I will not kick Uhuru out of State House, Raila says as he calls for fresh polls

Raila Odinga has said according to their timetable, a third election will be held by October 2018 [Baz Ratner, Reuters]
National Super Alliance (NASA) leader Raila Odinga has called for a third presidential poll within six months.

The Opposition leader was speaking during an interview in the no-holds-barred Hardtalk programme of the British Broadcasting Corporation hosted by Zeinab Badawi.

“Uhuru Kenyatta does not have legitimacy because in the October 26 elections only less than 20 per cent of registered voters turned up. We want a third election, according to our timetable by August 2018,” Raila said.

In the three-minutes clip of the interview, Raila took a turnabout on his January 18 remarks during an interview on Voice of America (VOA).

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He had told VOA that the Opposition was mooting plans to form a cabinet after his January 30 swearing-in, insisting he was ready to do it even in exile.

“We can even be a government in exile, one that works from outside. It has happened in other countries. What we are saying is that Kenyans can no longer allow an illegitimate government not elected by the people to rule them. We will work like a government, we will form a Cabinet and we will work as a government,” Raila said in the Swahili interview.

Barely a week after the now controversial swearing-in, Raila told Badawi he had no plans of forming a cabinet but will create a people’s convention to deliberate on issues from the regional assemblies.

“I did not say we will appoint ministers. What I meant to say is we have set it out very clearly that we started out with forming the people’s assemblies in various regions and we have had basically meetings and they have passed resolutions which will be taken to the people’s convention,” he said in a stern voice.

Treason charges

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Moments after Raila Odinga’s swearing-in on January 30 at Uhuru Park, Cabinet Secretary for Interior Fred Matiang’i announced that Government had commenced a probe into the swearing amidst reports that Raila could face treason charges.

“What was witnessed yesterday was a well-choreographed attempt to subvert or overthrow the legally constituted government of the Republic of Kenya,” said Matiang’i.

Raila however denied committing treason, telling Zeinab Badawi he did not recognise the legitimacy of President Uhuru Kenyatta.

“We will not go to remove Uhuru Kenyatta from State House, he can sit comfortably. We know how we are going to remove him,” he said, stressing he did not recognise Uhuru’s presidency.

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 As for the convention, Raila said: “We are invoking the provisions of Article 1 of our Constitution. What we are doing now is setting up a people’s convention having taking oath as a people’s president”. 

This is as more than 10 leaders from the Opposition outfit announced to begin a civil disobedience if Government Authorities did not stop what they described as flagrant abuse of power.

The legislators have said they will call on their supporters not to cooperate with the Government if its officials do not stop ignoring the court orders targeting the leaders.

They maintained that Tuesday January 6 deportation of vocal member of the outlawed National Resistance Movement (NRM) was in violations of the Constitution as it protected the citizenship of individuals born in Kenya. 

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