Orange Democratic Movement (ODM) party leader Raila Odinga has expressed his reservations over the National Cohesion and Integration Commission’s move to name and shame Dagoretti North Member of Parliament Simba Arati over a recent scuffle in a Kisii event he attended.
Arati and his South Mugirango counterpart Silvanus Osoro were captured on camera engaging in a fistfight during the burial ceremony of Kisii Deputy Governor Joash Maangi’s father on Monday.
Osoro confronted the Dagoretti North MP, who was addressing mourners after he called out his ally Deputy President William Ruto over association with corrupt and “fraudsters” from the Gusii region.
Arati, a Raila-die hard supporter, had also asked the DP to apologize to locals over the 2007/8 violence that left a number of Kisiis dead and thousands displaced.
Chaos that ensured disrupted the event for close to half an hour as Kisii County Governor James Ongwae pleaded with mourners to calm down.
Yesterday, NCIC Chairman Dr Samuel Kobia said the two lawmakers were among four politicians who had been listed on the Commission’s list of shame over the shameful act.
However, speaking during an interview with Inooro TV, Raila, who rooted for the Building Bridges Initiative Constitution (Amendment) Bill, 2020, differed with the commission saying Arati was innocent as he acted in self-defence.
“I differ with the Commission over the move because there is the aggrieved and the aggressor. Osoro attacked Arati, who had no choice but to defend himself … it was a matter of self-defence, ” said Raila.
Others shamed by the Commission include embattled former Nairobi Governor Mike Mbuvi Sonko and Emurua Dikirr MP Johana Ng’eno.
Dr Kobia accused the two of “divisive” utterances that may stir up hatred.
According to Dr Kobia, politicians and any Kenyan who will appear in the list three times will not be eligible to vie for elective office.
The NCIC boss said the Commission had started to work on a list of fame and shame Pursuant to NCIC Act(2008) Section 26(2b) which gives power to the watchdog to “publish the names of persons or institutions whose words or conduct may undermine or have undermined or contributed towards undermining good ethnic relations, or who are involved in ethnic discrimination or the propagation of ethnic hate”.
In the Thursday interview, Raila reiterated that the “hustler Vs dynasty” narrative being pushed by the DP’s Tanga Tanga camp is divisive and should be shelved.