By Baraka Karama and Brian Okoth
Eston Barack Mbaja, the younger brother of the Late Minister of Foreign Affairs, Robert Ouko, has died aged 79.
Mbaja’s brother, Maurice Seda, told K24 Digital Tuesday that Barack died on Monday, August 17 while receiving treatment at a United States of America (USA) hospital.
“His wife and children, who live with him in the US, took him to hospital last week after he suffered a stroke,” said Seda, adding: “Sadly, my brother succumbed to the stroke yesterday (Monday, August 17).”
“Plans are underway to have his body flown to Kenya for burial. He will be laid to rest in Nyahera, Kisumu West Sub-County.”
Mbaja, who is survived by a wife and four children, lived in Tacoma, a mid-sized urban port city and the county seat of Pierce County, Washington.
In previous interviews, Mbaja claimed he knew who killed John Robert Ouko, whose mutilated body was found on February 16, 1990 at the foot of Got Alila, 2.8 kilometers from Ouko’s ancestral home in Muhoroni, Kisumu County.
Mbaja said — in the past interviews — that Ouko hurriedly scrawled a note saying he was being taken to see high government officials, including one he had accused of corruption, as a last act before he was found brutally murdered.
Mbaja said Ouko’s note said that on February 13, 1990, four men had come to take him to then-Energy Minister Nicholas Biwott and Hezekiah Oyugi, who was the permanent secretary for state internal security in the office of President Daniel arap Moi.
″That was the last time my brother was seen alive until the president announced that his body was discovered a few kilometers from his home, shot and burned beyond recognition,” Mbaja said in a sworn affidavit submitted to a judicial commission in Kenya. The affidavit which has not been made public in Kenya.
Ouko’s scorched, mutilated body was found near his farm at the foot of Got Alila three days later.
Although Moi enlisted Britain’s Scotland Yard to investigate the murder, the former Foreign Affairs minister’s killing remains unresolved to date.
Mbaja, in an interview about the affidavit from his Tacoma home where he lived after fleeing Kenya, said he believed Biwott and Oyugi were involved in his brother’s murder, although did not have direct proof. He swore in the affidavit that Oyugi was involved in a cover-up effort.
In the interview, Mbaja also accused the president of failing to seriously investigate the killing.