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Raila: BBI will not decide my journey to State House, Kenyans will

By Eric Abuga and Edwin Nyarangi | February 26th 2021

ODM leader Raila Odinga addresses mourners during the funeral service of Bonchari MP Oroo Oyioka. [Sammy Omingo, Standard]

Emboldened by the passage of the Constitution of Kenya (Amendment) Bill by county assemblies, ODM leader Raila Odinga said the initiative was not meant to make him President but unite Kenyans.

Raila, who together with President Uhuru Kenyatta are the architects of the Building Bridges Initiative, said BBI was not birthed as a result of his desire to lead the country.

Speaking in Bonchari, Kisii, during the burial of MP Oroo Oyioka, Raila said Kenyans will decide on his State House journey.

"There are those who have been accusing me of having a hidden agenda on the BBI Bill. I had told them to wait and get to read the contents of the report.

“They instead started running across the country opposing a document that they didn't participate in its preparation," Raila said.

Raila who mourned Oyioka as an intelligent leader said the country has many challenges that needed to be solved.

"We need to unite our communities. Development cannot be achieved if we continue politicking and bickering after every election. The handshake has given an opportunity to rethink our destiny as a country," Raila said.

The former Prime Minister said he will lead a countrywide campaign to popularize the BBI Bill ahead of the referendum.

Raila Odinga (center), Kisii Governor James Ongwae (right) and Kisii Woman Representative Janet Ongera during the burial of Bonchari MP Oroo Oyioka. [Sammy Omingo, Standard]

"We will educate our people and have them vote for the Constitution of Kenya (Amendment) Bill, 2020," Raila said.

He explained the amendments will result in channeling more funds to counties as well as create more employment opportunities.

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He also thanked MCAs from Nyamira and Kisii for voting for the BBI Bill and assured locals that he will support the split of Bonchari Constituency.

Kisii Governor James Ongwae, who was also in attendance, described the late Oroo as a straightforward leader who always stood for the rights of his people.

"We have lost a man who was a unifying factor in our politics."

Kisii Senator Sam Ongeri said Oroo did a good job in the Ministry of Education for the many years he served there.

Central Bank of Kenya Governor Patrick Njoroge, on his part, remembered Oyioka as having sponsored Central Bank Amendment Bill 2019 and asked Parliament to pass it in his honour.

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