In Summary
  • Nasa leader Raila Odinga and President Uhuru Kenyatta met on Friday morning and resolved to work together for the benefit of all Kenyans.

The meeting between Nasa leader Raila Odinga and President Uhuru Kenyatta on Friday sparked reactions from around the country.

Leaders and residents welcomed their resolve to put aside their differences and work together to reconstruct a nation that is responsive to the urgent need for prosperity, fairness and dignity for all Kenyans.

RIGHT TIME

Political commentator and Nasa adviser Joseph Simekha said the decision to hold the meeting was arrived at after Mr Odinga’s January 30, 2018 ‘swearing-in’.

The meeting aimed at toning down political temperatures, he said.

Mr Simekha was however quick to assure that Nasa would still hold even after the Friday morning meeting between the country's two senior politicians.

Retired Anglican Bishop Beneah Salala Okumu welcomed the meeting between the two leaders and said it had come at the right time.

"It is reassuring to hear Mr Odinga and the President have met and promised to work together and unite the country and heal the divisions brought by the last presidential election," said the former bishop of Mumias Diocese.

He asked Jubilee and Nasa politicians to support the two leaders in their quest to heal the country from ethnic divisions ignited by political differences.

He asked the two leaders to address issues of inequality, corruption and tribalism.

Matayos MP Geoffrey Odanga said he hopes the talks will help the country move forward as leaders push for inclusivity.

STATESMANSHIP

Homa Bay Governor Cyprian Awiti said the move to work together would bring peace and people would then concentrate on development.

“The country will now be in the right shape now that leaders can sit together despite the long and difficult political period we have had. On behalf of the people of Homa Bay, I congratulate my party leader [Mr Odinga] for taking this bold decision,” he told the Nation.

“It is a decision that ordinary people cannot take. We are very encouraged and motivated by this because it will open our country to better things.”

Kisii Governor James Ongwae said the two leaders will help the country move forward.

“That the two leaders mutually agreed to stand down on their hard line positions for the sake of Kenya is a show of statesmanship, which is laudable,” he said in a statement.

Mr Ongwae had on many occasions after the October 26 repeat election called for dialogue between the two leaders.

Nyando MP Jared Okello urged President Kenyatta and Mr Odinga to be transparent and cautioned them against non-disclosure of details of the talks.

He said this could breed suspicion among Kenyans.

Kisumu Governor Anyang’ Nyong’o declined to comment on the matter, saying he was yet to meet the ODM party leader.

'BETRAYAL'

In Tharaka-Nithi County, some residents said the show of unity was good for growth and development but it is a betrayal to supporters.

Mr William Mutegi from Chuka Town and Mary Kageni from Chogoria accused Mr Odinga of betraying his followers.

They said they were shocked by his move.

But Mr John Kinoti, a businessman in Chuka Town, appreciated the unity.

Meru Governor Kiraitu Murungi, Senator Mithika Linturi and MCAs said they were optimistic that through the talks, Kenya would be united.

CAUTION

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