Nyoro arrested as Catholic cleric bans politics in church

Tuesday, September 10th, 2019 00:00 | By
Murang’a Catholic Diocese Bishop James Wainaina addresses the press in Murang’a, yesterday. Photo/PD/WANGARI NJUGUNA

Kiharu MP Ndindi Nyoro was last evening arrested shortly after attending a Kameme TV talk show that was being transmitted live from Murang’a county.

Nyoro was arrested after police failed to get hold of him on Sunday night after camping outside one of the local stations where he had appeared for an evening show. 

His arrest comes after security heads in Murang’a had in the day said they were looking for him after he caused fracas at a church on Sunday.

Murang’a county commander Josphat Kinyua said they are conducting investigations into the scuffle which happened at Gitui Catholic church to establish the root cause of the chaos.

Addressing the press in his office, Kinyua, however, had said Nyoro is not the only person being sought, as they will arrest everyone who contributed to  the chaos. He said the church chairman and faithful have already recorded statements which are aiding them in the investigations.

Assault charges

“We shall prefer charges of assault, causing disturbance and resisting arrest,” said county Criminal Investigations  Officer Julius Rutere.

This comes as the Murang’a Catholic Diocese Bishop James Wainaina yesterday banned political functions in Kirinyaga and Murang’a churches.

He told politicians to respect places of worship and not use them as platforms for preaching hatred and settling scores.

The cleric, who was addressing the press over the altercation between Nominated MP Maina Kamanda and Kiharu’s Ndindi Nyoro that led to chaos on Sunday, said he will not allow such ugly incidents within his jurisdiction, which covers Murang’a and Kirinyaga.  

“I have written to all the churches under my jurisdiction not to give platform to any political leader until further notice,” he said.

Bishop Wainaina told the two leaders to publicly apologise for disrespecting the church and setting a bad precedence saying their actions were “regrettable, unfortunate and shameful”.  “The diocese of Murang’a demands a public apology from the two leaders who were involved in the chaos” he said.

Kamanda and Nyoro, who are allied to the ruling Jubilee party factions—Kieleweke and Tanga Tanga respectively clashed at a church fundraiser. 

Nyoro accused Kamanda and his Kieleweke group of going to his constituency to undermine him leading to an altercation that disrupted the function being presided over by Kamanda.  

Political arena

“Political leaders have turned churches into a political arena and we condemn this with the strongest terms possible,” said the bishop.

The bishop told church leaders to be firm and take control of what happens in their churches saying: “An incident which may look innocent at the beginning may end up being uncontrollably ugly and embarrassing and we are not going to let it happen again.” 

Meanwhile,  two MCAs and locals have blamed Nyoro for the mayhem in the church, saying he started it. Wangu Ward MCA Isaac Kamote and his Ichagaki counterpart Charles Mwangi accused the Kiharu MP of trying to introduce politics to the event.

At the same time, Kandara MP Alice Wahome has claimed the government is unfairly targeting leaders allied to team Tanga Tanga, which is campaigning for Deputy President William Ruto’s 2022 State House bid. She alleged that there is a plan to eliminate her and Nyoro for their political affiliation. 

Speaking during a TV talk show yesterday morning, Wahome claimed a meeting was held in Murang’a last week at the home of a prominent businessman where some political leaders and security agents present were to discuss how those who support the DP will be “cut down to size”. 

Earlier,  Nyoro’s supporters clashed with those opposed to him disrupting a press briefing in Murang’a town as the MP claimed Kamanda tried to “stage a coup” in his constituency. 

Nyoro who later addressed the press at Kiangage Primary School said the issue of being targeted did not start during the Sunday incident, adding that it has been cooking for a while. 

He claimed to have been receiving threats even from Kamanda who has been telling him to decamp Tanga Tanga to Kieleweke. Nyoro, however, vowed not to bow to the pressure because it would amount to committing political suicide. 

“How can I be forced to popularise Raila in Murang’a while I know very well he is not sellable?” he asked.

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