BUNGOMA, Kenya, Mar 15 – A section of Western Kenya leaders have rallied behind President Uhuru Kenyatta, saying they will back his bid in 2017.
The leaders mainly from the Opposition said they wanted to be in government.
Led by Bungoma Governor Ken Lusaka, the leaders said the Opposition had nothing to offer.
Those who spoke in support of the current regime included Bernard Shinali, Ben Washiali, John Waluke, Malulu Injendi, Sakwa Bunyasi, Janet Nangabo, Reginalda Wanyonyi, Moses Otsula, Dan Wanyama, Patrick Wangamati and Ayub Savula. Former Ministers Eugene Wamalwa and Noah Wekesa also urged Luhyias to back the Government.
Also present were Senate Majority Leader Kithure Kindiki, Chuka Igamba Ng’ombe MP Muthomi Njuki and Funyula MP Paul Otuoma.
They spoke during a church service at St Mary Magdalene, Kimatuni, Bungoma County attended by Deputy President William Ruto.
Ruto told parties in the Jubilee Coalition to join the alliance and stop hanging on their small parties.
He said it was high time for the parties to fold and seek identity in Jubilee Alliance Party.
“If we are in Jubilee we should stop this talk of am in Jubilee but my colour is red, yellow, blue…”
Ruto said the government will serve all areas irrespective of their political affiliation. He cited Government’s efforts to reduce electricity prices and schools fees, improve health facilities and tarmacking roads.
The leaders also asked the government to assist the ailing sugar companies in Western Kenya. They said Mumias and Nzoia sugar companies was the mainstay of the region and should be put back to their capacity.
Ruto said the government will ensure the sugarcane industry did not collapse saying Sh1 billion had been set aside for Mumias Sugar Company.
However, he said there will be changes in the sugar company before the money is released.
He also said those who were involved in the plunder of the sugar company should be held to account.
“The government will ensure that farmers are protected from individuals who are out to fleece them
Shinali (Ikolomani) said: “We people of Western Kenya should join and support the government because it’s going to win the next elections. We should rather be in government than talk from outside.”
Waluke (Sirisia) said although he was elected in the Opposition ticket, he was already working with the government.
Washiali, Nangabo and Otsula urged western Kenya leaders to join the Jubilee Alliance Party in readiness for the 2017 elections.
They argued that the Opposition had nothing to offer the Luhya community.
The leaders also asked the International Criminal Court to drop charges against Deputy President Ruto. They described the charges as dubious.
Lusaka urged county governments to work with the national government. He backed calls that Luhyas should back the current regime in its re-election bid in 2017.
Kindiki, in reference to the corruption allegations facing MPs, said those who were involved in corruption should carry their own cross without dragging other people in their predicament.