Kenya Violence: US, Others Urge Odinga to Recognise Kenyatta as President
The political uneasiness in Kenya is festering. Opposition figure, Miguna Miguna has been detained, released and sent on exile to Canada following his role in ‘swearing’ in opposition leader Raila Odinga a fortnight ago. But the government called Miguna’s treatment a ‘deportation’ to a country he holds better allegiance to. Members of the opposition are growing in numbers by the day irrespective of government clampdown. Miguna is making legal efforts to return to Kenya. The government has not arrested the main figure, Odinga, possibly for fear of mass resistance. So, President Uhuru Kenyatta is quite mindful of the dicey times in the country.
Foreign envoys are getting concerned about the unease.
On Saturday, eleven foreign ambassadors to Kenya signed a press statement, urging the National Super Alliance (NASA) to recognise the election of President Uhuru Kenyatta and his Deputy William Ruto as a legitimate expression of the people’s will before dialogue takes place.
The diplomats said this was the only way to set the country on a path of recovery, even as the NASA leader Raila Odinga assured his supporters that the journey to Canaan was on course.
“The opposition needs to accept that Uhuru Kenyatta and William Ruto are the legitimate President and Deputy President of Kenya as the basis for the dialogue that it and many Kenyans want. Stoking and threatening violence are not acceptable, nor are extra-constitutional measures to seize power,” the envoys statement read in part
But speaking yesterday in Vihiga, Raila urged his supporters to keep fighting for the constitutional gains attained in previous years. “We are now putting in place structures that will enable us to execute our mandate, whether they (government) like it or not,” Raila said.
“If we don’t demand that everyone from the President downwards submits to our Constitution and to the constitutional organs that we created to keep them accountable to us, then we shall have allowed a ‘State capture’ by a few individuals and we shall cease to be citizens of our country and become subjects to a political oligarchy,” he added, and assured his supporters that he had delivered them to the much promised Canaan and that it was only a matter of time before systems were put in place to enable him execute his mandate as the ‘people’s president’.
But the envoys, including Robert Godec of the US and Nic Hailey of UK, termed the swearing-in of the Opposition leader Raila Odinga a violation of the same Constitution he purports to fight for.
“A father of multi-party democracy has made unsubstantiated claims about elections and unilaterally sworn himself as ‘President’, in deliberate disregard of the Constitution for which he so proudly fought,” the envoys said of Raila. “The ambitions of politicians are fundamentally weakening institutions, and breaking bonds of shared citizenship, which Kenyans have built up patiently over decades.”