NAIROBI, Kenya, Sep 5 – President Uhuru Kenyatta has criticised National Super Alliance (NASA) demands to have the fresh presidential election date changed on grounds that they were not consulted by the Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission (IEBC).
The Head of State who was speaking on Tuesday at State House, Nairobi during a meeting with Western Kenyan leaders said it was presumptuous of Raila Odinga to imagine that he can dictate to the electoral body when to hold the election.
“There is no legal requirement that Raila should be consulted. I was neither consulted, Kenya doesn’t belong to one man,” said the President.
President Kenyatta took a swipe at Odinga accusing him of playing divisive politics even as the country heads to a fresh presidential election in 42 days time.
“Every single step in his political career, all he has done is play ethnic and divisive politics pitting groups, communities and religion against one another, that has always been his political career game plan,” said Kenyatta.
Earlier Tuesday morning, Odinga faulted the Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission for declaring a new election date without adequate consultations consequently threatening to boycott the October 17 presidential election unless their demands are met.
“IEBC should not be allowed to conduct the election but instead be sent home, investigated and prosecuted for heinous acts,” said Odinga.
Odinga further noted that the electoral body should have sought their opinion on the matter given the weighty issues they have raised – including demands for far-reaching reforms before a new election is conducted.
On Monday, the Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission announced that the fresh presidential election will be held on October 17 and that only President Kenyatta and Odinga would be in the ballot.
“There shall be no fresh nominations in the envisaged fresh election. In the fresh election, the petitioners before the Supreme Court, Raila Odinga and his running mate Kalonzo Musyoka and the 3rd respondent Uhuru Kenyatta and his running mate William Samoei Ruto, shall be the only candidates.”
As the election debate continues to gather momentum, on Tuesday a section of Jubilee leaders drawn from the Rift Valley lauded the electoral body for choosing a date that will not affect the preparations for primary and secondary national examinations that are due to begin on Tuesday, October 31 and on Monday, November 6 respectively.
“We wish to state we are ready for the repeat presidential election which the IEBC has set for October 17. We commend IEBC for coming up with an electoral date that will not interfere with the school calendar,” said former Baringo Governor Benjamin Cheboi.
The leaders asked the opposition not to interfere with the planned fresh presidential election date released on Monday by IEBC.