Buying political support will not help you, Azimio tells Ruto

Azimio politicians led by Raila Odinga, Kalonzo Musyoka and Martha Karua address members of the press when the stormed Jubilee Party premises in support of Jeremiah Kioni and David Murathe. [Courtesy. Twitter]

Azimio la Umoja One Kenya Coalition has lampooned President William Ruto for what it terms as political blackmail.

Speaking after storming Jubilee Party's new premises, Azimio leader Raila Odinga said the president has embarked on a dangerous route of buying politicians while assaulting democracy.

“The Kenya Kwanza regime is assaulting our democracy by dishing out money to individuals without political character to get support. These undemocratic moves are financed by tax payers’ money that would be used to fight hunger and drought,” Raila said.

He said it is unfortunate that people across the country are frustrated with hunger while the government focused on revenge politics.

“People need water and food but the current regime is not concerned. It is evident that increased school fees has kept many learners out of school with about 30 per cent having not been able to join secondary schools. This is a monumental shame for the country,” he said.

Raila said instead of the president buying political support with proceeds of subsidies that he removed, the money could be channelled to more meaningful sectors that can improve the well-being of Kenyans.

“The Kanu regime tried this move and they failed and you too will terribly fail,” he said.

Raila said the Azimio will not be intimidated or threatened but rather will go on with its planned public barazas across the country.

“We shall have our baraza in Kisii tomorrow, on Saturday we shall be in Kisumu before going to Mombasa on Sunday. This baraza will culminate with interdenominational prayers at the Jevanjee gardens on Wednesday where all Kenyans are invited,” he said.

Raila in the company of Martha Karua, Wiper leader Kalonzo Musyoka, former Defence CS Eugene Wamalwa among other politicians had stormed Jubilee premises to show solidarity with embattled SG Jeremiah Kioni and Vice Chairman David Murathe who have allegedly been suspended.

“We as Azimio remain unbowed and shall not be intimidated by threats. Kenyans should wake up and realise that we are feeding a monster from which sooner no one will be safe,” Raila said.

In his sentiments, Kioni dismissed reports that together with Murathe had been ousted from their respective positions by a faction of the party that is more inclined toward the government.

“We have been on this podium before and informed you that there has been an attempt to hijack the party. This attempt started in June last year amid efforts to break away and form Jubilee Asili. Even during our campaigns as we supported Raila, there were elements from within the party that tried to sabotage our efforts but luckily we delivered for Baba,” Kioni said.

Kioni said President Ruto is so determined to take over Jubilee Party which culminated in a meeting that saw them being removed.

“They hurriedly met after visiting State House. What they forgot is that only the Secretary-General or Party Leader can call for an NEC meeting. They even made resolutions without properly exhausting internal dispute resolution mechanisms,” he said.

Kioni said Jubilee is peaceful and does not believe in shedding blood to pass political messages.

The political justice we are fighting for is not vested in a building but deep down within individuals like us. We are telling those who believe in our ideology not to resist any move. Even if they come here to remove you, please let them have their way,” Kioni said.

Kioni said those who are currently alleging to have taken over the party leadership are facing disciplinary action.

“We moved to the Political Parties Dispute Tribunal and we have been given an order that is barring the said new leadership and the registrar of political parties from adopting any resolutions until the pending interparty hearing and determination,” he said.