Presidential age limit a threat to democracy, says CORD
26 August 2014, 14:23
Nairobi - A section of CORD allied leaders from western Kenya have rebuked and dismissed plans by Jubilee to amend the constitution to set a maximum age for Presidential candidates.
The leaders said the plan is blackmail and intimidation that will fail terribly.
Senator Boni Khalwale (Kakamega) and MPs Wilbur Otichilo (Emuhaya) and Chris Omulele (Luanda) said Jubilee is determined to strangle democracy and push for one party state by locking out popular candidates.
“They are only driven by malice and hatred for Raila Odinga, forgetting that we have so many other potential candidates in CORD. If Jubilee dare bring up their plans to reduce the age requirement for presidential contestants, they must know that am in their age bracket and I will contest for presidency to send them home,” Khalwale said.
He vowed that the opposition will not be cowed in their push for referendum saying it was the only option that will get Kenya back on development track.
“The constitution has given power to the people and referendum gives the people a chance to decide how the country should be run. This is the way to end insecurity, corruption, unequitable distribution of state jobs and to protect devolution,” he declared.
Khalwale said CORD is also working towards ensuring that governors are involved in handling county security saying that will bring a long term solution to escalating insecurity that has gripped the country.
“The referendum will provide solutions to rising incidents of insecurity. The President will be in charge of the National Security Council and governors will chair County Security councils to curb insecurity in the country,” he said.
Otichilo urged Kenyans to support their calls for a referendum to bring more funds to grassroots.
“We need county allocations raised from 15 percent to 45 percent so that county governments can use 40 percent and 5 percent to be directed towards ward development. Devolution has given every Kenyan a right to enjoy the fruit of this nation without depending on the will of the country’s top leadership as it was in the past,” he explained.
He observed that the opposition’s call for referendum is not driven by hunger for power or disrespect for Presidency but by the desire to salvage the nation.
“This country belongs to all of us and we should be involved as Kenyans in the daily running of the country. When Jubilee starts to counter our calls for improving lives of Kenyans by threatening to set age limit for running for Presidency, this shows that they are out of touch with reality,” said Omulele, the Luanda MP.
Omulele said the referendum train has already left the station and nothing will stop their efforts to salvage devolution.
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