ODM apologises to Maragua MP Mary Wa Maua over harassment at Raila Odinga event 

 Mary Wa Maua.

Maragua MP Mary Wa Maua.

Photo credit: File | Nation Media Group

Presidential aspirant Raila Odinga’s Orange Democratic Movement (ODM) on Saturday issued a public apology to Maragua MP Mary Wa Maua and her supporters for the harassment she was accorded by security guards manning the gates of Kasarani stadium during Friday’s Azimio la Umoja function.

 In the event, Mr Odinga announced his candidacy for the presidency during next year’s General Election.

ODM chairman John Mbadi described the incident as not characteristic of the party and Mr Odinga.

 “On behalf of the Orange Democratic Movement (ODM), I take this opportunity to publicly apologise to Hon Wa Maua for the indecent handling and pray that she, together with the good people of Maragua will accept our apology,” the statement read.

 The incident was captured in a video that went viral showing the Jubilee MP getting shoved away as she protested bitterly.  

 “As an elected leader, you are pushing me like a sack of potatoes? What if you assume State House? We want humble people…You will get me in Murang’a...You will get us in Murang’a,” Wa Maua is heard protesting as she leaves the venue.


 The statement regretted the harassment, committing both the party and Mr Odinga to ensure going forward, such scenes will be avoided.

“We take great exception to the incident…where the MP was harassed and manhandled by security personnel…Although it was not majorly an ODM affair but an Azimio la Umoja event, our party leader was the man of the moment…as a party, we regret the ugly incident and commit to ensure such incidents do not happen again,” the statement read.

Chaos at VIP entrance of Raila's convention

 The event brought together supporters of Mr Odinga and those of President Uhuru Kenyatta.

The statement added that Mr Odinga is a strong defender of the rights of women and their empowerment and therefore “we (ODM) shall do everything within our limits to protect, defend and uphold the dignity of women at all times.”

The incident attracted the wrath of Mt Kenya leaders who termed it as a direct onslaught on the dignity of area women and the general voters.

 Raila’s elder brother Dr Oburu Oginga had also on Saturday described the incident as ‘very unfortunate’.

Earlier on, ODM Secretary General Edwin Sifuna had regretted the incident but appeared to blame it on Wa Maua.

Unity and cohesion

“The incident would have been avoided if she had let us know in advance that she would join us…since we have recently received a dozen defectors from the United Democratic Alliance (UDA)…and there is a likelihood of their intentions being misunderstood…” Mr Sifuna said.

 Mt Kenya Maendeleo ya Wanawake Organisation chair Lucy Nyambura termed Mr Sifuna’s conditional apology as “cheeky.”

 She said all those portending to be pursuing an agenda to unite the country must embrace all Kenyans unconditionally and “from all the corners of their mouth, issue statements that wholesomely embrace peace, unity and cohesion.”

Wa Maua remained mum on the incident insisting that she stands for national and universal unity as enshrined by humanity “but not that which is administered by discriminatory acts of groupings.”

 She said she is steadfast in the ruling Jubilee Party under the stewardship of President Kenyatta until her five year mandate expires next year.

“It is then that I will engage Maragua people to declare to me where their party passions are and the kind of relationship they would love me to cultivate with them as I seek a fresh mandate…I am busy trying to conclude my contract with them and sideshows will not help me or my people,” she said.