Turkish Businessman Harun Aydin, who was deported by former Interior Security CS Fred Matiang'i, was among the guests hosted by President William Ruto for a luncheon at State House after his inauguration.
Aydin was, on Tuesday, September 13, in the company of ex-Kiminini Member of Parliament (MP) Chris Wamalwa and Trans Nzoia Senator Allan Chesang who also attended the function.
"Joined special guests at State House for the luncheon of the inauguration of the 5th President William Ruto," Wamalwa captioned.
Aydin's return comes a year after he was deported to Istanbul, Turkey, following an intense grilling session at the Directorate of Criminal Investigations (DCI) headquarters along Kiambu Road.
On August 7, he was arrested by Anti Terror Police Unit (ATPU) officers at Wilson Airport while returning from Uganda. The businessman was taken in for questioning on accusations of being linked to terrorism and money laundering.
Ruto castigated his arrest, terming it as a political witchhunt targeting his allies. He further defended Aydin from accusations of financing terrorism, terming him an investor.
"Harun is a victim of top-down arrogance bred by patronage and cartels that criminalise enterprise. Those claiming that this man is a terrorist are not only soiling his name but that of Kenya as a country," he rebuked.
The police sought to find out how the investor obtained a Ksh15 billion loan which he used to set up a pharmaceutical company in Uganda. Reports alleged that he used Ruto's network to access the funding, claims the President rejected.
Ruto's then spokesperson, David Mugonyi, clarified that the only investors the DP helped secure funding were from the region.
"The Deputy President did not help Aydin get money from the bank. He helped some Eastern African investors and this was two years ago," Mugonyi reiterated.
Outgoing Interior CS, Matiang'i, cast aspersions on Ruto's investor theory and even fronted a review of the minimal threshold foreigners seeking to invest in the country must meet before setting up businesses in Kenya
He beckoned the National Assembly’s National Security Committee to ensure the investors are properly vetted before being awarded Class G work permits.
Furthermore, he asked the committee to close loopholes exploited by foreigners giving unfair advantages over local small traders.
While assuming office, Ruto stated that the police and other independent bodies were misused politically to propagate certain narratives and oppose the government's critics.
One of the reforms he initiated on his first day as President was transferring the National Police Service budget from the Office of the President and designating the Inspector-General as the accounting officer.
"As required by Article 245 of the Constitution, the Inspector-General of Police is mandated to exercise independent command over the National Police Service.
"The services’ operational autonomy, however, has been undermined by the continued financial dependence on the Office of the President. This situation is going to change," he stated.
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