Former Kakamega Senator Boni Khalwale has rushed in to defend former Sports Cabinet Secretary Rashid Mohamed Echesa. The embattled Echesa has been followed by several accusations since his sacking. On Sunday night, armed police officers raided his Karen home in search of guns where they took his beretta Pistol and recovered 15 bullets.
However, Khalwale argues that since Echesa was appointed as Minister for Sports and Heritage a year ago, he has been close to him and that they have been corresponding.
Khalwale further cites that Echesa has not confided in him about how he was conducting his office and affairs of his ministry.
Speaking in an interview with a local daily, Khwalale said that Echesa deserves justice, like anyone else, and therefore if there is any suspicion of wrongdoing, he should not be humiliated.
“Echesa is a young politician and those rumours and innuendo can hurt his political progression in life. Concerning his ejection from the Cabinet, Echesa deserves fair treatment as well. But justice does not necessarily mean that if he is in the wrong Echesa should be excused,” said Khalwale.
“It simply means that he should be given justice that he deserves. I can comment without fear that justice should also include treatment similar to that which his predecessors have been given,” he added.
All of Echesa’s predecessors have received soft landings upon their loss of Cabinet secretary Secretary positions.
“This soft landing is not a tradition that started yesterday. Even during the reign of President Daniel Moi, high-ranking government officials, including ministers, had always been let down gently,” argues Khalwale.
According to Khalwale, Echesa deserves a soft landing just like his other colleagues.
“As late as last week, we even saw the Inspector General of Police Joseph Boinnet get a soft landing as Chief Administrative Secretary in the Ministry of Tourism and Wildlife — on the very day he was exiting office,” he said.
“That is why I am talking about justice. Silence and failure to do justice for Echesa will definitely send the wrong message. It will also fuel the rumour that there is something wrong with him as a person or about his conduct. That would be unfair.”
He further argues that the position of minister in the country is a very highly-placed posting that requires its occupants be treated with the dignity that they deserve.