, NAIROBI, Kenya, Mar 15 – In the example of his party leader Raila Odinga who said he was unafraid to go to jail for ignoring an EACC summons, Orange Democratic Movement Deputy Party Leader Ali Hassan Joho says he is not afraid to be jailed for refusing to hand over his guns to the police.
Flanked by Odinga on Tuesday, Joho said: “cells were made even for men like me,” and gave Interior Cabinet Secretary and former party ally Joseph Nkaissery a roadmap of where to find him should he decide to make good on his threat to have him arrested for his failure to comply with a directive to relinquish possession of his firearms.
- Joho says his troubles began after he gave President Uhuru Kenyatta a public telling-off in January during his stay at the Coast.
- Joho called out President Kenyatta for overlooking him while on his home turf and said he would not be strong-armed into abandoning the opposition - much to the chagrin of Nairobi Senator Mike Sonko.
“Just tell me which police station you want me to turn myself into. There’s no need for you to bother sending someone to find me, I’m not trying to hide.”
Joho was on March 10 directed by Chief Firearms Licensing Officer Samwel Kimaru to hand over his registered rifle and two pistols, “as I am satisfied that the revocation is warranted for reasons that you are unfit to be entrusted with a firearm anymore.”
Through his Facebook account, Joho said he had received a call from Kimaru on the matter but said he declined to comply pending, “formal communication.”
The National Police Service later took, “grave exception to the public theatrics displayed by the (Mombasa) Governor,” who they accused of playing to the public gallery while complying behind the scenes.
“The public should know that contrary to the false display of bravado, he is co-operating with the police and as of now one firearm has already been surrendered.”
On Saturday Nkaissery defended the decision to withdraw Joho’s licence to bear arms as, according to the Daily Nation, investigations into his Container Freight Station businesses are underway.
“It was not about his political stand. The government realised there were unresolved issues on CFSs and a decision was made to withdraw the gun licence. If investigations show that the issues regarding CFSs are okay, he will have his guns back. His chest thumping that guns cannot be taken away is crossing the red line,” he is quoted as saying.
But according to Odinga, it was Nkaissery who had crossed the “red line” by allowing his office to be used to settle political scores.
“I find it hard to believe that he has turned into such a sycophant,” Opposition leader Kalonzo Musyoka said. “Ole Lenku alikuwa afadhali (his predecessor was better).”
The Coalition for Reforms and Democracy (CORD) of which Musyoka, Odinga and Moses Wetangula are co-principals, says the timing of the gun directive to Joho is suspicious as was that of the closure of his CFS businesses and cutting down of his security detail from fifteen to five officers.
“It is sinister,” Wetangula said on Tuesday at the Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission headquarters where he together with Joho, Musyoka and Odinga gave a press briefing.
Joho says his troubles began after he gave President Uhuru Kenyatta a public telling-off in January during his stay at the Coast.
During a land title handover ceremony in Likoni, Joho called out President Kenyatta for overlooking him while on his home turf and said he would not be strong-armed into abandoning the opposition – much to the chagrin of Nairobi Senator Mike Sonko.