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HomeNewsWithdraw KDF Immediately- Malema's EFF Demands Ruto

Withdraw KDF Immediately- Malema’s EFF Demands Ruto

The South African party argued that Kenyans’ voices regardless of stance must be heard as well as respected

The Economic Freedom Fighters led by the party leader Julius Malema has urged President William Ruto to recall his directive of deploying the Kenya Defence Forces (KDF) to help tame the anti-Finance Bill protests ongoing across the country.

In a statement, the South African party argued that Kenyans’ voices regardless of stance must be heard as well as respected, instead of being suppressed through violence.

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“The EFF calls upon President Ruto to immediately cease the violent suppression of protesters, withdraw the military and police from the streets, and engage in meaningful dialogue with the citizens of Kenya. The voices of the people must be heard and respected, not silenced through bloodshed and intimidation,” the statement read in part.

Kenya Defence Forces troops during a past training exercise. /KENYA DEFENCE FORCES

EFF also deemed it imperative that those responsible for the heinous acts of violence are held accountable and that all detained protesters are released without delay.

The Malema-led party further condemned the use of live rounds by police on peaceful protesters, affirming that the presence of police has been known to make matters worse instead of de-escalating them.

“If anything, their presence always escalates things, and clearly, President Ruto is willing to kill just to put his bill through,” the statement added.

Regarding KDF deployment, EFF termed it unethical for Ruto’s administration to use military force against their own Kenyans, underscoring the role of the military in protecting the nation and not confronting unarmed protesters with legitimate grievances.

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“President Ruto’s subsequent statements, labelling some protesters as “criminals” and threatening to counter the “violence and anarchy,” demonstrate a profound disregard for the legitimate grievances of the Kenyan people.

“This oppressive response highlights the President’s willingness to resort to deadly force to push through his Finance Bill, which clearly serves the interests of Western powers at the expense of his own citizens,” the party became the latest to tear into President Ruto’s Tuesday night address.

EFF’s statement comes hours after Members of Kenya’s National Assembly approved the Defence Council’s request to deploy KDF troops, following a Gazette Notice by Defence Cabinet Secretary Aden Duale allowing military deployment to support the National Police Service (NPS) in restoring normalcy in the country.

National Assembly Majority Leader Kimani Ichung’wah had earlier tabled a motion to legally ratify the government’s decision to deploy military troops on Kenyan soil.

Duale in the notice, explained that the decision to use the KDF was in light of the demonstrations that escalated and caused significant damage to critical government infrastructure.

Parliament buildings on fire as of June 25, 2024. /INDIA TODAY

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