Jaguar tastes freedom after a week in police cells

Starehe MP Charles Njagua at a Milimani court today. He was arrested for threatening foreign traders. [Collins Kweyu, Standard]

Starehe MP, Charles Njagua alias Jaguar has been freed on a cash bail of Sh 500,000 after he denied incitement to violence charges.

Jaguar has been in police custody since last week on Wednesday.

He was arraigned a day later where the prosecution sought to detain him for 14 days to allow them to complete investigations.

While releasing him, the court slated the hearing of his case for September 4, 2019.

Where it began

Jaguar was captured in a video telling foreigners engaged in business in his constituency to shut down and vacate the country failure to which they will be forcefully removed.

Nairobi's Starehe Constituency, which Jaguar represents in the National Assembly, includes the expansive Gikomba market popular in Kenya for second-hand clothes and construction materials.

Jaguar issued Interior Cabinet Secretary Fred Matiang’i with a 24-hour ultimatum to deport all Chinese nationals and other foreigners carrying out businesses in Gikomba area.

Jaguar talked about people from Tanzania, Uganda and China, accusing them of dominating Nairobi markets.

The youthful legislator’s remarks that did not sit well with many.

Government spokesman Cyrus Oguna denounced the MPs remarks adding “mitigating measures have since been instituted against them”.

“We wish to state that this is not the position of the Government of the Republic of Kenya, and we denounce the comments carried in the video in the strongest terms possible,” Oguna said.

“Such comments are unfortunate and have no place in today’s globalized environment. Kenyans are peace loving people who have over the years coexisted with others of different nationalities.”

Reports indicated Tanzania’s Speaker of Parliament Job Ndugai ordered his government to issue a statement on the safety of Tanzanians in Kenya.

This was after Rufiji MP Mohammed Mchengerwa sought his guidance on the need for the Tanzania government to protect its nationals who operate businesses in Kenya.

Tanzania’s Prime Minister Kassim Majaliwa said the government took the remarks seriously and has summoned Kenya’s envoy to explain.


Hitherto, Jaguar’s utterances came hot on the heels of deportation of Chinese nationals who were found selling second-hand clothes in Nairobi’s Gikomba market.

“We are not talking about six Chinese nationals. We are talking of hundreds of foreigners who work here (Kenya). I give the government 24 hours to evict these foreigners lest I, being a representative of this area, go into their shops, beat them and send them all the way to the airport,” he said.

 “We summoned the Kenyan High Commissioner to Tanzania. We also spoke to our High Commissioner in Kenya. The Kenyan diplomat said it was a personal utterance that had nothing to do with the official position of the Kenyan government. He promised that his country would summon the lawmaker to explain what he actually meant by the statement,” said Mr Majaliwa.