In Summary
  • The DP said he will not waste time engaging in referendum campaigns but challenged Mr Odinga to accept the outcome if the vote is done.
  • He said Mr Odinga cannot purport to unite Kenyans by using divisive means.
  • Chuka/Igambang’ombe MP Patrick Munene asked Kenyans to oppose the referendum push.

Deputy President William Ruto and a section of Mount Kenya politicians have now backed the referendum calls but vowed to vote against it if the planned changes are meant to create a prime minister’s position for ODM leaders Raila Odinga.

The leaders said they are not scared of a referendum.

Speaking Saturday at Kibugua in Chuka/Igambang’ombe Constituency, Tharaka-Nithi County during a Kenya National Union of Teachers (Knut) fundraiser to buy a bus, Mr Ruto said he will not accept any constitutional change that will burden the citizens.

He said he will not waste time engaging in referendum campaigns but challenged Mr Odinga to accept the outcome if the vote is done.

NOT SCARED

“We are not scared of a referendum and we are waiting for those crusading for it to explain to Kenyans on the changes they want,” said Mr Ruto.

The DP said Mr Odinga cannot purport to unite Kenyans by using divisive means and claiming that referendum was among the issues discussed during the handshake deal with President Uhuru Kenyatta.

“The handshake was meant to unite Kenyans and not anything to do with a referendum,” he said.

Tharaka-Nithi Governor Muthomi Njuki said the Building Bridges committee has changed from uniting Kenyans to pushing for constitutional changes.

Mr Njuki claimed that Mr Odinga is using the handshake to push for his individual interests but maintained that they are ready to shoot down the referendum if it is meant to create more positions and overburden Kenyans.

BUILDING BRIDGES

“What we are getting from the Building Bridges Initiative is contrary to what we thought it was meant for,” said Mr Njuki.

The governor also said that in 2022, the region will rally behind Mr Ruto for the presidency.

Kikuyu MP Kimani Ichung'wah said in 2010, Mr Ruto was against the current constitution while Mr Odinga supported it and it is surprising to see the latter faulting it and calling for changes.

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