Embakasi East MP Babu Owino has urged Deputy President William Ruto to respect Nasa chief principal Raila Odinga as his [Ruto’s] senior in politics.
Babu Owino says Mr Ruto showed disrespect to Mr Odinga last week, when he accused the veteran politician of hatching a plan to dismantle Jubilee Party. The DP indirectly referred to Mr Odinga as a “political conman”, when he toured Coast region last week.
And now, Embakasi East legislator Babu Owino says Mr Ruto’s choice of words to refer to Mr Odinga, was “harsh”, and sets a bad example to younger leaders like him.
“The Deputy President should respect Raila Odinga, who has been in the field of politics longer than him. Mr Odinga is not a conman, but a statesman, who has sacrificed personal interests for the sake of the public. Mr Odinga forewent his presidential ambition in 2007, 2013 and 2017 for the sake of peace and stability in Kenya,” Babu Owino said on Milele FM breakfast show on Thursday, October 4.
“Today, the government is broke, but the country is still intact because of the political stability it enjoys. Had the opposition not stretched a hand of friendship to Jubilee, Kenya [most likely] would have been chaotic today, given the ruling party currently does not enjoy goodwill from the nation. Imagine a situation where the opposition piles pressure on a government which is broke and does not enjoy political goodwill…,” said Babu Owino.
“The government’s administrative functions are running seamlessly because of the handshake that Mr Odinga had with President Uhuru Kenyatta in March. And now, when Mr Ruto refers to Mr Odinga as a conman, then it sets a bad example to younger leaders looking up to him. Should I insult another leader publicly tomorrow, would you blame me for doing that? We [younger leaders] are emulating what our seniors are doing,” said Babu Owino.
The vocal lawmaker told the DP to, at least, respect Mr Odinga’s clothes and shoes if he [Mr Ruto] finds it hard to accord him respect as a senior politician in Kenya.
“Raila’s suits are very expensive, same to his shoes. If the DP cannot respect Raila politically, he should, at least, show respect to the suits and shoes that the Nasa chief wears every day. I repeat, Raila is not a conman,” said Babu Owino.
The parliamentarian says his eyes are set on the race for Nairobi governor in the 2022 general election.
“I will become Nairobi governor; when that time [for election] comes, don’t refer to me as a contestant, but as governor-in-waiting,” he said.