Faceless heroes: Four men who stopped Kenya Air Force coup plotters
Remembering the attempted Military coup of 1982 |REWIND
Senior Private Hezekiah Ochuka the 1982 coup maker
Kenya - Voice Announcement of 1982 Attempted Coup D'etat
The 1982 Kenyan coup d'état attempt was a failed attempt to overthrow President Daniel arap Moi's government. At 3 A.M. on Aug. Sunday, 1 August 1982, a group of soldiers from the Kenya Air Force took over Eastleigh Air Base just outside Nairobi, and by 4 A.M. the nearby Embakasi air base had also fallen. At 6 A.M. Senior Private Hezekiah Ochuka and Sergeant Pancras Oteyo Okumu captured the Voice of Kenya radio station in central Nairobi where they broadcast in English and Swahili that the military had overthrown the government. Working at the behest of Ochuka, Corporal Bramwel Injeni Njereman was leading a plot to bomb the State House and the General Service Unit headquarters from the Laikipia Air Base, Nanyuki. Corporal Njereman commandeered three pilots, namely Major David Mutua, Captain John Mugwanja and Captain John Baraza to fly two F-5E Tiger jets and a Strikemaster that would be used for the mission. However, Major Mutua was aware that Corporal Njereman had never flown a jet fighter before and would likely not be able to cope with the g-forces. The pilots, while communicating on a secret channel, agreed to execute daring manoeuvres to disorient their captor. The trick worked. The pilots dumped the bombs in Mt. Kenya forest and headed back to Nanyuki.
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