“We are innocent,” Junet, Sumra say over ‘inciting remarks’ in Kibra

Former Embakasi South MP Irshad Sumra (left) and Minority Chief Whip in Parliament Junet Mohamed at the NCIC offices in Upper Hill on October 17, 2019. Sumra and Mohamed were called over utterances they allegedly made at an ODM campaign rally for Imran Okoth in Kibera over the weekend. [Collins Kweyu, Standard]

Suna East MP Junet Mohamed and former Embakasi MP Irshad Sumra today appeared at the National Cohesion and Integration Commission (NCIC) over alleged inciting remarks in Kibra Constituency.

However, the two denied being summoned by NCIC investigators claiming they were honouring an invitation by Chief Inspector Johnson Kilua who is attached to the commission.

Through lawyer Otiende Amollo, Junet and Sumra decried what they termed as a prejudiced inquiry on their alleged inflammatory remarks even as they insisted on their innocence.

"They (investigators) have shared their fashion of what they claimed was said in Kibra. We have taken them and we shall compare with what we have and see if it tallies with our fashion,” said Mr Otiende after a closed-door interrogation at NCIC.

Junet and Sumra denied uttering inciting statements in Kibra and accused Director of Public Prosecutions (DPP) of making premature conclusions.

“By saying the utterances were inflammatory, DPP has prejudged and concluded even before an investigation is completed. It prejudices the entire inquiry and it means the inquiry is a waste of time,” said Otiende.

DPP in a press statement had the utterances by the two and Embakasi East MP Babu Owino was “bordering on incitement to violence and ethnic profiling.”

DPP directed them to appear before NCIC to record statements.

Junet and Sumra faulted police for summoning them yet there was no complainant regarding the alleged remarks.

They also claimed the probe was even as they challenged police to investigate allegations of bribery of voters touching on Deputy President William Ruto.

“We want to know if the inspector (Chief Inspector Johnson Kilua) is acting as an individual or as a police force. Why has Ruto not been investigated over bribery in Kibra?” posed Otiende.

The lawyer said they expected to meet with the investigators anytime from next week once they have compared notes over the alleged incitement.

NCIC Chief Executive Officer Hassan Mohamed did not address the media.

Babu Owino was also expected to turn up but NCIC said the legislator will appear tomorrow in the morning.

About a week ago, video clips with the aforementioned politicians surfaced, and many have argued the statements made were inciting Orange Democratic Movement (ODM) supporters against opponents.

The statements were alleged to have been made as ODM-allied leaders were campaigning for party candidate Imran Okoth.

Okoth is seeking to replace the former immediate MP Ken Okoth who was also his brother. However, he faces stiff competition from Jubilee Party candidate and former football star Macdonald Mariga and Amani National Congress (ANC) candidate George Owalo among others.

The differences between Jubilee and ODM supporters have spiraled with blame games especially after Mariga’s convoy was allegedly pelted with stones while campaigning.