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There’s a tendency by the bereaved families of powerful personalities in Kenya to turn into state collaborators once their figureheads are removed.

Christabel Ouko, the wife of former Foreign Affairs minister Dr. John Robert Ouko suddenly turned chummy with President Moi’s Government and at one point told Scotland Yard Investigators that she did not see anything odd in her late husband’s body being found at Got Alila charred by acid with a jerry-can, Somali sword and a jacket placed beside it.

According to Detective Inspector John Troon of the Scotland Yard, Christabel appeared cagey and afraid when interrogated in isolation. As the widow of the former minister one would have expected her to come forward as a key witness in unravelling the identities of people who may have been involved in the kidnapping and eventual gruesome murder of her husband. Christabel didn’t and it turned out that she had been promised some handsome remuneration by the state.


Yesterday at the burial of his father Rabuku Omondi Ogolla went to great pains to paint the relationship between his father and the Head of State as rosy and exceptionally cordial. These are facts that have not been in the public domain and Rabuku, by all means, could be telling the truth.


The only problem is that less than 72-hours after the incident Rabuku Omondi Ogolla was ardently defending the state over rumours of involvement in the death of his father. Again, I repeat, Rabuku could still be right, but who undertakes investigation of such incidences if not the state? Why, for God’s sake, was the young man preempting an outcome of investigations? On whose behalf was he making a defence and why was such a lopsided clarification needed?

Rabuku failed whomever he was defending when he went ahead and revealed that he has been “promised support by the state to run schools renovation projects.” 

As a member of the Z generation Rabuku came out as suave and oratorically polished but he lacked the Luo sense of mourning.

Subsequently an elder in the Luo community Ng’onga Molo Oburu Oginga, the Siaya Senator was at hand to remind him of the Luo essence of mourning which is to find the killer (or whomever can be blamed for the act). The mourning process of tero buru and goyo sigalagala or giyo (kata gweyo) is tailored to call out the culprit. People don’t die in the Luo community; someone murders them.

So who murdered CDF General Francis Omondi Ogolla?

“We are asking to know the truth of who exactly killed our son CDF Ogolla. We do not want to leave any stone unturned. Young man allow the investigators to do their work”, Oburu succinctly advised Rabuku. This is great advice from one total orphan to a partial orphan.

Remember there was a Commission of Inquiry into the murder of Dr. John Robert Ouko. Similarly tribunals were set up to investigate the deaths of Thomas Joseph Mboya, Argwings Kodhek, Professor Mbai and others. The tribunals and commissions are sometimes disbanded as in the case of the Justice Gicheru-led Ouko Commission of Inquiry that sat in Kisumu.

Whatever ultimately happens to investigations and commissions, the truth always outs.


Editorial Monday 22 April 2024


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