Envoys’ charges against Raila harmful to Kenya – Salim Lone
An adviser to Raila Odinga has accused ambassadors of siding with President Uhuru Kenyatta and putting Kenya at higher risk of harm.
In a statement on Monday, Salim Lone said the envoys have gone beyond interference with Kenya’s electoral process to a full-fledged entry into the battle itself.
Lone noted they accused Raila of “stoking and threatening violence” and using “extra-Constitutional measures to seize power”.
He said: “Rather than promoting peaceful healing, this condemnation of Raila will lead to increased radicalisation on both sides of the divide.
“Given the power and the armed might of the state, the envoys’ charges could lead to Uhuru’s regime doing further harm to Kenya’s stability with the kind of actions that have been in full global glare.”
Actions by the government that have attracted global attention include the shutdown of three major TV stations before the swearing-in of the Nasa leader as the people’s president.
Several Opposition leaders have also been arrested over this inauguration, the most prominent case being that of lawyer Miguna Miguna who was deported to Canada.
Lone said the ‘glare’ increased after the regime’s refusal to heed orders by the highest courts on the TV stations’ shut down for nearly a week.
He said Raila has been holding the country together in the face of his supporters’ intense outrage and demand that he lead them” in a much more visceral response to the regime’s stealing the election”.
“Even after the swearing-in, Raila continued to talk of a dialogue and in fact met Godec again last week to pursue it.”
Lone warned: “Those wanting more forceful action to correct the rigged election and state killings will be even more enraged, and Jubilee supporters will now want Uhuru to clamp down even more forcefully and lawlessly than he has.
Eleven envoys, led by Robert Godec of the US, asked the Opposition to accept Uhuru and William Ruto as the legitimate President and Deputy President.
“The Opposition needs to accept this as the basis for the dialogue that it and many Kenyans want,” Godec said in a statement they all signed on Sunday.
In his response on Sunday, Raila criticised the ambassadors saying Kenya is independent and does not need their advice.
“They can only be observers… we know their positions,” he said. “They cannot come out here and tell us about democracy… we do not need advice from Godec and British High commissioner.”