In a bid to ease political tensions, President William Ruto implored Azimio La Umoja One Kenya Coalition Party leader Raila Odinga to consider engaging in dialogue during an Iftar dinner at Nairobi’s State House on Tuesday, April 17. This request comes after Odinga announced that the Azimio La Umoja coalition intends to resume anti-government protests following the holy month of Ramadhan.
In his address, President Ruto emphasized the importance of allowing the bipartisan committee to work on finding solutions to pressing issues. He urged leaders from both sides to support the committee’s efforts, stating, “Let us give this committee a chance.” President Ruto also highlighted the need for agricultural development and the implementation of Universal Health Coverage (UHC) in Kenya.
However, Azimio-affiliated leaders have dismissed the Kenya Kwanza Alliance’s proposal for bipartisan talks. Wiper Party leader Kalonzo Musyoka announced the opposition’s refusal to participate in a parliamentary-led process, asserting their preference for an extra-parliamentary approach. The opposition also criticized the government for initiating a motion on the talks without including minority leadership.
Odinga’s Azimio coalition maintains that they will only engage in discussions with Ruto’s side through an extra-parliamentary process, and they have instructed their representatives not to cooperate with their Kenya Kwanza Alliance counterparts. The opposition claims that the government’s proposed terms of reference fail to address the issues raised by the opposition.