“Kenya will not be transformed through constant referendum calls,’ -DP Ruto

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Deputy President William Ruto speaks to residents of Nakuru County where he launched various development projects on August 31, 2019. Image: DPPS

Deputy President William Ruto has asked leaders to focus on their mandate rather than engaging in constant politics.

“We have put our energy on making Kenya better for everyone. This country would not be transformed through constant calls for a referendum,” Ruto said.

The DP spoke on Saturday in Subukia, Nakuru County where he launched various development projects.

Ruto’s sentiments come days after he faulted ODM leader Raila Odinga during a tour of Uasin Gishu County accusing him of using the referendum debate to divide Kenyans.

He urged Kenyans to ignore leaders who want to take advantage of calls for a referendum to amend the Constitution as a route to create division, hatred and confusion in the country.

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“Some leaders should stop blackmail and threats. We will not give you the opportunity to divide the country,” he said.

He added, “When BBI puts across their proposals, we will engage in a sober debate. We will not accept the spirit of tsunami that divides this country again,” Ruto saod.

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Opposition chief Raila Odinga last week warned that Ruto and his Tangatanga group will be swept into political oblivion.

During Saturday’s tour of Nakuru, leaders allied to Ruto said they would oppose the Building Bridges Initiative if it is aimed at resurrecting the fortunes of some politicians.

They said the Initiative would get their nod if only the proposals therein would transform the lives of Kenyans.

The leaders said Jubilee must re-evaluate its friendship with the Opposition.

They were Nakuru Senator Susan Kihika, MPs Martha Wangari (Gilgil), David Gikaria (Nakuru Town East), Samuel Gachobe (Subukia), Kimani Kuria (Molo) and Joseph Tonui (Kuresoi South).

Others were Charles Kamuren (Baringo South), Kimani Ichungwa (Kikuyu), Liza Chelule (Woman Rep, Nakuru) and Gideon Keter (nominated).

We know what the problem of our current Constitution is: this perennial election loser. He wants to revive his political grip through the referendum.-Nakuru Senator Susan Kihika

Ms Kihika observed that the public would have identified with BBI “were it focused on bettering our education, healthcare and infrastructure”.

The Nakuru Senator asked Kenyans to oppose any referendum efforts that election losers would want to use to achieve their political dreams.

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“If Raila Odinga wants a political seat, let him face us in the 2022 polls,” she said.

The Molo MP and his Nakuru Town East counterpart supported Ms Kihika, who termed the BBI sessions around the country as a “meeting of friends to have tea”.

Gachobe said the country was strained, and would not have any resources available to hold a referendum whose appeal was for the selected few.

Ichungwa regretted that Jubilee was being pushed to the path of furthering the agenda of other political parties.

“Kenyans were brought together through Jubilee by President Uhuru Kenyatta and  Ruto. Their promise was to unite and transform Kenya,” he said.

The Kikuyu MP said nowhere in the promises that Jubilee made to the people was the pledge to review the Constitution. He urged Jubilee to remain focused, and avoid being “used in pushing the interests of other politicians”.

“We are aware that the public was not involved in the BBI. Its sessions were exclusive; and therefore, if this Initiative is for giving life to some dwindling political hopes, then Kenyans will not support it,” he added.

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-The Star

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