Raila politicizing President's foreign visits, claims Senator Elachi
09 December 2015, 16:48
Nairobi -Senate Majority Whip, Beatrice Elachi has told off those criticizing President Uhuru Kenyatta over his frequent trips to foreign countries.
The Nominated Senator accused opposition Chief Raila Odinga of politicizing the matter, noting that the Orange Democratic Movement party leader knows the value of the visits because he used to travel abroad on behalf of President Kibaki when he was Prime Minister.
Speaking to News24, Elachi said it is wrong for leaders who held plum posts in past regimes to criticize the Head of State when they very well know the value the foreign trips add to the country.
Raila on Monday at Rangwe in Homa Bay County during the burial of Nairobi Governor Evans Kidero's father, Johnson Kidero, hit out at President Kenyatta over the numerous foreign trips he has made since coming to office in 2013.
The Coalition for Reforms and Democracy leader asked the President to cut down on his foreign travels and instead focus on rebuilding the country. President Kenyatta has reportedly made 43 trips in the three years he has been in power.
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"It is dishonest for some leaders, especially those who held high profile jobs in the previous government to trash President Kenyatta international visits. Raila who has been vocal on the issue himself made several foreign trips as Prime Minister on behalf of President Kibaki," said Elachi.
The Senator explained that it is misleading to compare the foreign travels made by the former Head of state, whom she noted was ill when he assumed office, with the visits President Kenyatta has made.
"The narrative that former President Mwai Kibaki made 33 foreign tours in 10 years he was in office doesn't hold water because we all know he assumed office when he was on a wheelchair after an accident. Raila represented him in the travels," she said and emphasized that the matter should not be made a political agenda.
"Our opposition leaders should be realistic and not politicize every issue. They started with insecurity, corruption, Eurobond now they are foreign travels. We should not play propaganda because of selfish political reasons, tainting the country's image in the process," she observed.
Senator Elachi however pointed out that the delegations of people accompanying President Kenyatta in his travels should be scrutinized to see if they add value to the country.
"Key statehouse officials organizing the trips should ensure those who travel with the President give Kenyans value for their money. There should be no joyriders," she said.
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