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Governor Anyang’ Nyong’o calls for arrest of leaders who fueled chaos at funeral

By Harold Odhiambo | July 25th 2021

Kisumu Governor Anyang Nyong'o during a press briefing on the status of Covid-19 in the county on May 21, 2021. [Collins Oduor, Standard]

Kisumu Governor Anyang’ Nyong’o has called for the arrest of leaders who allegedly fueled chaos that left one person dead at a funeral in Muhoroni.

Nyong’o termed the chaos as unfortunate and urged police to ensure the culprits are brought to book.

The incident happened on Saturday during the burial of Lazarus Obera, senior human resource manager at the county assembly. He succumbed to Covid-19 a few weeks ago.

“It is even more demeaning and disrespectful for any politician to orchestrate any form of violence at a funeral where we are expected to preach peace and condole with the bereaved,” said Nyong’o.

At the funeral, trouble started when a group of youth opposed to politicians speaking at the funeral began heckling when County Assembly Speaker Elisha Oraro, the master of ceremony, sought to introduce the next speaker.

Those who had been lined up to speak included Kisumu Senator Fred Outa and Former Governor Jack Ranguma. They are all seeking to unseat Governor Nyong’o in next year’s polls.

A group of youth opposed to their candidature heckled and demanded that no politician speaks at the funeral. They jammed the podium and called on the church to take over the funeral service.

Casket bearing the remains of Lazarus Obera. [Harold Odhiambo, Standard]

But another group wanted the politicians to speak and as a result, a fight broke out.

One of the youth stabbed the deceased, who died on the spot, as mourners scampered for safety. 

The suspect was shot in the leg by police officers, disarmed and detained.

With the burial service disrupted and the programme forced to end prematurely, the family of the deceased and the church whisked his coffin away and laid him to rest.

Yesterday, Nyong’o claimed that some politicians had planned the violence. “Inciting the youth to engage in violence is the most despicable form of politics that all Kenyans must discourage,” he said.

Nyong'o did not attend the burial that was held in disregard of Covid-19 protocols.

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