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Maandamano madness: Kawangware area protestors clash with police

On March 27, 2023, tension erupted in the Kawangware Area of Nairobi County as demonstrators took to the streets, lighting bonfires and barricading roads with tires and large stones.

Nairobi News reporter who was at the scene witnessed the chaos unfold as shops were forced to close due to the escalating violence.

Also read: #MaandamanoMondays: The history of teargas

Protesters light bonfires at Kawangware stage 56. PHOTO| Nyaboga Kiage

According to Mr Joshua Ogutu, a local resident, the situation could be resolved through a dialogue between President William Ruto and opposition leader Raila Odinga.

“It will be very important if the two top leaders hold talks. The demonstrations will only cause chaos,” he said.

As the day progressed, the situation escalated further, with demonstrators throwing stones at police officers attempting to clear the roads.

“The police have been forced to use teargas cannisters to disperse the crowd which had started getting violent,” said Ms Mary Wambui, a local.

The police responded by using tear gas canisters to disperse the crowd, leading to a running battle between the two groups.

Also read: Ruto seeks support from German investors as anti-government protests intensify

At 12:20 pm, the Inspector General of Police, Mr Japheth Koome, issued a warning, stating that Mr Odinga had not been granted permission to hold protests and urging Kenyans to continue their usual business.

“I ask all Kenyans to go on with their business as usual, and we are out to ensure more officers are stationed in different parts of the city to deal with any chaos,” Mr Koome said.

He also accused the opposition of causing chaos, insisting that there were other ways in which they could address their grievances.

Mr Koome further warned that police officers would not be intimidated by anyone and would work hard to ensure the environment was conducive for Kenyans to conduct business.

It was noted that Mr Odinga had announced his intention to lead Kenyans in holding demonstrations every Monday and Thursday after what he called a successful protest on March 20, 2023.

Also read: Layman’s advise on how to avoid Maandamano drama to and from work