Connect with us

Politics

Eight best kept secrets that made Biwott a Total Man

He was a billionaire, but he never liked expensive cars commonly known as fuel guzzlers mostly used by top government officials and wealthy people

Published

on

Nicholas Biwott was a mystery even to his closest friends.

Kipyator Nicholas Kiprono arap Biwott was a Kenyan businessman, politician and philanthropist.

In a way or the other, he defined the Kenyan political history by serving the first three governments. He has remained in politics till his death, being a leader of National Vision Party (NVP), which supports President Uhuru Kenyatta’s reelection.

Biwott served as a civil servant, Member of Parliament and government minister, during which time he held eight senior ministerial positions. Despite that, little is known about his life. Below are some things that were hidden from the public about ‘total man.’

1. He never owned a mobile phone
In his entire life, ‘total man’ never owned a mobile phone, totally. In case he wanted to make a call, he would buy a sim card, borrow a phone from his personal assistant William Chepkut or any other close associate, make the call and discard the sim card. Why he feared owning one, no one knows up to date, including his confidants. If you wanted to call him, you had to go through Chepkut.

2. He travelled in a maze
Biwott would use more than three vehicles to travel from Nairobi to his rural home in the Rift Valley. It was seen as a security measure to evade his enemies who could have trailed him with malicious aims.

3. He had another nickname, the ‘Bull of Auckland’
On November 15th 1995, James Orengo, while asking why GG Kariuki was being allowed to speak from the dispatch box, coined the nickname. His exact phrase was “…”The Bull of Auckland” or rather Hon Biwott…” It was a jab at Biwott for indecently exposing himself in Auckland five days before.

Less than a week before, then President Moi and a powerful delegation had left for Auckland, New Zealand. They would be attending the different sessions of the Commonwealth Heads of State Meeting (CHOGM).

On the morning the CHOGM started, Biwott either indecently exposed himself to or actually tried to rape a housekeeper who came in to clean his room. She ran out of the room and informed her manager, who called in the police. The police in turn called the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, and a small, important but oft-overlooked diplomatic spat followed.

4. He preferred cheap cars
He was a billionaire, but he never liked expensive cars commonly known as fuel guzzlers mostly used by top government officials and wealthy people. He was comfortable using cheap cars probably to disguise his movements.

5. He feared his own shadow
He lived on the run, in a move to confuse his enemies. No person could trace his whereabouts, unless he was attending a public function, in office or in parliament. Most of his personal life remained a mystery, up to date. This in most times confused the media who wrongly reported his death twice, in August 2016 and January 2014.

Next: Nicholas Biwott, who died today at 77, was a real Total Man

6. He died with a lot of secrets about Kenyan history
Having worked with the first three presidents of this country, Biwott carried with him a lot of secrets. He worked with Kenyatta government as a District Officer (DO), Moi government as a member of parliament and a minister and Kibaki government as an MP.

7. An enemy of the media
On 22 March 2002, Nicholas Biwott was awarded Ksh20 million. Kalamka Ltd, the publisher of “The People Daily” now owned by Mediamax, was sentenced to pay Biwott Ksh 10 million in compensatory damages and a similar sum in exemplary damages, following the publication of an article implicating Biwott in underhanded dealings involving the award of tenders for the construction of the Turkwell Gorge Hydro-Electric Power project.

Text Book Centre, one of the country’s leading bookshops, agreed to pay him the Sh7.5 million for selling the book The Rogue Ambassador by the former American ambassador to Kenya, Mr Smith Hempstone, which alleged that he (Biwott) killed Foreign Affairs minister Robert Ouko.
In a span of two years (2001 to 2002), Biwott had pocketed more than Ksh67 million from the media for defamation, libel and slander.

8. Richest Kenyan: According to the Constative portal, Biwott was ranked as the 14th wealthiest person in Kenya.

[crp]

Editor and writer at BUSINESS TODAY, Muli has a passion for human interest stories that have a big impact on economic development. He holds a BSc in Communication and Journalism from Moi University and has worked for various organisations including Kenya Television Service. Email: [email protected] or [email protected]

Continue Reading
Advertisement
Click to comment

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Politics

Babu Owino arrested over Uhuru slur

The first time MP is being grilled at Mazingira House, the DCI headquarters, over his weekend remarks in Dagoretti, Nairobi

Published

on

Embakasi East Member of Parliament Babu Owino has been arrested and taken to the Directorate of Criminal Investigation (DCI) headquarters for using disparaging remarks against President Uhuru Kenyatta and threats to force him out of office.

