President Uhuru Kenyatta and ODM leader Raila Odinga were on Wednesday evening due to hold talks, moments after the former Prime Minister was briefed by the Head of State’s allies on their proposed coalition.
Mr Odinga met Jubilee Secretary General Raphael Tuju and vice chairman David Murathe to discuss the planned pre-election coalition between his Orange Democratic Movement [ODM] and the President’s party. He thereafter flew to Mombasa for the meeting with the President.
Mr Odinga had earlier met a youth delegation from Murang’a County at Crowne Plaza Hotel in Nairobi as the Uhuru-Odinga camp fight to slow down Deputy President William Ruto’s forays in Mt Kenya region. Mr Murathe, who flanked Mr Odinga at the youth meeting, declared that the ODM leader was President Kenyatta’s preferred successor.
“Jakom [Mr Odinga] is on his way to Mombasa to meet [President Kenyatta] . I had [said before] prepare for Jakom to be the fifth President,” Mr Murathe declared.
He claimed it was now a done deal that Mr Odinga will succeed President Kenyatta, adding the dissolution of the opposition National Super Alliance (Nasa) coalition had now given Mr Odinga the opportunity to formalise a coalition agreement with Jubilee and other parties.
Mr Kamau Mweha, an ally of Mr Odinga, said they had planned a series of meetings in Mt Kenya region to market Mr Odinga’s presidential candidature.
Mr Odinga declared that nothing would stop the unity of the Luo and the Kikuyu communities as they have worked together before since independence.
He said in 2002, the Luo community overwhelmingly voted for Mwai Kibaki despite the fact that Siaya Senator James Orengo was also running for President in that election.
Mr Murathe said the resolve to back Mr Odinga’s bid is based on his plans for the country and because he had played a major role in uniting the country after the divisive 2017 elections.
“Raila has a better plan, not like the wheelbarrows being advocated by Ruto. We don’t want the handout culture. We need to ensure the youth are empowered and employed,” he added.
He revealed that whereas they were waiting for the Appellate Court’s verdict on the Building Bridges Initiative (BBI), they were ready for the election under the current constitution with Mr Odinga as their captain.
Yesterday, Mr Odinga also hit out at Dr Ruto who is touted as his main challenger in next year’s polls. He accused the DP of perpetuating the culture of handouts instead of creating employment for the youth.
“We must come up with clear policies on how we can transform this economy from a third world economy to a middle income status like we did with Kibaki through the Vision 2030,” said Mr Odinga.
Mr Murathe challenged the DP to first account for his nine years as deputy President. Mr Tuju said Jubilee and ODM were working together courtesy of the Handshake and their meeting with Mr Odinga should not raise eyebrows.
“We have been working together and if we meet, that’s exactly what we discuss,” said Mr Tuju.
Mr Odinga’s spokesperson Dennis Onyango confirmed that the ODM leader flew to Mombasa last evening but did not divulge his itinerary.
“He has been up and about and has retired to Mombasa to have some rest away from the cold weather in Nairobi,” Mr Onyango told the Nation.
Courtesy Nation Africa