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DETAILS OF OFFICER WHO HIT RAILA ON HEAD WITH WOODEN STICK AND WHY

Raila Odinga was tortured and held in horrid conditions after the aborted 1982 coup. He described how he was tortured and illegally detained by officer Josiah Kipkurui Rono under the Moi regime.

He says in his autobiography The Flame of Freedom that he played only a limited role in the attempted coup designed by then Kenya Air Force officers to depose President Moi.

The manhandling was in the hands of Special Branch in their offices on University Way at Central Police station and later on at Muthangari Police Station, CID and GSU headquarters.

Raila described how an officer named Josiah Kipkurui Rono and his team tortured him severely while trying to extract a confession from him and what he knew about the coup.

His reluctance to give any information regarding the coup angered Mr Josiah Kipkurui Rono who broke the leg of a wooden table and slammed it repeatedly on Raila’s head and shoulders.

“The blows to my head dazed me and I fell to the floor, and as I lay there, Rono and the others jumped on my chest and my genitals.

Through the blinding pain, I heard them cock their guns, then Rono’s voice: I was either going to speak and tell the truth or I was dead meat. I waited for the end… But it did not come,” he writes.

He was later taken to cells and for days he was tortured in water-logged cells at the ruthless hands of the Special Branch officers. His efforts to sleep in the cells were futile due to the cold since his sweater and shoes were taken away by the officers.

The torture continued with Mr Ben Gethi, the then Commissioner of Police, came in person to interrogate Raila Odinga. Gethi was always drunk while interrogating Raila and chewed disgustingly on a roasted goat leg.

Raila was however not cowed and their plan to force confession failed terribly. He has since grown to be one of the most respected Kenyan politicians.

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