Ruto: ‘Reggae’ must stop if focus is on creating leadership posts

Monday, October 26th, 2020 00:00 |
Deputy President William Ruto when he arrived at St Leo Catholic Church for a church service, Mumias East, Kakamega county. Photo/DPPS

Deputy President (DP) William Ruto yesterday warned that the Building Bridges Initiative (BBI) report which is set to be launched today will be rejected, if it focused on creating leadership positions.

Dr Ruto led several politicians in poking holes in the report, in what appeared to be well choreographed scheme to push for its rejection.

Speaker after speaker attacked the proposal to create the positions of prime minister and two deputy prime ministers, as well as the powers given to the President to appoint the holders of the offices, warning that it amounted to creating an imperial presidency.

Addressing rallies in Mumias town and Shianda market in Kakamega County, the DP insisted that Kenyans should not be coerced into supporting the document.

“Kenyans will reject the BBI report if its focus is about creation of leadership positions at the expense of addressing the needs of those in boda boda business, wheelbarrows, mama mboga and barbers, among others,” the DP warned.

Speaking at Our Lady of Assumption Catholic Church in Matungu constituency, the DP said changing the Constitution should involve all Kenyans and not a few individuals.

He said Kenyans should be allowed to go through the documents and make their own decisions without being coerced.

He added that it was wrong for some leaders to threaten Kenyans that the BBI report would be passed whether they liked it or not.

“Kenyans are ready to talk about BBI. But leaders should stop using threats and insults like telling the people that no one can stop reggae, whether they like it or not,” said Ruto.

The DP said Kenyans have every right to be heard on matters pertaining to BBI, noting that the issue would affect their lives in future and should, therefore, be allowed to read and make informed decisions.

Present were MPs Benjamin Washiali (Mumias East), Didmus Barasa (Kimilili), Charles Gimose (Hamisi), Malulu Injendi (Malava), Justus Murunga (Matungu), Dan Wanyama (Webuye West), Caleb Kositany (Soy), Ndindi Nyoro (Kiharu) and Kimani Ichung’wa (Kikuyu).

Others were former Sports Cabinet Secretary Rashid Echesa, former Senators Boni Khalwale and Johnstone Muthama.

The MPs expressed their reservations about the report, saying there is nothing to smile about especially on matters pertaining to ordinary Kenyans.

They said issues affecting sugarcane, maize and coffee farmers have not been captured in the report but instead more focus was on creation of new positions.

“The BBI report has not said anything about how to improve the lives of sugarcane, maize or coffee farmers in this country. This means the report has not addressed the concerns of the ordinary people,” said Washiali.

He said the move to change the Constitution was suspect, wondering why President Uhuru Kenyatta could not embark on the process when he took over power in 2013.

Ichung’wa said the funds that have been set aside for the referendum should be used to improve the country’s economy.

Nyoro and Gimose said the document was “sneaking back” the imperial presidency, saying the move would return the country to the dark days.

“Our great leaders like the late Kenneth Matiba opposed an imperial presidency in this country.

Now we have a situation where the President will appoint Deputy President, Prime Minister and their deputies. We should reject this,” said Nyoro.

Kositany said Kenyans should be allowed to read the document so as to make informed decisions without being coerced.

Khalwale and Muthama said laws were not the problem facing the country but failure to implement the Constitution. —DPPS

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