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Shelve push for repeat election, Godec tells Nasa

Anthony Mwangi and Seth Onyango @PeopleDailyKe

United States Ambassador to Kenya Robert Godec yesterday told the National Super Alliance (Nasa) it is not possible for the country to hold another election as demanded by the Opposition outfit.

Though Godec reiterated the need for dialogue between President Uhuru Kenyatta and Nasa leader Raila Odinga, he dismissed demands for election repeat as not workable.

“The country’s leadership need to talk to each other and unite the country coming from the tense election period,” he said after separately meeting National Assembly Leader of Minority John Mbadi and his Senate counterpart Moses Wetang’ula.

“According to the ambassador, we can’t have another election, but we need to work with the outcome of the previous elections,” Mbadi told reporters at Parliament Buildings, shortly after he met Godec. Both meetings were not open to the media.

The Opposition has been clamouring for dialogue with the Jubilee leadership, saying they want to discuss electoral reform and a fresh election. Godec, who has in the past week held talks with parliamentary leaders said focus should be directed on uniting the country and not on selfish interests.

Last week, he held talks with Senate Speaker Kenneth Lusaka and Senate Leader of Majority Kipchumba Murkomen. The statement is not likely to go down well with the Opposition who have been accusing Western diplomats accredited to Nairobi of “siding with Jubilee”.

Upon his return to the country, Wiper leader Kalonzo Musyoka hit at the envoys for allegedly backing the Jubilee government in dictating on the agenda of the proposed dialogue.

The US envoy said yesterday, such dialogue should be centred on addressing issues that came up from the polls last year. Godec said his country was ready and willing to assist Kenya in addressing electoral issues raised by the Opposition.

“Dialogue is very important for the progress of the country; the leaders need to come together for the sake of the future of this country,” he said.

And addressing the media separately after the talks, Wetang’ula and Mbadi said Nasa was ready to shelve their plot to swear-in Opposition leader Raila Odinga as the ‘People’s President’, if President Uhuru Kenyatta agrees to the idea of constructive dialogue.

Wetang’ula said the opposition would shelve the planned move if the President opens up talks on electoral reforms. The Senate Minority Leader said the opposition will abandon the swearing-in exercise only if the government agrees for talks. Said Mbadi: “The country needs to have a way forward and the arrogance in Jubilee is not helping matters.

Jubilee needs to realise that they cannot run this country on their own…this country needs all of us… we have to run it together. This is a do-or-die for us as a country.” Wetang’ula, who is also the Bungoma Senator said there is no stopping the coalition clamour for electoral reforms.

Uhuru has committed to talks only touching on his economic blueprint for the country, but that hasn’t augured well with the opposition. The President has reiterated often that his priority i on the ‘Big Four’ development roadmap that focuses on health, housing, industrialisation and food security.

But the opposition has stuck to their grudge of losing in two presidential elections last year, with Wetang’ula insisting yesterday: “It is idle for us to sit down with Kenyatta to talk about the Standard Gauge Railway yet there are so many questions that will arise from that conversation with no answers.

Let us first fix the politics of the country then we will address the other issues.” Speaking during his meeting with Godec last week, Lusaka stated that the proposed dialogue should be within the confines of the Constitution.

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