NAIROBI, Kenya, Jan 12 – Deputy President William Ruto has accused the Orange Democratic Movement Party (ODM) of being hypocritical about their agenda on the Building Bridges Initiative (BBI) report in the wake of countrywide political meetings.
In a tweet on Sunday, DP Ruto faulted the Raila Odinga-led party accusing it of “hijacking the BBI to craft its 2022 political line up”.
DP Ruto said the implementation process of the 156-page document had been marred by, “pretense and associated squander of public resources.”
He emphasized that former premier Raila Odinga and his brigade were out to cause more divisions in Jubilee Party.
“The opposition, National Super Alliance (NASA) is already dismembered/dead; now dividing Jubilee,” he tweeted.
DP Ruto who on Friday lashed out at leaders who attended the BBI political meeting in Kisii, noted that the full implementation of the Big Four agenda was, “the only way to go.”
When he spoke in Vihiga, DP Ruto who is keen to succeed President Uhuru Kenyatta once his term lapses in 2022, questioned the use of public resources in the BBI political meetings.
“What are all these campaigns for? Who do they want to persuade? Is it a way of misusing Government resources?” posed Dr Ruto noting that BBI recommendations published in November 2019 were widely accepted by leaders including himself.
He said there was no need for the BBI drama as the entire country was behind it.
“If there are those opposing BBI, let them not hide behind these campaigns,” he explained. “They should come out and say what they are opposed to.”
He said there was a reason for Kenyans to worry as BBI report copies had not been availed to them.
“Are there politicians who want to make a decision for Kenyans?” he asked.
Dr Ruto argued that the BBI report should be implemented and the resources being put in it channeled to productive activities that would better the lives of Kenyans.
“We want to bring an end to all these BBI issues and focus on the transformation of our country via the Big Four agenda and Vision 2030,” added Dr Ruto
DP Ruto’s criticism over the scheduled popularization meetings on BBI was reinforced on Saturday by the National Assembly Majority Leader Aden Duale who laughed off attempts by a section of leaders crisscrossing the country mobilizing support for the review of the BBI report before its implementation.
Duale was categorical that the former premier’s agitation for a referendum before June 2020 was “impossible” due to the constitutional processes that are involved in planning one.
He scolded Odinga and Siaya Senator James Orengo for imposing a referendum on Kenyans yet following its launch Kenyans were urged by President Kenyatta to read the report by themselves and determine its fate later.
“ODM, Raila and Orengo will not give us a script and a time plan on how the referendum road map will be. We’re stakeholders,” he said.
Duale, a close associate to DP Ruto challenged Odinga to start collecting one million signatures if indeed he wanted the report to be implemented through a popular vote and shun “wasting Kenyans’ time”.
“If they want a pure parliamentary system the way I want it, let them not waste Kenyans time and taxpayers’ money, that is not their function; Kenyans were told to read the document,” he said.
He said he will not be mum and watch “a group of corrupt Governors and party leaders dictate to Kenyans on how the constitution will be amended”.
He said it was the responsibility of the 47 million Kenyans to decide on the fate of the document while urging President Uhuru Kenyatta to “come out clearly on the implementation matrix of the BBI report”.
On whether further changes can be made on the document, Duale maintained that no changes should be made and that the already existing recommendations are fitting.
“BBI is non-controversial everybody and every shade of the political divide has agreed with the recommendations in BBI and we will not accept further changes.”
During the Kisii meeting ODM Leader Raila Odinga told participants who included 11 governors, 78 MPs, MCAs, elders, religious leaders, women and youth leaders and other professionals from across the Nyanza region, that BBI is the only bridge to take Kenyans to the proverbial Promised Land.
“Kenya is embarking on a new journey; I am confident that we will get to our destination. We have to unite as One People and One Kenya. That is the call that we are carrying from here,” said the former PM.
He further appealed to leaders to avoid using the BBI Report to divide Kenyans along regional or ethnic lines.
“There is no country in the world that is similar to Kenya, therefore each and every country must solutions to each of its own problems and peculiarities. We cannot go and copy how they did it in America. We must deal with these issues us ourselves, that is why we side this is a game of inclusion, not excluding.”
The second BBI meeting is scheduled for Kakemega County on Saturday, January 18, with a section of the local leaders who include 12 national lawmakers vowing to boycott the event.