Monday, October 08, 2007
Dangerous Trip (Kenya Betrayed)
Nairobi - early December 2004 ………
“Frau Briner, we are now facing the most dangerous part of your visit to Kenya.”
Those words, dropping off the lips of the German Ambassador, sent shockwaves down my spine. I knew that I was up against an old enemy. A ruthless, proven killer.
But as the events of the last couple of hours had demonstrated, there was an even more dangerous enemy in the mix now. A man who wanted to conceal certain details of his private life forever. Secrets which I knew and could therefore talk about and with this could eventually endanger his up to now peaceful retirement.
“So ….. how do we handle this?” I therefore asked, as I was watching how an employee of the Embassy was depositing my luggage into the trunk of this armored vehicle which the German Ambassador had put at my disposal.
The Ambassador looked down. “I have arranged with my personal Military Escort at the Embassy to accompany you to the Jomo Kenyatta International Airport. And because it’s a good forty-five kilometers drive from here, I would not be surprised if the marauding murderers come after you, even may try to blow up this car as you cruise down Uhuru Highway. To be on the safe side, we have also decided that another member of my Security Personnel will accompany you. It is a woman and she is blonde like you. This will put some doubts since like that there will be two blonde women in the car and it will be difficult to find out which is the right one …..
But in any case, it is very important that you remain calm. Whatever happens, keep your practiced Swiss poise. ”
He then looked her straight in the eye, “Listen, Mrs. Briner. I shouldn’t tell you this, but because I understand how frightful this whole situation is for you, I will.” He looked around, “Look careful at this car – it’s equipped with the latest German-built explosives. They have a five-kilometer range and they have heat sensors. When they are fired, they follow the heat emission of the object they are intended to hit and blow it up upon contact. They have a proven enviable track record.”
When I nodded grimly, he continued, “What I am saying, Mrs. Briner, is that the goons have no chance against us. You will get to the airport …… just make sure you follow the advice of the Military Escort carefully.”
I still had some doubts if we would really make it. He had only minutes ago given me the copy of a letter in which Nicholas Biwott’s lawyers had asked the Committee and the Police to prohibit me to leave the country and if possible even to arrest me. It verbally said: ‘She has to be punished’ and further: ‘We are already in the process to prepare a case against her for lying under oath’ – meaning my evidence in front of the Parliamentary Select Committee set up to investigate the circumstances which led to the murder of Dr. Robert Ouko in 1990.
And knowing Biwott the way I did, I knew he would do everything possible to make this threat come true – and I was not alone with this judgment about him.
Also the German Ambassador felt that I was in danger and had contacted his Superiors in Berlin to get the permission to protect me and to make sure that I could leave the country unharmed.
And then he had added that he would do everything in his power that I was not joining the list of so many other witnesses who had lost their lives during the last years. It was estimated that their number had in the meantime reached more than 100 …..
I felt that also he still continued being worried, so I risked a small smile, “I trust you and I trust your personnel – so let’s all hope that nothing happens.”
Before he could reply, a blue Volvo appeared at the first Security Gate and as soon as the guard opened the second gate, the Volvo roared past it and then came to a screeching halt next to the armored vehicle.
To be continued tomorrow
Posted by Chris at 12:05 PM