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Kenyan protestors arrested for wearing T-shirts!!!!

Via Sukuma Kenya:

Caroline Mutoko of Kiss FM and Mwalimu Mati of Mars Group Kenya are among those who have this morning been arrested at the Nyayo National Stadium, Nairobi. The two have been taken to the Langata police station. 60 other Kenyans are also being bundled into waiting police vehicles and it appears that it is planned to distribute those arrested in various police stations across the city.

The 62 are part of a larger group of Kenyans that had gone to attend the national event at the Nyayo National Stadium as we mark Jamhuri Day today and use the forum to address our leaders, making the Kenyan citizen’s grievances heard.

They were all wearing black T Shirts with the message “No Tax for MPs, No Tax for Us” which is part of the campaign being run in conjunction with Kenyans who care and university students to protest against MPs refusal to pay tax.

The black T Shirt campaign forms part of a larger campaign where Kenyans have over the past few days held demonstrations, rallies, boycotts as they are protesting against the ongoing food crisis, the escalating prices of basic commodities, the high price of fuel and the MPs culture of impunity.

The urgent help required is: legal representation, cash bail for each person arrested, tracing and visiting all the arrested at the various police stations where they have been taken, lobbying for their immediate release, and any other help you are able to render.

It would be great if other Kenyans could wear the same t-shirts in solidarity with your fellow Kenyans who are doing more than just complaining about MPs. Visit Sukuma Kenya for details on where to purchase the shirts.

UPDATE: Other activists have been released, but Mwalimu Mati and his wife Jayne Mati the directors of Marsgroup Kenya, have been charged with incitement to violence on the specific instructions of the Minister for Internal Security.

UPDATE II (Saturday); 1. Mwalimu Mati of the Media Analysis and Research Services (MARS) Group and his wife Jane remain in custody at Langata Police Station Nairobi…they have not yet been charged (at which point they could apply for bail) more than 24 hours after their detention…we are deeply concerned that the intent is to hold them for no apparent purpose up to the maximum of 48 hours.

2. Fred Odhiambo of Bunge la Wananchi was just brought to Langata Police Station from Nyayo Stadium, where he’d been detained overnight. He has been badly beaten and has just been moved to Nairobi Women’s Hospital for treatment, still in detention.

3. Four colleagues in Garissa remain in detention for simply trying to present the Provincial Commissioner with a memorandum.

WHERE TO BUY SHIRTS: Right now they are available at Mars Group offices, 1st Floor
Chevron Plaza, Limuru Road (Parklands near the Aga Khan Hospital) for Kshs 500 a shirt (the money is used to subsidize printing the shirts that can be distributed for free to those who can’t afford the shirts). I’m wondering whether someone can help them set up an online store to sell the t-shirts? Other advocacy materials including video that you can help circulate are availalbe at the Partnership for Change website.

8 comments to Kenyan protestors arrested for wearing T-shirts!!!!

  • Ali

    Man, where can we get the T-shirts.

  • Ronnie T

    Its another sad day for kenya.Human rights & our freedom of expression are trampled yet again.Its now about the fashion police.What’s wrong with wearing a tshirt…we have lost the plot.The dark days are back

  • Tony

    I hate making “I told you so” statements. But this somehow takes me back to the debate on Presidential vs Parliamentary system of governance. While the Executive system showed its excesses and no doubt needed to be checked, many flooded to the “other side” urging for a Parliamentary system of governance to counter the Executive’s prior excesses. We are now experiencing the tyranny of the House . It just goes to show that it never works to make ‘knee-jerk’ reactionary decisions.

    We need to realize that the future is neither Orange nor Blue, and our politicians don’t bleed red, but rather they bleed “self-interest”.

  • Its a pretty sad exposure of he nature of our political elite that it has come to this and whilst my political communications lecturer would contend that all politicians world wide operate on self interest we really shoul at leats know to pick legislators with different interests

    Where can I get that logo?

