Capital FM (Nairobi)

Kenya: Presidential Candidates Intensify Vote Hunt

Nairobi — With less than a month left before the March 4 General Election, presidential candidates continued with their nationwide hunt for votes that will determine the successor of President Mwai Kibaki.

Prime Minister Raila Odinga of the Coalition for reform and Democracy (CORD) and his running mate Kalonzo Musyoka spent their second day in Nyanza with rallies in parts of Migori County.

The PM addressed a rally at Ntimaru while Musyoka campaigned in Getonganya and Kegonga before they converged at Customs grounds in Isebania for a joint rally.

Odinga asked Kenyans to shun tribalism and embrace tolerance in order to realize peace and national cohesion.

He said CORD will strive to fight negative ethnicity that has contributed to stagnation in national development.

The Prime Minister blamed entrenched tribalism to bad leadership that condoned the vice since independence.

He took issue with the move by the Communication Commission of Kenya to switch off frequencies of the Royal Media Services.

"It is not proper to switch off this radio stations, particularly at this time of campaigns when Kenyans need them most to enable them make informed decisions during the elections," he added.

Musyoka asked the electorate to elect leaders with international repute and who are able to enhance cooperation with the international community.

"We want to stand tall in the community of nations, what will happen if we elect leaders who will not be welcomed internationally. We will risk being sidelined," he added.

On the development in the area, Musyoka assured locals that the CORD government will improve the road networks to enable residents access market for their goods.

"Already about Sh27 billion has been set aside to tarmac the Isebania -Kehancha - Gwitembe road and construction work will commence soon," he assured.

Deputy Prime Minister Musalia Mudavadi of the Amani coalition spent his day searching for votes in Nairobi County, outlining his policy for the city.

Mudavadi promised to fast-track the pace of industrialisation in the country to create jobs for the youth.

He noted that the informal sector is the biggest employer in the country with over eight million people running their own micro and small businesses yet they remained poor.

If elected, Mudavadi said his government will support the growth of jua kali sector into bigger industries by providing financial, legal and institutional framework for the enterprises while pledging to establish a jua kali authority.

"Who said you must remain jua kali forever? We want jua kali to grow into mega-industries. AMANI will establish an Authority that will oversee your activities," he stated.

NARC Kenya's Martha Karua who was in Elgeyo Marakwet County castigated pollsters for misleading Kenyans.

"The real opinion poll will be the secret ballot; pollsters never disclose their sponsors and can never be trusted," she said, adding that voters will have themselves to blame if they elected tainted leaders.

The former Justice Minister promised to lead the country to greater heights by dealing with impunity and fighting corruption which, she said, had hampered the country's growth chances.

Karua will be winding up her campaign tour of Rift Valley counties on Thursday by visiting Baringo and Nakuru counties.

The Jubilee Coalition team which was on its second day break after launching its manifesto will embark on a campaign tour of the North Rift region for one week starting Wednesday.

The team led by Deputy Prime Minister Uhuru Kenyatta and his running mate William Ruto will start with rallies in Turkwel in Turkana on Wednesday before heading to Lokori, Katilu, Kaikor, Lodwar and Kakuma.

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