No thanks! Ruto tells Raila over ‘handshake’ offer


NAIROBI, Kenya, Aug 6 – Deputy President William Ruto has turned down an offer of a handshake after Tuesday’s election by his closest rival and Azimio La Umoja One Kenya Presidential flagbearer Raila Odinga.

Speaking at the Nyayo National Stadium on Saturday, Ruto stated that he will only sit down with Odinga to agree on their respective roles but not anything that will compromise or undermine the Constitution.

“I want to commit that I love this country so much that I will not participate in something that undermines the constitution of Kenya. I will not participate in anything that brings confusion between separation of power and accountability of the government,” he said.

“I am therefore telling my competitor on the other side that yes I am ready to sit down with him after the elections but only to agree on his roles as the opposition leader.”

The United Democratic Alliance (UDA) flagbearer further committed to accept the outcome of the Tuesday’s poll regardless of the way it goes.

Odinga had earlier said he was ready to shake hands with his main rival DP Ruto whether he wins or not during next week’s general election.

Speaking during his final campaign rally at the Kasarani Stadium, Odinga pointed out that this will enhance the spirit of reconciliation following the hotly contested election.

He indicated that his political ambitions go beyond himself but depends on the goodwill of the nation, in the spirit of reconciliation.

The battle for votes by the two frontrunners has been dominated by mudslinging, tit-for-tat claims of rigging which has led to the elections being taunted ‘cut-throat’ competition.

“I want to assure Kenyans that I will continue with this handshake doctrine, the doctrine of unclenching the fist. For the sake of Kenya, I will shake the hand of my rivals and pay the political price if I have to,” Odinga said.

“I will shake the hands if I win, and I will shake the hands if I don’t.”

DP Ruto also had something for his erstwhile ally cum political foe President Uhuru Kenyatta whom he said he has nothing against committing that he will continue building on the foundation he has set up for the last 10 years.

“We worked together. We achieved much together but as fate would have it you chose a different path and I wish you well as you go to retirement. I am very confident that you know my capacity and you have nothing to fear because I will respect the foundation you built. I will respect the things we did together, but I will build on that foundation, and it is going to be phenomenal,” said Ruto.

Saturday marked the end of the 2022 campaigns in accordance with the law and the Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission’s (IEBC) regulation and timelines ahead of the general election.

Source: capitalfm