  • Tony

    Further to above, please read this piece by Philip Ochieng (today’s Sunday Nation) precisely on the tyranny of Parliament…


  • adongo ogony

    This is the discussion we are having about the issue on Jukwaa.


  • Tony

    Three questions to the nation


    This Sunday, I want to ask three questions to the nation. The first question is outrageous, but I will ask it all the same. Is it true that if you are poor, you do not feel pain?

    I am inspired to ask this question by a colonial relic named Karen Blixen. This nasty woman believed that Africans are immune to pain. As a result, she used cruel methods to punish them in the Karen area of Nairobi (which is named after her).

    To her, this was like a sport: Addictive, thrilling and sadistic. But she is not alone. Some South African Boers share the same belief. In fact, a story is told of this South African farmer in Grahamtown and his young labourer.

    One day, the farmer woke up to find the labourer down with an axe lodged in the middle of his head.

    He kicked the fellow twice to see if he was still alive. To his surprise, the man responded. But he abandoned the poor guy until he finished his day’s work.

    When he returned home late that evening, he kicked him again to see if he was dead. Amazingly, and hours later, the fellow was still conscious.

    At this point, he took him to the hospital where they spent hours removing the axe from his head. Later, the agile guy made a full recovery. And alas! The farmer was convinced that Africans do not feel pain.

    I submit to the country that the nasty Karen Blixen and the Boer farmer are with us today. Our politicians have taken over from these colonial relics.

    And what is more: they have formed a tribe of what the Tanzanians call ‘mafuta mingi’. Now they are toying with us the way Blixen toyed with her ‘slaves’.

    Inflicting pain on the poor has become a sport to them. The subsidiary question I must ask the nation therefore is this: who is our enemy? Is it the labourer with an axe on his head, or is it the ‘mafuta mingi’ MP who has refused to pay tax? Is the enemy your poor neighbour from another tribe or is it the politician who pays him to burn a church?

    The answer to this is obvious. Our leaders have turned against the people. And the struggle now has a clear divide: “us” versus “them”!

    Now I move to my second question. Should these ‘mafuta mingi’ politicians hide in the tribe? Should we defend their evil designs simply because they are from our tribes?

    I ask this question on behalf of my late father, a Mau Mau fighter. When Jomo Kenyatta became president, my father believed the Kikuyus would benefit. As a matter of fact they did; but only the rich ones. He died a poor man.

    Then president Kibaki took over and my relatives from Nyeri decided it was time for them to eat. Instead, he abused them and told them to go to the bank! The question my poor father would therefore ask is this: “of what use to the tribe is the presidency?”

    And the answer is simple – zero!

    How about power sharing, how does it benefit the tribe? This deal, in my view, is a hoax arrived at through blood. It is a formula on how the ‘fellowship of thugs’ will share the fat of the land amongst themselves.

    And this is why after the ODM fat cats were allowed into the ‘house of eating’, they shut up. One year later, their sons are racing recklessly in fancy cars as IDPs languish in camps.

    In my view, this ain’t right! My question to the nation therefore is this: should we protect this thuggery using the tribe? And the answer is a resounding “No Way!”

    We have to reject this because our tribal chiefs are like the slave traders. Given a chance, they will mortgage the country to the devil and we saw them make an attempt in January.

    We must also remember that the slave traders first sold the criminals in society.

    Then they realised that slavery was good business, so they created wars and captured strong men for sale. Before long, they were selling women and children. And this is what our leaders are doing.

    They have captured the criminals and enslaved them as tribal warriors. Now they are coming for the good men to enslave their minds with the ethnic agenda.

    If we do not reject this, they will come for our women and children in the name of the tribe. I cannot imagine what they will do to them!

    My third question regards the future. When leaders turn against their people, it is an indication that change is coming. My question to the nation therefore is this: will you abort the change? Will you stop the birth of a new Kenya to protect some ‘mafuta mingi’ politicians?

    To honour the innocent people we killed, change must be allowed to happen. And if the country is pregnant with something new, we must not botch its birth. The question however is this: who will be the midwife?