November 12th, 2017,
National Super Alliance (NASA) leader Raila Odinga while speaking at the Centre for Strategic and International Studies (CSIS) this week in Washington DC called for the establishment of an interim government to fast-track electoral reforms in the country.
“NASA is calling for an interim government to ensure electoral reforms take place,” said Raila Odinga.
Raila repeated his calls for an interim government in an exclusive interview with Reuters on Wednesday when he insisted that it was only an interim government that could give Kenyans space and time to open dialogue about the current political impasse that was brought about by the electoral dispute. Raila suggested that the interim government runs for at least six months to allow time for changes needed for a free and fair election.
“We think that what we are calling for requires an even longer time, in the meantime, we need to have an interim arrangement of governance, which will involve representatives from both parties. We think that maybe six months would be required to carry out all these changes that we need in our country in order to have a proper and fair election,” stated Raila, insisting that even if Mr. Kenyatta is sworn in, it will just create another political impasse regardless of if he’d have been cleared by the Supreme Court.
Jubilee party leaders led by the Garissa Town MP Aden Duale and the Elgeyo Marakwet Senator Kipchumba Murkomen, however, took issue with Raila Odinga’s call for an interim government accusing the NASA coalition leader of hindering the country’s operations.
Mr. Duale spoke with the Star on Wednesday in response to Raila’s call stating that “Kenyans voted on October 26 and elected the President. Raila Odinga should forget share of government. We are tired of these gerrymandering and desperate maneuvers for nusu-mkate.” Adding that “Kenya is not a failed state; we have a constitution that has not collapsed. It is wishful thinking of Tinga to imagine Kenya is in a political crisis.”
On is a part, the Elgeyo Marakwet Senator, Kipchumba Murkomen claimed that the NASA leader’s demand showed that he was determined to get power through unconstitutional means. “Raila’s latest demand confirms he only wants to get into government ‘through the backdoor’. You can see the country is calm and the Supreme Court will make its decision in 11 days,” stated Mr. Murkomen, adding that, “….the crisis Raila is talking about is a figment of his fertile imagination. We do not agree with NASA that this should be a single party state. Let Raila take his place in the opposition.”
The NASA leader has however received support on his call for an interim government from unlikely quarters. Former Gichugu MP Martha Wangari Karua has surprised many Kenyans with her latest remarks that Uhuru Kenyatta isn’t fit for the office. She has also condemned the manner in which the electoral body conducted the repeat poll. Below is Martha Karua’s statement that has got Kenyans thinking.
“… I must confess that it has reached a point where we as a people, must speak the truth and stick by it. The truth may be bitter to the extent of leaving our faces frowned even more disturbing to our throats but eventually upon swallowing it, we will surely smile and rejoice. I supported the re-election of President Uhuru Kenyatta not out of my inner being but because of the murky waters of politics in my backyard.
I still believe that Uhuru isn’t fit for the office, having presided over a regime marred by serious ethnic divisions and mega run-away corruption cases. My statements must not be misconstrued as to mean bitterness having lost in the Kirinyaga gubernatorial race- a lot of mischiefs happened though. Truth is said, the repeat poll which was conducted on 26th October, was not a reflection of the will of the people of Kenya.
The turnout was way below the average. Nearly three-quarters of the registered voters did not participate in the process. In so far as the major opponent (The Rt. Hon Raila Odinga) jettisoned the duel, I think the whole process lost its essence and legitimacy. Most of the Jubilee politicians think that Raila is a nobody- little do they know, that the more they mock and continue to vilify him, the more our country get divided along ethnic lines.
We all know that Raila has enormous support from across the country. His seniority in our country’s politics is unparalleled. We ought to respect him despite our political differences. The current regime is in office unconstitutionally. This means that an interim government needs to be established as a step towards uniting an already divided nation, as we prepare for fresh polls-with a robustly reconditioned electoral body.”