As Maina Kiai Goes Underground
Nobel Peace laureate Wangari Maathai has today revealed that she has received death threats for reasons she thinks are linked to her condemnation of the results of the December 2007 general elections and strong support for the Annan peace mission.
Maathai, a world renowned environmentalist and a veteran of the Kenya civil society movement, said she reported the matter to police after getting three text messages on her telephone on Tuesday (yesterday).
One of the texts read: "Because of your opposing the government at all times ... we have decided to look for your head very soon," said one of the messages she read to reporters. She appealed to the government to restore bodyguards whom she says it recently recalled.
Wangari Maathai was interviewed on Citizen FM Radio this morning and was widely critical of the PNU regime. She attributed current problems in Kenya to the failed NARC (MOU) dream and the failure to pass the Bomas Draft Constitution.
Meanwhile, KNHC Chairman Maina Kiai has gone underground after highly successful trip to United Kingdom and USA where he and former nominated MP Njoki Ndungu made presentations to the United States Congressional Hearing on the Kenyan Crisis held in Washington D.C on Feb 6, 2008. Kiai and Ndungu are deemed to have upstaged the VP Kalonzo Musyoka who undertook a similar itinerary and also embarrassed the PNU government. Because of their ethnic origin, supporters aligned to PNU are considering the two as enemies.
The latest African Intelligence Newsletter reports in an article titled "Maina Kiai under the eye of the NSIS" that The National Security Intelligence Service is taking a close interest in the international trip of the head of the Kenya National Commission on Human Rights (KNCHR).
According to information obtained in Nairobi from various sources, the National Security Intelligence Service (NSIS) has begun to investigate the activity of Maina Kiai, the head of the Kenya National Commission on Human Rights (KNCHR), during his travels to the United Kingdom and the United States. The NSIS is trying to list all the people he has met and find out whether he wants to request political asylum. The NSIS began to take an interest following the meeting last week between Maina Kiai and Mark Malloch-Brown, the British Minister of State with responsibility for Africa. During this meeting, Maina handed Malloch-Brown a report on the recent events in Kenya. Their discussion is also believed to have concerned identifying the Kenyan personalities who incited to violence or participated in election fraud.
The NSIS consequently wants to know who prepared the meeting between Kiai and Lord Malloch-Brown. It also wants to know whether Kiai is likely to become a new John Githongo, the former Kenyan anti-corruption czar who became highly unpopular among the supporters of President Mwai Kibaki when he denounced corruption within the Kenyan government team from his exile in the United Kingdom. Some members of the Kenyan government were also perturbed by the fact that Malloch-Brown’s meeting with Kiai took place just before his meeting with Vice President Kalonzo Musyoka. Among the Kenyan executive circles, Kiai is seen as having sold out and a traitor to his Kikuyu community, the same as Kibaki’s.
Matters got worse after Kiai’s speech to the Sub Committee on Africa & Global Health of the United States House of Representatives on February 6th, and his subsequent call this week in which he asked the US to suspend military aid to Kenya. This added even more to the impression held among Kibaki’s partisans that Kiai in fact supports the ODM (opposition). The NSIS then began to investigate his international contacts in order to evaluate the real impact of his stance in the US and the UK.(end)
If the aforegoing is anything to go by it means Mungiki have powerful members within the PNU and that the recent arrest of 37 adherents administering oath was no fluke.
It will be recalled that in early January, members of the civil society made reports to the Kilimani Police Crimes office alleging that they had received reliable information that the personal safety and security of its members, including Maina Kiai, was at serious risk and that a special unit had been officially formed to consider “methods of neutralisation” of the these civil right activists.
More recently an anonymous pamphlet has found its way in parts of Central Province and Nairobi where, it was instructively noted that the death threats have been issued against civil rights activists who are considered “traitors” to their ethnicity (Kikuyu), because they have spoken out about what they believe to have been irregularities in the election result, or about human rights abuses committed by the police and armed gangs, including gangs of Kikuyu people, throughout the country. The pamphlet includes Maina Kiai as part of a list of more 25 people of Kikuyu origin, who it calls “traitors (who) live among us in peace”, and included a veiled threat that they should be killed.