News 2008

 

Leaders protest at war arrests



Daily Nation

Story by LUKE KAPCHANGA and NOAH CHEPLOEN

03. March 2008



Cabinet minister Moses Wetang’ula wants the youths arrested on the farm of former Saboti MP Davis Nakitare while allegedly undergoing illegal military training released.

The minister termed the issue as a “private matter” and said the over 200 youths should be set free unconditionally.

“Mr Nakitare has been the defender of the community and whatever was taking place in his farm was a private affair,” he said.

Ford-Kenya chairman Musikari Kombo and Kimilili MP David Simiyu accused the police of harassing Mr Nakitare’s farm workers.

The leaders who were speaking at Bokoli in Webuye constituency cautioned the Government against detaining the youths who they said were innocent.

“Nakitare keeps wild animals in his park as a tourist attraction; the people found in the farm were just his employees,” Mr Kombo said.

The former Local Government minister said if there was any training, then the youths were being trained as rangers to guard the farm.

Dr Simiyu said arresting the youths amounted to intimidation and harassment of the community.

Former Kanduyi MP Wafula Wamunyinyi warned that they would not turn a blind eye when leaders from other communities suspected of funding the clashes are being let to go scot-free.

Elsewhere, Rift Valley Province MPs have called for fresh investigations into the post-election violence saying the previous investigations were biased.

Get back to their farms

The MPs also want the Government to release those in police custody as part of national healing and reconciliation process.

The ODM legislators who included Musa Sirma (nominated), Peris Simam (Eldoret South), Joshua Kutuny (Cherangany and Lorna Laboso (Sotik) were speaking at Muserechi in Eldama Ravine constituency where a Catholic priest Michael Kamau was killed at the peak of the violence in January.

“The violence was not planned, it was everywhere. We want our people to get back to their farms. We are not protecting criminals, but those who are innocent must be released,” said Mr Kutuny.

Area MP Moses Lessonet said fresh investigations should be launched now that normalcy has returned to the country.

The legislators said the violence was spontaneous and residents were protesting over long standing injustices sparked by the flawed presidential election.

 

 

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