Langa’ta MP Phelix Odiwour, popularly known as Jalang’o, has decided not to pursue legal action against Citizen Weekly, despite the publication of a defamatory article implicating him, Tranz Nzoia Senator Allan Chesang, and Nyaribari Chache MP Zaheer Jhanda. In a recent interview with an online media outlet, the former comedian explained that he had changed his mind about pursuing a lawsuit against the newspaper due to its history of disseminating false information about prominent individuals.
Jalang’o expressed his frustration with what he referred to as a “rogue media” and stated that the newspaper had a habit of publishing negative stories about various individuals. He firmly asserted the innocence of himself and his colleagues, emphasizing that they conducted their business ethically and diligently. He also questioned the credibility of the article, deeming it mere clickbait devoid of substance.
Initially, Jalang’o and his associates had sent demand letters to blogger Cyprian Nyakundi and Citizen Weekly following allegations that they were involved in a Kshs1 billion fake gold scam. In an earlier statement, the Lang’ata MP had vowed to take legal action against the publication, expressing his determination to hold it accountable for its actions.
However, Nyakundi, the controversial blogger, later revealed that he had received demand letters from the three politicians but expressed no fear of going to court. He welcomed the legal action and asserted that it was essential for Kenyans to scrutinize the sources of their wealth, including the politicians in question.
Nyakundi’s lawyer, Donald Kipkorir, was poised to handle these legal matters, according to the blogger. He asserted that the suits lacked legal and factual basis.
The fake gold scam at the center of the controversy involves a Tunisian businessman who nearly fell victim to a fraudulent transaction. The scheme took place within a luxurious house located in the renowned Garden Estate, where the Tunisian allegedly met with the fraudsters. The Directorate of Criminal Investigations (DCI) subsequently discovered counterfeit gold and fake U.S. dollar notes within the premises, which were believed to underpin their illicit business.
It is worth noting that this is not the first time that Zaheer Jhanda, one of the politicians implicated in the scandal, has faced accusations of involvement in fraudulent activities. He was previously embroiled in a scam involving Sh1 billion worth of gold back in 2019.