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Didimus Barasa: Why I was fired from the army

Kimilili lawmaker Didmus Barasa on Wednesday, July 9, 2021, left mourners in stitches at the burial of Senior Sergeant Stephen Omaran Omale in his constituency.

The deceased was among the eleven KDF officers who died in the grisly crash in Kajiado County on Thursday, June 24.

According to the outspoken Barasa, the late SSGT Omale was a colleague when he served at the Kenya Air Force, only for a blunder to kick him out.

Barasa said that at the time, he spoke better English than most of his colleagues and even convinced some of them to help them get loans which they were supposed to be signed by the senior officer.

“I went in and tried to convince the officer to sign the loans but I think my English was better than his and he did not understand me. He left me in his office alone and I stamped and signed the junior officer’s documents that approved the funds,” he said.

The MP stated that this mistake cost him his job in the Air Force.

“Fortunately, it worked and my friends ended up receiving the loans but the incident ended up costing me my career in the Air Force later in life. I lost my job in the Air Force because of this mistake.”

“I knew Stephen Omale as a friend. We met and worked together in the Kenya Air Force back in 2007, we did the training together, joined the Moi Air Base together, and even joined the Laikipia Air Base together. Interestingly, the person who got me in trouble to the point of being fired from the Air Force is this Stephen and his friends.”

The military aircraft that had 23 occupants crashed on June 24 at Eremet area in Oltinga, Kajiado West.

KDF spokesperson Zipporah Kioko in a statement said the helicopter was on a training mission when it went down and burst into flames.

President Uhuru Kenyatta visited the recuperating soldiers a day after the crash at the KDF Memorial Hospital in Mbagathi, Nairobi.

KDF, however, continues to remain tight-lipped about the crash, with only two statements sufficing as official communication issued publicly.

The cause of the helicopter accident remains unknown so far.

“The injured were airlifted and are at the Defense Forces Memorial Hospital, Nairobi. Regrettably, following the crash, we suffered fatalities. The process of communicating with the families to relay the information and KDF condolences are underway,” reads the statement in part.

KAF identified the 11 soldiers as Warrant officers (WO2) Joshua Obare Odera and Tarcisio Wandera Namboka, Staff sergeant (SSgt) Noah Wanyonyi Munialo, Bob Kipkemoi Aruasa, Anthony Simon Kamuti, Irene Wanjiku Githinji, Sergeant (Sgt) Josphat Muriuki Maingi, Steve Ombuka Angwenyi, Stephen Omarian Omale, Corporal (Cpl) Bonface Ogati Mocheche and Spte Thomas Shekeine.