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Kenya Lawmakers Demand Inquiry over Slain Colleague

Onlookers gather at the scene after Kenyan lawmaker George Muchai, his two bodyguards and driver were shot dead on a main street in Nairobi, Kenya, Feb. 7, 2015.

The majority leader in Kenya’s parliament has demanded security agencies launch a thorough investigation into the shooting death of a lawmaker in the central business district in the capital, Nairobi, on Saturday.

Majority leader Adel Duale condemned the killing of his colleague, describing it as heinous and barbaric.

“We condemn it in the strongest terms possible. It’s a heinous act and we have called on the security agents, the director of the CID [Criminal Investigation Division of police] to move with speed and bring the perpetrators of this heinous act to justice as soon as possible,” said Duale.

Parliamentarian George Muchai of President Uhuru Kenyatta’s ruling Jubilee Coalition was killed at 3 am local time along with two of his bodyguards and driver.

“This is a sad day for the Jubilee Coalition. The coalition has lost one of its best members of parliament the country has lost a leader. Honorable Muchai was one of the finest trade unionists in our country before he joined politics,” said Duale.

Some Kenyans have called for increased protection for lawmakers following recent acts of violence often carried out by the Somali-based Islamist militant group al-Shabab. Duale echoed similar sentiments saying the government has a mandate to the protect citizens.

“The Jubilee administration is under obligation to protect the lives and property of each and every of the 41 million Kenyans and also to provide more security for the top leadership of our country,” said Duale.

“Our top leaders both in the executive and in the judiciary enjoy a scaled up security. Of course this is an isolated incident. It looks like it is a well-coordinated attack and killing of one of our colleagues. But I am sure the national intelligence service and the other arms of security will make sure that each and every Member of Parliament or leader in our country is safe just like all the other citizens of our country,” he added.

Critics of the government say the killing of the parliamentarian is yet another example of the failure of the administration to implement security measures to protect civilians despite the threats posed by al-Shabab. They contend that the killing has sent shock waves and sparked fear among the entire population.

Duale disagreed.

“Let me make it clear that since December, the country has enjoyed a sense of security and stability. And what has happened today is not an isolated incidence not only to Kenya and to Nairobi... It can happen in Washington it can happen in New York…But, it is the obligation of the government of the day to make sure that all the 41 million Kenyans including our leaders are safe and sound,” said Duale.

“I am sure the security agents are on the heels of the perpetrators of this heinous act, and sooner or later the killers of Honorable George Muchai and his three aides will be brought to book. That is what we are demanding from the National Police Service as the leadership of the Jubilee coalition and as a member of parliament,” he added.

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