ODM leader Raila Odinga calls for enhanced security in Meru-Isiolo border

  • Odinga spoke when he attended the mass burial for the seven victims in Tigania East, Meru County, on Wednesday.
  • He called on Meru and Isiolo residents to live in harmony and set aside their differences.
  • Odinga blamed ethnic differences for the deaths and vowed to push for unity in the region, but first have security patrols along the border.

Orange Democratic Movement (ODM) party leader Raila Odinga is now calling for intensified security patrols along the Meru-Isiolo border where recent clashes claimed seven lives.

Odinga, who attended the mass burial for the seven victims in Tigania East, Meru County, called on Meru and Isiolo residents to live in harmony and set aside their differences.

Odinga blamed ethnic differences for the deaths and vowed to push for unity in the region, but first have security patrols along the border.

“Hatuwezi kubali ati watu wanakuja ovyo ovyo pahali wananchi wanaishi, wanawapiga bunduki na kutoroka, na polisi wanasema ata hiyo bunduki hawajui iko wapi. Ni kazi ya polisi kutafuta hao watu mpaka washikwe,” he said.

The former premier said the boundary between Meru and Isiolo was intact and called for military deployment to enforce border patrols.

“Hatuwezi kuvumilia mambo kama haya, maanake kama inavumiliwa inakuwa tabia… mpaka tayari ilipimwa ikajulikana Meru iko wapi na Isiolo iko wapi…kwa hivyo, kwa sababu ya yale ambayo yanafanyika wakati huu, mimi ntapendekeza kwamba iwe patrol ya jeshi hapa kwa mpaka,” said Odinga.

Azimio la Umoja politics took centre stage during the burial ceremony with Meru Governor Kiraitu Murungi declaring that his Devolution Empowerment Party will back Odinga's presidential bid.

“Tunajua Baba pahali anatembea popote Kenya anaongea juu ya Azimio la Umoja…ningetaka kumwambia sisi tukiwa Wameru ata sisi tunaunga hiyo azimio tuwe pamoja na watu wengine,” said Govenor Murungi.

Odinga added: “Yale shida ambayo mko nayo hapa ni kwa sababu bado tuko kwa pre-industrial economic structure…watu wanategemea tu mifugo pekee yake…tunataka kuona kama tumebadilisha uchumi yetu kama Wakenya.”

The ODM chief used the opportunity to tell off Meru Senator Mithika Linturi, who was also present at the burial, over his “madoadoa” remarks.

“Sasa ni vizuri sana nimeona Senator wenu amefika hapa…na nataka kusema kama yeye hajaongea hapa, mambo ya ‘madoadoa’ awachane nayo…hakuna ‘madoadoa’ katika taifa letu, kila Mkenya ni Mkenya anaweza kuishi kila mahali,” said Odinga.

In Nairobi, Azimio Young Turks led by Kieni MP Kanini Kega announced that the Thika Saturday meeting is good to go.

The Azimio la Umoja train moves to Taita Taveta on Friday with Odinga expected to launch several water projects in Maktau then address a rally in Overseer.

Odinga will later hold a public rally in Mwatate town, before on Saturday continuing with the Azimio meetings in Thika with a scheduled rally in Mt. Kenya University grounds.

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