His remarks on Sunday during a campaign tour of Dagoretti in Nairobi, during which he referred to the President as “mtoto wa mbwa” ( son of a dog) set social media ablaze with Jubilee supporters demanding his arrest as those supporting Raila comparing him with Gatundu South MP Moses Kuria.

His arrest came as protesters took to the streets of Kiambu and Ruiru towns to express their distaste to Owino’s remarks, demanding his arrest and an apology from him. Business and transport operations have been paralysed along Kiambu Road and at Ruiru on the Thika Superhighway.

The MP, however, refused to apologise, saying that his remarks were not directed to President Uhuru, and that he owes no one apology.

“I will not apologize to anyone because I called nobody’s name during my yesterday’s address. We have so many presidents in Kenya, from the President of Sonu to all presidents of students union in Kenya, President of the Supreme Court, President of Youth senate and many more. However I will stick to objective politics and will never abuse anybody,” wrote Owino.

Women Representative of Nairobi Esther Passaris, who was present, has distanced herself and the Nasa Coalition from Babu’s words and conduct, and apologised to former First Lady Mama Ngina and the Kenyatta family for the insults.

Kiambu-Town-demo-576x1024 Babu Owino arrested over Uhuru slur

Residents of Kiambu town protest remarks made by Embakasi East MP Babu Owino. He has since been arrested.

“I would like to condemn in the strongest terms possible the utterances made by my fellow MP Babu Owino during our campaign rally in Westlands and Dagoretti North yesterday. As a mother, I sincerely apologize to the former First Lady, Her Excellency Mama Ngina Kenyatta, and her family over the insult and disrespect meted on her, which neither depicts nor reflects the character or direction envisaged by our Party leader the Rt Hon. Raila Odinga and the NASA principals,” Passaris said in a statement posted on Twitter.

“Freedom of speech comes with responsibility, and I beg my fellow politicians and Kenyans on both sides of the divide not to abuse this freedom whether on social media or otherwise,” she said.

ALSO SEE: Babu Owino: Radical who will spice up Parliament

According to Passaris,  no matter how big political differences are, there is a line that should not be crossed.

This is not the first time the MP is finding himself in trouble over derogatory remarks since he was elected into Parliament a month ago.

During his swearing in ceremony, Owino was forced to repeat his oath allegiance after pledging loyalty to Raila referring to him as the President of Kenya.

He, however, got away with utterance of the ‘Tibiim’ slogan at the end of the swearing in.

Continue Reading

Economy

Prolonged campaigns fatigue Kenyans

Henry Wandera, an economics lecturer in Nairobi, noted that elections tend to cause fatigue as they slow down all the other sectors

Published

on

By

A prolonged campaign period following the order by the Supreme Court for fresh a presidential election seems to have tired many Kenyans as the date for the new election got postponed.

Many of the electorate are eager to see the campaign period end so they can move on with their lives, but a political standoff among key parties, the opposition National Super Alliance (Nasa) and the ruling Jubilee is unlikely to end soon.

Kenyan politicians have been on the campaign trail since March, and on August 8, Kenyans went to ballot to choose Members of County Assemblies, senators, woman representatives, governors, MPs and the president.

Many thought the ‘election madness’ was over until the Supreme Court nullified President Uhuru Kenyatta’s victory and ordered for fresh polls.

The electoral commission on Thursday pushed the date for the fresh presidential elections to October 26 from its earlier set date of October 17, citing the need to be fully prepared to deliver free, fair and credible elections.

Previously, Nasa leader Raila Odinga dismissed the idea of holding election on October 17.

“There would be no elections on Oct. 17 until the electoral commission is reformed,” he maintained.

Meanwhile, Kenyatta and his party Jubilee insisted that elections would be held as scheduled on October 17, noting that the country must move on.

