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Kenya: Prepare for Another Defeat, President Kenyatta Tells Opposition

President Uhuru Kenyatta and his Deputy William Ruto on Saturday took their hunt for votes to Kakamega County, a perceived National Super Alliance stronghold, and told the opposition to prepare for another defeat in the August 8 election.

Mr Kenyatta asked the Luhya community not to gamble by supporting Nasa presidential candidate Raila Odinga since he had nothing to offer.

He said Mr Odinga and his Nasa co-principals had sensed defeat and had resorted to insults and utterances meant to cause divisions.

At Bukhungu Stadium, Mr Kenyatta — who was accompanied by several Jubilee MPs, senators and governors and senior government officials — shocked the crowd when he took less than two minutes to address the gathering before walking to his official limousine.

In the address, a visibly agitated President Kenyatta said he would not dwell on trivialities and insults like his rivals, but would instead tell Kenyans what Jubilee would do for them.

Mr Ruto said the opposition leaders were accusing him of giving President Kenyatta’s administration a bad name and challenged them to prepare to face him in 2022 polls.

“In 2022, I will be ready to face them as a presidential candidate and I can assure them of another defeat since they are always grumbling about everything the government does,” he said.

Mr Kenyatta said Nasa leaders had run out of ideas and were busy hurling insults at him and other Jubilee leaders in a campaign calculated to fan animosity among different communities.

“Unlike our competitors in the opposition, we are here to humbly request you to support our re-election so that you can have a stake in the next government if we clinch victory,” said Mr Kenyatta.

The President kicked off his campaigns at Malinya Market in Ikolomani, the backyard of Kakamega Senator Boni Khalwale, before heading to Khayega and Shinyalu.

During stop-over rallies, Mr Kenyatta said: “In 2013, you did not give us your votes since we did not campaign in Kakamega; but this time round we have come knocking on your doors; please do not disappoint us.”

An earlier itinerary had indicated that the President would tour Matungu, Mumias, Butere and Khwisero but the programme was abruptly changed on Saturday morning, with sources attributing this to intelligence reports of expected hostilities.

At Malinya Market, drama unfolded at the sportsground usually used to host bullfighting contests after a group of villagers went to the field with bulls, sparking a confrontation with police officers deployed to guard the venue ahead of the scheduled visit by President Kenyatta.

They were later allowed to proceed with a bullfighting contest for about an hour before the arrival of President Kenyatta and his team.

At Bukhungu Stadium, Mr Kenyatta said Jubilee had a clear development agenda for western region and had implemented several projects, including the tarmacking of 250km of roads and provision of medical equipment worth Sh800 million to Kakamega County Referral Hospital and Malava sub-county hospital.

He said the Jubilee administration would inject an additional Sh500 million to turn around the fortunes of Mumias Sugar Company.

“We have so far injected Sh3.1 billion for revival of the sugar miller but there have been challenges in the management of the firm,” said Mr Kenyatta.

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