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Uhuru takes on Raila over direct ODM tickets

President Kenyatta on Wednesday termed as an affront on democracy ODM handing out direct tickets to more than 400 aspirants.

The President said handing over nomination certificates to eight governors 10 MPs and a host of county assembly aspirants, was a sign that ODM leader Raila Odinga was not keen on democracy.

“He says he is the father of democracy. Which father of democracy doles out certificates to politicians without having the input of the people?” he asked.

He was speaking at Wangige market during a tour of Kiambu County. He made stopovers at Ruaka, Banana, Ndenderu, Kikuyu and Dagoretti.

He continued: “For him, it is about who pays more and who can kneel better before him. As Jubilee, we have said that no nomination certificate will be handed out until the primaries are over.”

The President, however, said he had quit engaging the Opposition leaders because they are no match for him.

THIRST FOR POWER

“I stopped engaging them, even that man from Mombasa (Governor Hassan Joho), I was done with him while in Mombasa and I do not know to whom he keeps talking to,” he said.

The President was with deputy William Ruto. He said the opposition coalition was made up of leaders who were only interested in quenching their thirst for power.

He cited his willingness to serve a shorter first term as proof that he did not have greed for power compared to his opponents in Nasa who were fighting for government positions.

Nasa leaders “have no good intentions for the country”. I am the first President who will serve a shorter term, but you have never heard me complaining about it because I am not power hungry,” he said in Ruaka.

He continued: “What I want is to serve the people of Kenya, and even in 2002, when I lost to President Mwai Kibaki, I conceded defeat but there are people who are well-known and who keep inciting their supporters based on the election outcomes.”

DEDICATED LEADERS

The President said the country needed dedicated leaders to serve.

He said Mr Odinga was not honest with Kenyans in his sustained claims that he wanted to transform the country. He portrayed himself otherwise when he was given the position of Prime Minister in the Grand Coalition Government, Mr Kenyatta said.

Mr Odinga, he said, spent the five years “wrestling” retired President Kibaki over power sharing instead of serving Kenyans because he was never contented with the premier’s position.

“We are not special. And it is not miracles we have done. It is because we have a unity of purpose. We do not have wrangles and power struggles. During President Kibaki’s term, he (Raila) did nothing other than fighting, demanding toilets and carpets to an extent that he impeded the government work,” he said.

DP Ruto dismissed Nasa’s plan for parallel vote tallying, saying only the electoral commission was mandated to announce results. “Nowhere in the world is an election won on the account of announcing yourself a winner. They do not know how to go to the people, now they want to have a tallying centre. Are votes in the tallying centre or with the people?” DP Ruto said in Kikuyu.

READY FOR ELECTIONS

Mr Ruto said the Jubilee team was ready for the elections in August 8, which he said the opposition would lose. “They have no plan, no candidate, no party and now they want their base their win in a tallying centre. We are telling them to go to the people,” said Mr Ruto. “Jubilee will go to the people with a scorecard and a track record. We are ready and prepared for the elections.”

During the tour, Kiambu Governor William Kabogo arrived in state-of-the-art public address systems and top-of-the-range vehicles in a bid to outdo his opponent Ferdinand Waititu.

Also in the tour was Kiambu Senator Kimani Wamatangi and his Nairobi counterpart Mike Sonko.

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