Kenya’s Opposition Chief Raila Odinga says President Uhuru Kenyatta’s invitation to him and the CORD co-principals to join the Head of State at Afraha Stadium in Nakuru to celebrate Madaraka Day on Wednesday was not timely, and that is why they snubbed the event.
Speaking at Uhuru Park where CORD held its rally on Wednesday June 1, Raila said he and the CORD leadership would have graced the event had President Kenyatta tendered his invitation earlier.
“President Kenyatta invited me and the CORD leadership to Nakuru so that we celebrate Madaraka Day together, but we did not go. We did not boycott the event. It is only that his invitation was sent very late. So we couldn’t honour it,” Raila said.
The former premier maintains he is open to dialogue with the state’s executive on the IEBC standoff.
“We want peaceful dialogue. They say it is Raila and Kibaki who appointed Isaack Hassan. When you give birth to a child and he becomes a thief, it is not the parent’s mistake. We did not know about the chicken gate saga when we were appointing the current IEBC commissioners. There will be no elections (in August 2017) if the IEBC commission remains intact,” Raila said.
President Uhuru Kenyatta on Tuesday, May 31 hosted Raila Odinga and Senate Minority Leader Moses Wetangula at State House Nairobi – a move that many interpreted as an olive branch Kenyatta is extending to the CORD leadership – and sections have speculated that the meeting would yield a long-lasting solution to the IEBC standoff.