Raila plans 2024 demos over high cost of living

Azimio leader Raila during the coronation of Odungi Randa as the Chairperson of Luo Council of Elders at Ofafa Hall grounds in Kisumu. [Michael Mute, Standard]

Azimio leader Raila Odinga has once again hit out at the government over the skyrocketing cost of living and warned of fresh round of demonstrations in the coming year.

Delivering his message as Kenyans usher in the Christmas festivities, Raila asked Kenyans to be ready to take part in the protests should the prevailing poor state of economy persist.

Speaking at Ndura Sports Complex in Kitale during Trans Nzoia Governor George Natembeya-sponsored tournament, Raila urged Kenyans to brace themselves for tough times and hinted at potential mass action to pressure the government into action.

Economic hardships

Coming on the eve of Christmas and when most Kenyans are hard-hit by the high cost of essentials, Raila emphasised the need for resilience in the face of economic hardships.

“This Christmas comes at a time when many Kenyan families are struggling to make ends meet. The cost of living has reached unprecedented levels and it is our duty as citizens to demand change,” said Raila.

Highlighting specific issues contributing to economic challenges, Raila said there is an urgent need for the government to make the costs of basics more affordable to all Kenyans.

The Azimio leader’s message struck a chord with citizens grappling with the harsh economic realities.

Yesterday most residents expressed their support for Raila’s call for action.

Some party leaders also weighed in on Raila’s stance.

DAP-K party leader Eugene Wamalwa expressed skepticism about the current government’s ability to reduce the cost of living, asserting that Raila was the leader capable of salvaging the situation.

Siaya Governor James Orengo urged Kenyans to turn up in large numbers once Raila signals the call for protests against the rising cost of living.

DAP-K deputy party leader Ayub Savula dismissed critics claiming Odinga is too old to contest the 2027 General Election, emphasising the need to focus on the immediate economic challenges facing the nation.

Natembeya took a moment to wish Kenyans a happy Christmas amidst the calls for resilience in the face of economic adversity.

Raila, in his message, acknowledged the hardships faced by the people in a year filled with economic challenges.

“Let’s find time for family, friends and neighbours; visit the lonely and help those in need and retain this as the most wonderful time of the year. Let’s take time to pray and hope that this season will find us happier, healthier and wealthier with more financial resources at our disposal at this time in 2024,” said Raila.