Tom Mboya and Jaramogi Oginga Odinga were NOT friends. Yes, I know you saw him in the video clips that I placed in yesterday's Mboya post attending the funeral, but the truth is that the two were sworn enemies.
In fact in a way it is probably this bitter rivalry that cost Mboya his life in that this brilliant politician did not see the fact that immediately he eliminated Jaramogi Oginga Odinga from the political scene, it would put his own life in grave danger.
It was probably one of the few times when Mboya was so obsessed with a political enemy that he placed his better judgement aside.
Mboya's biographer David Goldsworthy puts it thus;
"Tom Mboya fought the arduous power struggle of 1964-66 with masterful technique and a quite chilling implacability. He fought to win, of course, but more than that, he fought to eliminate his opponents from the contest entirely. He fought by nothing less than zero-sum rules: Winner take all and crush the loser."
Goldsworthy goes on to say clearly that after Mboya had effectively dealt with Oginga Odinga, the period 1967 to 1969 was one where the Kenyan political scene was a battlefield between Mboya and the Kikuyu inner circle Kenyatta had surrounded himself with. The most visible members of that group were Mbiyu Koinange, Dr Njoroge Mungai and Charles Njonjo.
We all know how that battle ended up. So who killed Tom Mboya and why?
Every patriotic Kenyan should join in asking this question, because in answering it, we will get to the root of political assassinations in Kenya and indeed bring them to an end by sending a very clear message to any would-be government or powerful brokers-sponsored assassinations of the future.
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