Drama at JKIA as Miguna is denied entry, journalists injured

Drama at JKIA as Miguna is denied entry, journalists injured

Drama ensued at Jomo Kenyatta International Airport (JKIA) on Monday evening after the Immigration department declined to allow self-declared NRM general Miguna Miguna into the country without a visa.

A heavy contingent of police officers was deployed at the airport at around 11pm as a stand off ensued between the airport officials and supporters of Miguna, among them NASA leader Raila Odinga and businessman Jimmi Wanjigi.

Citizen TV reporter Stephen Letoo and other journalists were injured as GSU officers battled members of the press to stop them from covering the happenings at the airport.

Amid the scuffle, Miguna was whisked away by the security officers.

Earlier on, Miguna alleged that the Immigration department intended to deport him to Dubai after he refused to apply for a temporary visa for him to be allowed back into the country.

Mr. Odinga arrived at JKIA shortly before 10pm seeking to have Miguna cleared and allowed into the country.

However, the standoff persisted with a handful of Miguna supporters heckling security officers at the airport.

Miguna touched down at JKIA at around 2.30pm on Monday but was held up at the airport for more nine hours.

Mr. Wanjigi who also arrived at the airport caused a scene as he demanded that the security officers open the door for him to join other NASA leaders at the airport’s lounge .

“Open the door. Put me under custody. If you want to jail me open the door. You people are breaking the Constitution of this country,” Wanjigi demanded as the officers stood their ground, leaving the door locked.

Amid the scuffle, a heavy contingent of security officers was deployed at the airport to disperse a crowd milling around the Immigration section.

One of Miguna’s lawyers, Cliff Ombeta, told journalists at the airport that the firebrand political activist had been asked to surrender his Canadian passport at JKIA, a demand they declined sparking a standoff.

It is understood that the Immigration officials are treating Miguna as a Canadian citizen after the government declared him a non-citizen and revoked his Kenyan passport before deporting him to Canada on the night of February 6, 2018.

By 11pm, nine hours since he touched down at JKIA, Miguna was still held up at the airport after he declined to apply for a temporary visa

Lawyers James Orengo, John Khaminwa, Judy Soweto and Nelson Havi were with Miguna at the airport trying to secure his clearance.

Interior Ministry spokesman Mwenda Njoka confirmed the standoff at JKIA, saying Miguna had declined to surrender his travel document as required by law.

“The Government has not denied Miguna Miguna entry into the country. Upon arrival at JKIA he was asked to present the passport he travelled in. He declined. It is a requirement under law & IATA regulations for travellers to show the documents they travelled in at the point of entry,” said Mr. Njoka.

Miguna’s return comes exactly a month after the High Court in Nairobi directed the government to issue him with a travel document to enable him re-entry into Kenya pending the hearing and determination of a case he filed challenging his deportation.

Justice Chacha Mwita on February 26 ruled that should the government fail to issue Miguna with a travel document, then the self-declared NRM general should be at liberty to use his Canadian passport to regain entry into Kenya.


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