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Saturday, January 19, 2008

Omtatah Okoiti: A Kenyan Hero

This week I want to nominate Omtatah Okoiti as my Kumekucha Man-of-the-Week.

On Thursday January 17 2008, playwright, civil society and human rights activist Omtatah brought activities at Vigilance House (Kenya Police Headquarters) along Harambee Avenue to a standstill after he chained himself to the gates of police headquarters in what he called the "protest of justice" to end the merciless killings of innocent people by security agents.

Specifically, Omtatah was protesting the widely condemned TV footage that captured a police officer shooting two unarmed civilians in Kisumu. During his "protest of justice", Omtatah yelled: "Action and inaction of a police officer on duty are not supposed to be motivated by any other interest other than public interest. This was not the case in the Kisumu murder". By this time a large crowd had gathered to cheer him on. Omtatah was armed with his national ID card, a statement to the police commissioner and a catholic rosary that he held in the air as he protested the loss of innocent lives at the hands of Kenya Police. It took 5 police officers about two hours to unchain him and another 50 paramilitary GSU officers to frog-march him to the KICC police station.

In August 2007, Omtatah was among a group civil rights activists calling themselves the "Yellow Movement" who were arrested and later released by the high court after marching to Parliament to protest against a move by MPs of the 9th parliament to increase their own allowances and pay themselves a hefty gratuity. During the incident, the arrested activists were injured in a road accident involving the police car that was ferrying them to various police stations and a matatu.

The latest protest took place on the 2nd day of ODM mass action protest and when the Nairobi CBD was a no-go zone because of running battles between security forces and ODM supporters. Yesterday Omtatah was released on a bond of Kshs. 10,000/- after pleading not guilty to a (trumped-up) charge of "causing public disturbance." He had spent the night at the Central Police Station in Nairobi.

This country certainly needs more Omtatahs. Kudos bro.


Anonymous said...

I wonder what is heroic about chaining yourself...

Anonymous said...

This is a real kenyan hero. a calibre beyond tribe. making a simple specific claim.


chris said...

Let me be the first to congratulate this great son of Kenya. He spoke for millions of Kenyans when he said what he said. Thank you Omtatah Okoiti for what you did for the motherland. My prayer is that you will soon see the fruits of what you have helped to fight for.

Kudos brother. Kumekucha salutes you.


Anonymous said...

I am PNU damu and I wish to congulatulate him. True, he has spoken for millions. The execution style of the two fellows in Kisumu that was on KTN footage is surely in bad taste. Nobody supports that, not ODMers nor PNUists.
Supposing a poll was to be done on two questions:
1. Do you support excessive use of force by the police? 98% NO, 1% Yes, 1% I dont know.

2. Do you support the mass action called for by ODM? 89% NO, 8% Yes, 3% I dont know.

3. What would you suggest be the way to resolve the current political stand off?
"The political leaders should talk and forthwith stop making the ordinary Mwananchi to suffer, yet he voted faithfully."

This would mean the following.
1. Police must stop use of excessive force.
2. ODM must stop mass action(mass chaos) with immediate effect.

Kenya will stand the test of time, despite the evil forces standing against her. They will all be shamed, may they be in PNU or in ODM.

Anonymous said...

Thanks a million times Mr. Omtatah. You one of the most carrageous Kenyans I have ever seen. You did NOT mind the consequences that would follow your action! Your detension may one day see us Kenyans from this dispiccable regime of murders and looters of our Motherland.
By the way did anyone see what i saw on Aljazeera Europe last night?! Aljazeera Kenya bureau chief Andres Simson walked freely into Uhuru park past the red berrets aka FFU aka GSU aka murders without being tea gassed or being clobbered yet fellow Kenyans can NOT even come near Serena, Mafya House or community area!
Hmmmmmmmm. What a site to behold.
God help us all if Kibaki and Panua are to lead Kenya for 5 years.

Anonymous said...

Some people might say this man is mad but it was said before"When the madness of an entire nation disturbs a solitary mind it is not enough to say the man is mad" this kenyan is not mad but a true HERO depicting the state of the minds of the majority kenyans today.

Anonymous said...

God will surely help us as he has always done. Kenya will be great now, 2012 and beyond.

Anonymous said...

Okoiti Omtata! My brother is a hero per excellence!! Like Lwanda Magere you epitomise the character that we should all emulate. Shame on the Kenyan police!

Anonymous said...

In case you want to contribute and help, go to - here you will find the real heroes of this madness under 'contact us' ......

Please contribute to at least reduce some of the suffering.

Anonymous said...

What a civilized man. Rare to find in Kenya.

Kenya nchi yetu said...

Okoiti Omtata is a patriot in the true sense of the word. Amazing courage.

Anonymous said...

He has eloquently told the police and the powers that be what many have been trying to, albeit unsuccessfuly - THE NAKED TRUTH!! The methods employed by the police in dealing with demonstrators are certainly not in the public interest. Bravo, Mr Omutatah!

Anonymous said...

Sorry guys but I don't see anything heroic in chaining yourself. I can only feel sorry for his wife and kids, wondering where is daddy? Read any history book/autobiography, yes heroes/heroines suffer for their country, but with some strategy. At this rate he will end up with a broken jaw at the very least.

ken kahugu said...

Chaining oneself and making the loudest noise does not qualify one as a patriot.Okiya is a heckler for hire, there is no big difference between this particular boys and others whose main business is to shout and heckle during campaign rallies .

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