To some individuals, Sirisia MP John Waluke is just too forthright for his personal good. To others, he seems naive. Some suppose he’s artful and politically adept.
However none of that can assist him, after he was convicted of graft and sentenced to 67 years in jail, if he fails to pay a effective of greater than Sh1 billion, in relation to a Sh314 million Nationwide Cereals and Produce Board maize scandal.
His crimes apart, Waluke, for many who know him, is a down-to-earth, good-natured particular person, who, in contrast to most of his colleagues, eschews ostentatious shows of energy. Perhaps these attributes emanate from the self-discipline cultivated in him when he served within the navy.
However after participating the person, one at all times walks away with a break up conclusion about his character: he’s both a really trustworthy man or naive.
You see, he’s maybe the one MP who has had the braveness to face TV cameras and declare that he acquired some monetary inducement to simply accept the alteration of a report of a committee on which he served.
After all, he by no means revealed the committee or the report, however his open declaration that MPs routinely obtain cash to behave in a sure means of their line of responsibility was unprecedented and says one thing concerning the man.
“Let’s be trustworthy,” he declared on NTV in 2017. “No MP ought to let you know that he has by no means acquired cash to change a committee report. We obtain as a lot as Sh100,000,” he mentioned.
Whether or not this sort of shoot-from-the-hip confession is honesty or naivety is topic to interpretation, however that’s the portrait the person has constructed since he first received into Parliament in 2013.
Within the corruption case that lastly proved to be his Waterloo, Waluke would, on the day of his courtroom look, get out of Parliament and take a stroll to the Milimani courts. He would stroll via the ever-crowded Uhuru Park, in style with the unemployed. Regardless that he has the providers of a police bodyguard, he by no means used it.
A video of Waluke protesting the standard of tea served in Parliament’s restaurant did its rounds and attracted all method of feedback. The irony right here is that he’s a client of black lemon tea. Simply how the absence of milk affected him to the extent of staging the protest continues to be a thriller. One other occasion of the person’s sense of honesty, or naivety, performed out in 2014 simply after an Al-Shabaab terror assault that left almost 70 individuals lifeless in Mpeketoni.
Whereas ODM chief Raila Odinga linked the assault to the fear group and requested the federal government to withdraw Kenya Defence Forces from Somalia, President Uhuru Kenyatta’s view was that the killings had been a product of native political networks, focusing on one neighborhood
An ODM lawmaker on the time, confused glances had been exchanged when he confirmed up at a press convention alongside a gaggle of Jubilee MPs led by then majority leaders Kithure Kindiki (Senate) and Aden Duale (Nationwide Meeting). The MPs had convened the briefing to name out Odinga over his demand to withdraw the KDF from Somalia, arguing that it was a part of his scheme to undermine nationwide safety.
“We now have at all times suspected that ODM is Al-Shabaab and AlShabaab is ODM,” Kindiki thundered as he questioned Odinga’s calls.
“That’s not true,” Waluke hit again from the midst of the lawmakers even earlier than Kindiki may full the sentence. He wasn’t alleged to be there. He didn’t know what their message was. Waluke had simply walked together with his colleagues to the press convention.
Watching throughout his sentencing on Thursday, one received the impression that there’s a probability that the MP might be a sufferer of a much bigger conspiracy, which could have been too sophisticated for his comprehension. However as a result of he’s an trustworthy, if not naive, man, he performed alongside.
There are those that acquired even bigger sums of cash within the deal. They had been neither in courtroom nor talked about. Perhaps, simply perhaps, a very good man has been pressured to hold the cross for different modern operatives.