Ruto says pastor Mackenzie of Kilifi fasting cult is a terrorist, belongs in jail
President William Ruto has weighed in on the controversial church in Kilifi as shocking deaths by starvation of members of the suspected cult continue to be unearthed.
Speaking on Monday at the prisons cadet pass out in Ruiru, the President said Pastor Paul Mackenzie, who is suspected to have brainwashed his congregation into starving to their death is a terrorist and belongs in jail.
“What we are seeing in Kilifi in Shakahola is keen to terrorism, there is no difference. Mackenzie pretends and postures as a pastor when he is a dangerous criminal,” President Ruto said.
“People like Paul Mackenzie are using religion to do exactly the same thing.”
As of 12 pm on Monday, 42 bodies had been exhumed at the Shakahola as eight of those who were rescued alive since the rescue mission began were confirmed dead in hospital.
Ruto said he has instructed relevant agencies to investigate the matter fully to identify the cause of the matter.
“Any religious group that peaches against the tenets of the constitution, that teaches against seeking medical adoption or going to school should be prosecuted, institutions closed down,” he said.
“People like Mackenzie do not belong to any religion, they belong to jail and that is where they should be.’
Prior to Ruto’s remarks, Kenyans expressed outrage at how the government has handled the case, with reports that the team deployed to carry out the exhumations and rescue operation complained over a lack of adequate manpower.