Kenya: Odinga, Ruto Allies Headed for BBI Clash

President Uhuru Kenyatta (centre) in a show of unity with Deputy President William Ruto (left) and opposition leader Raila Odinga, during the launch of the Building Bridges Initiative report at Bomas (file photo).
28 January 2020

Members of Parliament allied to Deputy President William Ruto have flexed their political muscles in readiness to counter the ongoing Building Bridges Initiative (BBI) meetings, which they have christened "BBI 1" and the parallel rallies "BBI 2".

In a show of might, the group under the auspices of the Jubilee Parliamentary Group announced Monday that they were planning to conduct the first "BBI 2" rally in Nakuru on February 8, just two weeks before the opposition leader Raila Odinga-led group takes its rally to the same town.

The delegates, who complained that Mr Odinga's Orange Democratic Movement (ODM) party had usurped the BBI campaigns, ruled out the possibility of holding a parallel campaign to counter Mr Odinga, asserting that they would only hold one rally at a time.

Senate Majority Leader Kipchumba Murkomen said the Nakuru rally will be about issues raised by the BBI and not personalities and positions for the political class.

"We will have conditions for those attending. They must Kenyans who are willing to engage in a conversation about the common mwananchi," Mr Murkomen said.


The more than 150 MPs, who kept reiterating that they were not only drawn from Tangatanga but "Jubilee and like-minded leaders", said they were in full support of the BBI, but expressed concerns that the BBI popularisation campaigns have so far been about personalities and positions for the political class.

"This is in stark contrast to the original objectives of the discourse. We are desirous of shifting the discussion back to the people and their issues," the statement said.

Although the delegates who met at the Lake Naivasha Resort encouraged Kenyans to attend the ongoing meetings already announced by BBI 1, they said BBI 2 will ensure the inclusion of other stakeholders: business people, farmers, professionals, youth, and farmers.

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