News 2008


Mutua dismisses report linking State to election chaos

Daily Nation


06. March 2008

The Government has dismissed a British Broadcasting Corporation report claiming that post-election violence in parts of the Rift Valley Province was State-sanctioned.

Government spokesman Alfred Mutua termed the report “preposterous, baseless and at best defamatory”.

The report posted on the BBC’s official website Wednesday, claims the violence was planned by senior Government officials in meetings held at State House, Nairobi, after last year’s General Election.

“The Government of Kenya has been shocked by the story that alleges that members of the banned Mungiki sect held meetings at State House, Nairobi, the Official Office of the President,” said Dr Mutua. He continued: “No such meetings took place at State House or any Government Office. It is injurious to the President, Government and the People of Kenya for BBC to run such unfounded lies.”

Dr Mutua said the Government would write to the broadcaster to demand an apology, a retraction and an inquiry into the motive of its producers.

Observe peace

Meanwhile, he urged Kenyans to observe peace and shun the allegations.

The BBC report quotes anonymous sources alleging that Government officials declined to comment on the matter. However, Dr Mutua said they did not seek any comment.

According to BBC, former Internal Security minister John Michuki and his predecessor, Prof George Saitoti, had been invited to respond to the claims.

The report claims Mungiki youths were transported in matatus to allegedly cause mayhem in Nakuru and Naivasha while police were given strict orders not to restrict the movements of the youths.

“The Government has never worked with or engaged banned criminal organisations for any work,” said Dr Mutua.

The BBC report was posted on its official website hours after groups of Mungiki supporters swarmed city streets demonstrating in support of their jailed leader, Mr Maina Njenga, Wednesday morning.

More than 1,000 people were killed and another 350,000 displaced following fighting which broke out after the announcement of presidential election results.