Azimio la Umoja One Kenya Alliance presidential aspirant Raila Odinga will not participate in the Presidential Debate.
In a statement on Sunday, July 24, the former Prime Minister’s campaign Spokesperson Prof Makau Mutua cited Deputy President William Ruto’s demands as the reason behind their decision.
Makau pointed out that the DP’s demands to have other issues among them corruption be left out of the debate has diverged its purpose.
“That is why he has demanded that the debate not focus on corruption, ethics and governance. These are issues at the core of the Azimio campaign; any debate devoid of these questions will be an insult to the intelligence of Kenyans,” he said.
Makau noted that having Raila on the debate would only mean that he will be campaigning for DP Ruto whom he said has failed in his campaigns.
“It would be a colossal mistake to reward such a person with a national debate. We will not assist his failing campaign; he can explain himself and his poor record to voters without our help
“We plan to take part in a televised town hall at Jericho Social Hall in Nairobi’s Eastlands with ordinary Kenyans to offer our solutions to the challenges facing the country and common people,” Makau added.
On the day of the debate, Raila and his running mate, Martha Karua will instead attend a town hall meeting at Jericho Social Hall in Eastlands, Nairobi.
“Our flag-bearer Rt Hon Raila Odinga and his running mate, Hon Martha Karua, will answer questions put to them by the people of Kenya openly, honestly, and free from what would otherwise be nothing more than empty self-serving political theater,” Mutua said.
Earlier, Raila’s communication director Dennis Onyango had hinted that presidential aspirant might skip the presidential debate.
Taking to his Twitter page, Onyango said the deputy presidential debate was poorly planned and the real issues were not addressed.
He noted that if that would be the case with the presidential debate, then showing up would be a waste of time for Raila.
“A failed debate, a waste of precious time at Media Council of Kenya. Very shoddy, very showbiz. Very lacking substance. If this, is it, don’t be too sure,” Onyango said.
Do you have a story you would like us to publish? Please reach us through firstname.lastname@example.org or call/SMS +254 731 469269