Jaro Soja’s response on Gor Mahia’s chaos at Bokello’s funeral
Gor Mahia’s renowned fan Jared Obonyo, better known as Jaro Soja, has refuted claims that the green army wagon caused chaos, and buried the late Inspekta Mwala’s actor Bon Aggrey Okello, popularly known as Bokello, without the presence of his family or close friends at the graveside.
Bokello was laid to rest at his Kobura home in Masogo, Kisumu County on Saturday, November 7th.
Speaking to Citizen Digital, Wednesday, Jaro said Gor Mahia fans were vibrant, sang dirges at the top of their voices which made attendees of the function panic, hence the unrest.
“Other mourners saw Gor Mahia fans were much energized, and sang at the top of their voices, which consequently scared them. They panicked, leading to the confusion,” Jaro said, adding: “Causing chaos at Bokello’s funeral was not in our minds – he was one of us.”
Jaro says they accorded Bokello the treatment he deserved as a staunch supporter of K’Ogalo.
“Bon Okello was a diehard fan of Gor Mahia, a very active member of its Obama branch. We paid our last respects to him the best way we could, just the same way soldiers pay 21-gun-salute to their late colleague – that’s how we orchestrated our tribute.”
Vehemently denying being the source of the turbulence witnessed at the event, Jaro says the whole ceremony was to be presided over by Gor Mahia fans, Obama branch and not the clergy.
“Bokello’s burial ceremony was supposed to be steered by Gor Mahia Obama branch. People who claim Gor Mahia took over the service are up to no good for the reputation of the club. We only wanted to help,” said Soja.
By presiding over, does it mean they were mandated to ‘bury Bokello without his family witnessing?’
“Gor Mahia did not bury Bokello ahead of the scheduled time. We did not stop his family or work colleagues from burying him.”
What about the pedestal which they took control of? “For the podium, which they said Gor Mahia fans destroyed, I disagree. It is the weight of the huge number of fans who went on stage that made the dais to crumble.”
Gor Mahia’s alleged Saturday’s actions attracted sharp criticism from different quotas, but notably Kano elders who condemned the act terming it as disrespectful to the deceased.
“That is not the way to go as a community. The behaviour was uncultured and against the Luo customary laws,” Apostle Benjamin Awuondo was quoted by The Star.
Jaro Soja marshaled a defense against the elders, saying: “Kano elders shouldn’t speak much because they did not do a lot to ensure Bokello’s funeral was one of a kind. It is Gor Mahia fans who made sure water and electricity was available.”
His gripe does not stop with the elders. He added: “I also think Kano residents also took advantage of the enormous numbers of Gor Mahia supporters to cause chaos, because it is they who hurried to carry Bokello’s casket.”
“K’Ogalo fans never spoilt Bokello’s funeral; and we did not intend to,” he concluded.