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Deya: I’ll never return to Kenya

Friday November 27 2009

Kenya's Prime Minister Raila Odinga (center) in a past photo with the family of Archbishop Gilbert Deya (second left). PHOTO/ FILE

Kenya's Prime Minister Raila Odinga (center) in a past photo with the family of Archbishop Gilbert Deya (second left). PHOTO/ FILE 

By GITAU wa NJENGA in LONDON

Embattled London-based Kenyan preacher Gilbert Deya, who is wanted in Kenya on child trafficking charges, on Friday said he was protected by international law and would never return to Kenya despite the government’s spirited efforts to have him extradited.

“I am protected by the UK and international law,” said Deya, 56, in an exclusive interview with the Saturday Nation.

“The media has been reporting on my extradition from the UK since 2004, but I’m still here. I’m not going anywhere. My home is here in the UK and the Kenyan authorities can do nothing about it,” said Deya, who spoke to by telephone from his Peckham offices in South London.

Deya’s comments would be seen as a mockery of UK criminal justice and come four days after his adopted son, Paul Otieno, was placed in police custody in connection with the killing of his four-year-old son at the family home in Southwark, South London.

Otieno, 31, is under 24-hour police surveillance at a South London hospital on suspicion that he knifed his son Wilson to death before stabbing his wife, Jacqueline, 28, and himself.

The couple’s 17-month-old girl, Valerie was left unharmed in the horrific attack. She is now in the custody of Southwark Social Services.

Deya said his family was devastated by the tragedy just like any other family would be under the circumstances.

“My family is still trying to come to terms with what happened. It is now a police matter,” said Deya.

However, Deya could neither confirm nor deny whether his family had visited Paul at the hospital since the horror attack on Monday evening.

Deya’s comments follow a recent revelation carried by the Nation that he was living on borrowed time in the UK and that his long-awaited extradition is not a question of if but when.

Sources said the controversial preacher could be extradited to Nairobi under the Extradition Act 2003 on the request of the Kenyan Government before Christmas.

It emerged on Thursday that the British Home Office was reviewing Deya’s extradition order to Kenya.

Deya’s lawyers had written to the Home Office protesting against his extradition on grounds that it was in breach of the European Convention on Human Rights.

Deya, who runs his worldwide Gilbert Deya Ministries from Ormside Road, Peckham, South London, is wanted in Kenya on five counts of abducting children aged between 22 months and four-and-a-half years between 1999 and 2004.

Miracle babies

Reacting to Friday’s allegation by the Rev Rose Atieno Kiserem, a senior pastor with his church, that the miracle babies claim was a hoax, the controversial preacher said: “Kiserem has been paid by some powerful people to damage my name.”

“She has never been employed by Gilbert Deya Ministries. We do not have a ministry in Kenya as our Christian ministry is based in the UK,” he added.

Deya wondered why thr Rev Kiserem was arrested and jailed by Kenyan authorities if she was so innocent as she claims.

“Kiserem implicated my wife in the whole mess, now she wants to drag me into the same mess,” he said.

The Rev Kiserem told Saturday Nation in an exclusive interview on Thursday that the so-called miracle babies were a “hoax” intended to “hoodwink and dupe” the church’s followers.