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Kibaki declares 3 days of national mourning

By By Standard Team
Updated Mon, June 11th 2012 at 00:00 GMT +3

By Standard Team

The Government declared three days of national mourning from Monday after the deaths of Prof George Saitoti and Assistant minister Orwa Ojode.

And President Kibaki has also convened a special Cabinet meeting to be attended by Prime Minister Raila Odinga, Vice-President Kalonzo Musyoka and all ministers.

There was an outpouring of grief on Sunday following news of the death of the ministers. Former camPresident Moi hailed Prof George Saitoti and Orwa Ojode as champions of peace and security.

Moi said that their demise was not only a loss to their families but to the country at large.

Deputy Prime Minister Uhuru Kenyatta also sent a message of condolence to the families of the two ministers.

shock and disbelief

In a post on his Facebook page, Uhuru said he received the news with deep shock and disbelief.

“Prof Saitoti and Hon Ojode were hardworking colleagues in government. In their dedication to duty, the two put country before self and were an exceptional example of cooperation between a minister and his assistant despite being from different sides of the coalition,” he stated.

Deputy Prime Minister Musalia Mudavadi who was to attend rallies in the vast Rift Valley immediately cancelled all his engagements of the day to mourn his colleagues.

“Iam very shocked. I could not go on with the campaigns. I have had to cancel them until further notice,” he told The Standard.

Mudavadi described Ojode as an articulate leader.

“You saw how he performed in Parliament. He was very active and an able deputy to the late Saitoti,” he said.

Terror threats

Kanu vice-chairman Gideon Moi in a statement to The Standard,said the two ministers had played a major role in instilling law and order and cracking down on terrorist elements.

 “They were in office at a time that the country faced major threats from agents of terror and they had done their part in ensuring the people were protected,” Gideon said.

 Kanu Secretary General Nick Salat said Saitoti and Ojodeh had played a major role in reforming the police service whose image had over the years been tainted.

Energy Minister Kiraitu Murungi said the Government was robbed of two dedicated servants whose tenure in the security docket had many successes. “I am deeply saddened by the death of brother Saitoti and Ojodeh.”

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