, NAIROBI, Kenya Oct 4 – Cabinet Minister Amason Kingi’s bodyguard is among four people killed on Thursday after violence broke out at a political rally addressed by the minister in Kilifi.
At least twelve other people sustained injuries in the attack that occurred at about 5pm.
Police said the three civilians died on the spot while the Minister’s bodyguard succumbed to injuries sustained in the confrontation with the gang members who disrupted the meeting.
“We have lost four people in the violence. We are investigating the cause of the incident but we have some suspects in custody,” Coast Provincial Police chief Aggrey Adoli said.
A police officer in the region said theY suspected members of the Mombasa Republican Council (MRC) to be behind the violence that broke out when some youths started chanting slogans castigating the minister.
Others were heard shouting ‘No elections in Coast province’, according to police.
Adoli said several youth had been arrested over the chaos which comes a week after another attack in the region where at least twelve people were killed when residents clashed with MRC members.
MRC members were allegedly found taking an oath in the forest when residents and police confronted them, according to police.
On Thursday, police said the Minister was addressing a rally when the violence broke out but he was not wounded. His bodyguard sustained injuries as he shielded him.
Prime Minister Raila Odinga condemned the incident and condoled the families of the deceased people.
“I wish to convey a message of condolence to families and friends of the innocent Kenyans who lost their lives during an attack by hooligans at a rally in Mtwapa early today,” Odinga said in a statement issued by his Spokesman Dennis Onyango late Thursday.
He said “I say sorry also to Hon Amason Kingi who escaped from this attack but lost his bodyguard and to Mr Stewart Madzayo who was also a victim in this attack.”
The Prime Minister described the incident as an “act of hooliganism and terror stands condemned.”
“It has no place in the society Kenyans are struggling and sacrificing to create. It is a misguided agitation that cannot and will not be tolerated at all,” he said.
Reports from Kilifi indicate that tension remains high in the region.
MRC members have lately become a serious threat to security in the coastal region where they have vowed to rally residents to boycott the next general election as they continue to agitate for session.