Gabriel Kagombe
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Gabriel Kagombe, gun-toting MP who is not new to controversy

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Gatundu South MP Gabriel Kagombe (center), flanked by fellow lawmakers, speaks to the media at Maji House on September 20, 2023.

Photo credit: Dennis Onsongo | Nation Media Group

Gatundu South Member of Parliament Gabriel Kagombe, whose surname loosely translates to "small cow" in the Kikuyu dialect, does not shy away from controversy.

But this time, he's in the middle of a deadly storm.

In the latest drama, Mr Kagombe, elected in the 2022 elections on a UDA party ticket, was caught in a viral video firing at a crowd on Friday last week.

David Nduati, 26, a boda boda rider, was killed in the incident that had boiled over protests on market stalls. 

On Tuesday, his family told Nation.Africa that a post-mortem examination showed that he died of excessive bleeding from a gunshot wound.  

The bullet went through the back and exited through his chest.

Nduati's brother, Harrison Ndirangu, vowed that they would not bury their loved one until the government showed commitment to investigating his killing and compensating them for the loss.

"The post-mortem examination clearly shows my brother was shot from behind and the bullet exited from the chest. We don’t intend to bury him any time soon until the police and the government show the commitment to investigate and compensate us,” Ndirangu said. 

Kiambu police commander Michael Muchiri said he could not comment on the investigations since the homicide department in the Directorate of Criminal Investigations (DCI) headquarters had taken over the case.

The head of the homicide department, Martin Nyuguto, did not respond to messages and calls on the status of investigations.

But police sources said most of the politicians who were at the chaotic function had recorded statements.

Born in Nyandarua, Kinangop North, Mr Nduati lived about 350 metres away from where he met his death.

He was among those putting up makeshift sheds allocated by the local ward representative when rival groups clashed.

When the MP is not attacking the media, the police or the gate crashing into county events, he is Kiambu Governor Kimani Wamatangi, claiming the county has more commercial buildings than hospitals.

During an event organised by the Kiambu County Government last year, he was involved in an altercation with police when he demanded to address the crowd during a medical camp. He protested that he had not been invited to the event. 

The lawmaker blamed police for "muting his microphone" during the event that degenerated into a near-clash between his camp and that of Governor Wamatangi.

"You are muting my microphone as who? I want to know who has given you the instructions to mute my microphone?’’ Kagombe charged at the police officers who watched the situation degenerate.

When Public Service Cabinet Secretary Moses Kuria – who formerly also served as Gatundu South MP – bashed the media for allegedly running anti-government stories, Kagombe, a former advertising executive with one of the local media houses, attacked his former employers. 

The Friday event, where two camps clashed over the ownership and credit of a proposed market valued at Sh55 million in the Kiganjo market in Kamenu Ward, was the latest spat involving Mr Kagombe. 

In the video, he can be seen drawing his gun from his waistline and firing shots directly into the crowd.

The crowd was hurling stones at the legislator and his group of supporters. But they never ran away despite the hostility.

The chaos emanated from supremacy battles pitting Kamenu Ward Rep Peter Mburu and Thika Town MP Alice Ng'ang'a.

Trouble started on Thursday last week and spiralled to Friday when Mburu mobilised his supporters to take up slots in the market.

The group started erecting makeshift market shades. Ng’ang’a turned up with her supporters and a contract to commission the construction of the market.

The two camps would then engage in running battles.

Mburu insisted that the proposed market was a brainchild of the Kiambu County Government, while Ng’ang’a maintained the project is driven by the national government.

Ng’ang’a was accompanied by Kagombe, National Assembly Majority Leader Kimani Ichung’wah (Kikuyu), Elijah Njoroge (Gatundu North MP) and Ngoliba ward MCA Joachim Njama in a bid to show that the project had the blessings of the national government.

Kagombe has exonerated himself from the shooting and blamed political rivals for "sponsoring the chaos."

“In the ensuing altercation, I and other residents were injured,’’ Kagombe wrote on his X handle.

Ng’ang’a and Ichung’wah have been feuding with Wamatangi.

Some months ago, the trio openly clashed during a tour of Kiambu by President William Ruto and his deputy, Rigathi Gachagua.

A previous meeting to reconcile the three, spearheaded by Gachagua, never yielded a truce.