7 June 2014

Kenya: President Kenyatta Says He Is Ready for Dialogue On Matters That Affect Kenyans

President Uhuru Kenyatta today said he is ready and willing to hold dialogue with all leaders on various issues that affect the lives of Kenyans.

President Kenyatta however ruled out engaging in conditional talks that do not add value to the country's transformative agenda.

"My doors are open for talks on issues that move the country forward.I am ready to meet those willing to contribute to national development. I believe that no single person has a monopoly of ideas. Let us sit down and address real issues," the President said.

He said talks based on demands by Cord will not happen.

President Kenyatta was speaking during the funeral service of the late Eflyne Otieno, former employee of Geothermal Development Company and daughter to Rongo MP Dalmas Otieno at Kangeso secondary school in Rongo, Migori County.

President Kenyatta was responding to requests by several leaders from the larger Nyanza, led by Migori Senator Dr. Wilfred Machacge, who had requested him to agree to meet with Raila for the proposed national dialogue.

He urged leaders to tone down on political rhetoric and give Kenyans a chance to work together for tangible development adding that there is need to cool off the current political temperatures.

President Kenyatta said the Government has a social responsibility to serve all Kenyans equally and should be given a chance to deliver on its constitutional mandate.

He said Kenyans went to elections last year and chose their leaders who should now be given a chance to deliver on their pledges.

"Keep political temperatures down. Let us love one another as Kenyans. God created us to live together peacefully," the President said.

The President also called on leaders to respect one another saying competitive politics should not create enmity between losers and winners.

"winners and losers in the election contest are all Kenyans who should come together in development", said the president.

He reminded the politicking leaders that campaigns ended with last year's general elections and they should now concentrate on issues of national importance.

"Tribal politics will only polarize the country. Let us shun divisive politics that only serve partisan interests," he added.

Nairobi Governor Evans Kidero said he will continue working with the Jubilee government for the next five years and extend the cooperation if president Kenyatta is re-elected to office in 2017.

He said the presidency is usually desired by many politicians but those leaders must now appreciate and recognize that Mr. Kenyatta is in power.

He said the constitution allows those in the opposition who are willing to work with the national government to do so without fear.

He said he will continue with his current initiatives to bring development to the people.

Mr Otieno asked the president to continue his current efforts to unite the whole country "without fear".

"Bring all Kenyans together. I believe this you can do", said Mt Otieno adding that the president will have done an incomplete job if he only succeeds uniting some communities.

The former cabinet Minister who talked of his 27 years in politics, some of them working with the president asked fellow leaders to stop politicizing the security issue in the country.

He said no leader should glorify a criminal in veiled reference to the recent meeting between Raila Odinga and former Mungiki leader Maina Njenga after which the Cord leader blamed the government over the recent gun attack on Njenga.

"There is need to deal with mungiki in similar manner with Al-Shaabab. Nobody should praise a criminal", said Dalmas.

Dr. Machage who talked with passion over the need for dialogue between the president and the opposition requested the head of state to accept calls for dialogue as proposed by Cord leader Raila Odinga.

He said holding the proposed dialogue was both heroic and a sign of statesmanship .

"Kindly agree to sit and hold dialogue with Raila. There is need to hold the dialogue to unite the country", pleaded Machage.

The remains of the late Ms Otieno were laid to rest at his father's Kangeso farm.

Others who attended the ceremony included former Rarieda MP Raphael Tuju and Migori County Commissioner Ms Anne Ngetich


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