No campaigners criss cross Kenya

July 27, 2010 12:00 am

, NJORO, Kenya, Jul 27 – Higher Education Minister William Ruto on Tuesday intensified his No campaign in a rush against time, with a whistle-stop campaign tour of Rift Valley.

The minister who hopped from one venue to the other in a helicopter started off with a rally at Ndeffo area before flying off Kabarnet.

Mr Ruto reiterated his message that Kenyans should reject the proposed Constitution in next week\’s referendum and soon after start another process of amending it to eliminate discrepancies.

"We wanted amendments before the referendum and since this is not possible the only way out is to shoot it down," he said at Njoro.

He said amendments to the draft will enable the country to "pass a Constitution that unites all the communities."

At the Njoro rally, there was heavy police presence with more than 100 officers being sent to ensure security.

The Eldoret North MP later addressed other rallies at Tot and Marakwet before ending at Litein. He asked the communities living in the clash prone areas to co-exist peacefully regardless of the referendum results.

"Let us live like people of one nation," he said.

Mr Ruto was accompanied by other No camp leaders including Kuria MP Wilfred Machage who said the arrogance of the leaders of the Yes camp was to blame for the current contested referendum. He accused them of refusing to listen to the concerns raised by those in the No camp.

"The church tried to entice them and failed just like us," he said urging the residents to vote No and force the political class to institute dialogue on the contentious issues.

"Let us defeat this Constitution so that we can later pass an all inclusive document," said the suspended Roads Assistant Minister.

The No team led by Mr Ruto is opposed to the provisions of the Lands chapter which it claims could re-open old wounds of the perennial land clashes especially in the Rift valley. The politicians are opposed to the powers given to the yet-to-be created Land commission which can institute proceedings to address historical land injustices.

Also opposed to the new law, Church leaders have taken issue with the inclusion of Kadhis courts and a clause that they claim leaves a loophole for the legalisation of abortion.


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