Matatu Tout Arrested for Incitement to Violence Against Fruit Vendors in Kericho



A man in Kericho has been arrested for threatening fruit vendors. Kipruto Vincent Koech, a matatu tout told the vendors that they would be ejected from the county before the August 9 general election.

The man who is a tout had commandeered his vehicle a Matatu registration number KCW 131D, blocking the vendors. This led to a protest from the fruit vendors based at Jumbo Petrol station.

As the vendors asked the matatu driver to give them some space to attend to their customers, the tout shouted them down telling them that their days in the county were numbered, as they would be ejected before the forthcoming general elections. This alarmed the fruit vendors who have operated their businesses at the petrol station for the past 20 years.

Read: Uncircumcised, Hatupangwingwi; Among 19 Words Declared As Hate Speech By NCIC

They rushed to Kericho police station where they filed a report leading to the arrest of the tout. The suspect is currently in custody facing incitement to violence charges.

The National Cohesion and Integration Commission (NCIC) has recently taken a hard stance against acts that could potentially inflame ethnic tensions before the August 2022 polls.

NCIC Chairman Samuel Kobia said local politicians and Kenyans, in general, are prone to speaking recklessly without considering their broader impact on the country’s political climate.

Read also: NCIC Reveals Plans to Block Politicians Notorious for Hate Speech from Getting Visas

Kobia said the commission would continue monitoring content in radio, TV and social media while working closely with stakeholders to enforce laws meant to curb hate speech which could lead to political violence in the country.

Interior CS Fred Matiang’i in a past forum said that the government would enforce strict measures to ensure the country is protected.

“We will be very ruthless when it comes to those who interfere with others’ freedoms. We will not hesitate or be intimidated by pressures or complaints from anybody. We will protect Kenya,” he said.

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Written by Vanessa Murrey

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