Tom Mboya: The man the rich political class in Kenya want to forget
Shocking New Revelations In Cold Case That Kumekucha Won’t Let Go
The date today is July 5th (at least in Kenya as I write this). Ever since I started this blog, I have always remembered this date and more specifically what happened on a day like this in 1969. It is the day Tom Mboya was shot dead.
Mostly my annual memorials have been a lonely crusade. But not this year. Yesterday and today Kenya’s leading daily, The Nation has carried extensive coverage on the assassination of the man I consider to be the greatest politician to ever come out of a Kenyan woman’s womb.
I interpret that to mean that finally more and more Kenyans have come to the realization that this assassination was significant and that if the country is to move forward and truly have a new beginning then we must face the ghosts of Tom Mboya and settle this thing once and for all. More so because the chief planner and executor at the centre of that assassination still lives.
Why was Mboya’s assassination so significant? Simply because the two bullets that were fired that Saturday lunch time July 5th 1969 changed the course of Kenya forever. Today we are suffering the consequences of that new course that was clearly charted out that day. Impunity won that day. Years later the rhetorical questions were to be asked over and over again; Mboya was killed and nothing happened, who is so and so? We survived the Mboya assassination what crisis can we not survive?
Tribal politics won that day. In killing Mboya the assassins killed nationalism. To date we are yet to see another Kenyan attracting national popularity in their own right enough to win a presidential poll with votes from every corner of the republic. Every single prominent politician now has their political base in their ancestral village and those who don’t have imported their fellow tribesmates in large numbers into the constituency they represent away form their village. Tom Mboya was a Luo who was time and again voted in by mostly Kikuyus even when other prominent Kikuyus from very prominent families stood against him. To a young Kenyan who understands Kenyan politics today, this statement seems like pure fiction.
I want to say today that most analysts agree that Tom Mboya was on course to end up as the first president of Kenya. A man called Jaramogi Oginga Odinga noted this fact early and decided that he would do everything in his power to make sure that this did not happen. And so he started a crusade insisting that Kenyans did NOT want Uhuru unless Kenyatta was released. In fact Odinga said that Kenyatta was “like a god to Kenyans. This clever ploy put Mboya in a tight corner. Knowing his constituents he knew that if he failed to support this belated call his support would evaporate. And so the old man who had been so out of touch with what was happening was released from Kapenguria and Oginga Odinga won the day while Kenya and nationalism lost badly. The Brits also won big time (more on that later).
It has now been revealed that a few weeks before the assassination of one Pio Gama Pinto, Tom Mboya warned the politician that he was going to be killed by Kenyatta’s inner circle (the same people who murdered Mboya). This is instructive and demonstrates the fact that Mboya’s intelligence sources were impeccable. We also know that Mboya knew his life was in danger. Indeed his biographer tells us that his American friends warned him and discussed the possibility of getting more body guards (which Mboya turned down). In fact on the day Mboya was killed, he had just released his driver and bodyguard. Why? Was he not concerned about his own life? He had warned Pinto that the Kenyatta inner circle was capable of murder and Pinto had doubted saying that his killing would cause serious problems for the Kenyatta administration. In other words “they wouldn’t dare.” Is this what Mboya thought about his own possible assassination? We can only speculate but the truth is that this is a question that badly begs for an answer.
It is also instructive to note that warnings of assassination came to Mboya from the Americans. This adds an International angle to the plot. Which major world power had a motive for Mboya’s death? Which country benefited most with Mboya out of the way? Britain of course. I have come across many interesting facts that point to MI5 links in the assassination of Tom Mboya. Indeed it would seem that Kenyatta’s inner circle got encouragement to proceed with their heinous plan from the Brits (unofficially of course).
In planning Tom Mboya’s assassination the plotters were keenly aware that this was one hit that could NOT go wrong. The Kenyatta administration and everything they were fighting for (in terms of personal gain) could not afford any slip ups. It would have been a disaster for them if Tom Mboya survived. The plotters already had the experience of carrying out the Pio Gama assassination over 4 years earlier and knew that many things can and do go wrong in the best planned assassinations. So they had to choose the gunman very carefully. There was no way they could afford him getting cold feet or worse still, missing his target.
I can authoritatively report today that there is increasing evidence that I am coming across that suggests the unbelievable. That apart from being the chief planner and operations man in the killing of Mboya, a certain man well known in the security forces at the time may have been the man who coolly pulled the trigger and fired those two shots that change Kenya forever. This man had a striking resemblance to Nahashon Njenga (the man who was convicted of Mboya’s assassination). That man remained an “untouchable” throughout the reign of Kenyatta. That man’s name is Ben Gethi (now deceased). I have talked to several people who confirm that in his last days Gethi's consceince seemed to have been disturbing him greatly. He drunk way too much and seemed to be haunted by the things he had done in his savage and eventful life (including overseeing the cutting off of certain sensitive parts of JM Kariuki's body).
In Pio Gama Pinto’s assassination word got out about the taxi driver who had been hired to carry out the hit. Nothing of the sort happened in the Mboya assassination and it is no accident. Little wonder that the Nation told us yesterday that then Vice President Daniel arap Moi described the Mboya assassination as “brilliantly planned and executed.”
Eye witnesses say that there was a bald-headed man with a brief case who looked like he was window shopping moments before Mboya was shot. Naturally the brief case concealed the murder weapon. Now just think about it for a moment. It is possible but unlikely that that man was a Kanu youth winger with little or no previous training in firearms. It is hard for me to believe that that youth winger coolly pulled out his revolver at just the right time and with precise timing shot the Minister just as he walked out of Chaani’s chemist. In fact the door was not fully open when the shots rang out because Mboya fell back inside the chemist’s shop. Now the fascinating thing here is that both Nahashon Njenga and Ben Gethi were approximately the same height. The resemblance of the two was uncanny.
The truth is that there were two very well planned phases of the Mboya assassination. That is the actual hit and the cover up that was to follow. Both were carried out clinically. With the clinical precision of a doctor... a surgeon perhaps?
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...To Be Continued