- On Thursday morning, a stand-off was witnessed at the venue of the rally after police arrived and tried to stop workers from erecting the main dais.
- UDA candidate for Mombasa senatorial race Hamisi Mwaguya, who was at the grounds to supervise the work, was picked by the police officers from the nearby Tononoka police station.
Deputy President William Ruto’s mega rally at Tononoka grounds will continue as planned, the UDA party officials in Mombasa have said.
On Thursday morning, a stand-off was witnessed at the venue of the rally after police arrived and tried to stop workers from erecting the main dais.
UDA candidate for Mombasa senatorial race Hamisi Mwaguya, who was at the grounds to supervise the work, was picked by the police officers from the nearby Tononoka police station.
However, this did not stop the workers from continuing to set up the dais, where the leaders will sit during the rally.
After some time, Mwaguya came back and told reporters at the Tononoka grounds that the scheduled rally will continue as planned.
“There is someone who had planned to disrupt our meeting, but it will still go on as planned. We are expecting the Deputy President to be here at 2 pm,” he said.
He did not divulge more details on what the police wanted from him.
Earlier in the day, DP Ruto cried foul during a press briefing in Nairobi and alleged the State is planning to block him from using the Tononoka grounds.
"This is our final rally in Mombasa and it is a very important one. The kind of excuses they are giving us is that the President is in Mombasa," he said
Ruto said the president’s presence in Mombasa is not a justifiable reason to deny them permission to hold their rally in Mombasa.
"How ridiculous can that be, and so if the president is in Mombasa, we can't have the meeting at Tononoka? Surely!," Ruto added.
The Kenya Kwanza rally in Mombasa was to be held on Friday, but the Mombasa County government said the ground had already been booked for the Azimio Coalition party rally.
The UDA team in Mombasa said they had to reschedule their rally to Thursday to avoid confrontation with the Azimio team.
President Uhuru and his deputy Ruto are expected in Mombasa on Thursday afternoon.
According to the State House itinerary, the President is expected to first commission the Sh4.5 billion Makupa Bridge.
After the Makupa Bridge event, the Head of State will commission the construction of the Metre-Gauge Railway from Mombasa Central Business District to Miritini SGR Terminus.
He will also tour the port of Mombasa for the commissioning of the new Sh40 billion Kipevu Oil Terminal and phase II of the second container terminal.
Ruto is expected to hold his rally at the historic Tononoka ground.
On Friday, the Azimio presidential candidate Raila is also expected to visit the same Tononoka grounds.