Some of his supporters have threatened to swear him into office if polls delay. The talk on the streets, on radio and social media show many citizens are tired with the seemingly unending electioneering period.

“I am tired with the campaigns and I want them to end. Does it mean this politicians have nothing else to do?” posed Classic 105 breakfast show host Maina Kageni.

On the streets, frustrations about the lengthy electioneering period is evident in peoples’ talk and faces.

“I’m exhausted of the elections, I’m completely tired of them that I may never vote even if they come on October 17 or November 1,” said Antony Kioi, a cooking gas seller.

Kioi noted that the country has seemingly been on campaign for the last four years, with the blitz heightening only close to elections.

ALSO SEE: IEBC sets new date for presidential re-run

“Leaders have been holding rallies for many months that one cannot remember when the campaigns started or ended. We can not live politicking, elections must come and go,” he said.

Beatrice Mulundi, an insurance agent, said elections had even derailed her sales, as her many potential clients hoped to wait until the polls are over to consider her products.

“In fact when I hear that the new polls may not be held as scheduled, I get angrier.

“How do I earn a living if political uncertainly hangs over the country?

“For the last two months, people have simply been not taking insurance,” she lamented.

On social media, election talk is prominent but opinion is divided on the lengthy electioneering period, with some noting the country should get it right with elections for the things to go right.

“We better politic for 90 days, reform the electoral commission and elect the right people than have bad leadership for five years,” said one Twitter post under the hashtag ElectionsKenya.

On the other hand, other citizens are complaining of how politics has clouded all the other sectors of life.

“The health sector is literally on its dead bed, politics has taken over nothing is moving.

“This is frustrating,” said Sylvia Nyaboke.

Companies too are feeling the pinch, with many complaining about losses related to the lengthy elections.

“We lost approximately 3.8 million U.S. dollars during the election day last month due to closure of M-pesa businesses,” leading Kenya’s telecom Safaricom CEO Bob Collymore said at the company’s Annual General Meeting recently, adding that uncertainty over the new polls is having huge negative impact on business.

Related: Raila now threatens to prosecute Chebukati, top IEBC officials

Henry Wandera, an economics lecturer in Nairobi, noted that elections tend to cause fatigue as they slow down all the other sectors.

“From education to the economy and sports, nothing moves.

“Even people tend to marry less during electioneering period when tribal hatred rises,” he said.

However, he observed that while citizens may get tired, it is important that the country gets it right in the elections.

“Countries have plunged to war because of polls, so to me there is nothing alarming with what Kenya is facing now.

“The Supreme Court was right in its ruling.

“What Kenya needs to go after the next elections is to enforce electoral laws so that campaigns do not start early as it happened before the August 8 polls.”

Continue Reading

Politics

Raila now threatens to prosecute Chebukati, top IEBC officials

Opposition Nasa gives DPP Keriako Tobiko 72 hours to act or it institutes private prosecutions

Published

on

The opposition National Super Alliance (Nasa) has given the Director of Public Prosecutions (DPP) Keriako Tobiko 72 hours to file charges against IEBC officials accused of bungling the August 8 election.

At the same time, Nasa has vowed to institute private prosecution against the IEBC officials.

Mathare MP Anthony Olouch, whose firm AT Olouch and Company Advocates, has written to the DPP, said the decision of the Supreme Court did not exonerate any member of IEBC.

“Following that decision, your office has made a statement that it will evaluate the full text of the Judgment and make a determination on whether or not to commence and proceed with criminal prosecutions.

ALSO SEE: Supreme Court puts IEBC on the spot over poll fiasco

“Our express instructions are that the commissioners and members of the secretariat not only committed criminal acts of which they should be held personally responsible, but also aided and abetted the commission of offences under the Elections Offences Act, the Public Procurement Act, the Elections Act and breaches of the Constitution,” the MP said in Nairobi on Friday.

He added: “In light of the pending presidential election due for 26th October, 2017, the persons cited herein below cannot continue being in office and neither can they be allowed to perpetuate further illegalities.

