A police officer who allegedly lobbed a tear gas canister during Azimio la Umoja one Kenya coalition rally in Kisii town is being held in custody as investigations into the incident thicken.
Police sources confirmed that the officer was arrested on suspicion that he discharged the teargas canister that exploded at the podium where the coalition’s deputy presidential candidate Martha Karua was addressing the rally.
The explosion disrupted the rally after thousands of supporters scampered for safety as security details whisked Karua and other dignitaries to safety as enraged members of the public promptly turned their anger on uniformed officers whom they engaged in running battles over the unfortunate turn of events.
The incident has attracted condemnation from most quarters with calls for political tolerance and peaceful coexistence among supporters of rival political camps ahead of and after the polls.
Karua was accompanied by Murang’a Women Representative Sabina Chege, Homabay Women Representative Gladys Wanga, Dagoretti North MP Simba Arati and Kisii Governor, James Ongwae among others at the rally.
Speaking to the press after the rally ended abruptly, Kisii County Director of Culture Nyambane Obino noted that the residents of Kisii do not deserve the chaos witnessed on Thursday saying such an incident has never been witnessed in the county.
“The issue of somebody throwing teargas at leaders and then you are going to tell us this was organized, by who and we had all the security since morning?” Obino asked.
The Director pointed out that he was speaking on behalf of the elders, youth, and women who were very hurt by the occurrences at the stadium.
He urged the security agencies to thoroughly investigate the matter and ensure the perpetrators are brought to book.
Further, the Kisii county leadership declined to speak on the matter saying the incident would be addressed by the Inspector General of Police Hillary Mutyambai.