Raila responds to Ruto's request to Parliament on office of opposition leader

Azimio la Umoja leader Raila Odinga addresses a gathering in Kamukunji, Nairobi on December 4, 2022. [Twitter, Raila Odinga]

Azimio la Umoja leader Raila Odinga has questioned President William Ruto's proposal to amend part of the constitution to allow for the establishment of the office of the opposition leader.

In a statement on Sunday, December 11, Odinga said Ruto was being hypocritical since he opposed the very changes that were in the Building Bridges Initiative (BBI).

"The memorandum of His Excellency Hon. William Ruto to the speakers of both the National Assembly and the Senate proposing several amendments of the Constitution of Kenya is puzzling to many Kenyans and myself as it undoubtedly seeks to re-introduce the same matters that had for many months been suggested by the Building Bridges Initiative," said Odinga.

"For a similar period, the same had been vehemently opposed by Mr Ruto when he went around the country campaigning in the years 2018-2021," he added.

Ruto has written to the Speakers of both the National Assembly and Senate to consider the introduction of a constitutional amendment bill to set up the office of the official opposition leader.

According to Odinga, had Ruto been honest with the BBI proposals, everything suggested in the memorandum would have been law.

"I will not be hypocritical about his memorandum as far as the content of the proposals is concerned because these are in truth BBI proposals.

"However, they cannot be presented as he has done nor can they be processed through the procedure that he is prescribing. He must comply with the same imperatives that he demanded of the BBI process," said Odinga.