NAIROBI, Kenya, May 30- The son of a peasant and self-declared squatters’ spokesperson maybe be dead, but not in the minds of those who knew and believed in him.
The former Kibwezi MP, who also served as an Assistant Minister in former President Mwai’s cabinet, died on Saturday night after suffering cancer-related complications. He was 57.
Whenever he spoke, be it at public rallies, village barazas or at press conferences, Ndile left his listeners in stitches due to his choice of words. He did not mince them.
Besides serving as an Assistant Minister and MP, Ndile was the founder and leader of his Tip Tip political party which had fizzled out prior to his death.
The former MP had joined the Kalonzo Musyoka led Wiper leader.
Transport Chief Administrative Secretary Wavinya Ndeti said of Ndile, “he never feared saying anything. He spoke freely.”
Ndile once engaged Machakos Governor Dr. Alfred Mutua in a war of words, over his restaurant in the County, which is allegedly on riparian land.
Attempts to have the facility closed did not go without a fight.
“I have no hatred with Governor Mutua, but I am also not begging for my rights,” he told journalists at the height of the controversy.
He added, “he has only 2 years and I can close the facility and wait for his term to end. But he should also not open a hotel during the time.”
Wiper Leader Musyoka also hailed Ndile for never mincing his words and his ability to handle weighty political incidents in a comical manner.
“He stood truly for the common person. He did not hide or fear. He would say as he saw it,” Kalonzo said, “This country has lost one of the best political leaders. He was a true representative of the people.”
On corruption, Musyoka said Ndile “had little patience for corruption and was a true representative of the landless people in Kenya.”
He lately asked Deputy President William Ruto to acquire a mirror and use it when he addresses Kenyans on matters corruption.
“This will help him not to forget some things,” Ndile said on April 21.
He once took on former Nairobi Governor Mike Sonko over an alleged debt.
He accused Sonko of having incurred expenses at his hotel facility and never settled the bill.
Sonko denied and went to hurl unkind words at him.
“I have blacklisted you in Nairobi,” Sonko declared.
Realizing that Sonko was not his match, he surrendered saying, “I have left you in hands of God.”
In his message of comfort, President Uhuru Kenyatta described the late Kalembe, 57, as a witty, determined, and practical politician whose rise in life was as a result of sheer hard work.
“It is unfortunate that death has taken from us the Hon Kalembe Ndile in his prime. He was a lively politician who loved and worked with everyone, and always held the interests of the country at heart,” the President said.