MERU, Kenya, Jun 11 — Jubilee leaders led by Deputy President William Ruto have asked opposition leaders to be sincere in their calls for electoral reform.
The leaders said the Government has agreed to calls by the opposition for dialogue and wondered why they had given fresh conditions on how the dialogue should take place.
The legislators who were with the Deputy President included Kiraitu Murungi (Meru Senator), Mintika Linturi (Igembe South), Rahim Dawood (Imenti North), Florence Kajuju (Women Rep), Muthomi Njuki (Chuka-Igambangombe), David Kariithi (Tigania West), Mburi Apuri (Tigania East), Moses Kuria (Gatundu South), Gideon Mwiti (Imenti Central), Kubai Kiringo (Imenti Central) and Joseph M’eruaki (Igembe North).
Speaking at Mulathankari Girls Secondary School in Imenti North Constituency, Meru County on Saturday, the leaders said their opposition colleagues were after, “something else,” and not electoral reforms.
“Our friends in the Opposition wanted dialogue and as Government we agreed to dialogue. They wanted us to speak on issues of IEBC and we have agreed. Now they are giving us fresh conditions. What is their problem?” Ruto posed.
They said it was, “unbelievable,” that leaders who played a key role in passing the current Constitution were the same ones who wanted business to be done outside the laws they lobbied to have adopted.
“They had warned us not to change even a comma in the Constitution. They are now confused and want us to do business outside the parameters of the same laws they helped put in place,” said Apuri.
They accused the opposition leaders of seeking to take Kenyans bakc to what happened in Bomas during the Constitution making process.
The legislators maintained that Parliament was the body mandated by the Constitution to solve issues pertaining to IEBC.
The MPs took issue with the CORD leadership accusing it of reneging on their promise to protect the Constitution.
They said the Opposition led by former Prime Minister Raila Odinga was not sincere in their calls for reforms at the IEBC.
“The Opposition wants to join the Government through the back door if you do not know. It is not anything to do with reforming IEBC,” Kuria said.
Kuria said the opposition came up with allegations in regard to the Eurobond, insecurity and now the IEBC all in an effort to destabilise the government.
Kiraitu thanked Jubilee for giving him the opportunity to chair the 11-member team that will spearhead talks with CORD.
“We are ready to negotiate with our CORD counterparts on the issue of IEBC once they are ready,” Kiraitu said.
Apuri and Kajuju said it is only Parliament that was well placed to solve the IEBC stalemate urging the opposition to respect institutions established under the Constitution.
“If the opposition has no faith in Parliament, then it means it has no respect for Kenyans who elected the MPs including its own legislators,” said Kajuju.
The leaders also called on CORD to stop, “tormenting,” the country through chaotic demonstrations adding that the country was losing up to Sh2 billion every week in terms of businesses during the protests.
They wondered why the opposition leaders were not shaken into calling off their protests on witnessing loss of life and destruction of property during their recent demonstrations.
The MPs sought to assure Ruto that those who resided in the Mt Kenya region would rally behind him when President Uhuru Kenyatta’s term comes to an end in 2022.
Apuri said the Ameru community had faith in Jubilee’s leadership saying they would back Ruto for the Presidency come 2022.
Cabinet Secretaries Jacob Kaimenyi (Lands), Joe Mucheru (ICT) and Judy Wakhungu (Environment) were also present.