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Raila’s chopper stoned at Jackson Kibor’s burial ceremony

A chopper carrying Raila Odinga's entourage stoned at Jackson Kibor's burial. [Junet Mohammed, Twitter]

A chopper carrying ODM Leader Raila Odinga’s entourage to the burial of Mzee Jackson Kibor was Friday evening stoned in Soy, Uasin Gishu County.

Suna East Member of Parliament Junet Mohammed confirmed the incident to The Standard on phone, saying that Raila and his key allies were safe.

The team was just leaving Kibor’s burial at his Kabenes home in Soy Sub-County, Uasin Gishu, when a group of youth charged at their entourage.

“Once we came out of the gate, we saw several youths ready to attack us, pelting stones,” Junet narrated.

The lawmaker explained that upon sensing danger, they rushed to their chopper but noticed that it could not take off after they had boarded.

“We took a risk. The chopper had a broken window…We alighted and rushed to the nearest vehicle,” he claimed.

A chopper carrying Raila Odinga's entourage stoned at Jackson Kibor's burial. [Junet Mohammed, Twitter]

Junet told The Standard that they then drove to safety. At the time of publishing, they had pitched camp in Kakamega.  

Raila condemned the incident, terming it unfortunate. "The attacks present a very dark reminder of what this country has witnessed before. For today’s unfortunate events, I hold Uasin Gishu Governor Jackson Mandago and Soy MP Caleb Kositany responsible,” he said in a statement Friday. 

Uasin Gishu County Commander Ayub Gitonga confirmed the incident, saying an irate crowd charged toward the chopper as they wanted to take off.

“Police were able to push the crowd back, forcing them to throw stones from a distance. Nobody was injured during the incident as the two choppers managed to take off,” Gitonga said.

He added that no arrests have been made, and they have launched investigations into the incident.

Azimio leaders led by Kakamega Governor Wycliffe Oparanya have asked police to probe the incident and prosecute the perpetrators. 

Jackson Mandago: It wasn't me

In a subsequent statement, Raila Odinga blamed Uasin Gishu Governor Jackson Mandago and Soy MP Caleb Kositany for the Friday evening attack.

In his defense, Mandago said he played no part in the chaos, asking law enforcement officers to arrest and prosecute the perpetrators of the violence.

According to the county chief, it was he who helped Raila Odinga and his team move to safety during the chaos.

Kositany, on his part, said he only got to learn about the violence through Twitter, and that he never played any role in planning the unrest.

Kibor, who died aged 88, was buried at his home in Kabenes, Soy Constituency, Uasin Gishu on Friday, April 1.

Raila arrived at Kibor's burial ceremony in the evening when it was about to end.