Kingdom’s Secretary of Defence Ben Wallace was expected to address Parliament about the findings later on Thursday.

Lammy hailed the report as a “watershed moment”.

“No apology can ever make up for the indignity suffered by the Unremembered,” he tweeted.

“However, this apology does offer the opportunity for us as a nation to work through this ugly part of our history – and properly pay our respects to every soldier who has sacrificed their life for us … The arc of history is long but it bends towards the truth.”





Source – www.aljazeera.com

Continue Reading

Trending