, NAIROBI, Kenya, Mar 30 – President-elect Uhuru Kenyatta has extended an olive branch to Raila Odinga who had filed a petition with the Supreme Court challenging his declaration as Kenya’s fourth President.
In a televised address to the nation a few hours after the Supreme Court upheld his election, Kenyatta asked Raila to join forces with him for the greater good of the nation.
“I sincerely thank my brother, the honourable Raila Odinga for wishing us well and indeed reach out to him and our other worthy competitors to join us so that we can work together in the interest of the well being of our people,” said the president-elect.
Echoing Odinga who issued a statement accepting the court ruling an hour after it was given, Kenyatta called on Kenyans to move past the divisive politics of the past months and focus on building Kenya.
“I urge you all to accept that the elections are over, and we must now continue living together as members of one family.
“Let us rise above the differences of the electoral period and continue co-existing peacefully as brothers and sisters.”
Religious leaders and civil society, Kenyatta said, will play a crucial role in helping to heal the divide; “I also call upon religious and civil society leaders to continue playing their role in the process of national healing that is needed after a heated electoral contest.”
Kenyatta assured Kenyans that his government will not discriminate against any community, even those who did not support his presidential bid and added that his government will be all-inclusive.
“I want to assure all Kenyans, including those who did not vote for the Jubilee coalition and indeed even those who challenged the validity of my election, that my government will work with and serve all Kenyans without any discrimination whatsoever.”
The president-elect continued to congratulate the Supreme Court for meeting set timelines and congratulated all legal counsel involved in the petition for putting up a good fight.
“Let me take this opportunity to congratulate the Judges of the Supreme Court for delivering a verdict under extremely constrained timelines.”
“I also congratulate all counsel for the able representation of all parties involved in this petition.”
Overall, Kenyatta also sought to downplay his victory by saying it was not a personal one but one for the nation.
“I want to assure all Kenyans that the ruling of the Supreme Court is not a victory for the Jubilee coalition and its partners, rather, the ruling is a victory for all Kenyans.”