Kiambu County Governor Ferdinand Waititu Babayao is in a corner, his nuts in a tight political grip. And the vultures, smelling blood, are circling the county headquarters, as suspect budget allocations bloody the burly politician’s nose.
While some residents want Waititu arrested and prosecuted, the county boss is not shaken at the prospect of evacuating his dinner in a smelly police cell bucket as happened in 2016.
Then, together with fellow MPs Johnson Muthama, Timothy Bosire, Junet Mohammed, Florence Mutua, Aisha Jumwa, Moses Kuria and Kimani Ngunjiri, Babayao was flung into Pangani Police Station for ‘hate speech’.
The governor insists he has done nothing wrong to warrant his arrest. He believes those who wish him doom cannot fathom his meteoric rise in politics, as well as his ability to mint money and accumulate wealth through ‘honesty and hard work’.
Waititu says long before plunging into politics, he was a relatively rich man and that politics only helped him expand his business empire to the envy of political detractors like his predecessor, William Kabogo, and his deputy, James Nyoro.
Describing himself as an entrepreneur with a nose for opportunities in the most unlikely areas, Waititu maintains he makes millions collecting garbage and selling some of his plots scattered in Nairobi’s Eastlands.
“I am a self-made tycoon, having been a garbage collector in the city through Bins Management Service. I am not a poor man as portrayed by my political enemies,” says Waititu, dismissing allegations that he is a corrupt man who is benefitting from his position as governor. He says people assume he is daft and therefore deserves to be poor.
“Mimi nilijipanga kitambo kabla niingie siasa wakati nilikua nauza mchanga (I started making money selling sand long before I switched to politics),” says Waititu.
He has frequently faced graft claims. Some in Kiambu accuse him of raiding county coffers and using the proceeds to enrich himself.
Last year, he bought Delta Hotel along University Way and Jamii Bora Building on Koinange Street, both in Nairobi.
Before the suspect budget allocations were uncovered recently by senators grilling the governor, rumours doing the rounds were that Waititu had bought a house in Runda.
He did not dismiss the claims, instead he retorted back…