By Mourice Seretta
The Orange Democratic Movement (ODM) Party Leader Raila Odinga has warned that the country is facing imminent chaos ahead of the 2022 general elections.
Addressing ODM Members of County Assemblies (MCAs) on Tuesday at the Co-operative University in Karen, Nairobi, Raila said that he has started to hear ‘deafening sound of war drums’ a year and a half to the general elections slated to take place in August 2022.
“Already drums of war are being sounded and it is easy to tell how it will end. We have to decide whether we want violence after every election cycle.” Raila told the ODM MCAs.
Raila said that a section of politicians is hell-bent in pushing the country to the edge for their selfish interests and called on Kenyans to be wary of such politicians who are advocating for violence saying that the country’s stability is waning by day.
On Monday, MPs Simba Arati (Dagorreti North) and Sylvanus Osoro (South Mugirango) engaged each other in a fistfight during the funeral of Abel Gongera, the father of Kisii Deputy Governor Joash Maangi in Kisii County in the presence of Deputy President William Ruto and Raila. Both leaders later condemned the incident.
Kisii Governor James Ongwae who is also the Council of Governors Deputy Chair described the incident as a new low for the Kisii community. He was the Master of Ceremony during the burial.
A section of MPs drawn from Kisii County Richard Onyonka (Kitutu Chache South), Janet Ong’era (Kisii Woman Representative), Joash Nyamoko (North Mugirango), Alfah Miruka (Bomachoge Chache) and Gusii Council of Elders chairman James Matundura termed the incident as tragic and unfortunate.
Raila told the MCAs that he supports President Uhuru Kenyatta’s promise to them that they will be getting car loans.
“If MPs receive Sh7 million car grant why will it be a crime and you are the people who are in contact with the people?” Raila wondered.
He pleaded with the MCAs to approve the Building Bridges Initiative bill which he has been advocating for together with President Uhuru Kenyatta.
The BBI bill will now constitutionally move to County assemblies for approval after the Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission (IEBC) verified more than one million signatures collected from Kenyans by the BBI secretariat and taken to the commission for verification as provided by in law for the bill to move to the assemblies.
ODM controls at least 14 of the 47 county assemblies and also has elected members in the remaining 33 Assemblies where it is the minority.
The ODM-controlled counties are Mombasa, Kilifi, Tana River, Turkana, Kakamega, Vihiga, Busia, Siaya, Kisumu, Homa Bay, Migori, Taita Taveta, Kisii and Nyamira.
President Kenyatta secured the support of 10 Mt Kenya counties at the weekend when he met 550 MCAs from Central Kenya at the Sigana State Lodge.
These are Meru, Tharaka Nithi, Embu, Kirinyaga, Nyeri, Murang’a, Nyandarua, Kiambu, Laikipia and Nakuru, which is a member of Central Kenya Economic Bloc, despite being in the Rift Valley.
At least 24 assemblies of the 47 are required to pass the Bill before it goes to parliament for debate.