Azimio La Umoja leader Raila Odinga has slammed President William Ruto over tax increase at Mukami Kimathi’s funeral in Nyandarua County.
Odinga directly targeted President Ruto who was also in attendance, and questioned the proposed tax increase outlined in the Finance Bill 2023.
The former premier defended the anti-government protests organized by Azimio, stating that his movement is not crazy for staging demonstrations, but rather exercising their constitutional rights on behalf of the country and its people. His remarks, however, caused a stir among the congregation.
Odinga took a trip down the memory lane, reflecting on the historical events and struggles that led to Kenya’s independence, highlighting the importance of unity and cooperation, and Mau Mau’s successful fight for freedom.
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He encouraged the present-day Kenyans to follow in the footsteps of their forefathers and defend their country with courage and determination.
“Watu wote waliungana pamoja wakaanza mambo ya Uhuru…Uhuru wa Kenya ulikuja kwa sababu ya umoja wa wakenya and we want Kenyans to continue being united.
“United Kenyans should continue speaking truth to power, hapana tishwa, hapana ogopa! Unaogopa nini? Sisi kama Azimio si wendawazimu…tuweze tu kuelewana. I have worked with Ruto for many years, he knows me very well…sometimes I see him akipiga kelele huko mimi naangalia tu, ninajua atapoa,” Odinga said.
“Sisi tumetuma watu wetu na yeye ameleta watu wake waongee. Wakielewana sawasawa, lakini mimi ninamwambia ukweli. Gharama ya maisha imepanfa, hapana leta ushuru mingi zaidi…punda amechoka. Jamaa wako hawakuambii, mimi ndio naweza kuambia tu, punda amechoka.”
Odinga’s comments were a response to earlier remarks made by other guests and leaders who spoke at the ceremony, some of whom were aligned with the Kenya Kwanza government. They urged him to end the protests and give President Ruto the opportunity to govern the country.
Odinga however remained steadfast in his position, arguing that the protests were necessary to hold the government accountable and push for necessary reforms.
He emphasized that the country belongs to all Kenyans, and it is their collective responsibility to ensure that their voices are heard and their interests are protected.