Omar Lali, the Lamu-based fisherman who rose to fame over his unconventional relationship with Keroche heiress Tecra Muigai, has now opened up on the troubles his love for the deceased brought him.
Omar revealed that the romantic relationship was initiated by Tecra after she spotted him at a restaurant in Lamu.
"I had gone to dinner with my daughter who had not been to Kenya in many years. Tecra was at the restaurant with a friend who I happened to know. I said hello to my friend but when I got home my friend called me saying Tecra was asking around for the guy with the grey beard.
"That night we stayed late as we talked about life. I took her to her room at around 2am and she told me not to leave because she felt at peace being with me. We spent the night together and that is how our love started," he narrated.
Omar, however, admitted that the relationship was heavily fought by Tecra's wealthy family - particularly her mother - Keroche CEO Tabitha Karanja.
"When Tecra took me to her family, they didn't want to hear anything about me. Her mother told me there is no way her daughter was going to live with an Alshabab terrorist. But I have since forgiven her since she is old school she probably didn't mean it. At one point she came home with a convoy of six cars and I decided to escape because I was afraid of the people she was bringing," the 51-year old recalled.
He added that the feud was finally resolved through the intervention of Tecra's brother, James Muigai who convinced their father, Joseph Karanja, to bless the union between the unconventional lovers.
"Mzee blessed us and the feud stopped. We toured the world and I was able to teach her to overcome her fears. The only thing, regrettably, that I failed to teach her was regulation of alcohol intake. She used to drink a lot and I pleaded with her to only drink after sunset but she would respond by telling that her family was in the alcohol business and drinking was their tradition which I must respect as she respected mine," Omar said.
The veteran fisherman said he would spend most of the day looking after the Keroche heiress until that fateful night when she fell down the stairs when her boyfriend had already blacked out.
"That day I had taken some antibiotics for my tooth which had an infection. She pressured me to drink but I only took a few drinks and blacked out. I was awoken by the sound of a thud and when I work up, I realized she had fallen down the sharp staircase on her way to the washroom," he recalled.
Tecra died a few days after the fall with Omar spending several days in police custody before the DPP dropped murder charges against him.