By Calvin Osiemo
Coalition for Reforms and Democracy leaders have criticized President Uhuru Kenyatta’s speech delivered during the Mashuajaa Day celebrations at the Nyayo National Stadium. The leaders have accused the President of turning a blind eye to burning issues that are currently affecting the nation and cited some examples including the teachers’ pay row, the economic crisis, corruption, and the contentious media bill.
CORD co-principal Moses Wetang’ula accused the president of disrespecting the ICC by failing to honor its warning against holding prayer meetings for DP Ruto and Joshua Sang.
“Everything that needs to be addressed was not addressed, and that includes corruption that is endemic, ethnic exclusivity that is part of the Jubilee official script, the NYS saga, threats to devolution, thefts going on in the name of El-Niño, disrespectful utterances to the international court to which Kenya is part of … the country is technically bankrupt, the nation in a sorry state yet he spoke as business as usual. He has praised hypocritical prayer rallies which threaten national peace and security. For the President even to attack (the) ICC, an international court to which Kenya is a signatory, is most unfortunate, it means the rule of law is under threat from the very government that is supposed to protect and defend the rule of law” said the Bungoma Senator.
Ugunja Member of Parliament Opiyo Wandayi said the President did not utilize the opportunity to give guidance and leadership in regards to the ICC warning by stopping the prayer meetings.
“On national cohesion and integration, he has missed a golden opportunity to provide leadership by putting a stop to the divisive so-called prayer meetings currently being spearheaded by his cronies,” the MP said.
Regarding the controversial media bill, the MPs have supported the President’s sentiments, saying most legislators were willing to delete the contentious clauses from the bill. President Kenyatta said the media should be allowed to operate in a free environment.
Mr. Wetanguula also echoed these sentiments saying the media has the right to operate without gagging.
“I agree with him that we should not negate the gains we have made in media freedom. Let us allow people to write what they want to write and use the laws in place to ensure they do what is right,” said Senator Wetangula.