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Why Robert Ouko was once referred to as 'Mr president'

Ouru David
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Robert ouko addressing the 37th session of the UN General Assembly in New York in 1982.[Photo-nation.co.ke]

The late and former Foreign Affairs minister, Robert Ouko was once sarcastically referred to as ''Mr. President" by the late Nicholas Biwott before his death.

During his time as the Foreign Affairs minister, Mr. Robert Ouko gained so much foreign recognition. He was considered as a very intelligent man who knew well how to interact and associate with people from a diverse culture.

His prowess and eloquence in the English language portrayed him as one of the intelligent public servants in the then Moi government.

However, his Washington trip that took place between the 29th of Jan and 2nd of February 1990 did not go well with some figures in the Moi government.

According to Truth Justice and Reconciliation Commission(TJRC) report, Robert Ouko was among the 84 Kenyan delegates who attended the National Prayer Breakfast with President George Bush and other world leaders.

"Since it was a not considered an official state visit, President Moi was unable to get a private audience with the president of the United State of America," the TJRC report says.

Quoting a report by Scotland Yard, the TJRC report said Ouko privately met Bush in the absence of the Kenyan deligation. Something that caused jitters in the Moi regime.

"The meeting apparently caused a great rift between Ouko and Biwott, with Biwott sarcastically referring to Ouko as ''Mr. President'' and the two having public arguments in the presence of other delegation members," the TJRC report says.

After the altercation, Ouko was later suspended from his official duties, passport confiscated and stripped off his official car and private security.

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