Raila: Kenya is hurtling towards dictatorship
OPPOSITION LEADER Raila Odinga delivered a defiant and aggrieved address on Thursday at a Washington think tank, warning that Kenya is hurtling into outright dictatorship.
He said President Uhuru Kenyatta has no intention of relinquishing power through democratic elections.
The Nasa chief also charged that the Kenyatta administration has embarked on “a reign of terror.”
Innocent civilians have been killed during peaceful protests in recent weeks, he said, adding that the Jubilee government has sought to intimidate the Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission and Kenya’s Supreme Court.
Mr Odinga gave a 90-minute speech and question-and-answer session at the Centre for Strategic and International Studies.
Noting that the Kenyan presidency has been dominated by two ethnic communities throughout the country’s 55 years of Independence, Mr Odinga said “the biggest problem in Kenya now is exclusion.”
As a result of domination by “a powerful elite,” some Kenyans are beginning to advocate secession for their regions, he observed. But Mr Odinga did not endorse those calls, instead describing talk of secession on the Coast as “dangerous.”
In comments lacking offers of compromise and reconciliation, Mr Odinga also had harsh words for the US government.
He pointed to the “disappointing role of our partners” in failing to condemn the conduct of the August elections and the new round of voting last month.
Despite the uncompromising tone of his remarks, Mr Odinga offered assurance that “not all is lost.”
He reiterated his call for fresh elections within 90 days under the auspices of a reformed electoral body.
But Mr Odinga gave a dismissive response to a question about possibly accepting a power-sharing arrangement with President Kenyatta.