Maina Njenga was abducted by armed men driving Subarus – Azimio
Azimio la Umoja - One Kenya coalition has condemned the alleged abduction of former Mungiki sect leader Maina Njenga by unknown people on Saturday night.
In a statement on Sunday, the opposition coalition claimed that rogue police were behind the disappearance of Njenga, who was allegedly abducted while heading to his Kiambu home.
"We strongly condemn the gang-style abduction of Mr. Njenga and his continued persecution without any charges being preferred against him. His family is being kept in the dark regarding his whereabouts," Azimio said.
"The information we have suggests that the abductors did not identify themselves, nor did they state that he was under arrest. All indications point to this being an operation carried out by rogue police," the coalition added.
According to the coalition, Njenga was picked up by a group of armed and hooded individuals driving Subarus.
"The abductors were driving Subarus, armed, and hooded. It is highly likely that they were part of the Special Support Unit, known for terrorizing Kenyans during the anti-tax protests. The SSU is evidently still active and determined to intimidate and harm Kenyans," the coalition added.
Alleging the state's hand in the disappearance of the businessman-cum politician, Azimio said the abduction was part of attempts to intimidate the opposition amid protests over the rising cost of living.
"Even more alarming is that Mr. Maina Njenga appears to be a particular target of such arrests and harassment. Kenyans need to understand that Maina is scheduled to appear in court tomorrow for a pre-trial, and this arrest is clearly an attempt to interfere with that scheduled pre-trial," Azimio noted.
"Maina’s abduction is also part of the ongoing targeting and intimidation of opposition leaders by Kenya Kwanza. It is a deliberate attempt to distract Kenyans from the pressing issues such as the rising cost of fuel and food."
The coalition demanded the immediate release of Njenga, saying the leadership would hold Inspector General of Police Japheth Koome personally responsible should anything happen to him.
"We vehemently condemn the abduction and continued persecution of Mr. Maina and his family. We demand his immediate and unconditional release or his production in court. We want to make it clear that we will hold the Inspector General of Police fully accountable for Mr. Maina's life should anything happen to him," Azimio noted.
"Finally, we want to let Kenyans know that we are in a very dangerous terrain. Kenya Kwanza has failed, and it is becoming desperate and increasingly brutal and dictatorial. We must stand firm, fight, and demand our freedoms and all other rights."
Njenga made headlines in May following a series of police raids at his homes in Nairobi, Nakuru, and Laikipia counties.
After unsuccessful attempts to arrest him, the Directorate of Criminal Investigations (DCI) sent out an alert, saying the former sect leader was wanted for questioning in relation to a recovery of two firearms and over 90 rolls of bhang at a home linked to him in Nakuru.
He would later surrender himself to Nakuru Law Courts in the company of his lawyer to face his accusers.
On July 19, Njenga was again arrested at the Olosurutia area in Kajiado County alongside his brother Njoroge Njenga and his personal assistant Ole Lekishe.
The trio was arraigned in court five days later and charged with possession of offensive weapons contrary to section 89 (1) of the Penal Code, CAP 63.
"On the 20th day of July 23 at Kiserian area within Kajiado County, without reasonable excuse, were found in possession of offensive weapons to wit 14 machetes, 24 Maasai swords, 46 rungus and three jembes sticks in circumstances which raised reasonable presumption that the said offensive weapons intended to be used in a manner prejudicial to the public order," the court papers read in part.
It also emerged that the three had been arrested in connection with the three-day anti-government protests that rocked the country from Wednesday, July 19, 2023, to Friday, July 21, 2023.