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Babu Owino slams Ruto for ‘neglecting gas explosion victims’

By Mercy Simiyu February 9th, 2024 2 min read

Embakasi East lawmaker Babu Owino has accused President William Ruto of neglecting the residents in his constituency who were recently affected by a fire tragedy.

The tragedy, caused by the explosion of a gas cylinder in the middle of the night, caused the death of seven and injured 300 others.

The youthful lawmaker asserts that President Ruto misplaced his priorities by electing to visit Japan at a time when the survivors of the tragedy were nursing serious wounds while others were homeless.

“It is shameful that when fire engulfed the great people of Embakasi East constituency, Ruto was and is still busy sitting on his hands. It is shameful that people lack houses after the incident and the president is leaving the country to go to another country to find the interest of a foreign nation,” he said.

“It is shameful that people do not have food to eat in Embakasi East constituency but the president is running away from this challenge instead of facing it,” Babu stated.

“People are not happy in Embakasi East constituency because of what happened, and that is complete negligence from the government. The government owes Kenyans a duty of care to protect them and therefore the government is directly liable for what happened to Kenyans in the Embakasi East constituency.”

The outspoken lawmaker further accused the government of making false promises to the victims affected by the tragedy with no intent of fulfilling them.

“They lied to us that he would extend some financial support. (Deputy President) Rigathi Gachagua visited the area on the day of the explosion, but until now, no help has been forthcoming. Are these people not Kenyans, or are they sons and daughters of a lesser human being?” he posed.

Before leaving the country for Japan, President Ruto ordered the arrest of all government officials who allowed for the licensing of a gas refilling point at a residential area. He also ordered that they step aside from their work, pending the conclusion of investigations.

Those suspected to have made decisions that caused this tragedy have since been arraigned in court and temporarily detained pending completion of investigations.

President Ruto is in Japan and has, among other engagements, held talks with Prime Minister Fumio Kushida in a visit his media teams says will enhance diplomatic ties between the two countries.

Opposition leader Raila Odinga, Nairobi Governor Johnson Sakaja, and Senator Edwin Sifuna are among those that have visited the area, consoled the victims and shared contributions.

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