Almost a year later, Joseph Hellon, Esther Arunga and Quincy Timberlake seem to have had a
By Grace Kerongo
It's almost a year after the controversy that snared ex-TV anchor Esther Arunga, saxophonist Joseph Hellon and rapper Quincy Timberlake hit the proverbial fan.
Esther Arunga shocked many fans when she made the decision to dump her fiance just weeks ahead of their planned wedding, under advice from leaders of the Finger of God cult.
She then went ahead to quit her job at KTN - a job she had described on her Facebook page as, "The best job ever, I love my job"
Esther then refused to go back home even after the police were called by her concerned parents to get her from Runda, where musician Joseph Hellon, the Church leader lives.
(Veronica Agape, Joseph Hellon, his wife Wagikuyu and Quincy Timberlake's former bodyguard Joel Masiga on Tuesday when they visited the Star office.)
At the time Hellon told the world with Esther by his side that she was old enough to make her own choices.
The controversy caused quite a social commotion with many people thinking the trio had lost their senses.
Now Hellon has come out to speak about the controversy describing the whole affair as "a well-planned, elaborate con carried out on me, Arunga, and the Finger Of God congregation."
Quincy meanwhile is keeping silent and refusing to comment on the affair. Attempts to reach him failed when he refused to respond to calls and messages.
The musician turned spiritual leader spoke in detail about his interaction with Quincy, and when it finally dawned on him that he had been had.
Hellon first met Quincy in childhood. Quicy's family lived 100 metres from Hellon's mother's Kokuro village home, located a few kilometers from Awendo Town in Nyanza Province. Quincy was raised by his grandparents Joel and Rael Madanji.
The two were deskmates since class two at Kokuro Primary School. Back then, Quincy was registered in the school as Joginda Singh. Since then, Quincy has gone by many aliases.
When he was in Kanda King's band he was a Congolese known as Dezato, and to the late rapper Krupt, he was Fizzle Dogg. Now with Hellon he goes by Quincy Wambita Zuma Timberlake.
In an exclusive interview this week, Hellon came clean about all the too good to be true deals that he was sucked into Quicy's orbit by.
The first deal that grabbed Hellon's attention was a contract with Pepsi Cola, the deal was further sweetened by an acting deal with Hollywood actor Mel Gibson and finally an interview on Larry King Live's show on CNN.
"When Quincy came to me he told me he had a contact at the Pepsi Cola Company in the USA and they would be interested in sponsoring my jazz career. Immediately, I started receiving phone calls from people saying they were Pepsi's managers for Africa. I could see the number was South African for real and so I believed."
Even when soon afterwards Quincy went to prison and was released on bail, after a case of obtaining money through false pretence, Hellon stuck by him.
"When he got out, I told him 'Look, let's get on with Pepsi Cola deal' and he told me all these court cases were slowing the deal down. That is when I started thinking there must be something wrong.
"The various people who called never wanted to meet in person. When after a while nothing happened, it occurred to me that the many Pepsi Cola managers, and others who claimed to be Larry King and Mel Gibson had been inventions of Quincy Timberlake all along.
"If it wasn't for the way things happened early last year (the raids and court cases) we would have discovered this a lot earlier.
"It was hardly a month after meeting him that we got raided and arrested and now we have been saddled with the legal aspect of everything. We have bills and lawyers to pay and our names to clear.
"So basically, attention shifted from him. That gave him a lot of time to work with whomever his accomplices were to keep us deceived. And I do admit we were fully deceived."
The final confrontation leading to the breakup between Hellon and Quicy took place on December 8 last year.
"When I asked him about all the deals that never happened, he became upset and said he was leaving.
"One of the reasons I had believed him initially was because Quincy never hid details of his former life or on how he earned his money.
"He convinced us he needed help. He wanted to be part of the church as well," explained Hellon.
Hellon claims that Quincy somehow managed to hack into his e-mail and pretend he was the televangelist Benny Hinn and order Hellon's Finger of God church to do various things.
"Finger of God had been partners with the Benny Hinn ministries for many years. And Benny Hinn used to send us letters every month. How Quincy was able to somehow hack into that mail to the extent that instead of getting mail from Benny Hinn we got it from him, we don't know.
The wording, format and message was the same.
"We were oblivious, thinking we were still receiving original messages from Benny Hinn. We only realised this was not the case towards mid-last year."
During his 12-month stay with Quincy at his Runda and later Kitisuru homes, Hellon said he began to notice the "peculiar habits" of his erstwhile friend.
"We started to realise that he regularly destroyed or got rid of his computer hard drives. This got us wondering what is he trying to hide," Hellon said.
After the confrontation with Hellon, Quincy left the house in Kitisuru that Hellon, his wife Wagikuyu, Esther Arunga and a female UN employee friend of theirs shared and he rented a place of his own in New Kitisuru.
Later on December 12 a blog claiming to detail the gang rape of a Finger of God congregation member allegedly posted online by fellow Finger of God member, Veronica Agape. These claims have since been denied by Agape who says she suspects that an imposter posted the blog to hurt Hellon.
Hellon, his wife Wagikuyu and Veronica Agape recorded statements at CID headquarters on Tuesday, in which they threatened to sue Quincy.
Archive for January 2011
Almost a year later, Joseph Hellon, Esther Arunga and Quincy Timberlake seem to have had a
By Grace Kerongo - The Star 'Word Is'
Controversial Finger of God church founder Joseph Hellon has denied claims that he raped a member of his church.
