Azimio Manifesto: Raila Odinga promises to grow the economy, fight corruption

Azimio la Umoja presidential flag-bearer Raila Odinga and his running mate Martha Karua during the launch of their Manifesto at Nyayo national stadium on June 6, 2022. [Denish Ochieng, Standard]

Azimio la Umoja One Kenya leader Mr Raila Odinga has indicated growing the double-digit economy through manufacturing. This, he said, will create more wealth and jobs. 

Mr Odinga noted that supporting the Micro Small and Medium Enterprises including the  Jua Kali sectors as drivers for the “Made in Kenya” initiative, creating an enabling environment for climate-smart agriculture, improved livestock farming and growth of the blue economy will be factored in his administration.

In a review of the manifesto launched today at Nyayo National Stadium, Mr Odinga said; “ Zero-tolerance to corruption, commitment to addressing the high cost of living of all Kenyans, Free Education for all, universal quality healthcare for all, food security, safety and nutrition for all making every Kenyan feel secure and safe at home, in communities, rural areas, towns and cities will be given priority in our government.” 

The unveiled Manifesto is part of Mr Oding’a push to be elected as the fifth president of Kenya. 

Mr Odinga said mainstreaming and harnessing Information Communication Technology towards a digital economy and improving the ease of doing business by making the country an attractive investment destination to both local and international investors will also be factored in his administration.

He also promised to ensure there was an improved comprehensive foreign policy that would promote Kenya’s political, social, cultural and economic interests abroad, promote good labour relations and protection of workers’ rights.

The ‘Azimio la Kina Mama’, according to Mr Odinga, will focus on the multipliers of wealth in the country, who are women, arguing that the programme will unlock access to financing for women-led businesses.

“Women constitute more than half of the country’s population, their potential contribution to the economy is therefore enormous. Gender equality and empowerment have received increased attention in recent years. However, despite a progressive constitution that promotes gender equality and women’s empowerment, gender equality remains elusive,” said Mr Odinga. 

Further, Mr Odinga added that his administration will address the plight of widows and single mothers through financial literacy programs, reduction in the cost of healthcare and education, and offering support services to cushion them from poverty.

In agriculture, Mr Odinga, said that the ‘Azimio La Ukulima’ initiative is aimed at generating agricultural bounty to feed the people of Kenya.

“The Fukuza Njaa agenda is committed to create an enabling environment for climate-smart agriculture, agro-processing, improved livestock farming and growth of the blue economy. My government will factor in climate change adaptation and mitigation to support and help realise high agricultural productivity across the nation,” said Mr  Odinga.

On matters of corruption, Mr Odinga said that through the ‘Azimio la Uwajibikaji,’ custodians of power will be accountable for the mandate bestowed upon them by the electorate.

“The cornerstone of this agenda encompasses battling corruption and ensuring efficiency in Public Service Delivery. This will ensure that all the gains of the economic revolution are secured and that the environment is even more conducive for productivity and investments. No doubt, corruption and inefficient public service delivery undermine development,” he noted. 

On access to education, the Azimio presidential candidate, noted that the ‘waste, not a single child initiative’ will ensure an aggressive scheme to ensure that all children receive rightful access to quality education and the deployment of motivated teachers to deliver quality education that prepares children to succeed in a modern global world.

“Education is non-negotiable, every child must get a quality education. We commit to employing qualified teachers, who are currently unemployed. This programme will deploy an affirmative action initiative dubbed, the ‘Baba Kubadili Plan’, a multi-agency body that will spearhead the process to ensure no young Kenyan is locked out of the education system,” said Mr Odinga. 

On matters of healthcare, the Azimio leader, said that ‘Baba Care’ primarily focuses on social protection, transformation and upscaling Universal Health Coverage to Universal Health Care, which ensures all citizens enjoy the right to accessible, quality, and affordable healthcare.

Mr Odinga said that his administration will take care of the vulnerable in the society, through the social protection programme that will offer an Sh6,000 monthly stipend to poor families.

“The money will not be given out as a handout, but as an investment and a foundation for a new transformational value- chain that will also trigger economic activity,” he said. 

Mr Odinga noted that the ‘Azimio la Wananchi’ recognises that whichever administration comes into power, the people will remain sovereign and therefore, there will be continuity and minimal disruption in case of changes.

“Starting afresh with every new administration is an exercise in profligacy. Whereas public finance management demands optimal resource allocation, the Azimio commitment is that transfer of power will be seamless and the country should not lose momentum as it aligns its priorities with government business,” he said.