Weekly Citizen article on “Raila’s secret spy network”
In his famous book the 48 Laws of Power, author Robert
Green advises those who want to be succesful leaders
to be as cunning as foxeswhen dealing with both friend
and foe. In rule number 14 titled ‘Pose as a friend,
work as a spy’, he states: ‘Knowing about your rival
is critical. Use spies to gather valuable information
that will keep you a step ahead. Better still, play
the spy yourself. In polite social encounters, learn
to probe. Ask indirect questions to get people to
reveal their weakness and intentions. There is no
ocassion that is no opportunity for artful spying.”
Raila Amolo Odinga – the politician affectionately
nicknamed Agwambo by his supporters – is a man who has
perfected this art of spying on both friends and
enemies and the noxious merceneries saga is the latest
and most credible case that has proved claims that the
Lang’ata MP runs a very effective parallel secret spy
THE MP, using this elaborate network, has effectively
infiltrated key state institutions including the
police force which falls under the office of the
president, the sensitive immigration ministry whose
headquarters are at Nyayo House, the Kenya Ports’
Authority, the Registrar of Companies and Kenya
Revenue Authority’s motor vehicle registration
Additionally, the MP, a political strategist of no
mean repute, has a formidable information gathering
machinery whose work is to collect and process as much
intelligence as possible on his real and perceived
For instance, during his political duels with the late
Vice-President Wamalwa Kijana, he enlisted the
services of a Wamalwa kin who had 24-hour access to
Wamalwa to effectively monitor his rival’s activities.
It is said Raila capitalized on the infighting among
the late Senator William Wamalwa’s siblings to achieve
the spying aim. Using the relative, Wamalwa was able
to receive information on which people had spoken to,
where he had slept and the cars he had used.
It should be recalled that Wamalwa was always
ridiculed as a politician who liked watching cartoons,
the favourite being Tom and Jerry. This information
is said to have been passed to the public after Raila
received it from the Wamalwa kin. Indeed Wamalwa
enjoyed watching cartoons, at times at the expense of
very important functions.
And while he served as minister in the Moi cabinet and
untill recently the Kibaki cabinet, raila made sure
that he had all the necessary intelligence on all
ministers, particularly those from Nyanza province
opposed to his politics.
Word has it that last year, a Luo minister warned his
driver and bodyguards to stop associating with Raila’s
bodyguards and drivers. This was after the minister
discovered that Raila’s bodyguards and drivers had a
habit of talking ill of their boss openly, claiming he
was arogant and mean. This was a strategy to get
others talking about their bosses, information that
was passed on to Raila. This way, the enigmatic MP
learnt a lot of secrets on the ministers.
An insider in Raila’s camp says through such networks,
the Lang’ata MP has gathered massive intelligence on
practically all the important politicians in the
“Agwambo knows which politician coughs at night, their
favorite drinks, love affairs, business associates and
investments and of course bank accounts,” said the
insider who did not want to be named.
A shrewd political operative, he has a secret security
network which travels ahead of him during public
functions including weddings and funerals.
The politician has very strong contacts in the media,
ussually at senior management and editorial levels.
These contacts brief him on all the news that touch on
him or his political interests before the information
is made public.
Last week when the alleged Armenian mercenery, Artur
Margayan visited Standard Group offices, Raila aides
were spotted at I&M Buildings in a white Peugeot
vehicle registration KWS 606 an hour before the
controversial businessman arrived. A Lang’ata
councillor, Opete Opete, was also spotted at the press
conference. What he was doing there is anyone’s
The two well-built men kept on talking on mobile
phones and when the alleged mercenery was forced to
flee a lynch mob, one of Raila’s men was heard
communication the information to a second party.
That the government is concerned and worried about
Raila’s information gathering machinery was well
manifested when an immigration officer suspected to
have given Raila details of the Armenians from the
Immigration Department was suspended.
The officer was suspected to have been instrumental in
giving out the photocopies of passports and work
permits of the two controversial brothers.
Copies of the two passports displayed by Raila to the
media indicated that the two men, born in 1970 and
1973 respectively entered Kenya for the first time on
January 23, 2006 and were issued with residence visas
for two years. The passports also show that the two
travelled to Dubai between 2005 and 2006. Weekly
Citizen has information that initially the CID thought
the copies of passports were not genuine and made a
follow-up at Immigration offices. To their suprise,
the copies were of genuine passports.
