Home » Burial ceremony turns into a ‘tug of war’ as Ruto, Raila men clash ahead of Monday’s mass action

Burial ceremony turns into a ‘tug of war’ as Ruto, Raila men clash ahead of Monday’s mass action

by Paul Nyongesa
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On Friday, a heated exchange took place between allies of Kenyan President William Ruto and Azimio la Umoja One Kenya Coalition leader Raila Odinga during the requiem service for former Communications Authority Director-General Francis Wangusi in Nairobi. The disagreement was over planned mass protests scheduled for Monday, March 20th.

The funeral service, held at the Friends Church on Ngong road, was attended by former Defence Cabinet Secretary Eugene Wamalwa, as well as Members of Parliament Didmus Barasa, John Makali, John Waluke, and Tim Wanyonyi. Wamalwa urged the congregation to attend the upcoming demonstrations, stating that Kenyans have a right to peaceful protests.

However, Barasa pushed back, insisting that until the leaders put their own families on the frontline during the protests, Kenyans should not participate. “We will not demonstrate until we see their families on the line demonstrating. Before they join them we will not join them,” Barasa declared.

The MP went on to accuse Wamalwa of squandering his government position and opportunity to lower the cost of living. “When I see my very close friend Eugene Wamalwa, the immediate former Minister for Defence supporting mass action when most of them, including himself, had an opportunity to sort out the problems we have in this country you wonder whether they metamorphosed overnight and became different people or they are the same persons,” Barasa added.

Makali also commented, saying that the government was not under any threat from the opposition over the planned protests. “Kenya is a democracy and Eugene Wamalwa can say whatever he wants to say but we are not under any threat. We are on course,” the MP stated.

Wamalwa accused President Ruto of seeking to return the country to a one-party state. “The journey to a single-party state has begun. We had section 2A under (former President Daniel) Moi and with what Ruto is pushing we are seeing a possibility of that section returning, where only one party called UDA will be in Kenya,” the former CS claimed.

In eulogizing Wangusi, the leaders described him as a courageous person and unifier who worked towards the unity of the community.

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