Cord’s ‘Men In Black’ return at Uhuru Park rally
The infamous ‘Men in Black’ returned Saturday pulling the strings behind the scenes at the Coalition for Reforms and Democracy (Cord) rally at Uhuru Park
Three men, one in a brown fur coat and a United States marine trouser, another in a leather coat and the third in a brown corduroy jacket were seen about the dais giving instructions on who to admit into areas designated for Cord dignitaries.
The gang of men, who have popularly come to be known as the ‘Men in Black’, violently interrupted the elections by destroying ballot boxes at the Kasarani Stadium on February 28.
ODM then set up a team led by Mr Jotham Nyukuri to investigate the chaos and who was behind it but nothing substantial was revealed.
Their resurfacing lends a lot of credence to earlier claims that they belonged to members in the party inner-circles and might have intentionally caused chaos at Kasarani to foil a takeover by a faction of the party.
Former Makadara MP Reuben Ndolo, the party’s current deputy organising secretary and who was in charge of the security, denied the presence of the men involved in the Kasarani chaos but boasted about the party 400 strong new and professional ‘Men in Black’.
Mr Ndolo told the Nation at the event that they did not require security from the government and were handling their own security.
“Everything is under control and our ‘Men in Black’ are totally in charge of the situation,” he said.
This however contradicts sharply with the situation on the ground with a spot check by Sunday Nation of the security in the park revealed that some of them were intoxicated while others could not tell the dignitaries apart.
Some of Cord leaders arrived with their own security men throwing the whole arrangements in disarray.
A scuffle ensued as Westlands Member of Parliament Mr Timothy Wanyonyi was making his way to the podium.
A Cord insider claims that five men dressed in black suits were trying to gain access in the confusion as the Westlands MP was being brought him. He claims that they were promptly bundled out in the scuffle and calm was restored.
The Cord men who had earlier in the morning established their own perimeter in the open space at Uhuru Park to frisk people collapsed under the overwhelming crowds streaming in.
Only the police continued searching the people as they entered Uhuru Park as the day wore on.
Earlier in the morning, there was heightened security at the park as all access points to the park were sealed off and crowds milling in for the rally as early as 4am could only access the park through two entrances along Valley road and Uhuru highway.
Police were stationed at several spots along the park fences armed with tear gas canisters and batons.
The throngs from different parts of the city came chanting pro-Raila songs but were forced to file in lines as they were frisked by police.
Motorists were forced to alight from their vehicles as their cars were searched, a testament to the heightened security in light of terror alerts.
Meanwhile groups of Cord supporters marched through the Central Business District carrying placards in support of former Prime Minister Raila Odinga who returned to the country Saturday while chanting anti-Jubilee slogans.
They groups disrupted traffic along the busy roads forcing motorists to give way as they made their way around the city.
The situation, however, remained calm with no ugly incidents yet reported.