From the beginning, mega betting company Sportpesa had all the hallmarks of an idea put together by friends and acquaintances who benefited from each other. Their relationships were important in opening doors in Kenya’s government circles so their betting experiment could take off. 

At the centre of it all was former Nairobi Mayor Dick Wathika, a political operative par-excellence. He had contacts everywhere. Without him there was no Sportpesa, no licensing and, no billions. 

Dick Wathika

The late Dick Wathika.

Photo credit: File | Nation Media Group

Just before the company takes off, Wathika and other directors get into a squabble over how the company is being run. A meeting is planned at a casino to iron things out. 

He ends up dead that night. 

However, the company that he had founded, Sportpesa, takes off from here. 

What happened at the casino that evening?