And to add insult to injury, Raila went ahead to name
the residential house in Runda where the Armenians
were staying beside providing information on a truck
registration KAU 967W that was seen entering and
off-loading materials in the compound before speeding
away with occupants.
Raila’s recent exposes, complete with documentary
proof, is said to have caught top CID officers and the
staff at the National Intelligence Security Services
(NSIS) headquartered at Ruaraka and headed by Michael
According to observers, Raila has penetrated a section
of the country’s intelligence that is giving him
useful information that he has been using to embarass
A second theory has it that a group of influential
personalities who were recently elbowed out of State
House after being fingered by former Ethics PS John
Githongo is on a revenge mission and could be
responsible for the credible adverse information Raila
has been releasing with such devastating effects.
The fallen group which still enjoys sympathy in
various strategic government departments can lay their
hands on confidential government documents including
those at State House.
Last week, state intelligence network were pursuing
ODM luminaries for leads on the merceneries, exposing
how the raid at the KTN studios and the Standard
newspapers at I&M Building and on the Standard press
at Likoni Road was excuted on March 2.
ODM claims that more foreigners among them Tanzanians
including a woman only identified as Shifana are on
the government’s dirty payroll. They have been issued
with police certificates and guns by a CID officer
which they used to plan and raid the Standard.
Police are puzzled that Raila’s network was able to
identify the vehicles used in the raid whose
registration were given as KAQ 010W, KAU 828Y (white
Lexus), and KAP 448Z, a blue Mitsubishi and KAR 4553H,
a green Toyota Prado.
Raila’s underground network has been able to unearth
numbers of several vehicles that are available to
foreigners. They are KAH 980M, a blue Merceded Benz
320; KAS 501S a Mercedes Benz 320; KAQ 010W and KAU
838Y, both white Lexus; KAT 331P, a white Volvo; KAR
453H Toyota Prado Green; KAU 801P, a grey Land Rover
Discovery; KAT 285Y blue Peugeot 406; GK A222H white
Subaru; KAS 847F, a blue Mercedes Benz KAQ 215J; blue
Subaru and KAP 448Z a blue Mitsubishi.
It is suspected Raila has been able to capitalize on
the current infighting among Kibaki close confidantes
to access sensitive information. For example, queries
are being asked how how the fiery MP established that
two officers from the presidential escort unit have
been deployed as bodyguards and drivers to the
Our informant tells us that Raila gets sensitive
information either directly or from close allies in
the business, social and political areas. It is said
that Raila’s information gatherers are to be found on
streets of Nairobu, Mombasa and Kisumu and when they
land on information they either call him directly or
The network, according to sources has to verify
information. For example if news comes in that Kibaki
was planning to visit Kisumu and raila is not aware,
the network immediately starts gathering hints from
close men associated with Foreign Affairs Minister
The reason here is that the president cannot visit
Nyanza without Tuju’s knowledge.
We have established that among politicians Raila has
detailed his men to monitor closely are Prof. George
Saitoti, Uhuru Kenyatta, Kalonzo Musyoka, Nicholas
Biwott, James Orengo, Musalia Mudavadi, Gideon Moi,
Najib Balala, David Musila, Musikari Kombo, William
Ruto, Mukhisa Kituyi, Simeon Nyachae, Raphael Tuju,
Mutula Kilonzo, Fred Gumo and Cyrus Jirongo among
And within Kibaki’s kitchen cabinet, Raila is
interested in the activities of Strategic Planning PS
Stanley Murage, ministers Njenga Karume, Amos Kimunya,
John Michukl and Martha Karua. Francis Muthaura
secretaery to the cabinet and head of the civil
service, George Muhoho, Eddy Njoroge and Joe Wanjui,
Chancellor University of Nairobi.
Within the Asian community, is is said the late road
contractor Sunil Behal alias “Lord Fupi” used to be
Raila’s informer. For now Raila, the man who studied
in the then Communist East Germany gets tips from a
number of Asians in Nairobi who have roots in Kisumu
and are fluent in the Luo language, which they use to
communicate in five-star hotels.
For Raila’s security network, he is said to mostly
depend on ex-air servicemen who were involved in the
1982 coup. It is this group that is said to have been
used as advance party during last year’s referendum
campaigns. Travelling in hired Nissan vans, with
crude weapons, petrol bombs and with mobile phones,
they offered security for ODM luminaries throughout
the hectic campaign period.
Source: Weekly Citizen, March 20-26th, 2006; pp.1-2.
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