Hours after video footage of Kimilili MP Didmus Barasa slapping a contractor went viral on social and mainstream media, the controversial MP has crafted a different story about the incident saying he did not commit the act.
In the video, the MP is captured slapping a contractor who has been identified as Stephen Masinde at Lurare Baptist Primary School where he had gone to launch five refurbished classrooms.
Speaking at Namasanda Primary School in the same constituency shortly after the drama, MP Barasa said he only approached the contractor to inform him to zip up his trouser but he ran away thinking he wanted to beat him.
“…Kwa vile ni raifiki yangu nikaona nikama alienda kujisaidia na alikua hajafunga zip. Mimi naona gari yake ndogo iko ndani hajafunga nikasema wacha nikimbie nimwambie garage yake iko empty funga duka. Sasa wakati nilienda kumuambia hivo akatoroka mbio akafikiria naenda kumpiga. ( Because he is my friend, I thought he had gone for a short call and failed to zip up his trouser. I saw his private part hanging outside and the trouser is unzipped and I said let me go and tell him to zip up. But when I was taking a step towards him, he started running away thinking that I was going to fight him),” Barasa said.
According to the legislator, he had tried several times to alert Masinde in a coded message of his open zip but he could not get it.
He says he has no problem with the contractor adding that he mistook his kind gesture for physical assault.
“Mimi nilikua naenda tu kumuambia afunge zip kwa sababu niliona najaribu kumfinyia macho lakini naona ni kama network yake haishiki vizuri ikabidi mimi mwenyewe niende nimuambie kwa sababu niliona Watoto wa shule wanacheka. Kumbe Walikua Wanachungulia garage yake. Kwa hivyo mahali ako asikue na wasiwasi ajue mimi sikukua naenda kumpiga nilikua nataka tu kumuambia afunge zip. (I was simply going to tell him to zip his trouser because I had attempted several times to alert him but he wasn’t getting me. I had to go and tell him because I had realized that school kids were laughing at him. Let him not be worried wherever he is because I was not after beating him, I just wanted him to zip up his trouser),” he claimed
The MP admitted that he knows Masinde very well and that he contracted him for the Job.
He however did not make it clear whether he had paid him for the work but added that the contractor has been his close ally who has been singing for him at his campaign rallies.
“Ni rafiki yangu ambaye mimi nimetafuta, nikamjenga, nikumsupport. Tumekua tukitembea an yeye huku tukifanya campaign akiimba. Nimemtafuta nikamuambia wewe kuja fanya renovation hiyo shule ya Lurare, akakuja akafanya akamaliza..(He happens to be a good friend of mine who I have been empowering, walking with during my campaign period where he has been singing for me. I looked for him and told him to come and work on this project at Lurare Primary School and he came and did the work),” he said.
Masinde, who went to block the MP from launching the classes, claims the MP is yet to pay him Ksh3.4 million accrued bills for the construction.
Together with his co-contractor they arrived at the school earlier before the launch and locked the classrooms with padlocks to block the MP from officially handing them over.
It is when the MP was making an effort to open one of the doors that he realized it was locked from inside and when he sought answers, Masinde emerged and explained he wanted his dues first.
The MP became agitated and slapped him resulting in a commotion that brought businesses to a standstill at the school.