, NAIROBI, Kenya May 18 – More than 30 Jubilee MPs have said the proposed review of the constitution should be guided by the needs of Kenyans, and not what they termed ‘selfish interests of a few leaders.’
The leaders, who accompanied Deputy President William Ruto on a Western Kenya tour on Friday, scoffed at those claiming the referendum would have to take place whether Kenyans like it or not.
The leaders spoke on Friday in Malinya, Kakamega County where they observed that the review of the constitution was not a problem.
“The problem is the greed from politicians. They want the amendment of the constitution for their selfish gains,” noted Malindi MP Aisha Jumwa.
She said times had changed and as such, leaders “should not have a fixed mind that if you go into a contest, you must win”.
Jumwa added that if the constitution should be amended, then it should be people-centered.
Leaders present were Kiambu Governor Ferdinand Waititu, MPs David Kiaraho (Ol Kalou), Owen Baya (Kilifi North), Khatib Mwashetani (Lunga Lunga), Malili Injendi (Malava), Ben Washiali (Mumias East), Bernard Shinali (Ikolomani), Titus Khamala (Lurambi), Justus Murunga (Matungu), Emmanuel Wangwe (Navakholo) and Enock Kibunguchy (Likuyani).
Others were Didmus Barasa (Kimilili), George Murugara (Tharaka), Sylvanus Osoro (South Mugirango), Caleb Kositany (Soy), John Waluke (Sirisia) and Dan Wanyama (Webuye West).
Also in the function were Mwambu Mabonga (Bumula), Charles Gimose (Hamisi), Soipan Tuya (Women Rep, Narok), Alfa Miruka (Bomachoge Chache), Michael Muchira (Oljororok), Githua Wamacukuru (Kabete) and Rahab Mukami (Women Rep, Nyeri).
Murunga said the constitution of the country was solid enough and only needed leaders to put their energy in addressing the needs of the people.
“We cannot have excuses of amending the constitution every time you fail to win an election. Those funds for such exercises should be put to more productive uses,” said the Matungu legislator.
His sentiments were supported by Mumias East MP who argued that he will ensure the idea of the referendum flops if it will be about leaders creating seats for themselves.
“We are after any idea that will empower Kenyans. Issues that would boost service delivery. We will oppose anything that does not address these,” said Washiali.
Wanyama said as Luhya community, they had grown tired of empty politics.
“Despite our support for the Opposition, we have not benefited much in terms of development. That is why I urge Musalia Mudavadi and Moses Wetangula to join us, work with us and unite with other communities in forming the next government,” he said.
Kiambu Governor urged Kenyans to embrace leaders who have a transformative mindset.
He explained that Mt Kenya would rally behind Dr Ruto when he seeks to succeed President Uhuru Kenyatta in 2022 because of his focus in making the country better.
“Jubilee is a national party that is driven by the development agenda of this country. Our succession is also clear,” he added.
On his part, the Deputy President urged Kenyans to embrace issue-based politics.
He said the current form of politics should be one that is informed by the desire to empower the people and erode tribalism in the society.
“For us to change our politics, we must build parties of national stature that would allow anyone to run for a seat without tribal biases,” he argued.
Dr Ruto said all seats in Jubilee will be won through fair and transparent contest.
“Every candidate should therefore arm himself or herself with development programmes for them to sail through,” he said.
He asked the Opposition to put its house in order and prepare for “tough race” in 2022.
In the function, former Kakamega Senator Boni Khalwale defected from Ford-Kenya and joined Jubilee.
Dr Khalwale urged the Luhya community to abandon the opposition and join a team that would change the fortunes of Western.
Earlier, the Deputy President launched the upgrading to bitumen standard and maintenance of the 60-kilometre Soy-Serekea-Kilimani-Turbo and Nangili-Ziwa Machine-Ziwa Sirikwa-Maji Mazuri-Moi’s Bridge road at Likuyani in Kakamega County.