Related: IEBC sets new date for presidential re-run

“Unless investigation leading into criminal charges and prosecution is commenced within 72 hours [by] this office, our instructions are to institute private prosecutions pursuant to Section 28 of the Office of the Director of Public Prosecutions (Act).”

The IEBC officials whom Nasa wants charged are CEO Ezra Chiloba, Chairman Wafula Chebukati, Betty Nyabuto, Immaculate Kassait, James Muhati, Praxedes Tororey (who has since retired), Moses Kipkogei, Abdi Guliye, Molu Boya and Marjan Marjan.

NEXT: IEBC begins to fall apart as senior officer quits

Continue Reading

Economy

Trump hails Africa for making his friends rich

While US President almost certainly meant it as compliment, and even seemed to pause for applause, not one attendee clapped (SCROLL DOWN FOR STORY)

Published

on

President Donald Trump speaks before a luncheon with US and African leaders at the Palace Hotel during the 72nd United Nations General Assembly on September 20, 2017 in New York. Credit: Brendan Smialowski | AFP | Getty Images

President Donald Trump on Wednesday was met with silence when he congratulated the leaders of African countries on the continent’s economic progress, telling them: “I’ve so many friends going to your countries, trying to get rich. I congratulate you. They’re spending a lot of money.”

Trump delivered the remark at a luncheon he hosted with the leaders of many of the 54 diverse nations on the African continent. And while Trump almost certainly meant it as compliment, and even seemed to pause for applause, not one attendee clapped.

For centuries, Europeans and Americans have exploited Africa’s natural resources and labor force, not least during the trans-Atlantic slave trade. In the post-Colonial era, the U.S. government has supported dozens of authoritarian regimes on the African continent, while American companies have made billions of dollars from deals with dictatorships.

Related: Trump to earn Sh10 per month as president after rejecting Sh40m

Since taking office in January, Trump has nominated ambassadors to only around a dozen African nations, despite having recalled all Obama-era ambassadors before he was inaugurated. This means that the vast majority of nations on the continent do not currently have a U.S. ambassador with whom they can conduct bilateral diplomacy.

During the same speech, Trump also mispronounced Namibia as “Nambia,” saying very clearly that “Nambia’s health system is increasingly self-sufficient.”

A White House transcript confirmed that he meant to say Namibia.

The White House did not immediately respond to a request for comment from CNBC.

Credit: CNBC

Continue Reading

News Updates

Politics56 mins ago

Babu Owino arrested over Uhuru slur

The first time MP is being grilled at Mazingira House, the DCI headquarters, over his weekend remarks in Dagoretti, Nairobi

Education6 hours ago

Cholera outbreak at Daystar University

Vice Chancellor Dr Timothy Wachira says the situation is under close supervision by the administration and an awareness campaign had...

Person of Interest6 hours ago

President Uhuru’s son who can’t speak Swahili

President Uhuru Kenyatta's son had accompanied DP William Ruto for a campaign tour of Nandi but viewers were taken aback...

Economy7 hours ago

Prolonged campaigns fatigue Kenyans

Henry Wandera, an economics lecturer in Nairobi, noted that elections tend to cause fatigue as they slow down all the...

Business Unusual8 hours ago

Kenyans rearing crickets to meet growing demand for special proteins

The cost of establishing a basic system is about Ksh3,096 (US$30), in addition to the cost of the initial breeding...

Politics3 days ago

Raila now threatens to prosecute Chebukati, top IEBC officials

Opposition Nasa gives DPP Keriako Tobiko 72 hours to act or it institutes private prosecutions

Economy3 days ago

Trump hails Africa for making his friends rich

While US President almost certainly meant it as compliment, and even seemed to pause for applause, not one attendee clapped...

Politics3 days ago

IEBC begins to fall apart as senior officer quits

Legal officer Praxedes Tororey was one of the 12 officials NASA named and demanded to be removed for bungling the...

People4 days ago

Coincidence or fate? Rerun to be held on Uhuru’s birthday

He will either become the first Kenyan President to win a second term after a rerun ordered by the Supreme...

Politics4 days ago

IEBC sets new date for presidential re-run

Electoral agency says Wednesday's Supreme Court ruling will impact on its preparations especially with regard to the technology that would...

Advertisement

Trending