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Exclusive: Gaucho reveals his past criminal life

Bunge la Mwananchi President Calvince Okoth, popularly known as Gaucho, has revealed how the absence of a parental figure in his life landed him in ‘trouble’ while growing up.

Speaking exclusively to Nairobi News, Gaucho narrated how he dropped out of school in class six and found his way from his rural home in Rongo, Migori County to Nairobi.

“I had Sh1,800 and I decided to travel to Nairobi. I knew things would be hard but I was determined to make it in life,” Gaucho recounted.

Because he knew no one in Nairobi, he boarded a number 14 bus which took him in Dandora.

“I looked around but it was not a place I desired to stay. This was around 2003. Luckily, I met one of my old friends who decided to host me in Korogocho.”

Because he loved football, he would walk around and play with his peers within the estate.

Also read: Gaucho – Lessons I’ve learnt from my arrests

“One day, as I was walking around, I found myself in Korogocho Primary School. I saw well-dressed youth playing football. I asked their coach if I could join them,” he recounted.

He said he was attracted by how the boys who were dressed in Kaunda suits seemed to have made it in life.

“Because I was a good player, they allowed me to join them. What I didn’t know at the time was that I had joined bad company. They were just playing football as a cover-up for their criminal ways.”

One evening after a vigorous training session, he was kicked out by the friend he was living with.

“I spent the night outside in a mkokoteni. In the middle of the night, I heard noises. The residents were chasing thieves. From a distance, I heard some voices and a bright torch shone on me. I didn’t know they were the very boys I had trained together with that evening. I heard someone say that I should be shot dead there nd then,” Gaucho narrated.

Also read: Gaucho – I am fighting for economic revolution, not political popularity

“However, when they moved closer, they saw me and told me to get up. They asked me what I was doing outside and I explained my predicament to them. One of them offered to host me. That is how I found myself in a gang,” Gaucho narrated.

“They told me that their main job is stealing. I had never stolen anything, but I was trained to be a ‘smart thief. Through them, I was now a thief,” he recalls.

From then, he hanged out with the bad boys and mugging was the order of the day. It was only after he saw death with own his eyes that Gaucho decided to change his ways.

“I would say I am lucky. Almost all my fellow gang members have died. Most of them were killed by the police. I was tired of this kind of life and decided to change,” he said.

Also read: Why Police arrested Bunge la Mwananchi president Calvince Gaucho