The government has distanced itself from the controversial statement made by Starehe MP Charles Njagua on Tuesday, which targeted foreign traders in Kenya. The MP, popularly known as Jaguar, said the Interior CS and PS and the Immigration department should make sure Kenyans are running businesses without competing with people from other countries.
He said businesses in Nairobi have been taken over by foreigners, including Pakistanis, Chinese, and traders from neighboring nations Uganda and Tanzania. “Now we say enough is enough, we give them 24 hours if they aren’t ejected, we will eject them and beat them, we don’t fear them!” The comments have stirred up controversy, especially in Tanzania, where Kenya’s High Commissioner to Dar er Salaam Dan Kazungu was summoned to explain the remarks, which have widely been viewed as xenophobic.
However, the government has come out strongly against Jaguar’s comments. “We wish to state that this is NOT the position of the government of the Republic of Kenya, and we denounce the comments carried in the video in the strongest terms possible. Such comments are unfortunate and have no place in today’s globalized environment,” read the statement from government spokesperson Col. (Rtd) Cyrus Oguna.
He has reassured all foreigners in Kenya and those who are interested to come and invest in the country of their personal security and that of their properties. The Starehe MP was arrested at mid-morning on Wednesday outside parliament buildings in connection with the remarks.