5 October 2012

Kenya: Mombasa Republican Council Planning to Disrupt Exams, Polls - Metito

Photo: Capital FM
Youth stands next to wall marked MRC (Mombasa Republican Council) (file photo).

Nairobi — The government has warned that members of the Mombasa Republican Council are planning to disrupt the forthcoming national examinations in Coast province.

Internal Security Minister Katoo ole Metito on Friday cautioned that the security threat posed by the militia group is serious because they are also warning residents against signing up as clerk for the 2013 elections.

"They are now planning to disrupt the national examinations for both class eight and form four. This is a dangerous group that must not be allowed to continue with its criminal activities," Metito told reporters in his Harambee House office.

The minister has reiterated plans by the government to appeal a ruling that legalized the group's operations.

"There is an election coming up and we have intelligence reports showing that they have been going round the coastal region telling parents not to allow their sons and daughters to apply to be clerks in the forthcoming IEBC registration voter exercise," the minister said.

He said an investigation has shown that MRC members are to blame for a spate of insecurity cases, including Thursday's attack at a rally organized by Cabinet Minister Amason Kingi where four people were killed.

The minister's bodyguard was among those killed when the gang members stormed the meeting and attacked participants with machetes, wounding others-including retired judge Stewart Madzayo who sustained machete cuts at the back of his head.

On Friday, the minister confirmed that the attack on Kingi was the work of MRC members who got agitated by retired judge Stewart Madzayo asking the people of Kilifi to vote him in as senator in the upcoming elections.

"When they unleashed terror at the baraza yesterday they removed pangas from their clothes saying no elections because pwani sio Kenya," Metito said and warned that the government will not tolerate such criminal activities to destabilize the country.

The government has reiterated plans to move back to court to challenge a July ruling that declared that there was no evidence linking MRC to criminal activities.

Metito who was accompanied at the press conference by Permanent Secretary Mutea Iringo and Police Commissioner Mathew Iteere said the government will act tough on the militia group and terror networks operating in the country.

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