Deputy President William Ruto has condemned the violence witnessed in Kitui County on Saturday, saying it is no way to approach the Building Bridges Initiative (BBI) debate.
The DP noted on Sunday that bridges cannot be built with violence and that each person has a right to be heard as the BBI matter concerns all Kenyans.
“It is no time for brainwashing, bravado and positioning, that only help to create divisions," he said at Itierio Girls' Secondary School in Kisii, during the consecration of Bishop Joseph Omwoyo of the Evangelical Lutheran Church.
The DP pleaded with politicians to embrace unity and end tribal and divisive politics.
“Let us carry out this debate with respect. There are no views that are better than others. Let all be given an opportunity to speak,” he said.
He added: "Let us work together, be patient with one another and listen to each other. Even the meek and weak have something to say. This debate does not belong to leaders or politicians only. It won’t hurt anybody ... it won’t break any bone ... let us be patient with ourselves. You can’t build bridges with violence."
Kisii Deputy Governor Joash Maangi and MPs Silvanus Osoro (South Mugirango) and Alpha Miruka (Bomachoge Chache), who received the DP, assured him of their support in his bid for the presidency.
There were chaotic scenes at the Kitui rally on Saturday as Dr Ruto's allies were harassed by a team of bouncers hired to provide security.
The MPs, who arrived moments after the rally began, were barred from the main dais, where opposition leaders Raila Odinga (Orange Democratic Movement) and Kalonzo Musyoka (Wiper), governors and other elected leaders were seated.
More than 40 security men intercepted and led away Tangatanga MPs, including Senate Majority Leader Kipchumba Murkomen (Elgeyo Marakwet) and Kericho Senator Aaron Cheruiyot.
Drama started when the two senators and MPs Kimani Ichung’wa (Kikuyu) and Moses Kuria (Gatundu South) were left standing behind county chiefs, prompting protests by Ukambani MPs.
The Ukambani lawmakers demanded that their colleagues be treated with respect and dignity.
MPs Victor Munyaka (Machakos Town) and Nimrod Mbai (Kitui East) threatened to lead a mass walkout.
Kericho Senator Cheruiyot said they did not expect harassment by "hired goons" at a rally meant to help unify the country.