Governor Natembeya Supporters clash With Senate Speaker Wetang’ula Supporters in Trans Nzoia funeral

Supporters of Trans Nzoia Governor George Natembeya and those backing National Assembly Speaker Moses Wetang’ula clashed during a burial ceremony in the Western region on Friday.

The occasion marked the burial of the wife of former Nominated MCA Phillip Nyongesa in Trans Nzoia County, where both Natembeya and Wetang’ula were present, sharing a podium after months of apparent discord.

Tensions between the two leaders have recently centered around disagreements over the unity of the Mulembe nation and the rightful claim to leadership within the community.

The situation escalated to the extent that mourners had to flee for safety when police intervened, dispersing irate crowds with tear gas. Consequently, the funeral service had to be abruptly concluded, and Sarah Nyongesa, the deceased, was hurriedly laid to rest.

In response to the chaos, Wetang’ula emphasized the importance of maintaining peace and respect during burial ceremonies. He condemned the violence and called upon law enforcement to take action against those responsible.

Expressing his sentiments, Wetang’ula stated, “It is disheartening and unacceptable that the late Sarah Nyongesa was not accorded the respect she deserved during her final farewell. Regardless of their status, no leader should be permitted to exploit impunity and violence to sow discord and turmoil merely to gain political advantage.”

He underscored the necessity for respect and peace among Kenyan citizens for the country’s growth and development.

Natembeya, on his part, remained steadfast in his commitment to liberating the Luhya nation from poverty, despite attempts to thwart their efforts through violence. He affirmed, “They think through violence they will stop the bid to liberate the Luhya community. It has just started. We will soldier on until this community is liberated from poverty. This plane is still on the runway.”

Health Cabinet Secretary Susan Nakhumincha, who also attended the burial, expressed dismay at the chaos witnessed during the send-off, emphasizing the imperative of maintaining peace. She warned that where there is disorder, measures will be taken to restore order, unequivocally stating, “Whether it is by fire or by fire.”

Trans Nzoia County Commissioner Gideon Oyagi echoed similar sentiments, cautioning against violence and affirming that those responsible would face legal consequences, regardless of their social standing. He emphasized the importance of preserving peace in the region, especially with impending elections.

Natembeya, in previous statements, denounced leaders who imposed themselves as kingpins within the community and engaged in what he termed as “politics of worship.” He asserted his position as a self-made leader, dismissing the notion of idolizing leaders who have not contributed positively to the community.

“I am a self-made leader. I have worked hard to where I am today, and I will not worship or clap for leaders who call themselves kingpins and have done nothing for our community,” Natembeya reiterated.