Inside Politics

Stop blaming me for your failures, Uhuru warns

Monday, November 20th, 2023 00:30 | By
Stop blaming me for your failures, Uhuru warns
Former President Uhuru Kenyatta speaking when he joined congregants for a Sunday Service and Cathedral fund-raiser at Full Gospel Church in Mwingi, Kitui County yesterday. PHOTO/Print

Retired President Uhuru Kenyatta has expressed his displeasure over the tendency by Kenya Kwanza government officials to blame its shortfalls on his administration.

The former Head of State — who appeared in public for the first time since July — told those in positions of authority to focus on uniting the nation and shun divisive politics. He spoke after attending a service at the Mwingi Full Gospel Church in Kitui County.

“We have been told many things; we have been threatened,” he said. “Mtu akishidwa kufanya mambo yake, ooo sijui serikali iliyopita (when an official is unable to discharge their duty they blame the past administration),” he said.

“Lets avoid divisive politics on basis of ethnicity, religion and the rich and the poor. Everybody has the responsibility to build the country; to fight poverty and the country remains at peace.”

Uhuru maintained that he was still a firm supporter of Azimio La Umoja One Kenya Alliance and urged leaders from the Ukambani region to continue supporting the coalition.

“I am pleased with the unity of leaders seated here. I am a supporter of Azimio with no intention to change my allegiance. I stand with my personal principals and I hold to what I believe in. We are there to stay, we are proud of it and we are hopeful of a bright future,” he said as he reiterated his call for national unity. “The desire for leadership should not exceed the problems of ordinary citizens. We will not engage in negative politics.”

His host, Wiper party leader Kalonzo Musyoka defended the retired President’s participation in politics.

“Our brother here has his constitutional right as a citizen of this country to belong and to a political (formation). It does not mean that because his is not in office now he should remain silent and not speak when things are wrong. He can’t keep quiet when the country is burning,” Kalonzo said.

He re-affirmed that Azimio will not give up on its fight for multiparty democracy, and accused the ruling alliance of a scheme to kill the voice of opposition. He also reiterated that remains the bona fide Jubilee Party Leader.

“He has not given up his position as the leader of Jubilee Party,” Kalonzo told the gathering. “When you oppress Jubilee, you are also oppressing Wiper and other affiliate parties in the Azimio Coalition.”

Respect for party autonomy has been one of the key demands that Azimio has been making to the government as part of the negotiations that Kalonzo co-chairs with Kimani Ichungwah, the Leader of the Majority in the National Assembly.

Kalonzo revealed that the Minority and Majority sides in the talks had agreed that each coalition would independently identify a firm to audit the 2022 general election results.

“Before we can even talk about the 2027 elections we must put to a closure this matter,” he said and urged the Azimio members in the National Dialogue Committee not sign the document containing the bipartisan talks report if it does not recommend lowering of the cost of living.

Kalonzo said inflation had escalated and blamed this on corruption.

Last month, inflation stood at 6.9 per cent, up from 6.8 per cent in September.

“The Director of Criminal investigations and our international partners should not cover any corruption cases because that’s where the problem is,” he said.

Kalonzo also challenged Ukambani leaders in Azimio to stop fighting each other, warning that they were weakening the coalition and this risked creating confusion among supporters.

Former Kakamega Governor Wycliffe Oparanya, who is also the ODM Deputy Party Leader, challenged leaders in Azimio to rally behind a Kalonzo presidency in 2027.

“I have seen a lot of potential in Kalonzo and that is why I am endorsing him to be the sixth president,” said Oparanya. “We must be united in Azimio and create a strong alliance of all our parties. We must avoid the temptations of breaking away when the elections draw close. We must die together or survive together,” he said.

Redeem Kenya

While endorsing Kalonzo to seek the presidency in 2027, local MPs accused the Kenya Kwanza administration of neglecting the region. According to them, majority of the infrastructure projects that were started during Uhuru’s administration had stalled.

“We are ready to take up the leadership of this country. We have started our journey to redeem this Kenya and will are fully behind Kalonzo Musyoka and we are not going to waver from that course. So President Uhuru kindly talk to our brothers from Mt Kenya to support us,” Matungulu MP Stephen Mule said.

“Kenyans are tired of the blames being heaped on Uhuru by people who have failed to deliver on the expectations of the voters”.

Senator Enoch Wambua echoed Kalonzo›s call on members of Azimio to reject the negotiation document if the issue of cost of living is not addressed.

“Leave it, because Azimio is not negotiating on positions and power in the committee but the interests of common wananchi,” he said.

More on Inside Politics