In Summary
  • He said Dr Matiang’i should be left alone and those responsible be held personally accountable given that they are already known.
  • It is said that one of the fraudsters masqueraded as the Interior minister as they tried to con their victim, Mr Ali Zandi, who lost Sh400 million in the scam.

Opposition leader Raila Odinga Friday spilt the beans over the fake-gold scandal only hours after police seized a lorry suspected to be carrying the “mineral” at Jomo Kenyatta International Airport (JKIA).

Speaking in Kisii County, Mr Odinga revealed that he had travelled to the United Arab Emirates (UAE) and met its ruler Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum in Dubai over the scam, which has sucked in the names of President Uhuru Kenyatta and Interior Cabinet Secretary Fred Matiang’i.

“I told the royal ruler that the voice he heard on phone was not that of the minister. I know Matiang’i’s voice and the callers were simply using it to advance their agenda,” said Mr Odinga.

“Matiang’i is as clean as a whistle on this fake-gold saga. Leave him alone,” he added.

Mr Odinga spoke on the eve of fellow opposition leader Moses Wetang’ula’s return to Kenya from an official trip to Hong Kong.

SECURITY

Mr Wetang’ula has been adversely mentioned in the saga after an audio tape was circulated in which someone who sounds like him was heard assuring a member of the Saudi royal family that all was well following the intervention of President Kenyatta, Mr Odinga and Dr Matiang’i and that the gold would be delivered to him.

Mr Wetang’ula is expected to arrive this afternoon after a week-long stay in Hong Kong on official Senate duties.

Director of Criminal Investigations (DCI) George Kinoti is on record stating that the Bungoma senator is a person of interest in the scandal and would be interrogated to shed light on it.

This came as police intercepted more fake gold in a lorry that was trying to escape an operation by detectives at JKIA.

Investigators have been camping at JKIA for the past three days trying to establish if Kenya Airports Authority (KAA) employees are working in cahoots with fraudsters, who have turned the country’s gateway to the world into a haven for criminals.

JKIA is one of the country’s most secure installations and is accorded high security priority by the Ministry of Interior based on its Category One status.

WHISTLEBLOWER

But on Thursday evening, detectives confirmed their fears about lawlessness at the airport when, in the process of a security operation, they intercepted a lorry ferrying suspicious metal boxes out of the airport.

On being questioned, the driver of the Mitsubishi Canter registration number KCH 527T told police that he was ferrying cargo from the airport but declined to say what he was carrying.

The lorry, which we have established belongs to a Dorcas Wanjira Theuri, was then driven under tight police escort to the DCI headquarters.

KAA Managing director Jonny Andersen refused to comment on the investigations or the fake-gold discovery.

“This is an ongoing investigation by the DCI and we cannot comment on it,” he said.

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