, NAIROBI, Kenya, Feb 12 – Jubilee Party on Sunday challenged CORD leader Raila Odinga to respond to claims that he had extorted campaign money from American investor Calvin Burgess who is based in Siaya County.
During a press conference, Head of the Jubilee Party Secretariat Raphael Tuju and Majority leader Aden Duale asked the investigating and prosecuting agencies in the country to examine the allegations made by Burgess.
“We don’t want the sidekicks to speak. No, no, no, we want the Grand Ayatollah to speak. And the Grand Ayatollah in this case is none other than the former Prime Minister,” Duale said.
He said Odinga was popularly known for his “swift and loud to speak character” about other corruption scandals but he has remained quiet about the allegations made by Burgess.
“Raila Odinga the way he calls press conferences in his house, at his office in Upper Hill, we want him to call a press conference and clear the air,” he said.
Tuju asked Odinga and his ‘sidekicks’ to explain how Sh105, 000, 000 was paid to a ‘shady Indian company’ by the name Godavari Enterprises under the guise that it would conduct a feasibility study but instead the money was pocketed by ODM ‘luminaries’.
They both asked the Ethics and Anti Corruption Commission (EACC) and the Directorate of Criminal Investigations (DCI) to investigate allegations made by Burgess.
“This must be a country of laws in all its entirety and not to have enclaves where some people are a government unto themselves extorting money from business and investors and employing ‘thuggery’ on anyone who disagrees with them,” Tuju stated.
Duale also said the Lands Parliamentary committee had summoned Burgess to appear to explain his alleged frustrations by Odinga, his family and party members.
“Mr Burgess should also be accorded the opportunity, protection and immunity to make a statement before a parliamentary committee, EACC and CID,” Tuju said.
It was their allegations that Burgess’ press briefing was disrupted by ODM’s ‘men in black’ in an attempt to conceal the scandal.
Burgess who is the Chief Executive Officer of Dominion Farms in Siaya, in a 22-page document accused Odinga and his political associates of extorting campaign money from him.
He complained that Odinga and his associates had frustrated his business through forms of violence, eviction threats and extortion after he refused to fund his party.