Vandals raid Raila-owned gas cylinder firm in Nairobi amid protests

SpectreEA

A section of the East Africa Spectre plant on Road C in Nairobi's industrial area that was vandalised by unknown people. NMG PHOTO | LUCY WANJIRU

Unknown vandals have stormed the East Africa Spectre Limited which is associated with opposition leader Raila Odinga, the firm’s security boss Humphrey Waswa said in a stament on Monday.

The attack on the Odinga family-owned gas cylinder manufacturer came at around the same time as a near similar raid on former President Uhuru Kenyatta-linked Northlands City.   

East Africa Spectra, located on Road C in Nairobi’s industrial area, manufactures and distributes gas cylinders in Kenya and the region.

“At around 11.40 today in the morning, a group of around 50 people on motorbikes came around and attacked us and they were being supported by four unmarked vehicles. We suspect that their target was on our managing director because her office is the one that has been damaged,” said Mr Waswa.

Mr Waswa said the vandals destroyed the property of unknown value and pelted the firm’s managing director’s office with rocks. The opposition chief’s wife Ida Odinga is the company’s MD.

The Odinga family is the largest shareholder of the firm with 262,500 shares. Mr Odinga and Mrs Odinga individual own 90,000 and 50,000 shares respectively while the former Prime Minister’s brother Oburu Oginga holds 60,000 stakes.

Other shareholders include the widow of Argwings Kodhek (5,000) and Israel Agina (30,000).

Anti-government protests on Monday entered the second week as the opposition calls for the State to reduce the cost of living and push the electoral commission IEBC to open the servers.

Allies of the ruling part UDA have in recent days accused the former President of sponsoring the ongoing protests.

Gangs invaded the Northlands City linked to the former Presidents minutes to noon armed with machetes and power saws.

The group cut down rows of eucalyptus trees planted along the perimeter electric fence and carted away livestock grazing on the expansive property.

Escalation of the ongoing protests could further hurt the economy which is reeling from slowed growth due to the Ukraine-Russia war, drought and the economic fallout of the Covid-19 pandemic.

Already, the business community is bracing for another week's mass protests, with Mr Odinga announcing last week that they would take place on Mondays and Thursdays.

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