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Citizen Weekly

Sunday 11 January 2015


The premature death of Fidel Odinga and the mystery surrounding the cause of his death has now taken a new dimension after the larger Jaramogi Oginga Odinga family flew some of the samples to Germany for further analytical tests and examinations.
Weekly Citizen has information that the current call by the opposition that Fidel’s death was planned and well executed is after a word started spreading within Cord to the affect that initial reports by the doctors had indicated the death was caused by excessive alcohol consumption that slowly ruined his health. To counter,  talk within the opposition and the family is that Fidel died of slow alcohol poisoning inflicted on him from a third force.
Initially, an indication which had sunk well in the family of Raila Odinga and the entire Cord fraternity was that Fidel had died of slow alcohol poisoning. According to his pals, Fidel used to drink Vodka without eating.
Many have succumbed to alcohol-related liver disease which is a range of conditions and associated symptoms. ARLD does not usually cause any symptoms until the liver has been severely damaged. When this happens, symptoms can include: feeling sick, weight loss, loss of appetite, yellowing of the eyes and skin, swelling in the ankles and tummy, confusion or drowsiness, vomiting blood or passing blood in your stools. The disease is frequently diagnosed during tests for other conditions.
With the exception of the brain, the liver is the most complex organ in the body. Its functions include: filtering toxins from the blood, aiding digestion of food, regulating blood sugar and cholesterol levels, helping to fight infection and disease
It is said the liver is very resilient and is capable of regenerating itself. Each time one’s liver filters alcohol, some of the liver cells die. The liver can develop new cells, but prolonged alcohol misuse over many years can reduce the liver’s ability to regenerate, resulting in serious damage to it.
It was after this theory gained credence that the family moved fast and constituted a burial committee and fixed the burial date without raising any undue concern over what led to his death. Insiders say like any other controversial death involving a key opposition figure such as that of Mutula Kilonzo and Senator Otieno Kajwang that raised eyebrows calling for the government to act and come up with concrete findings of circumstances leading to their abrupt death, Fidel’s death has followed the same path. In is said that findings of the late Mutula were so sensational that if released to the public, it could cast doubt over his integrity.
For Fidel, the matter got complicated when controversial businessman Paul Kobia made a self confession and damning admission that he killed Fidel.
Kobia’s remarks are said to have raised tempers not only within the family but also in the opposition. To complicate matters was the manner in which the state security handled Kobia’s sensitive remarks. To the opposition, Kobia is a well known Jubilee wheeler dealer and at one time was mishandled by Raila supporters at an Italian restaurant located along Lenana Road.
It is imperative to note prior to Kobia remarks at Village Market, the first postmortem reportedly failed to reveal the cause of the death. This fuelled speculation with Kenyans saying never in the history of autopsy have pathologists failed to come with the cause unless they are unqualified or are hiding something. Pathologists said Fidel’s stomach was completely empty. Both the family and government doctors concluded that Fidel had been taking hard drinks on an empty stomach for years and the possibility of having negative impact on his liver and kidney was given as one of the underlying factors that might have led to his sudden death. Friends and relatives we talked to say Fidel’s love for Vodka was unrivalled. He used to move from one joint to another to the wee hours of the morning enjoying his drink but rarely eating any food. Countless people have died in their beds and roadsides after a night of bingeing.
In fact, it is said that had Fidel that fateful early Sunday morning retired to the same bed with his wife Lwam, his death would probably have been avoided as then she would have called for emergency.
With new claims over his death, the family thought twice and agreed that it proceeds with further laboratory analysis outside the country in Germany where Raila was educated, to conclusively determine the cause of Fidel’s sudden death.
Preliminarily, the pathologists had noticed abnormal lungs and infection in the throat during the postmortem.
 Vodka, the brand that Fidel preferred, is said to cause a quarter of all Russian men’s death before they reach their mid-fifties.
That Fidel had very little time for food is no secret to the family. This can be supported by the fact that when he visited his father on the day he died, he excused himself when lunch was almost being served and excused himself to a restaurant located around Yaya Centre where he was meeting friends.
The matter has now taken a new angle and people are demanding to be told why Kobia has not been arrested and charged with the murder of Fidel. During the burial, it was ODM secretary general Ababu Namwamba who fired the first salvo when he demanded an answer from the Inspector General of Police as to why Kobia was taken for mental tests rather than being arrested and charged with murder.
After Kobia was arrested and later taken to the hospital for a mental assessment after he became violent in Gigiri, Kenyans expected to see him arraigned in court but that is yet to happen. According to sources, Kobia was held near the popular Village Market after he started shouting that he was responsible for the death of Fidel.
It is now being asked why the government has not taken action and now some claim that Kobia enjoys high level protection from the government.
It is said that Kobia had in July last year had his firearm confiscated after he shot and killed a man in Parklands, but surprisingly, by the time he was being arrested, he was found with two other guns. It is not known whether he was again licensed to have arms but sources say Kobia is a well connected man and wields power within the Jubilee government.
What is now worrying most is the fact that the police denied reports that Kobia was arrested in connection with Fidel’s death. But the Odinga family now wants Kobia charged with murder. To show how powerful Kobia is, he has been moving in the city in a convoy of vehicles fitted with sirens.
The one million dollar question on the lips of Kenyans is: who is this man Kobia? Kobia aka Paul Ilunga Ngoei, is a controversial Kenyan businessman who was mentioned in the 392-page UN report over gold smuggling from Congo.
In 2010, Kobia was apprehended and charged with pretending to sell 8.25kg of gold and obtaining Sh17.4 million from a South African Dennis Ray Schmelzenbach.
On July 15 last year, he shot dead a man on Limuru Road. His legal firearm, a Browning Pistol, was confiscated and surprisingly, no one knows if he was charged with the murder. Earlier last year, Kobia was embroiled in another controversy when he was caught on video threatening to kill Raila.
Flashback, Kobia was beaten by Raila’s bodyguards after he tried to storm the Italian restaurant where Raila was having lunch. He is said to have been armed with a pistol while trying to force himself in.
An exchange of words ensued between Kobia and the bodyguards after they tried to stop him from accessing the restaurant. It is after he insisted to enter the restaurant that the bodyguards beat him up.
During the Kisumu service, Raila told the mourners that Fidel’s death was not normal and that it could mark the beginning of a new era.
According to Raila’s elder brother Oburu Odinga, Fidel’s death is not natural but was the hand of a wicked person. He repeatedly said that the killers must be brought to book. Of all the Odinga family members, Oburu seemed to have been terribly affected by Fidel’s death. 

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