Inside Politics

Orengo urges Ruto to create enabling environment for dialogue

Thursday, April 6th, 2023 14:55 | By
Siaya Governor James Orengo.
Siaya Governor James Orengo. PHOTO/Courtesy.

Siaya Governor James Orengo now says President William Ruto must create an enabling environment for the proposed bipartisan talks to be successful.

Speaking during the launch of Bondo Municipality at the Jaramogi Oginga Odinga Park on Wednesday, April 5, the county boss said the opposition cannot have a dialogue with the head of state when the people around him are "spewing hatred".

He claimed that Ruto's deputy Rigathi Gachagua was among leaders frustrating a bid for talks between the president and Azimio la Umoja - One Kenya coalition leader Raila Odinga.

"We are ready to talk but Ruto, you must create an enabling environment for us to have a sober and logical discussion about issues that are confronting the nation," Orengo said.

"If you got hyenas, jackals and wolves like Gachagua how can you carry on discussion when you have those kinds of characters? You can not have a discussion when the people around you are spewing hatred," he added.

The latest comes in the backdrop of a standoff over Raila's new demands ahead of the talks.

While President Ruto proposed a parliamentary committee to handle the opposition's demands on the reconstitution of the Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission (IEBC), Raila on Tuesday said Ruto must also address other demands touching on the cost of living and audit of the electoral body's servers as a matter of "urgency".

Raila also said a parliamentary process proposed by Ruto may not serve its intended purpose.

According to Raila, the Azimio leadership wants to have a conversation at the national level through a process akin to the 2008 National Accord, which was brokered by Koffi Annan following the disputed 2007 presidential election results.

The former prime minister threatened to return to the streets if the demands are not met.

However, Raila's remarks elicited criticism from Ruto's allies who accused the Azimio leader of using violence to blackmail the government.

National Assembly Majority Leader Kimani Ichung'wah threatened to petition the International Criminal Court (ICC) to monitor the opposition's activities in the country.

“We want to tell Raila, we have no problem with you demonstrating...but demonstrate peacefully. And that's why we are telling Raila Odinga, your system of looting, your system of anarchy, your system of using bloodshed to blackmail the country will come to an end and not next year, not after the next elections... This year, that system must come to an end,” Ichung’wah said on Wednesday.

“Blackmail us, and we will tell you this is blackmail. If you want to create anarchy we will call it anarchy. And that is why I have said we will propose an agenda to our PG meeting next week that we write to the ICC to take measures to ensure that Raila Odinga and his sponsors do not slide our country back to anarchy.”

The legislator claimed Raila was keen on causing chaos and bloodshed in the country to force his way into government.

“If our PG agrees with us, we will write to ICC because it is now very clear that all Raila Odinga and his team want is to blackmail the country using violence, anarchy, looting, and bloodshed to get into the system of government,” the MP added.

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