Gachagua to police: Let Kikuyu elders conduct their cultural rituals

Deputy President Rigathi Gachagua has issued a directive that Kikuyu elders be allowed to conduct their cultural rituals and practices without interference and harassment from the police.

Gachagua said he has already convened a meeting with all the security bosses and told them to allow the elders to conduct their traditional activities peacefully.

The DP was speaking at Honi Resort in Nyeri on Saturday evening during a múgithi gala that brought together legendary Kikuyu artists, leaders and residents from Mt Kenya region.

“I have said that everywhere that there are cultural rituals by our elders, they should be allowed to conduct them. I want this community to be protected and respected,” Mr Gachagua said.

“I convened all the security bosses and told them that our traditional cultural practices and rituals should be allowed to go on,” he added.

Gachagua, however, told the Kikuyu elders from Mt Kenya region to desist from individuals who infiltrate their shrines with evil intentions.

“What we would like to ask our elders is that they should take care not to allow the rituals to be hijacked by people who have evil intensions. I will hold talks with the elders so that they guide us as a community,” he said.

On December 31, 2023, at least 23 elders – aged between 57 and 90 years – were arrested at Mukurwe wa Nyagathanga cultural shrine in Murang’a County and locked up as suspects of the proscribed Mungiki gang.

The country’s Second-in-Command emphasized on the need for the residents from the vote-rich Mt Kenya region to remain united and shun being divided.

“That is why I am telling our people to remain united as one and desist any form of divisions,” Mr Gachagua said.

“Let us remember that our unity is our strength. As the leader of this community, I am urging you to always unite,” he added.

He challenged the community elders and parents to deliberately teach young people about their past, guide mentor them accordingly especially the boy child.

Recently, Kikuyu Council of Elders accused the government of meddling into the community’s cultural values by demanding admission of security officers into their sittings ‘in the guise of fighting the Mungiki sect’.

The council’s chairman Mr Wachira Kiago said: “We have our cultural secrets. We have rules of admission into our sittings. These security officers being imposed on us to take part in our meetings and rituals are not our members and many of them are not even from this community. We will not enlist them into our formation by decree of the government”.

He added: “Let it be known that we will not at any given time consult with the police as we undertake our cultural programmes since we also do not demand to be consulted as they serve our people. We are bound by the laws of the land but not to an extend of having our culture policed through forceful occupation within ourselves”.

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