Fighting on graves of the dead: When burial ceremonies turn into battlefields

Kasipul MP Ong’ondo Were was addressing journalists at Kachieng village in his constituency (James Omoro, Standard).

Burial ceremonies are supposed to be solemn events where bereaved families are given time to pay their last respects to their loved ones.

But Kasipul MP Ong’ondo Were says funerals in his constituency had been turned into political battlefields.

According to Were, some leaders have now formed the habit of hiring goons to cause chaos during burial ceremonies. He says this is grossly unfair to the bereaved families and the dead. “It is very sad that some leaders plan violence which disrupts funerals in my constituency,” Were said.

The MP said violence in funerals is shameful.

“Kasipul has been a very peaceful constituency where people undertake their activities without interruption. But what is happening is wrong,” Were told the media in Kachien village.

He said the violence had escalated to a situation where people are assaulted anywhere.

The MP referred to a recent incident in which three people were stabbed in Oyugis Town. The three included his driver and two supporters.

Two of the victims are still admitted in Homa Bay Homa Bay Teaching and Referral Hospital.

Were said he now fears for his life. He claimed that during a recent funeral in his constituency, some goons were planning to kill him but he narrowly escaped.

“I knew their plans and I decided to escape,” Were said.

He accused a senior government official from the Nyanza region of being behind the plot to eliminate him.

“If anything happens to me, he should be held responsible,” Were said.

The MP said he had reported the alleged threat to police at Oyugis Police and Homa Bay County Directorate of Criminal Investigations.

“I have informed police in Oyugis Police Station to the DCI Nyanza regional office about the threat on my life,” Were said.

He said goons were hired from various counties in Nyanza to cause violence in Kasipul.

He urged the police to arrest the people behind the violence.



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