Police arrest Kiharu MP Ndindi Nyoro over church row

Monday September 09 2019

Kiharu MP Ndindi Nyoro was on Monday arrested at ACK St James Cathedral in Murang'a over the chaos that marred a fundraiser at Gaitu Catholic Church on Sunday.

Muranga County Criminal Investigations Officer Julius Rutere said Mr Nyoro will be charged with resisting arrest, assaulting police officers and disrupting the church service.

The legislator has been detained at Murang'a Police Station, only his lawyer Irungu Kang'ata has been allowed to see him.

The incident involving the MP and his nominated counterpart Maina Kamanda, who are in Tanga Tanga and Kieleweke factions of the ruling Jubilee Party respectively, points to the shaping up of the 2022 succession politics.

Earlier Monday evening, at least 50 police officers were on Monday evening camping outside the church where MPs Nyoro, Peter Kimari (Mathioya) and Muturi Kigago (Kangema) were having a show with a vernacular TV station.



Already, the Catholic Church has demanded an apology from politicians involved in the chaos while at the same time announcing a ban on political activities in the church.

Cardinal John Njue has asked Catholic bishops to take charge of their jurisdictions to avert chaos while Murang’a Bishop James Maria Wainaina has cancelled all political activities in church.

The possibility that Central Kenya might not vote as a bloc in the next election is becoming a reality. Such a move means the region’s influence in national politics will be weakened.

Mr Nyoro is among vocal supporters of Deputy President William Ruto who have defied President Uhuru Kenyatta’s warning to Mt Kenya MPs who have support the DP’s presidential campaign.

In June, the president warned rebellious Mt Kenya MPs allied to the Tanga Tanga faction saying he was still the regional political kingpin and that they should not mistake his silence for cowardice.

The rebellion, he said, will not stop him from showing the Mt Kenya region the direction to take come 2022.

On Monday, Murang’a County Criminal Investigations Officer Julius Rutere said they will charge Mr Nyoro with trying to obstruct police officers from arresting him and assaulting them, causing mayhem in church by disrupting a service, and inciting locals.


“If you see him tell him to report to the nearest police station, there are many complainants, we will prefer several charges against him but we must first arrest him,” Mr Rutere told the Nation.

Mr Kamanda, a self-declared anti-Ruto campaigner, has been traversing Murang’a, Nyeri, Meru, Nyandarua and Kiambu counties in a bid to clip Dr Ruto’s influence in the region.

Mr Nyoro accused Mr Kamanda of trying to stage a coup in his own constituency.

“I can’t allow people to come from Nairobi and lecture us on how to do things, Kiharu people elected me and I’m the one supposed to invite guests.

“I know they are looking for me for political reasons and this has confirmed what Mr Kamanda has been telling me, that I will be arrested due to my political stand, but I’m not afraid since I have done nothing wrong," said Mr Nyoro at Kiangage Primary School.

The MP later went to Kahuhia and Gikandu primary schools for the issuance of cheques.


Jubilee has been grappling with internal wars as factions clash over political differences. The row reminds one of the 1992 split of the presidential vote between two titans Kenneth Matiba of Ford-Asili, who has since died, and retired President Mwai Kibaki of the Democratic Party.

The political differences divided the Central Kenya vote handing retired President Daniel Moi victory.

According to the 2017 voters register, Central region has more than 2.9 million voters and many more are expected to be registered by 2022.

Also, without an obvious choice of a leader to succeed President Kenyatta as the region’s political kingpin some politicians could be looking outside the community for one.

Mr Kamanda lauded Nyandarua governor Francis Kimemia’s call on Central Kenya leaders to abandon political groupings and instead support President Kenyatta's quest for development.


Mr Kimemia said the Kikuyu community was solidly behind the President contrary to reports that the 2022 politics had split the region.

"Tanga Tanga (politicians campaigning for Dr Ruto) is a rebellion against the President. All leaders should heed to Governor Kimemia's call," Mr Kamanda said.

While Dr Ruto has been winning the support of MPs in the region, Kirinyaga Governor Anne Waiguru has said that the region is open to forming a political alliance with Opposition leader Raila Odinga ahead of the 2022 elections.

“If it is Raila, he should know that the region will want a piece of his government,” she said.