The guy who lured Sunday Nation reporter Walter Menya into a trap that saw him arrested by six detectives on Sunday has been unmasked.
Nation Media Group, which runs the Sunday Nation, has been trawling the internet and finally found Kennedy Kiprotich Koros’s profile and even photo.
Koros, it turns out, is a paid intern at the Non-Governmental Organisations Coordination Board. By his looks, and if his photo is current, he is by all means a young man in his mid-twenties.
A former student at Egerton University, Mr Koros appears to be a sharp dresser — going by photos seen by the Nation. A former classmate at Egerton described him as a man with the gift of the gab.
Mr Koros supplied Mr Menya with documents to enable him to do a story about civil servants behind a lobby supporting President Uhuru Kenyatta’s re-election campaign, and later facilitated the reporter’s arrest. Calls to Mr Koros’s mobile number were unsuccessful. Mr Mahamed, the boss at the NGO Coordination Board, did not also take calls.
In his communications with Mr Menya, Mr Koros had lied that he works at Bomet Governor Isaac Ruto’s office and ran an NGO but Mr Ruto’s office disowned him. Nation investigations reveal that Mr Koros works at the NGO Board’s corporate affairs department.
A letter seen by the Nation indicates that he was appointed to this position last December by board CEO Fazul Mahamed for six-month contract that commenced on 3rd January, 2017.
Sources at the NGO regulator told Nation that since Sunday, there have been concerted efforts by a senior official of the board to hide the fact that Mr Koros works there, including disabling of the board’s website on Tuesday night.
On Wednesday, the website was blank. It reported no error upon visiting it, but no information was loaded on the page.
However, Nation managed to obtain at least three bits of information from the site through Google’s cache capability, which showed that Mr Koros’s name had featured a couple of times on the board’s website.
One of the pieces of information available is a newsletter from the organisation released on March 1, called The Co-ordinator, where Mr Koros is listed as a public relations official and is the author of the introductory article.
The information about his work at the NGO body contradicts what government investigator Moses Gituathi told a Nairobi court on Monday. While arguing why police should continue detaining Mr Menya, Mr Gituathi, a police corporal, at one point said the money allegedly demanded by Mr Menya was too high.
“The complainant [Mr Koros] is a young man who is unemployed and it was not easy for him to obtain the Sh50,000.
Because he was eager for his information to be published, he promised that he would pay the Sh50,000,” said the prosecutor. In an audio of the alleged conversation between Menya and Koros that posted on social media, Koros is heard trying very much to have Menya ask for the money as an incentive to have the article published.
Mr Menya is now a free man after Senior Principal Magistrate Martha Mutuku on Tuesday ordered that he be released by police without any bond terms. Mr Menya had spent Sunday and Monday night in police cells as prosecutors sought to charge him for what they claimed was extortion.
No charge on Menya
A statement from police spokesman George Kinoti on Sunday claimed that Mr Menya demanded Ksh50,000 to write a story that was published on Page 12 of the June 18 edition of the Sunday Nation.
The lobby group that Mr Menya had reported about is registered as a non-governmental organisation regulated by the body under which Mr Koros works. By Tuesday, prosecutors had found no charge to press against Mr Menya. The Director of Public Prosecutions, Mr Keriako Tobiko, then asked that the file be taken to him while the journalist is set free. (Copyright: Daily Nation)