Police in Kisii on Saturday, June 11, arrested a local businesswoman after recovering weapons hidden in her bar ahead of Azimio presidential candidate Raila Odinga’s tour of the region.
Speaking to the media Kisii County Police Commander Francis Kooli confirmed the incident, stating that the police had recovered seven machetes from her business premises following a tip-off from members of the public.
The businesswoman is being probed to establish if the reports were related to reports of alleged violence at Azimio flagbearer Raila Odinga’s rally slated for Monday, June 13.
Siaya County Police Commander, Francis Kooli.
“We got info from members of the public that there were some weapons hidden in one of the bars. My colleagues swiftly moved there and successfully recovered the items displayed.
“We are interviewing the proprietor of the bar in regard to how these weapons were found on her premises, which is not allowed,” he added.
The county police boss noted that preliminary investigations revealed that the brand new machetes were to be used to cause violence in the rally. He also disclosed that he had received intelligence that some youth had been mobilised to heckle Raila.
He warned those planning to cause disturbance in the rally to refrain from doing so, adding that it would only trigger a reaction from the Azimio supporters, which could turn chaotic.
“I know that there are others who are planning to heckle others in tomorrow’s rally. We would not want that to happen because the supporters of the politician may see it as something that may trigger violence,” Kooli stated.
In line with this, more police officers will be deployed to beef up security at the rallies. Kooli revealed that the police would use digital platforms to identify anyone looking to take part in violence.
Notably, this is the second time that police seized weapons in Kisii town on the weekend preceding Raila’s visit. On June 10, cops recovered four machetes.
The recovery comes barely days after Jubilee party Secretary-General Jeremiah Kioni called for security for the Azimio flagbearer to be beefed up. He further accused the police of favouring Deputy President William Ruto’s camp.
“We have seen during our campaigns that UDA receives better police protection than any other grouping, especially when Jubilee or Azimio are in an area. We want them to offer equal security to all of us,” he stated.
Azimio One Kenya flagbearer Raila Odinga addresses a crowd in Butula, Vihiga County on Thursday, May 26, 2022
weapon violence arrest probe