Edwin Sifuna: We won't be giving demos' notices from next week

A file picture of ODM Secretary-General Edwin Sifuna at the Synagogue Church in Kasarani, Nairobi on July 24, 2022. [Samson Wire, Standard].

Nairobi Senator Edwin Sifuna on Wednesday said that the Azimio coalition will, from next week, be holding demos without notifying the police.

The senator, who spoke on Spice FM, on March 29 said police have been using the notices that they have been filing to plot "violence against us".

"Therefore, from next week, the protests will be happening any day and anywhere, spontaneously, [without alerting police]," Sifuna, who is also the Secretary-General of ODM Party, said.

According to the legislator, the police service has weaponised the protests to target politicians who are not in good books with President William Ruto's administration.

At the same time, the senator defended former President Uhuru Kenyatta against claims of funding the Azimio demos.

Majority Leader in the National Assembly Kimani Ichung'wah, who is also the MP for Kikuyu Constituency, has repeatedly linked Kenyatta to the demos, terming him Azimio sole financier.

Ichung'wah is yet to table any concrete proof of the allegations.

Sifuna says those accusing Kenyatta of funding the Azimio demos are being dishonest.

"There is no proof that has been given [so far] to show Uhuru is financing these demos. Why are funds needed in demos, yet all we need to do is just show up?" he posed.

The first-time lawmaker says picketing is allowed by the Constitution, and that police have been illegally barring the Azimio demos.

According to Sifuna, police are only notified so that they can provide security during the demonstrations.

Azimio la Umoja-One Kenya Coalition has held protests in two consecutive Mondays, starting March 20, pushing for the lowering of the cost of living and access to IEBC's electronic voter transmission data.

They also want a "more inclusive" method of picking the team that will select the next seven IEBC commissioners.

Azimio leader Raila Odinga alleges that he was rigged out in the August 9, 2022 presidential election in favour of President William Ruto, claims he is backing up with alleged revelations by an IEBC whistleblower.

President Ruto, who is on Germany tour, on Tuesday, March 28 said his administration won't allow anyone, including Odinga, to operate outside the law.

Odinga's lieutenants, including Sifuna, say the president is clueless on how to reduce the cost of living.

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