Former Mungiki leader Maina Njenga yesterday alluded to his presidential ambitions and the formation of a new party for the youth early next month.
Speaking at Kwa Mbira grounds during the Limuru 2B meeting that was attended by thousands of youth and a cross-section of leaders in a speech heavily laden with parables, biblical quotes and snippets of Kikuyu culture, Njenga indirectly took battle to Deputy Prime Minister Uhuru Kenyatta for the hearts and votes of the youth.
“Some are saying that money can take you to State House. Others are saying education can take you there. I say the secret is God.”
Makadara MP, Mike Mbuvi who had arrived midway through the meeting to a mixed reception from the crowd was booed and jeered off the stage when he declared support for Mr. Kenyatta.
Njenga, who was the last to speak, was clearly the star attraction. His entry to the stage was dramatic. For ten minutes there was mass euphoria. To a man, everyone stood. Chants of Chairman rent the air. Kenyan flags were waved. Guys were screamed.
Then Maina, hands stretched out, intoned, “Bwana Asifiwe!” and the response was electric. He began by speaking of his salvation and of being reformed. Stating that the purpose of the meeting was to combine as Kenyans and finish tribalism, Njenga asked the crowd to join him in burying GEMA and Kamatusa.
Alleging that ten thousand youth were victims of extra-judicial killings, he wondered why MPs from Central Province remained mum on the issue while they had used the youth at one point or another.
Speaking in Kikuyu, he cryptically said, “I started the work in 1987. I have a register for all members. When they joined and when they took the oath. Home secrets are not shared but let them not play with fire. We put them in power, we can eject them too”
Releasing two doves as a signal for peace, the Hope International Church leader stated that from then going forward there was no Mungiki and that all should reform and see the light.
Stating that he had come to give youth hope and inform them that this was God’s time, Njenga declared “I note you have a party but no driver. I can be the captain or driver.” to a thunderous applause by the crowd.
Earlier a Mr. Wafula Simiyu had spoken of having registered a new party, Kenya Solidarity Network which is to be launched on ninth June at Kamukunji grounds.
He implored the youth to elect a new crop of leaders. Those who can listen without class barriers. Those who espouse the freedoms granted in the new constitution. Those who can bring desired change.
Touching on the International Criminal Court cases he said that he wished ill on no one and that he believed no Kenyans should be jailed outside the country.
Earlier, a cross section of leaders had addressed the charged crowd. They included former legislators Paul Muite and Kalembe Ndile, activists Zekii, Ken Wafula, Hassan Omar, Bob Ndolo, Zarina Patel, Gacheke Gachihi, Rajab Mohammed and Jacob Rotich. Daughter of Freedom fighter Dedan Kimathi, Evelyn also spoke.
Chief guest Rtd Archbishop David Gitari gave the keynote speech. He urged Kenyans to approach the next elections as nationalists not tribalists.
Quoting the Constitution and the Political Parties Act, he condemned parties that are not national in outlook. In reference to GEMA’s meeting last month he asserted, “I do not think people can sit in Limuru and decide who leads a certain community.”
The former prelate said that Exodus 18 should form the template for what kind of leader should be elected. Necessary qualities he said were capability, God-fearing nature, trustworthy and incorruptible. He also called for American-style presidential debates to enable voters interrogate policy and leaders.
Bunge la Mwananchi Chairman Gacheke Gachihi, who was the first to address the crowd, set the tone. Celebrating the reforms in the judiciary and legislature, he regretted that the executive remained in darkness. He asked for the youth to be given a chance as they were armed with ideas. “If you prevent a peaceful revolution, you incite a violent one but that is not our prayer,” he said.
The meeting began and ended with intonations from a priest from the African Orthodox Church. There was also a rendition of the first stanza of the national anthem.