PREACHING WATER, DRINKING WINE

The irony of state ban on political rallies, gatherings

Politicians had repeatedly been asked to suspend their political activities.

In Summary

• Deputy President William Ruto, ODM leader Raila Odinga, ANC leader Musalia Mudavadi, are among the politicians who have constantly contravened Covid protocols, with no action from the government.

• The Government Spokesperson Cyrus Oguna reminded the politicians, and members of the public again on Wednesday to adhere to the stipulated Covid-19 regulations.

A photo of Deputy President William Ruto when he addressed Kwang'ware residents on August 15, 2021, and ODM leader Raila Odinga Addressing Nakuru residents on August 17, 2021.
A photo of Deputy President William Ruto when he addressed Kwang'ware residents on August 15, 2021, and ODM leader Raila Odinga Addressing Nakuru residents on August 17, 2021.
Image: COURTESY

The new cases of coronavirus keep on surging leaving behind a worrying number of fatalities.

The virus has killed at least 4,300 people in the country.

By Tuesday, August 17, 2021, the Ministry of Health had recorded a total of 222,894 cases of the virus from 2,268,923 samples collected.

The government has always reminded Kenyans that fighting the virus is not only the responsibility of the government but is also an individual duty.

The government urged members of the public to stick to the protocols that had been issued, including sanitising, frequent handwashing with enough water, avoiding crowded places among others.

But ironically, politicians who are supposed to be the ones helping the government in the fight against the virus are the ones at the forefront of violating this by arranging public rallies.

Last month, Health CS Mutahi Kagwe asked the politicians to suspend their political activities and stick to the order that was earlier given by President Uhuru Kenyatta, which disallowed political gatherings for 60 days.

Nevertheless, politicians have not heeded to this, chasing their political ambitions as the 2022 general elections approach.

Government Spokesperson Cyrus Oguna reminded the politicians, and members of the public again on Wednesday to adhere to the stipulated Covid-19 regulations.

“As a reminder, all public gatherings, including political rallies remain suspended. This is to ensure that we cut the chain of transmission and reduce the rising cases of Covid--19 infections in the country,” Oguna said in a post via Twitter on Wednesday.

Deputy President William Ruto, ODM leader Raila Odinga, ANC leader Musalia Mudavadi, are among the politicians who have always been seen contravening the government’s guidelines.

On Tuesday, Raila Odinga continued with his engagement with leaders from Nakuru County, and address hundreds of residents who hardly wore masks, and as obvious, the social distance was a forgotten thing.

About 61 kilometres away from Nakuru town, One Kenya Alliance OKA principles were holding their conference in Naivasha with strategies of how to conquer the 2022 battle, no social distance was being observed either.

OKA principals and the technical team were discussing the draft manifesto and coalition documents.

OKA principals, and the technical team during the press address on Tuesday in Naivasha.
OKA principals, and the technical team during the press address on Tuesday in Naivasha.
Image: COURTESY

On Sunday, August 15, 2021, Ruto attended a Holy Mass at the St. Francis of Assisi Catholic Church, Gatina in Kawang’ware, Nairobi County.

Later on, the DP did his normal business, addressing hundreds of Kawang’ware residents who turned up to listen to his ‘hustler’ 2022 campaign.

Ruto had, however, issued a statement stating that he suspended his public engagement due to the spike of the virus.

While all these politicians are addressing Kenyans whom they depend on to clinch to power, they hardly seem to care about their health situations.

Most of the politicians are also partially or fully vaccinated.

As of August 16, 2021, the government had only managed to vaccinated 2,101,403 people, out of which 1,346,861 have received their first dose while second doses are 754,542.

Edited by D Tarus