The recent announcement by the Orange Democratic Movement (ODM) that the security details of party leader Raila Odinga and other opposition leaders have been withdrawn by the government has sparked concerns and discussions in Kenya.
According to the ODM, the move was made on orders from the government and not only affected Raila’s security personnel, but also those of other opposition leaders, including Narc-Kenya party leader Martha Karua and Wiper party leader Kalonzo Musyoka.
The security personnel of other elected leaders in the Azimio la Umoja One Kenya Coalition were also affected.
This move is seen as a strategy by security officers to prevent the opposition leaders from joining street protests.
The message sent to police officers attached to VIPs from the coalition ordering them to report to the Security of Government Building offices and return their weapons was seen as a clear indication of the government’s intention to clamp down on any form of opposition.
“To all officers whose VIPs will participate in tomorrow’s demonstration (Maandamano) you are advised not to accompany them (VIPs) on the same, instead you are supposed to report to U/Camp, return your firearms at the SGB armoury and be on standby at the Unit Headquarters as you await for onward communication,” read the message to the officers.