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Olekina vows to fight on for rights of ‘Maa’ despite arrest

By Zadock Angira
Wednesday, February 26th, 2020
Narok senator Ledama Olekina (centre) flanked by his lawyers led by George Wajackoyah (right) and supporters at Kilimani Police Station shortly following his arrest in Nairobi yesterday PHOTO: PD/TIMOTHY NJENGA
In summary

Narok Senator Ledama Olekina, who was yesterday arrested by officers from the National Cohesion and Integration Commission (NCIC) over allegations of incitement, insists he will continue to fight for the rights of the Maa community.

Olekina was arrested while leaving the studios of Royal Media Services in Kilimani and was taken to the Kilimani Directorate of Criminal Investigations (DCI) offices where he was grilled and his statement taken.

One of his lawyers, George Wajackoya, however, said the Senator  only recorded a brief statement regarding a remark he made in Narok on Saturday.

Cash bail

After recording his statement, the Senator was placed in custody at the same station. Efforts by his lawyers to secure his release on cash bail did not bear fruit and by yesterday evening, he was still in custody.

Wajackoya maintained the senator had not committed any offence, saying even if his utterances amounted to threats, they were future threats, which were not actionable by the police.

“Everyone has the right to bail. What the police are doing will only heighten the tension in the country. He is not alone, but has so many followers,” he said.

While in custody, the senator sent a video message: “This is the message to the Maasai nation that today I was arrested by CID officers from the NCIC. I am involved in a quest for truth and justice and no amount of intimidation is going to deter me. I will pursue justice for the rest of my life.”

Former Nairobi County Assembly Speaker Alex Magelo also said that there was nothing wrong with what Ole Kina said during the Narok BBI meeting on Saturday.

He had said that the Maasai community had been sidelined in positions of leadership and that non-locals had encroached on the Maasai-dominated areas, leaving them desperate.

“We are not saying that people should leave Maasai land. Let them do anything but leave politics to the Maasai community,” he said.

Apart from the local political leadership, Ole Kina and other Maasai leaders pushed for regulation of land utilisation. However, other local leaders including Kericho Governor Paul Chepkwony and his Nakuru counterpart Lee Kinyanjui have accused the senator of incitement and termed his statements retrogressive and divisive.

The two leaders said there was no need for land regulation as those who had acquired land in the region did so on the principle of willing-buyer-willing-seller.

Community affairs

While speaking in Narok on Saturday, Olekina said non-Maasais in the area should not be allowed to meddle in the affairs of the community.

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