NAIROBI, Kenya, May 8 – Nominated Member of Parliament Oburu Odinga says he has declined nomination to the East African Legislative Assembly and now wants to refocus his energies on campaigning for his brother, NASA presidential flag bearer Raila Odinga.
Oburu, who says he is also mulling retiring from active politics says he also want to re-organise his life after he lost in the ODM primaries in Bondo, Siaya County.
“I would like to have time to reorganise my own things, my own businesses and think about the future,” he told journalists on Monday.
National Assembly Leader of Majority Aden Duale had earlier indicated that he would lead legislators in rejecting his name and that of former Vice President Kalonzo Musyoka’s son, Kennedy, both who had applied to join the regional Parliament.
Oburu, however, says no member of his family should be denied any position just because Raila Odinga is their relative.
“I am really taken aback by the reckless comments by my brother Duale who claimed that I have no rights to be nominated to Parliament; I have been elected four times by the Bondo of people,” he said.
“If I wanted to, I would have just competed with the other candidates of ODM in my own rights and not as the brother of Raila. He should not be associating me with Raila all the time and think that I will desist from applying or vying for any position. Raila does not make me what I am. In fact, I am older than him.”
Having joined politics in 1974, Oburu said he was experienced for any position while hitting out at Duale, whom he says had been politically raised by Raila.
“Raila being my brother is just a biological accident and people should not be using it to deny any member of our family from vying for any position,” he asserted.
He said his family, just like any other, is entitled to all rights enjoyed by other Kenyans.
“Some of my family members always fear the negative publicity…that there is too much of Odinga’s, how much of them do you want?” he asked. “They are too many. It should be the people to judge and not the press.”
Oburu says he will now focus on mobilising voters in favour of his brother.
It remains to be seen whether Kennedy Musyoka will sails through in the National Assembly, where Jubilee legislators led by Duale have vowed to reject it.