Kenya's leading opposition candidate has debated moderators after incumbent President Uhuru Kenyatta turned down an invitation to the presidential debate.
Recent polls show Raila Odinga closing the popularity gap to within four percentage points of Kenyatta. Local media outlets that organized the debate Monday said the president declined to participate in the debate. Kenyatta is increasingly under fire over runaway corruption, insecurity and health, among other issues.
It's Odinga's fourth attempt to become president. He unsuccessfully petitioned the Supreme Court to challenge Kenyatta's 2013 win, claiming the system was set up to allow more easily manipulated manual tallying and voting. Kenyatta received a majority of votes to avoid a runoff with Odinga, but he did so by only 4,099 votes out of more than 12.3 million cast.
Raila Odinga’s pitch was compelling. Kenya’s 5th properly commanded the stage and, genuinely spoke to the Hearts and Aspirations of ALL Kenyans. The contest for the 6% UNDECIDED voters has been firmly settled, while a portion of Uhuru’s own voters has been decisively persuaded to change their minds. Congratulations Mr. P R E S I D E N T!
Gesiora Nyanchwani: Hate him or Love him, Raila did well tonight. He was presidential, respectful, a walking repository of knowledge and wisdom.
I have a confession. In 2013, I grudgingly accepted Uhuru as the president. Their narrative of uniting the two warring communities, did sink well and for four years other than corruption, and economic mismanagement, he has been a wonderful president. I could stand in a crowd and point to him as my president. And will wish him a happy retirement.
I think Raila allayed any fear to do with land, housing, insecurity, economy, politics, inclusivity and all. Above all, he was respectful to his competitors going to show his magnanimous heart. If we united the Kikuyus and Kalanjins, now we can honour the wishes of the six provinces and vote for him and we will be one big happy family.
Is it too much to ask?
Isaac Baba Dota : To me this statement by Raila moved me, so touching and moving, I cried. “The poor lighting in detention damaged my eyes. You often see them watering. Its all in my fight for what I believe is right for this country Kenya”.
I Isaac Baba Dota and my family will wholeheartedly vote for Raila amollo Odinga