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Ignore Raila call for vote, Coast leaders tell Uhuru

Coast leaders, including some from the Opposition, on Thursday urged President Uhuru Kenyatta to ignore the push for a referendum by Cord leader Raila Odinga.

They spoke as President Kenyatta challenged the Opposition to accept the outcome of the last General Election and give his government time to serve the people. The function at Taveta Grounds also saw Lands Cabinet Secretary Charity Ngilu criticise Cord leaders although her role does not permit her to engage in politics.

Politicians, among them Cord MPs from the Coast, asked President Kenyatta to ignore the Cord leaders and their criticism.

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Taveta MP Naomi Shaban (TNA) provoked the salvo of accusations when she described Mr Odinga as being bitter after losing the presidential election in March last year.


“We want to tell him to sit back and watch Mr Uhuru Kenyatta lead and develop this country for 10 years,” the Deputy National Assembly Majority leader said.

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Mr Peter Shehe, the FPK MP for Ganze said: “We at the Coast do not want any form of disruptions”.

Mwatate MP Andrew Mwadime (ODM) asked the President to ignore Opposition critics and “noisemakers” and concentrate on development.

Taita Taveta Woman Representative Joyce Lay (ODM) thanked the President for initiating projects in the county, saying, they had opened up job opportunities for wananchi.

The President told the Cord team to show leadership by working to raise people’s standards of living instead of engaging “in endless politics.”

“The responsibility of any leader is to respect the decision of the people,” Mr Kenyatta said at Sowen Primary School in Taveta.

“Elections are gone and the people cannot eat your empty words. They will eat your sweat because they elected you to serve them,” he said.

In an apparent response to the criticism Mr Odinga levelled against the Jubilee administration, the President said his government will work for all people irrespective of how they voted.

He urged Opposition leaders to work with the government to empower the people economically even as they await election time to start campaigns. (READ: Raila: We are not seeking regime change)

“Governors, too, must know that they have to work with the government and we will work together irrespective of the party you belong to,” he said.

The President addressed the public after opening a modern market and a sub-county office in Taveta.


He inspected progress of the Arusha Holili/Taveta/Voi Road and the One Stop Border Post, which is expected to open up trade between Kenya and Tanzania.

Taita Taveta Governor John Mruttu said his government was focused on development and working for the people. Coast governors, he said, had also agreed to work together to develop the region.

President Kenyatta announced that he would return to Taveta with his Tanzanian counterpart, President Jakaya Kikwete, to open the two projects.

He announced that at least 140,000 residents from the Coast will be given title deeds next month.

Issuance of the title deeds, the President said, will go a long way in ending the conflicts and wrangles in the region whose main source is land.

The President supported the directive by his Deputy William Ruto to have schools release all certificates they are holding for students and pupils owing them money.

President Kenyatta presents a title deed to a representative of the Taita Taveta University during a rally in Taveta Town on July 17, 2014. With him were Lands Cabinet Secretary Charity Ngilu (left) Taveta MP Naomi Shaban and Taita Taveta Governor John Mruttu. PHOTO | PSCU

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