Raila Odinga, the leader of the Azimio, has been informed by President William Ruto that he is directly responsible for ensuring the safety of Kenyans and their property during Monday’s mass protest.
The government, according to Ruto, won’t in any way meddle with the planned demonstrations, but Raila must ensure that no lives or property are in danger.
“We have no problem with you organising demonstrations but please it is your responsibility to work with the police to make sure that the rest of the citizens of Kenya, their lives are not disrupted, their property is not destroyed, their business is not affected and they can go to work (then) you can carry out your demonstrations,” Ruto said.
Ruto called it a fair challenge and stated that Raila had been using demonstrations to hold the nation to ransom for a while, but that the time had come to stop.
“And we must tell my good friend Raila Odinga enough is enough. You cannot continue to blackmail the country.”
Ruto spoke at State House in Nairobi, during a meeting with leaders from Trans Nzoia county headed by Governor George Natembeya.
The President expressed regret that Kitale town is in such a sorry condition but that it has enormous potential to become a city and promised to improve it by building roads and sewer lines.
Natembeya declared that the anticipated mass protest will not occur anywhere in the county.
“There is no room for demonstrations in Trans Nzoia. It is time to work and serve the people,” he said.
Raila reassured detractors that there would be no violence or illegal activity during the oncoming demonstrations.
“We launch a campaign of defiance of peaceful picketing, peaceful protests, boycotts, strikes, disobedience, peaceful petitions, peaceful sit-ins and peaceful demonstrations and it begins today and now.”
In defiance of Raila’s assurances, youth stormed a Communication Authority of Kenya event in Kisumu, ate food, and set equipment and plates on fire in tents as the demonstrations gained momentum in some counties.