Exclusive: Calvince Okoth – Why I was nicknamed Gaucho
Bunge la Mwananchi President Calvince Okoth alias Gaucho has revealed the origin of his popular nickname.
Speaking exclusively to Nairobi News, vocal political mobiliser said people nicknamed him Gaucho back in 2007 for his skills in football.
“I am a good football player. After dropping out of school in class six due to economic hardship, I travelled from my rural home in Rongo to Nairobi. My main goal was to find a football club, join and earn a living through it,” Gaucho told Nairobi News.
However, upon his arrival in Nairobi, things got tougher and he found himself among a ‘gang’ that played football in Korogocho slums.
“The group loved my playing skills and they allowed me to join their team,” he recalls.
Later, Guacho relocated to Mkuru slums where he made friends with other young ghetto football players.
“We used to train daily and because of my skills, my buddies nicknamed me Gaucho,” he said.
To his peers his football skills were similar to those of Brazilian legend, Ronaldo de Assis Moreira, who also goes by the name Ronaldinho Gaúcho.
And that is how the nickname stuck.
However, he revealed that he had to quit football because it was not putting a meal on his table.
“There was no need for training and having a big name yet you are unable to pay your rent. At that time my rent was only Sh1,550. This is why I opted to do other things.”
Gaucho recalled the frustrations he and his peers were subjected while trying to chase their football dream and how many football teams ‘killed’ his dream of becoming a renowned football player.
“For years, we kept on knocking doors on football clubs without success. I slept on an empty stomach not once, not twice. So I gave up on my football dream,” he told Nairobi News.
Gaucho came to limelight after last year’s General Election. He started out by organizing Bunge la Mwananchi press conferences at Jeevanjee Gardens.
He has also become a person of interest in the country following his involvement in Azimio la Umoja – One Kenya Coalition anti-government protests to push the government to lower the cost of living in the country.
He frequently hangs out with political bigwigs such as retired President Uhuru Kenyatta, ODM leader Raila Odinga and Wiper Party leader Kalonzo Musyoka among other Azimio luminaries.