The Star (Nairobi)

15 February 2013

Kenya: Kibaki Guards Shame Wambui in Othaya

PRESIDENT Kibaki's security guards yesterday locked Mary Wambui out of a presidential function. Wambui is standing for Othaya MP on the TNA ticket.

Wambui was stopped from joining the event to mark the official opening of Munyange Police station by the presidential security detail. A furious Wambui demanded to know why the officers prevented her from attending the function but allowed her Saba Saba Asili rival Gichuki Mugambi to join the function with President Kibaki.

"I have been born, brought up and educated here. If you allow Mugambi to enter I will follow him. You police were not here when we started building this police station," she complained.

When Kibaki arrived at 11.40am, the presidential guard surrounded her outside the gate until the function ended 40 minutes later. Wambui remained standing at the gate with her supporters and other members of the public until the function ended.

She clapped her hands with the others whenever the president said something positive. Later she joined his convoy of 40 vehicles going to Mumwe Community Hall where the president officiated at the opening.

But more drama unfolded later when she arrived to Othaya Boys High School where Kibaki was opening the new administration block. The school gate was closed immediately after the armed GSU officers spotted her vehicle. Her pleas to be let in fell on deaf ears.

"I have helped build this school and donated 40 computers, a generator and a TV. Why then should I be locked out? I am a resident of Othaya and Othaya people will decide who will be their MP come March 4," said Wambui.

Clad in a red dress on Valentine's day, Wambui insisted that she had a right to attend the ceremony as a resident and prospective MP. Also locked out of the school function was DP parliamentary aspirant Esau Kioni.

Efforts by the presidential guards to sneak Mugambi into the presidential function were thwarted as Wambui insisted that she would follow him.

But the persistent Wambui does not give up easily. She then followed President Kibaki to the Nyeri South District headquarters where the president opened the new offices for the District Commissioner.

She was blocked again, and camped outside the gate until the function ended an hour later. "You can block her today, but you will not lock her out on March 4," her supporters shouted outside the DC's compound.

President Kibaki's son Jimi has been campaigning with Mugambi and several times has said Kibaki supports Mugambi's candidature. Wambui and Mugambi were in the news last month after she clinched the TNA certificate for Othaya constituency. Mugambi filed a case before eventually withdrew and defected to Saba Saba Asili.

Kibaki has not commented on the different factions but has just urged voters not to elect corrupt leaders who might have been bribing voters.

Accompanying the president were Inspector General of Police David Kimaiyo, Central PC Kiplimo Rugut, Head of the Civil Service Francis Kimemia, Nyeri County commissioner Michael Mwangi, Othaya CDF chairman Karanja Mwangi, and his son Jimi.

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