Embakasi East MP Babu Owino has on Sunday revealed that it has been 6 months since he last took alcohol in what he has termed as a journey to become a better person. The MP took a break from his regular online classes for secondary school students to publish an emotive video on his social media pages asking Kenyans to forgive his shortcomings and empathise with him in his personal journey, ”In the course of my duties I have been engaging you (Kenyans) on various platforms on social media and I sense your anger. I sense that some of you are so hurt. I sense that some of you are disappointed with me. I am a human being like you. I am not perfect”, he implored. The former SONU chair seemed to be making reference to a shooting incident in which he was involved in resulting in public anger and calls for justice for the victim – Felix Orinda, more popularly known as DJ Evolve.
He narrated his life story as a young boy growing up in the slums where his mother had to sell illicit brew in order to feed, clothe and educate him and his siblings. ”I grew up in Nyalenda slums, and I know what it means to grow up in the slums. I know what it means to go without food. I know the pain you feel when you can’t afford medication…my mum raised me in the slums selling where we were selling changaa. She did not sell changaa because she loved it. She did it because she wanted us to get an education and food. It was the only source of living we had. In the course of me selling changaa, I remember this one time when policemen came to arrest us in the house. During that period, the policemen would come and beat people in our house and in that process, I would witness people, including my mum, being whipped”.
He also recalled the first time he took alcohol, ”I remember the first time I tasted changaa. I was 8 years old. I did it because that was the norm”. He also said that police would routinely come and arrest members of his family and take them to Kisumu central police station because of the changaa business, saying that such challenges contributed in shaping who he was and who he had become. He, however, said that he was committed to continuous self-improvement, ”…and that is why it has been six months and nine days since I last touched alcohol. I regurlarly pray and fellowship with my wife who has a fellowship group and I am looking inwards to become a better person”.