President William Ruto on Thursday appeared to downplay the scale of Azimio’s protests as he went on with normal diary hours after jetting into the country after a four-day official visit to Germany and Belgium.
The President was received at the Jomo Kenyatta International Airport by his deputy Rigathi Gachagua, Chief of Defence Forces Robert Kibochi, and Inspector-General of Police Japheth Koome, among other senior military and police officers.
The President arrived as the opposition side staged its third anti-government protests that have paralysed businesses in Nairobi, Kisumu, Migori, Homa Bay, and Siaya counties.
The President’s first assignment after landing was to attend the American Chamber of Commerce Summit at Ole Sereni.
Witnesses said the hotel has been surrounded by his security.
For his part, the DP was at the Bandari Maritime Academy in Mombasa County for a Seafarers’ event. He was accompanied by Blue Economy Cabinet Secretary Salim Mvurya among other leaders.
Mr Gachagua was in charge for the four days that the president was away and has been accused by the opposition of authorising excessive response to what they say are peaceful demonstrations.
Coincidentally, Mombasa Road was used by the Azimio la Umoja One Kenya Coalition leader Mr Raila Odinga who was heading to Embakasi to drum up support for his demonstrations.
On Wednesday evening, the Azimio leader held a meeting with the visiting United States Senator for Delaware Chris Coons and US Ambassador Meg Whitman, among other leaders, in an attempt to seek a solution to the ongoing turmoil.
Senator Coons is known in Kenya following his negotiation that led to a handshake between Mr Odinga and retired president Uhuru Kenyatta.