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Youth arrested over fears of disrupting Ruto event

By Lydiah Nyawira | December 9th 2019 at 02:00:00 GMT +0300

Nyeri County Assembly Deputy Speaker Samuel Kariuki is led away by police officers at Giakanja Boys High School yesterday. [Mose Sammy, Standard]

Deputy President William Ruto has criticised Jubilee leaders allied to the Kieleweke outfit for spreading divisive politics in the party and round the country.

Dr Ruto, while at a fundraiser in aid of the African Independent Pentecostal Church of Africa yesterday, also accused his fellow party members of spreading chaos and hatred.

Speaking in Giakanja High School in Nyeri town, Ruto made reference to an incident where police arrested seven people outside the venue over suspicions that they intended to disrupt the meeting.

Drama unfolded before the event started as youth burnt black T-shirts with the message 'No 2022 politics kwa bedroom ya Uhuru'.

The youth were later dispersed by officers deployed to secure the event.

The officers also chased down several men and bundled them into police vans.

During the fracas, Deputy Speaker and Ruringu MCA Samuel Kariuki also joined in the chase. Mr Kariuki followed one of the men to a parked vehicle and demanded his surrender.

The MCA allegedly assaulted the man, prompting police to intervene.

The unidentified man and Kariuki were frog-marched to a waiting police van. The officers later released the MCA, who was allowed to enter the venue.

T-shirt burning

While making reference to the burning of the T-shirts and the November 7 Kibra by-election, Ruto said the belief that central Kenya was President Uhuru Kenyatta's bedroom was misguided.

"The President's bedroom is 47 counties. He belongs to all Kenyans and not just one tribe. Do not be misguided; Jubilee was elected across the country," he said.

The DP urged all Jubilee Party leaders to reject the politics of violence, chaos and hate, and focus on policies and programmes.

Tension at the venue was high as MPs allied to the Tangatanga faction drove into the venue led by Mathira MP Rigathi Gachagua, Anthony Kiai (Mukurweini) and James Gichuhi (Tetu).

Alice Wahome (Kandara) and Ngunjiri Wambugu (Nyeri Town) arrived later amid tight security.

The strained relationship between Ruto and Mr Wambugu was apparent after the MP declined to welcome the DP, who was accompanied by MPs Aisha Jumwa (Malindi) and Moses Kuria (Gatundu South).

Wambugu instead sat alone in the dais while local leaders walked to the helicopter to greet the DP.

The leaders later castigated Wambugu, criticising him for not supporting their efforts and stating that it was time to bury the hatchet and join their team.

The AIPCA event was hosted by Woman Rep Rahab Mukami, who invited Wambugu to speak. He declined. When she rose to speak, Ms Wahome said they would not be cowered by Wambugu's efforts to silence them. "(Mukami) do not agree to be intimidated. The efforts to silence women will not work. Our last event in Nyeri was disrupted but we shall be back," she stated.

Mr Kuria and Ms Jumwa also told off Wambugu, asking him to change tack and avoid intimidating fellow leaders. "I'm happy that Interior CS Fred Matiang'i and PS Karanja Kibicho have made sure this meeting was not disrupted. He actually saved those young boys trying to cause chaos because we would have dealt with them," Kuria said.

Nyeri Central sub-county police boss Paul Kuria said: "We shall prepare our statements and evidence and they shall be taken to court."

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