(Continued from Potiphar’s Wife III)
The gunfight goes on for five intense minutes. When all is quiet, four police officers cautiously rise from cover. Two of their colleagues, including the Superintendent, are dead. One of the living four is wounded. The Bishop has a bullet wound on his chest and is bleeding profusely. Nancy is surprisingly not hurt and crying at the Bishop’s side. One of the cops calls an ambulance.
Nobody has seen the face of any of the attackers. They have laid a perfect ambush, catching the policemen by complete surprise. This was meant to be a high profile arrest with little resistance. It is rare for high end criminals to resist arrest, because that would mean remaining as out laws. Most prefer to fight the system from within, by corrupting judges and law enforcement officers. While some low end criminals engage police in gun battles, a rescue operation like the one that has just happened is unheard of.
Tellingly Mwangoye and Kumar have vanished into the thin air.
President Hellen Lerose sits quietly in her office at State House. With her are most trusted confidantes; State House Chief of Staff Jane Auma, Chief of Staff of the Kenya Defense Forces General James Mwangi, Head of the National Intelligence Service General Jacinta Kobia, Head of Public Service Andrew Kingi, The Inspector General of Police Martin Okello and the DCI Francis Were.
A political storm is looming, and the President knows it. Her ties with Mwangoye are going to be scrutinized. The opposition will have a field day. Even elements in her own party, those who had vowed in the last nominations that the party cannot be led by a woman will be looking on with glee.
Hellen knows that she carries the weight of womanhood on her shoulders. As the first female Head of State, her mistakes are not seen as her mistakes: they are seen as reasons why women are not fit to lead the nation. Instead of fighting that notion, she has used it to push the same agenda: describing her triumphs as more reasons why women are more than capable to lead. The triumphs have been many. The economy is growing in double digits. Terrorists are unheard of these days.
Fighting corruption is her biggest triumph. Her first agenda when she was elected was to get a new Economic Crimes Act enacted. The new, wide-eyed, inexperienced MPs passed it easily. They had not yet gotten to know their way around the capital to get their hands dirty. The Act is biting hard. There is a special Economic Crimes Division in the Judiciary now, all the way from Magistrates’ Courts to the Court of Appeal. The Supreme Court in a landmark ruling held that it has no jurisdiction over Economic Crimes. Cases are being tried and completed within a year, much less if there are no appeals. Stolen Assets are being recovered. The President’s approval ratings are over the roof.
But the Mwangoye fiasco is threatening to tear all that down.
“Jacinta, do your people know where these characters fled to?”
“No, Madam President. But we suspect that they are heading to Somalia. My agents have established a link between Kumar and Al Shabaab. We believe she has been hiding in Somalia since her last apprehension two years ago.”
There is a protest going on along State House Road. Not a large one, but attracting enough busybodies to create a disturbance if not handled properly. The President knows that she should address the Nation. But she has nothing to say.
“Andrew, how is the Bishop?”
“Stable, but still unconscious. He is still in the ICU but doctors say he has a fighting chance.”
General Jacinta’s phone rings and everyone stares at her as she picks it.
“Madam President, we have a problem,” the General says solemnly.
“What is it, Jacinta?”
“Someone has released a video on YouTube. On it a masked man says Kenya will pay because you allowed your officers to try and arrest Mwangoye. But that is not the problem. The problem is that he is claiming that Mwangoye’s network financed your campaign on the understanding that you would leave them alone.”
“What network is that?” the President asks.
“My agents tell me that Mwangoye seems to be the head of an organized crime group called the Network.”
The President smiles, drawing confused looks from her advisors.
“That fool Mwangoye actually contributed to my campaign. They have laid the perfect trap for me. James, we still have soldiers in Somalia right?”
“Yes, Madam President.”
“Good. Track down the two criminals and bring them back here. Alive. Jacinta will help you with all the intelligence you need if military intelligence is not sufficient. Send in more soldiers if you have to.”
“Madam President I do not think…”
“That is an order, General,” the President says, giving her friend a hard stare.
“Of course Madam President. I will get it done.”
“Jacinta, I want to find all the members of the Network and have them arrested. Coordinate with the IG and the DCI because I want some arrests today, now that your agents have unearthed the network. Jane, get the communications team to start working on my address. I will be addressing the nation after someone has been arrested.”
