‘Diaspora’ Residents Storm Thika Police Station To Demand The Release Of Colleague.



Thika residents celebrating the release of Michael Orao (centre with brown flowered shirt) outside Thika Police Station. Orao spent seven hours in police custody on allegations of voter buying.

Thika police over the weekend found themselves on unfamiliar territory as a section of Thika residents stormed the station demanding release of their colleague who had been arrested on Saturday for allegedly voter buying.

The close to 100 residents, all of whom are ‘immigrants’ from other counties, accused the police of being incited by a particular politician in the area to arrange the arrest.

Early Saturday morning, a chief in a neighbouring location and his sub-chief, accompanied by two armed administration police officers, stormed Michael Orao’s work place in Majengo Estate Thika accusing him of buying votes from residents of a particular ethnic community in Makongeni area with intent of influencing them to support another aspirant.

“At around 8:30 am this morning, four people came to my work place and demanded to do a search on my premises and later my house. They found nothing to incriminate me. Nonetheless, they arrested me and took me to Thika Police Station. Upon arrival, the police accused me of buying out the votes from people purporting to be supporting one of Thika Town MP candidates and selling it to the opponent,” explained Orao upon release.

Immediately, he was booked and put into the police cells.

Reports of his arrest spread like bush fire and within a short time, his relatives and colleagues flocked the station demanding an explanation as to why Orao was in custody. It took the intervention of several other politicians who secured his release, about seven hours later.

Orao is now out on a police bond of Ksh. 10,000 and is supposed to report back to the station on Tuesday the 21st of February 2017.

Meanwhile, investigations are still on-going to ascertain the truth of this matter.

Angry residents who came to secure his release connected Orao’s arrest to the race for the Thika Town Parliamentary Seat. They expressed their disappointment in the manner that they were being targeted for not originally being natives of this region.

“As Thika residents from the diaspora, we feel that we are intimidated threatened by this politician especially in Makongeni where we cannot even do business in peace. Our only crime is supporting the opponent. We want to tell all politicians that we reside in Thika by right and we are here to stay. As Kenyans, we have a constitutional right to vote for whoever we want regardless of where we are,” said Brinton Kimeo.

They vowed to rally all the ‘diaspora’ residents to speak in one voice and chart their way forward for the party primaries as well as the August 2017 General Elections.

“We have scheduled a meeting for all the diaspora residents next Sunday at the Kenyatta Primary School grounds at 2:00pm where we are going to decide on who to support as our candidate for the Thika parliamentary seat during the Jubilee nominations. We are going to vote as a block regardless of which part of Kenya one comes from,” said Kimeo, who incidentally is vying for the Kamenu Ward MCA seat.

Another resident threatened to mobilise his people to start a door-to-door campaign to ensure the said politician did not clinch the Jubilee Party nominations in March.

“We cannot entertain this at all. We are not lesser beings for not being born from this region. I will personally mobilise my people to make sure these people do not clinch the Jubilee nominations,” chided this irate resident.

Efforts to get a comment from the police or the chief were fruitless as our calls were unanswered.
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