Raila Odinga: Azimio government will reopen Kenya-Somalia border

Azimio la Umoja Coalition flag bearer Raila Odinga accompanied by his Running mate Martha Karua in Takaba Mandera County. [Emmanuel Wanson, Standard]

Azimio presidential candidate Raila Odinga has promised northern Kenya residents that he will re-open the Kenya-Somalia border to boost trade.

Odinga who spoke during a rally at Habaswein in Wajir County yesterday also vowed to improve security since insecurity has been the major reason for underdevelopment in the region.

“My government is going to open the Kenya-Somalia border since we have a new president who is friendly to our nation so that our people can continue doing inter-country trade which has been hampered by our strained relationship in the past,” said Odinga (pictured).

The Azimio presidential candidate said his government would come up with affirmative action programmes to uplift the region economically.

He pledged to put up an abattoir and leather factories to create job opportunities.

Odinga cautioned the residents to be wary of promises made by Kenya Kwanza presidential candidate William Ruto, saying he had been in power for nine years with little to show for it.

Odinga’s running mate Martha Karua urged the residents to turn up in large numbers to vote for Azimio candidates to ensure that they are in power to deliver on their manifesto.

“Our main goal as Azimio la Umoja is to bring about an economic revolution that will make a country that caters for the interests of all citizens regardless of their gender, age, origin or status in society, we will ensure equality for all citizens,” said Karua.

Former Vice President Kalonzo Musyoka called for the reopening of the Kenya-Somalia border due to the friendly government in place, terming the move long overdue.

Musyoka said Odinga would ensure that Kenya’s relationship with Somalia was cordial since the two nations share many things in common.

“I have been involved in the affairs of Somalia for many years since I served as the Minister of Foreign affairs and believe that we are going to have even better relationship with the new President who served the country previously and is now back to power,” said Musyoka.

Suna East MP Junet Mohammed also appealed for the reopening of the Kenya-Somalia border to allow business activities between the two countries to thrive since the residents of North Eastern had been deprived of their economic mainstay.

“It is only the Azimio la Umoja government that will come up with empowerment programmes that will uplift the residents of counties residing in the northern part of the country since we recognise that the region has got some untapped potential,” said Junet.

Cotu Secretary General Francis Atwoli reiterated his position that Deputy President William Ruto is not qualified to be the next president due to his alleged bad record for the past nine years in government.

“He cannot purport to have the best interests of the country,” he claimed.

Atwoli asked the residents to take to task any leader from the region who is asking them to support Kenya Kwanza.

“Ask them to show you what new thing Ruto is going to offer that he has not during the time he has been in government.”