There was an attempted coup to depose President Daniel Toroitich Arap Moi on August 1, 1982.

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It was alleged that the aborted coup was designed by then Kenya Air Force officers and a section of opposition politicians who were later arrested, detained or jailed. 

Among the politicians who were accused of masterminding the coup was Raila Odinga, the current Orange Democratic Movement (ODM) party leader. 

Raila was arrested on August 11, while at Prof Oki Ooko Ombaka’s house in Caledonia, Nairobi, and was put in custody in various police stations, where he was tortured as interrogators tried to find out what he knew about the coup. 

On March 24, 1983, Raila, who later served as Prime Minister, was finally put in detention and he would serve in various maximum prisons such as Kamiti, Manyani, Naivasha and Shimo La Tewa. 

But it is at the Shimo La Tewa where he was tortured and held in horrid conditions to a point he decided to go on a hunger strike to protest the inhumane treatment.

A past story published by People Daily indicates that Raila's lawyer Kiraitu Murungi who went to see him at the prison, says he had become 'sick and appeared weak' after going without food for seven days.

He told Kiraitu he had also refused to eat out of fear Moi's government could have plotted to eliminate him by putting poison in his food.

The lawyer noted his client had strong arguments but he had to find a way to convince him to eat since it was a matter of days before he could lose him. 

“If you continue doing this (hunger strike), you are soon going to die my friend,” Kiraitu told Raila as quoted by People Daily.

“Don’t you think Nyayo (Moi’s nickname) will be very happy to see you dead?” the lawyer posed.

Suddenly Raila realised that maybe that was the President's plan and was playing into his hands. There was no way he could grant Moi his wish.

Kiraitu says 'that day Raila enjoyed a sumptuous meal of rice and fried eggs.' The seven-day hunger strike was finally over!

The current Meru Governor made the remarks recently during the launch of a book by his Kisumu counterpart Prof Anyang' Nyong'o at the University of Nairobi.