Fearing the wrath of angry protesters, MPs are speaking from their bases

Murang’a MPs Betty Maina and Eric Wamumbi (Mathira) at the Waithaga ACK Retreat Centre in Murang’a. [File, Standard]

The third organ of government is missing. Though the parliamentarians are supposed to check the excesses of the government against its people in times of crisis, they seem to have fallen silent.

The whereabouts of most of the 349 MPs has been a top secret over the past week while protests continue across the country, with business coming to a standstill as police have fired on demonstrators after they voted for the Finance Bill, 2024, which they passed before going on recess.

On July 2, most MPs said StandardHe said they have decided to keep quiet to avoid the anger of the public, which is targeting their homes and businesses as punishment for passing the Finance Bill.

It is now emerging that angry mobs have attacked over 20 homes or business establishments of MPs.

Some MPs said Standard They have had to evacuate their parents and close relatives from their rural homes and abandon their vehicles to escape protesters who still want their blood.

Most leaders did not attend Sunday services because they feared being driven out by furious youths who vowed to “cleanse the stage desecrated by politicians”.

Politicians have also been locked out of social media platforms where they regularly communicate with voters.

Leaders like Murang’a Women Representative Betty Maina said they have 2,000 beehives ready for distribution to youth groups but are wondering what to do because the youths have prevented them from moving.

On Sunday, she said she was forced to fellowship with her husband, Mathira MP Eric Wamambi because “they said they don’t want us in the church even though we were born and raised in the church.”

He said, “Now I understand why Moses tore up the tablet containing the Ten Commandments.”

Nominated MP Sabina Chege said her colleagues are staying away from public places because their people are not willing to listen to them. She said other colleagues have been forced to relocate their families who are being targeted by people.

“I feel sorry for the families of the MPs who are now being targeted by the public because they voted in favour of the Finance Bill. Their children and parents had nothing to do with the voting and it is unfortunate that they are bearing the brunt. Everyone can make mistakes and MPs and the President are no exception,” he told The Standard over the phone.

Asked if Speaker of the National Assembly Moses Wetang’ula should recall the House to provide leadership during the crisis, Ms Chege said: ”I don’t think it has anything to do with Parliament, we did our job and the President withdrew the bill. We just give people time to relax because they are being unreasonable and the more you talk the more you make things worse.”

Describing the events as tragic, Chege said Kenya’s status was worsening internationally and some international organisations such as the United Nations Children’s Emergency Fund (UNICEF) had been forced to cancel their meetings.

“You cannot approach an attacking bull. It will attack you and you cannot avoid confronting the person who is attacking you by panga,” Nyeri Town MP Dankun Mathenge said.

He said that those who are opposing the Finance Bill do not want to listen to anything he says, which is why he has had to give his voters a chance to pacify him so that they can calm down their anger and talk to him.

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