Statement by Salim Lone on the planned swearing in of Raila Odinga

NASA leader Raila Odinga

There have been calls on Mr Raila Odinga to call off the December 12th swearing-in as it will polarize the nation.

Kenya has never been as polarized as it has been the last few months. It’s polarized because both the August and October elections were stolen, and because of a host of other murderous actions by this regime that have inflamed millions. The country is at a tipping point in a way it never has been before.

Not a single action has been taken by the Kenyatta regime to lower the temperatures. Indeed, even after the Supreme Court validated his 26 October win, and again as he was being sworn in last week, he unleashed the police, who killed more than two dozen lawful protesters.

Mr Odinga’s swearing will be lawful. It will help prevent further polarization by giving Kenyans hope for electoral justice that was denied them, under a genuinely independent IEBC. It will also give new impetus for the People’s Assembly to guide county assemblies in urgently addressing a number of pressing economic and justice issues that will provide material benefits to our people.

Mr Odinga has also always been open to a dialogue. Before this election he sought it to ensure that it would be credibly done, but there was no interest in the dialogue nor in holding an honest election. He has repeatedly indicated his willingness to enter into a dialogue even now, if it is held between equals, as was done in 2008 between a sworn-in President Kibaki and Mr Odinga. Mr Odinga’s only condition for the dialogue is that it must have an agreed agenda, which should, unlike in 2008, include electoral justice.

Mr Raila Odinga is holding the country together through his commitment to pursuing constitutional and peaceful means for resolving issues and crimes against Kenyans that have brought us to this sorry and explosive pass. The stolen elections apart, these have included the brutal torture and killing of IEBC IT Chief Chris Msando and the intimidation of the entire Commission; the abuse and threats against Supreme Court justices; and the killing of scores of unarmed Kenyans lawfully protesting these crimes.