The government has hit back at Cord Leader Raila Odinga for demanding that President Uhuru Kenyatta apologise for the deaths of Kenyans who perish as a result of hunger.
Devolution Cabinet Secretary Mwangi Kiunjuri, who is in charge of food distribution, asked Mr Odinga to table proof that people have died of hunger before he asks the President to apologise.
“Mr Odinga survives on anything for relevance. We are going to put him to task; he cannot play politics with the lives of people and go scot-free. Drought is a national phenomenon and it is only fair if we come together and assist but not condemn,” said Mr Kiunjuri.
He said that the government would not apologise since no death had occurred.
On Friday, when Mr Kenyatta declared drought a national disaster, Mr Odinga asked him to go beyond declaring it a national disaster and apologise to the nation for the inaction that has cost lives.
“We demand that the President goes beyond declaration of a disaster and apologises to the nation for inaction that has cost lives,” said the opposition leader.
The Devolution CS at the same time asked Mr Odinga to consult the 23 governors elected on a Cord ticket and establish whether, indeed, there is any Kenyan from their county who has died of hunger.
He said: “We have taken food everywhere more so those counties that are badly affected by the menace. Local administration, county governments and elected leaders from badly stricken areas have been receiving food from us; now I don’t understand why their people should be losing lives”.
At the same time, the minister accused the Opposition of failing to lend a hand in the fight against hunger.
Mr Kiunjuri said leaders from the Opposition are men and women who have ways and means but they have contributed nothing even to people in their strongholds.
Even before the President declared drought a national disaster, said Mr Kiunjuri, Kenyans had started contributing to their fellow colleagues faced with hunger but no opposition leader has chipped in.
“If Mr Odinga is sincere he wants to lead this country, then he should show by example. People from Nyanza who also face starvation should be his first beneficiaries,” he added.
Meanwhile, the Cabinet Secretary told opposition leaders that the Jubilee Government will be re-elected to power in the August polls.
Mr Kiunjuri said that nothing has changed since 2013, adding that the only difference is that Jubilee has made inroads in Cord strongholds, among them Coast region.