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8 Dead in Kenya Protests, Ruto Pledges to Defend Kenya At All Costs

No criminal will go unpunished, William Ruto

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Following recent protests in Kenya that have reportedly led to the deaths of eight people and injuries to 200, President William Ruto has revealed that an attack on Parliament by what he calls criminals resulted in the loss of lives and destruction of property. Ruto stated that these acts represent a critical turning point in how the government will respond to threats to national security.

Ruto emphasized that the government has mobilized all resources to ensure such situations do not recur, pledging to take any necessary measures. He acknowledged the officers who defended Kenya and its people during the protests. With immediate effect, Ruto directed all national security organs to use every measure to bring criminals to order. He assured Kenyans that the security of their families and property remains his priority.

He acknowledged the youth for raising important issues and promised to engage in dialogue to address their concerns. However, he expressed disheartenment that Kenyans were hijacked by dangerous people who brought terror to innocent individuals, challenged law enforcement, and continued with dangerous behaviors. He noted that his government would fulfill its constitutional duty of protecting the people of Kenya against all forms of harm. He issued a warning to planners, orchestrators, financiers, and abettors of violence and anarchy, stating that security forces would be deployed to secure the country and restore normalcy.

President Ruto further stated that it is inconceivable that criminals pretending to be peaceful protestors could terrorize the people, their representatives, and the institutions established under Kenya’s constitution and expect to go unpunished. He emphasized that crime must be separated from democratic expression and that criminals must be distinguished from those exercising their freedom of expression and divergent opinions.

Ruto added that he would continue to lead a government committed to maintaining integrity, promoting unity in Kenya, and enhancing peace and security for all citizens. He pledged to defend the constitution, which declares that all sovereign power belongs to the people and can only be exercised according to the constitution.

He concluded that the government would treat any threat as an existential danger to the Republic of Kenya and would provide a full, effective, and expeditious response to treasonous events.

The youth are protesting a financial bill that includes levies on basic commodities like bread, vegetable oil, and sugar, as well as a new motor vehicle circulation tax pegged at 2.5% of the car’s value to be paid annually. The bill also proposes increasing existing taxes on financial transactions. While the government suggests that the taxes are essential to fund development programs and reduce public debt, the youth demand that the Kenya Finance Bill be scrapped.

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