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Maandamano Monday and Thursday remain as scheduled – Raila Odinga

Azimio la Umoja party leader Raila Odinga has reiterated that the scheduled Monday and Thursday protests will go on as planned. In a video, the former Prime Minister also noted that the two days remain a public holiday.

This comes hours after the Inspector General of police Japheth Koome issued a ban over the demonstrations led by Mr Odinga saying the political outfit had not been granted permission to hold protests.

He also threatened to arrest the big guns involved in the protests explaining that the police would treat everyone equally when arresting street protesters.

However, Mr Odinga has insisted that he is not scared of the threats and will still be on the ground even as his security detail was withdrawn.

“Let’s go. Let’s go and reduce the cost of electricity and fuel,” Kenyans are seen in the video grouping up and rallying each other. He signs off by saying it is time to free the country then Sarafina’s song Freedom is Coming is played at the tail end.

Also read: Why police withdrew Azimio politicians security

According to the Kenyan Constitution, only the Interior CS is allowed to call for a public holiday. On the contrary, the law says, “The Minister may at any time if he thinks fit, by notice in the Gazette, declare any day to be a public holiday either in addition to the days mentioned in the Schedule or in substitution for any of those days and either throughout Kenya or in any district, area or part thereof, and thereupon any day so appointed shall be a public holiday.”

Last week’s protests led to a majority of Kenyans shying away from work, destruction of properties, confrontations between thousands of youth and police, and some 270 arrests.

Similarly, business in Nairobi is slow as business owners shy from the effect of the riots, even with Mr Odinga insisting that the protests are peaceful.

Also read: DP Gachagua’s office photos hit out at maandamano preparations