SERIOUS MATTER

JOSEPH NDONGA: Were Itumbi’s claims meant to whip up public sympathy?

He had reported to police that a strange car had tried to block him but he managed to speed away

In Summary

•Going by the information in the public domain, it was unclear whether the gun discharged the bullets as none hit him or his car.

•The trained and experienced assassins would rarely miss out on their target.

Dennis Itumbi
Dennis Itumbi
Image: EZEKIEL AMING'A

Is Dennis Itumbi’s life in danger? Were the threats real or were the claims meant to whip up public sympathy and taint the images of certain individuals in government?

This was a serious matter and he was required to fully cooperate with the detectives. If he failed to do so, then it was hard to believe his story.

He had reported to the police that a strange car had tried to block him but he managed to speed off after hitting the said car and escaped after he heard gunshots. 

Going by the information in the public domain, it was unclear whether the gun discharged the bullets as none hit him or his car. Was this incident stage-managed? We have had similar cases before.

If it is true there were gunshots, then it seemed this was the work of the amateurs. The trained and experienced assassins would rarely miss out on their target.

The timing of Itumbi’s claims was also bound to raise queries.

He reportedly made them two days after Interior Cabinet Secretary Fred Mataingi’s lawyers wrote to him demanding an immediate apology over the insults he had hurled at the CS.

In his ‘cease’ and ‘desist’ letter, Matiang’i threatened to sue Itumbi for defamation. But little did he know that this would silence him. He added more salt to injury by repeating the same epithets.

So, one would be forgiven for concluding Itumbi’s claims were a continuation of a smear campaign against the CS.

The CS is known to be a strong believer in the rule of law and his actions attest to this.

He has not only been condemning the rogue security officers implicated in extra-judicial killings but more importantly pushing for their prosecution and conviction

Itumbi was initially based at State House where he worked as the digital director before he was shown the door after an internal probe reportedly showed that he was engaging in acts of insubordination and exposing the President by leaking confidential information to certain individuals inside and outside the government.

As it turned out, Deputy President had no problem with what he was doing.

He considered him to be a key cog in driving his agenda of succeeding President Uhuru Kenyatta and this is why he immediately gave him a job at his office.

In the eyes of many, Itumbi has since carved out a niche for being the master of deceit, chief propagandist and spanner boy for the DP.

He mainly uses social media networks to hit out at those casting the DP in a bad light by whipping public emotions and profiling them as the enemies of the people.

For instance, the narrative of ‘hustler nation’ is designed to divide Kenyans along the class lines and, if the government turns a deaf ear, it would eventually lead to a class war.

Itumbi describes himself as the chief spokesman of the hustler nation.

Rwanda is a good example where similar class politics exploded into deadly genocide that left more than 800,000 people dead in 1994.

For President Kenyatta, Kenya will never go that route.

He has been working closely with leaders from both sides of the political divide and rallying them behind his legacy project of building a united and cohesive nation.

This is not the first time that Itumbi has made claims that many believed were meant to put Uhuru and his allies at a collision course with Kenyans.

We recall the time when DP Ruto claimed a plot had been hatched to eliminate him. He cited the unsigned letter that was circulating on social media as his evidence.

When the DCI invited him to record a statement, he declined to do so.

When the investigations to unearth the author of the letter were concluded, media reports indicated it had been written by Itumbi.

When he was arraigned in court, he denied the charges. What happened to this case? Kenyans are still waiting for the verdict.

 

The writer is a political analyst and blogger

 

Edited by Kiilu Damaris