She rises and leaves the room, looking every inch the Commander-in-Chief.
It is morning, and the President is getting nervous. Neither of the Generals has a report to share. The communications team has a draft speech but it depends on a positive report from either of the Generals.
She is pacing up and down in her office. Calls for her impeachment are getting louder. Her aide de camp comes in with a pot of coffee.
“Madam President everything will be alright. Here, take the coffee.”
“Thank you, Colonel. Sit, take the coffee with me.”
She serves two cups of coffee. The President is popular around State House because of her simplicity. Serving her guests, including her employees and officers under her command, is one of the things that amazes the military people like Colonel Wadime.
As they sit to have the coffee, her phone rings.
It is General Jacinta calling.
“Madam President I have some news. My agents and the military intelligence have hacked into the cellular network that Mwangoye and Kumar are using. Kumar has just made a call.”
“The Deputy President.”
“What! No, Vincent cannot betray me.”
“He wants you removed Madam President. I have the transcript of the call. He wants to be President without an election.”
The Deputy President is taking breakfast with his family when a security officer steps in and whispers to his ear.
“Please excuse me,” he tells his wife and steps out.
“What emergency are you talking about?” the DP asks the guard when they are out of the room.
“I have no idea, Your Excellency. The President just told us that she needs your immediate presence at State House.”
Vincent thinks for a while. Why didn’t the President just call him? She must be panicking. The poor woman considers him her most trusted political ally. He needs to play his cards carefully. He hops into one of the vehicles and they leave for Statehouse.
The President stares at him without talking.
“Do you know what treason is, Vincent?”
“I think I do Madam President. Why do you ask?”
“Then you should know that aiding an enemy of the State with the aim of overthrowing an elected government is treason. You are facing the death sentence, Vincent.”
“You are making a mistake Madam President. If you jail me, the nation will burn.”
The President smiles. She picks a remote control device and switches on a television. The station that comes alive is running a headline about the Deputy President’s treason.
“No nation will burn, Vincent. If your fellow criminals try to brew trouble I will have all of them arrested and prosecuted. Colonel, have this criminal taken out of my sight and tell Jane I am ready to address the Nation.”
After the Deputy President is arrested, the President addresses a press conference from State House. She has hardly gone beyond the first paragraph of her written statement when one of the soldiers standing guard nearby raises his weapon and fires at her from close range.
In Parklands, another assassin his making his way to the Aga Khan Hospital to finish off the Bishop. He knows too well that with the President’s assassination taking place, all focus will be on State House. Assassinating the man of God will be easy, and his employer, Dorothy, will easily seize the leadership of the church and the Bishop’s wealth.
[End of the free part of the story. To read the whole story and find out what becomes of President Hellen, the Bishop and Peter, follow the instructions below to purchase your copy of the novella at only Kshs. 100]
To purchase a copy of Potiphar’s Wife (or any of the other books in our e-bookstore), you can follow either one of three ways:
- MPESA Automated Digital Payment Method. Log in to the bookstore- register if you are new-(https://www.maroncha.com/book-store ). Select the book. Add to cart, check out then pay by inserting your number on the space provided then clicking ‘confirm’. You will be able to download instantly from the bookstore. A copy will also be automatically sent to your email.
- Pay Via Till Number. Log in to the bookstore- register if you are new-(https://www.maroncha.com/book-store ). Select the book. Add to cart, check out then pay via the Buy Goods Till Number provided. Once you get the message from MPESA, insert the MPESA code on the space provided then click ‘Validate Code’. You will be able to download instantly from the bookstore. A copy will also be automatically sent to your email.
If you are completely unable to use the above two methods, you can still purchase your copy manually. The only disadvantage of this method is that you will have to wait for a few hours before you get your copy. But eventually it will come.
- Pay Kshs. 100 to Buy Goods Till Number 297264 and send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org (or DM Sanctuary Side on Facebook) stating your MPESA name. Use the name of the book as the subject of your email. If you send a DM to Sanctuary Side on Facebook, kindly also include your email address. I will send your copy once I verify your payment.
Remember you can always DM Sanctuary Side on Facebook or email me at email@example.com if you have a query or feedback.
The next story begins on Tuesday. See you all then.