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Elders to Uhuru: Crack the whip on defiant leaders

Monday June 01 2020
rutere

National Council of Elders Chairman Phares Rutere speaking in Isiolo town on May 28, 2020. He condemned the ongoing wrangles pitting politicians allied to President Uhuru Kenyatta, his deputy William Ruto and ODM leader Raila Odinga saying there are more pressing issues that leaders should focus their energies on. PHOTO | WAWERU WAIRIMU | NATION MEDIA GROUP

By WAWERU WAIRIMU

The National Council of Elders has condemned the ongoing wrangles pitting politicians allied to President Uhuru Kenyatta, his deputy William Ruto and ODM leader Raila Odinga, saying that there are more pressing issues that the leaders should concentrate on.

The politicians, the elders said, should instead of engaging in divisive politics, focus their energies on, among others, dealing with the coronavirus pandemic and locusts’ invasion that continue to threaten food security and expose Kenyans to harsh economic times.

The council’s chairman Phares Rutere lamented over the turbulence within the ruling Jubilee Party characterised by divisive politics, saying it could derail the President’s vision on Big Four agenda, war against corruption and his legacy.

STOP DEMEANING UHURU, RUTO

Mr Rutere castigated a section of Jubilee legislators who have been demeaning the President and his deputy in public, calling on the Head of State to crack the whip on defiant members.

He singled out ousted Senate Majority Leader Kipchumba Murkomen and Cotu Secretary-General Francis Atwoli as being among the leaders making inflammatory statements likely to tear the country apart.

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“The freedom enshrined in the Constitution has been negatively exploited by politicians for their own individual interests. It is [bad] for Jubilee politicians to demean the President and his deputy in public,” said Mr Rutere.

“We want politicians from different political dispensations to put aside their political differences and ambitions, sit down and reason together for a united country,” he added.

ASSIST IN DEVELOPMENT

The leader said politicians should, instead of washing their dirty linen in public, focus on assisting the President deliver on his promises.

“The President would want to leave the country united at the end of his term and politicians, regardless of whom they support, should at least allow him to deliver on the promises he made to Kenyans,” he noted.

He said the elders’ council is ready to help mediate between the warring parties and stressed on the need for embracing dialogue at all cost.

On Jubilee politics and the de-whipping of some leaders in Parliament, the council said the party’s constitution should be adhered to and those with contrary opinion be allowed to express their democratic rights.

PRAISED HANDSHAKE

Addressing journalists in Isiolo, Mr Rutere praised the famous Handshake between Mr Kenyatta and Mr Odinga, noting that it ensured peace in the country. But he lamented that some Jubilee members who did not understand the President’s intention started divisive politics.

The council appealed to Mr Kenyatta to form a taskforce to investigate where the country went wrong from the pact, deliberate and bring proposals on how the top leadership will overcome the current political challenge.

WILLING TO HELP

He said his council is willing to offer a battery of elders of high integrity and social standing who have served with distinction for the President to choose from to assist in brokering the unity that Kenya needs.

The official urged elders in the country to remain focused and at the frontline in preaching peace and uniting Kenyans.

Mr Rutere further appealed to Kenyans to pray for leaders so that they go slow on politicking for development to be realised in the country.

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