Sunday, October 25, 2009



October 24 2009

The relationship between released Mungiki sect leader Maina Njenga and a number of prominent politicians from Central Kenya has been cold, and he is not willing to mend fences with most of them, he revealed on Saturday.

But, at the same time, the Mungiki leader said the proscribed sect has worked with many senior government officials, some currently in office and others who served in the last Parliament, he told the Sunday Nation on Saturday.

Mr Njenga said he knew his enemies but he would not seek revenge. “I know who we can work with and those who betrayed us. I mean those who have been plotting to kill Kikuyu youth and blame it on the government,” he said.

He spoke at his second palatial home in Isinya, a short distance from his other home in Kitengela. When the Sunday Nation team arrived at the magnificent home shortly after 8 a.m., Mr Njenga was taking breakfast with a few relatives and friends. He said the 2012 succession battle has pitted veteran politicians against the youthful generation and predicted that the young generation will triumph.

“They want to cling to power because they want the status quo to remain. The youth have said no,” he said. Without naming individuals, Mr Njenga said the affidavit he wanted to swear was “normal” but refused to divulge the details. Pressed, he said: “Since I did not swear it, it is not for public consumption.”

Powerful figures

But the Sunday Nation independently learnt from Mr Njenga’s confidantes that he had planned to name powerful public figures, some of whom harbour presidential ambitions. Pictures of the politicians taken during Mungiki-related activities since 1997 had been collected and would have been presented in court with damaging political effects.

It is understood that Mr Njenga was disappointed that the people his sect had worked with over the years were “being hypocritical” and had refused to come out in the open about their relationship. Instead, they turned their back on him when he was on trial, he said.

Another confidante said that there was panic in government the whole of this month especially when the affidavit reached high government offices.

One of five lawyers who represented Mr Njenga, but who requested anonymity citing sensitivity of the matter, said his client was acquitted on legal grounds, and that there was no evidence linking him to the murder of 29 people in Mathira in April this year. But he admitted there was also a lot of political pressure to have the charges dropped.

“On Thursday evening, we were summoned to court at 9 a.m. for an urgent mention of the two murder charges. We were not surprised when the Attorney- General terminated the case through state counsel Charles Orinda,” said the lawyer.

But on Saturday, Mr Njenga said he had been in prison for all the wrong reasons. “I am not a criminal and I do not smoke bhang or cigarettes. I also do not take alcohol. I just want a society that is just,” he said. Mr Njenga admitted he fell out with a number of Central Kenya politicians in 2002 when Kanu denied him a ticket to run for the Laikipia West parliamentary seat.

He said the relationship between him and the politicians worsened in 2005 when he went against the grain and campaigned against the draft constitution, contrary to popular opinion in the area.

“They were mad at me. They thought we were fighting a community battle but my conscience was clear -- the document was not for the benefit of the majority of Kenyans,” he said. The politicians, he said, have blocked sect members from holding talks with Prime Minister Raila Odinga.

“They think Raila will get our support and they are bitter with it. I do not care where a good leader comes from. Who told them it is only Mt Kenya that can produce a president?” he asked.