Kenya: Embattled Lawyer Miguna Defies Reapplication for Citizenship After Airport Standoff

Lawyer Miguna Miguna

Hours after a standoff which saw Kenyan lawyer, Dr Miguna Miguna denied entry into Kenya at the Jomo Kenyatta International Airport, government in Kenya has said he should reapply to be granted Kenyan citizenship.

On Monday night, the embattled lawyer was denied entry into Kenya after he landed at JKIA from Canada to where he had been deported on February following his role in the mock inauguration of former Kenyan Presidential aspirant, Raila Odinga.

According to the immigration department of Kenya, Miguna Miguna will be required to reapply for the Kenyan citizenship which they say he lost in 1998 when he acquired that of Canada. They say that at the time, the constitution of Kenya did not allow dual citizenship.

When Miguna arrived at the airport on Monday, a scuffle ensued between him and immigration authorities at the airport after he refused to cooperate with their request to hand over his travel documents including his Canadian passport for them to process his entry as the law requires.

The lawyer protested and said he was a Kenyan who was free to access his country. Instead, he only presented his National Identity Card which is only allowed for persons entering Kenya from the East African Community (EAC) countries, which wasnt the case with Miguna.

Miguna spent the night at the departure lounge. Efforts by Raila Odinga who went to the airport in the night to secure Miguna’s release were futile after security officers blocked him.

Government in a statement on Tuesday said; “To enable Miguna regularise his citizenship status, the department has this morning dispatched the requisite application forms to the JKIA for Miguna to duly fill for processing”.

But Miguna’s lawyer Cliff Ombeta insists that his client will not fill the citizenship forms “because it would mean that Miguna will be agreeing that the government was right about his citizenship.”

He instead wants government to respect the High Court order that allowed Dr Miguna back into Kenya after his ‘illegal’ deportation to Canada.

“The government wants him to use his Canadian citizenship to justify their actions, they want him to get a Visa so that he is given time limits,” Ombeta said.

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