Nairobi — President Uhuru Kenyatta on Sunday said he was ready to hold a constructive dialogue with former Prime Minister Raila Odinga.
However, he asked the opposition leader to refrain from issuing threats to the government and urged him to also respect the presidency just as he (Kenyatta) would do if Odinga were the president.
"CORD leaders should learn to practice mature politics and desist from constantly issuing threats and insults to a popularly elected government. I want to tell my brother Raila Odinga to respect the Presidency. If he was elected the President, I would not be standing by the roadside to insult him. Competition is not enmity and its time leaders respected one another for peace and harmony to prevail in Kenya," he said.
Kenyatta said if there is to be any dialogue it would be issue based as opposed to political contests that are hurting the peace of the country.
According to him, his government is ready to incorporate views and suggestions of people with a positive mind that will help Kenya address the challenges it is facing but made it clear that he will not entertain any attempts to frustrate the government's efforts of promoting development and peaceful co-existence in the country.
He made it clear that he will not be drawn in threats being issued by Odinga's CORD party.
The president further called on Kenyans to work with the government to expose criminals behind the attacks that have left scores of people killed and property destroyed.
He said only healthy public and government cooperation will help the country tackle criminal activities in the country.
"But we cannot create the dream nation in an insecure environment. Let us support our security agencies by exposing criminal elements in the spirit of being our brother's and sister's keepers. Security is crucial to creation of jobs and Kenya's transformative agenda. Our youth must guard against self-seekers duping them with a better life after death in order to engage in terrorism and other criminal activities," he urged.
Kenyatta was speaking at Mlango Kubwa after attending a church service at Redeemed Gospel Church in Huruma together with his deputy William Ruto.
Kenyatta also used the opportunity to campaign for The National Alliance party candidate in the Mathare by-election slated for August 7.