Kenya: MPs Question Kenyatta-Odinga Deal After Miguna's Deportation

President Uhuru Kenyatta and Nasa leader Raila Odinga conclude a joint press conference about the country's growth, at Harambee House in Nairobi on March 9, 2018.

The unity deal between President Uhuru Kenyatta and Opposition leader Raila Odinga was on Thursday dragged into lawyer Miguna Miguna's second deportation nightmare, with a section of MPs terming his treatment an insult to the pact.

The leaders said that the events around the forceful deportation of Dr Miguna are jeopardising reconciliation efforts started by the two leaders on March 9.

"Up to now, the terms of the handshake are not known, but the humiliation meted out to Raila over the Miguna saga and blatant disregard of court orders point only to one fact: The handshake was meant to break Nasa," Mr Olago Aluoch (Kisumu West, Ford-Kenya) told the Nation.

PEACE

Mr Aluoch claimed it was an exercise meant to alienate and isolate Mr Odinga, weaken his co-principals and make Deputy President William Ruto stronger.

In Parliament, MPs from the National Super Alliance (Nasa) told journalists that the way Dr Miguna was treated may have a negative impact on the handshake.

"Our leader Raila Odinga was committed to bring peace and stability in the country but it is clear that the government is taking us for a ride," Nominated MP Godfrey Osotsi (ANC) said.

The 20 lawmakers, led by National Assembly Minority Leader John Mbadi, warned that the peace the country had witnessed since the handshake may be eroded by the inhuman treatment of Miguna.

"The State must at all times respect the fundamental rights, freedoms and dignity of all citizens including Mr Miguna," he said.

INJUSTICE

Deputy Minority Leader Robert Mbui said the coalition was unhappy with the way the government had handled the Miguna issue.

Nyando MP Jared Okelo said: "An injustice meted out on one of us is an injustice meted out to all of us."

Nasa principal Musalia Mudavadi, while keeping off the handshake debate, condemned the manner in which Dr Miguna was treated.

"We are duly concerned about the appalling information that has come out of the Jomo Kenyatta International Airport, where Mr Miguna was placed under false arrest before being inhumanly evicted from his country and cast into the unknown, like a heap of garbage," he said in a statement.

IMPUNITY

ODM secretary-general Edwin Sifuna said that the blatant disregard for court orders in the Miguna case -- including his deportation in the face of a court order that he be produced in court -- is an entrenchment of impunity in the country.

But the Luo Council of Elders, led by its chairman Willis Opiyo Otondi, in what appeared to be the turning of their backs on Dr Miguna, maintained that they will not allow anyone to derail and divert the people's focus on greater things planned for the country.

Reported by Patrick Lang'at, Samwel Owino, Justus Ochieng' and Rushdie Oudia

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