Ahmednasir, Balala among prominent Kenyans whose citizenship has been questioned

When Kenyans are chased out of their country of birth

The surprise and hurried decision was made by Interior Coordination CS Fred Matiang'i without offering Miguna the chance to defend himself.

The ministry has since claimed that Miguna denounced his Kenyan citizenship but has not offered any evidence or documents to support its claims.

The deportation of a man born in Kenya to Kenyan parents, and who recently vied for political office after obtaining numerous clearance, one who has paid taxes in Kenya for more than ten years - offers a chance to review instances where citizenship has been used as a tool of dealing political opponents.

Sheikh Balala

Perhaps the most blatant example of infringement of the inherent right of citizenship involved a Mombasa politician who had become a thorn in Kanu's fresh.

Ahead of the 1997 elections, popular Mombasa preacher and then Opposition politician Sheikh (a distant relative to Tourism CS Najib Balala) was stripped of his Kenyan citizenship by the President Daniel arap Moi.

Moi made the announcement while the Sheikh was in Germany- pushing him to exile for three years.

Yemen ancestors

Interestingly, the official reason for the revocation was that the Sheikh's ancestors were from Yemen even though he had been born and brought up in Kenya.

"I can't deny that my ancestors came from Yemen, but even my late grandmother did not know Yemen. Just like many Kenyans, my ancestors must have come from somewhere, yet as far as I am concerned, I am a bona fide and loyal Kenya citizen," the politician stated in a past interview.

Nairobi Lawyer Ahmednasir Abdullahi, who has recently acted for President Uhuru Kenyatta, has also had rivals question his citizenship.

While vying to become a representative of the Law Society of Kenya (LSK) at the Judicial Service Commission, the lawyers' body received a letter claiming that Abdullahi was born in a village called Raaso in Ethiopia and was brought to Mandera when he was seven years old.

Mohamud Sirat

The accusations did not materialise and the lawyer remains an upstanding members of the LSK.

In 2010, then Wajir South MP Mohammed Mohamud Sirat faced criminal charges over allegations he is not a Kenyan citizen.

The claims were made by a political opponent who was challenging Sirat's election in Court.

Then Immigration Minister, Otieno Kajwang', who belonged to the same party as Sirat's opponent quickly prepared for Sirat's deportation but the High Court was later to save the Wajir South MP.


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