This comes after the allegations were posted in the blog www. agapehellon.blogspot.com saying that he had repeatedly raped Veronica Agape.
Hellon, who was accompanied by Veronica Agape and his wife Wagikuyu for the interview with Word Is, yesterday said he had reported the matter to the CID for further investigations.
Veronica also denied creating the blog.
Hellon confirmed that he has fallen out with former buddy Quincy Timberlake and that he has quit the Placenta Party. He was set to be the party's presidential candidate in the 2012 polls.
According to the jazz musician, the big fallout came after the "utopic promises" made by Quincy failed to come to fruition.
Quincy had approached Hellon with a deal allegedly from Pepsi Cola, claiming that the soft drink company was interested in signing him (Hellon) as brand ambassador and all he had to do was feature Quincy in the videos of his songs. Quincy also told Hellon that Irish American film actor and producer Mel Gibson wanted to feature him (Hellon) in one of his movies.
Another unfulfilled promise was getting an interview with legendary CNN talk show host Larry King. Quincy also claimed that Sarah Palin was to pay for Esther Arunga's child delivery bills - all promises never materialised.
Esther gave birth at Aga Khan Hospital, Nairobi, on December 27.
Hellon apologised to the public over the Esther Arunga saga.
He also said that he had reconciled with Arunga's parents and that he was working on a way to reunite her with her family.
Implementation of the constitution must remain a paramount agenda in the year 2011. The Parliament should urgently put into place the necessary legislations to effect the process. However, there are some critical institutions which yearn for urgent reforms and reconstitution.
The institution of cabinet as currently constituted in size, credibility and integrity cries for urgent reconstitution at least to be in consonance with the spirit of the constitution. Kenyans deserve progressive and reformed institutions. Establishment of strong institution will earn citizens confidence and avoid embarrassing situations where foreigners have in the past intervened to give prescriptions on issues of governance and internal disputes resolution on matters such as PEV.
Public office holders must be men and women of integrity. President Kibaki should submit to the spirit of the constitution and appoints a dignified council of ministers. The new constitution calls for a lean, credible and efficient cabinet. Chapter 6 of the constitution provides that all public officers including ministers must be people of sound morals and integrity.
Individuals with retrogressive ideas: tainted morals, questionable history in public/private service or known disgraceful political records should exit the cabinet forthwith. It is despicable that people whose names are synonymous with corruption, nepotism and outright incompetence continue to sit in the government.
Cabinet ministers who are suspected of perpetrating mega scams have no business masquerading as leaders and should resign and or be forced out of office. Land grabbers, thieves of public monies, tribalists and other barbarians should be ejected from the cabinet.
It is ironical that a culture of stepping aside is creeping in the public service; suspected public office abusers must upon resigning must be replaced with men and women of honour.
Public servants must demonstrate high level of leadership both in their public and private engagements. They must remain patriotic and sensitive to real challenges facing the nation and its citizens. A leader who seems indifferent to plight affecting Wananchi and the nation has
no business sitting in a public office. Arrogant comments attributable to some members of cabinet leave one wondering whether they live in the same society with the rest of Kenyans.
Recently I read a documentary of a cabinet minister who was quoted priding himself of owning 1500 hectares ranch and several others in Nakuru, feeding a lion at 1.4 million shilling and shamelessly making joke of naming a cheeter cage in his ranch as Hague. Such a minister is in the same category as his colleague who rudely belches in an air condition office castigating poor workers for not remitting premiums for NHIF funds and announcing his lunch date worth 2500/= shillings.
This altitude is not good for public servants since public service is honour which should be courted with dedication, humbleness and patriotism.
Ours is a capitalist society and there is nothing wrong with leading affluent lifestyles, however in a country afflicted by IDP menace, landlessness, abject poverty, insecurity, alcoholism, unemployment and other myriads social economic and political challenges a sensible leader should keep to himself issues which would appear to ridicule ordinary citizens.
It is pertinent to remind such leaders that this country is seating on a time bomb as the social economic gap in our society continue to widen due to inequitable distribution of public resources and opportunities. Sound policies to narrow this social-economic gap must be found to avoid an imminent explosion.
As the country struggle with the best solution to address the PEV and how to redeem its image in the international forum particularly on issue of seeking justice for victims and suspects of PEV and enhancement of national reconciliation, peace and sovereignty. It is abominable for some leaders make dry jokes of The Hague issue and or celebrate the circumstances of the suspects. Rather such leaders should engage their minds in exploring suitable ways of settling this issue
including establishment a special domestic court
Politicians who wine tribalism, dine nepotism, dream corruption should be uprooted from the cabinet. Ministers who crusade against settlement of IDP at certain parts of the country represent dark days of yester politics. This is contrary to express constitutional provisions allowing citizens to live and coexist anywhere in the country. Equally disgraceful are ministers who hold misguided thinking that government tenders, contracts and appointments are a preserve of their kin and kith. Kenyan should be spared such people as their leaders..
As the country address itself to the issue of public service appointments, it will be repugnant to hold a belief that certain fellows have monopoly of occupying cabinet slots due to their political
associations, dynasties and affiliations. A casual observation reveals that at least three quotas of the sitting ministers are unsuitable for office.
Recently the country witnessed sound political contribution from first timer’s legislators in parliamentary committee. This is clear confirmation that this country is not short of capable leaders. Men and women who have in the past demonstrated impeccable credentials in the reform process should serve in the government and not otherwise.
George N. Kimani,(The author is an Advocate of the High Court, Email.firstname.lastname@example.org)