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Rigathi to Raila: Accept Ruto's legitimacy before talks

 Prime Cabinet Secretary Musalia Mudavadi, Deputy President Rigathi Gachagua and Malava Mp Malulu Injendi During thanks giving function held at Friends school Silungai in Malava Sub- county on April 1, 2023. [Benjamin Sakwa, Standard]

The Kenya Kwanza government is ready for dialogue with the opposition but with conditions.

Deputy President Rigathi Gachagua and a host of leaders who accompanied him at a church event in Malava Constituency on Saturday insisted that they would only agree to dialogue with the Azimio la Umoja leader Raila Odinga on two grounds.

“He should first accept to retire permanently from politics and give Kenya Kwanza government ample time to deliver on campaign pledges and forget about ‘nusu mkate’ or sharing the government,” said Gachagua.

At the same time, the deputy president said the weekly protests by Azimio should be stopped.

“Raila should stop profiling Nyanza region as a place of lawless and demonstration enthusiasts.”

He told leaders from Nyanza to convene a meeting and dissociate residents from Raila’s “selfish” politics.

The DP said despite calling for nationwide protests, demonstrations were only witnessed in some parts of the county including Kisumu and Nairobi whereas Eastern where Wiper leader Kalonzo Musyoka hails and Central where “the sponsor of the current demos comes from” were calm. 

Gachagua took a swipe at former President Uhuru Kenyatta saying if the retired president wants to negotiate with the government on unpaid taxes and the stolen Covid-19 billions, he should come clean but not through sponsored demonstrations.   

He defended the foreign diplomats saying international community had not abandoned Raila as claimed by the former Prime Minister.

“They have just realised Raila is a fraudulent democrat,” he said.

National Assembly Speaker Moses Wetang’ula set the ball rolling by indicating that President Ruto’s leadership was ready for dialogue but with focus on issues affecting Kenyans.

“Raila should first acknowledge the legitimacy of Ruto’s administration and the Supreme Court verdict which upheld Kenya Kwanza’s victory in the elections,” said the Ford-K leader.

“Uhuru must come out clear and denounce that he is not part of the ongoing destructive demonstrations.”

Prime Cabinet Secretary Musalia Mudavadi said Raila could not keep disputing poll  results and discrediting legitimately elected governments.

“He should give the government time to fix the mess caused by Azimio patron Uhuru Kenyatta through excessive borrowing,” he said.

They were speaking during a thanksgiving and funds drive in aid of 40 churches from Kakamega and Nandi counties.

Governor Fernandes Barasa, the host, Kenneth Lusaka (Bungoma) and Jonathan Bii (Uasin Gishu) were among leaders who attended the event.

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