Opposition leader Raila Odinga is signalling a ceasefire with President William Ruto after he hosted Nyanza leaders allied to him on Wednesday and instructed them to welcome the Head of State in Homa Bay and Siaya counties.
President Ruto has began a two-day visit of the two counties for what is officially packaged as a development tour but with heavy political undertones after his last visit to Homa Bay was boycotted by Mr Odinga’s sycophants including Homa Bay governor Mama Gladys Wanga.
The president was recieved and by hosted by Wanga and will tomorrow tour Siaya, Mzee Odinga’s home county which is now under the leadership of Governor James Orengo.
Odinga held a meeting with politicians from the two counties in Nairobi where he advised them to embrace the president during his visit for the sake of development.
But the ODM leader has refused to accept that President Ruto defeated him in the last general elections, insisting the vote was rigged and bungled by the electoral commission. It is becuase of this hardline position that his sycophantic allies, especially from the Nyanza region, have kept off the president and his ruling Kenya Kwanza Alliance.
Rangwe MP Lilian Gogo who attended the meeting revealed that Odinga instructed them to travel upcountry and welcome the President Ruto. ODM deputy party leader Wycliffe Oparanya who did not attend the meeting also said that he was privy to the deliberations to welcome the President Ruto in Odinga’s turf.
With pleasure, I joined H.E. President @WilliamsRuto for a consultative meeting at Tom Mboya University in Homa Bay town.
We are working with the National Government to improve and strengthen our county's development efforts. Stay tuned for more details later. pic.twitter.com/9RAz9BxUzu
— Gladys Wanga, CBS (@gladyswanga) January 13, 2023
The meeting came barely a week after Odinga reiterated that Azimio governors were free to work with the Ruto’s administration and should not be perceived as having defected from opposition to join the government.
“The relationship between the county and national government is in the constitution. The two are distinct but must cooperate and work together. That is why governors must work with the national government; it doesn’t mean they are or have defected to UDA or the Kenya Kwanza coalition. The governor has to work with the national government because it’s in the constitution,” Odinga said.
The Azimio coalition leader and President Ruto were fierce rivals in the run-up to the August 9, 2022 elections, which saw their supporters from opposing backyards exhibit hostility towards them.
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