Denis Itumbi- From a Revered Government Mouthpiece to a Disgraced Fake News Peddler

Dennis Itumbi.

Before mothers in Luo Land began to name their sons Luis Gabriel Moreno Ocampo- Dennis Itumbi was a nonentity who would indulge in petty shop lifting of perfumes.

Then ICC came and he made a name for himself as a whistleblower/blogger at the height of the ICC story. The indictment of Uhuru Kenyatta had introduced legal, political, and communications problems for the candidate and his team. The decision to run for presidency and build an alliance with William Samoei Ruto, another ICC indictee, challenged the status quo of both local politics and the international order of things. Itumbi, as a young, curious blogger with itchy fingers fit right in with one purpose. To disseminate information on-line.

Itumbi furnished with enough material to update the public, like the appointment of Uhuru’s lawyers, legal strategy, and political alignments and re-alignment- slowly became an on line powerhouse.

They say nothing sells like negative publicity-  Itumbi’s  arrest by the Kibaki government in 2012 on suspicion that he had hacked into ICC servers and stolen sensitive information buoyed hi more into the limelight. Even though he didn’t have any sufficient technical knowledge to do such a thing, the ICC insisted that it had been his doing. But everyone in the know knew he wasn’t the true target, just the easiest and most vulnerable one. For the wrongful arrest, he was compensated Sh5 million in January 2018.

When Uhuru took the reins in 2013, Itumbi and a four others were board to form the Presidency’s communications strategic unit. They made mistake after mistake, often publicly and with a frequency that made anyone watching wonder how and why they had gotten the job. They did frequent media interviews, describing their work for the presidency, a mistake that once lost a minister his position during the Moi years.

By July 2016, the President couldn’t handle it anymore. The work of disciplining this rogue unit fell on Nzioka Waita, who had just been headhunted from Safaricom PLC. Waita revoked the PSCU’s access to State House, only telling them to wait until the president returned to the country. As they sat in the cold, denied access to the house they had called home for several years, they must have known that the end was near.

First, he built a new team within State House, starting from the campaigning period from mid-2017. He appointed Kinuthia Mbugua, a former head of the Administration Police and Nakuru Governor, as his new State House Comptroller. He also made Nzioka Waita his Chief of Staff, and even appointed a Deputy Head, PSCU and Head of the Presidential Library. The current holder, Munira Mohammed, occupies a role that has never been made public before, implying that by curating the lives and experiences of his predecessors, Uhuru Kenyatta is trying to shape how his legacy is processed.

Itumbi and his gang have since turned their eyes on campaigning for DP William Ruto. And yesterday, he made a huge blunder.

His attempt to make the wife DP William Ruto, Rachael Ruto, look good boomeranged on Wednesday afternoon after he was caught lying using old pictures.

Itumbi had tweeted pictures of Mrs Ruto next to a caravan full of foodstuffs and other supplies purportedly in the drought -hit Turkana and Baringo Counties.

Two other images showed Mrs Ruto sharing the goodies with some officials.

The pictures, which were posted at 3:40pm, were captioned: “A donation by @MamaRachelRuto in aid of fellow Kenyans facing hunger in Turkana and Baringo drought.”

Mr Itumbi, however, later deleted the post after people questioned why Mrs Ruto had opted to donate detergent to people in dire need of food.

He later offered an apology.

It has now emerged that the pictures were actually taken from a trip the DP’s wife had made in April 2014.

Will he ever return to his glory? Time will tell

Additional Information courtesy of OWAAH

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