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Secession talk poses threat to peace and security, warns Francis ole Kaparo

Kenyans have been warned against entertaining thoughts of splitting the country into Jubilee and National Super Alliance (NASA) Zones.

National Cohesion and Integration Commission (NCIC) chairman Francis Ole Kaparo Friday said engaging in secession narrative poses a threat to peace and security that is currently enjoyed by Kenyans.

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Speaking at a press briefing in Nairobi, Kaparo appealed to leaders to stop the separatism debate, which he termed as dangerous to the country.

“It is absolutely reckless for a leader of sound mind to even contemplate splitting Kenya into two. Talking about secession itself has the capacity to destabilise the country’s social fabric,” he cautioned.

A secessionist narrative gripped the country early this week, after an online petition on the same subject started making rounds on social media. The petition that targets 15 million endorsements has already been signed by over 10,000 people.

NASA leader Raila Odinga’s technical adviser David Ndii lend credence to the secession talks after he shared the online petition on his social media page, a move that he defended while appearing at a local TV station.

The fact that Kenya has over the years been ruled by two communities, the narrative of rigged elections, economic marginalisation and extrajudicial killings are some of the major reasons cited in the petition as grounds for self-determination.

“Kenya has consistently been ruled by only two communities, yet Kenya is a country of about 44 tribes. This has seen rampant discrimination against other communities in basic human rights including distribution of national resources,” reads the petition in part.

But Kaparo at the press briefing Friday maintained that there are better ways that can be used to resolve differences pitting the different political players, noting that going separate ways is not one of the options.

“There are better and legal ways of solving our grievances than resorting to secession which is treasonable offence. We cannot dismember Kenya because of political differences of some leaders,” he said.

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“If we allow every person who loses an election to dismember our country, what shall we be left with?” posed the NCIC boss.

The government in 2012 launched a heavy offensive against the Mombasa Republican Council (MRC) which had been advocating for secession of the Coastal region from Kenya.  The clamp-down thwarted MRC’s ‘Pwani si Kenya’ separatist campaign. 

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