Grand Azimio boost for Raila Odinga presidency

Raila Odinga

Azimio la Umoja presidential candidate Raila Odinga makes his congratulatory remarks at the KICC, Nairobi, on March 12, 2022.  

Photo credit: Francis Nderitu | Nation Media Group

Orange Democratic Movement (ODM) leader Raila Odinga has been endorsed as Azimio la Umoja movement presidential candidate in the August 9 General Election.

Mr Odinga was endorsed at the Azimio la Umoja Movement National Delegates Convention at the Kenyatta International Convention Centre in Nairobi on Saturday.

During the event attended by President Uhuru Kenyatta, the Head of State thanked Wiper Democratic Movement leader Kalonzo Musyoka for supporting Mr Odinga's candidature.

The endorsement now means that Mr Odinga will fly the flag of the Azimio la Umoja coalition and will battle it out with Deputy President William Ruto for the presidency in the August 9 election.

Raila Odinga endorsed as Azimio la Umoja presidential candidate

Mr Kenyatta said the endorsement of Mr Odinga marked the beginning of a journey towards uniting the country and building on the progress of previous administrations and governments.

The President also thanked Mr Musyoka for dropping his bid and backing Mr Odinga, describing the decision as a selfless act that will go a long way in assuring Azimio victory in the August 9 elections.

“This is the day when we begin the journey that will end in August and that journey will be to unite Kenyans and the country,” Mr Kenyatta said.

Uhuru Kenyatta's full speech at Azimio la Umoja NDC

“And I know for a fact that there is no leader among you here who does not have the ability to vie for the presidency. But you have all chosen to put your aspirations aside for the sake of Kenya. Kalonzo has also put aside his desires for the seat and for that, I would like to thank him,” he added.

Mr Odinga said that he had accepted the endorsement and promised to fight for victory in the August election, adding that his presidency will be an all-inclusive one.

He also promised to improve the economy, fight poverty and corruption as well as build on the legacy of President Kenyatta if elected president in August.

“Let me begin by saying I accept the nomination by Azimio la Umoja to vie for president of the Republic of Kenya in the August election. I accept this nomination with absolute gratitude and dedication to our people, our country and all the leaders and parties that have endorsed this.

“You have handed me a strong, broad and unified platform to stand on and additional pairs of hands to help steady the ship,” Mr Odinga said.

He added: “I pledge to lead an all-out war on poverty, unemployment and hopelessness in Kenya and actualise Article 43 of our Constitution which guarantees Kenyans the rights to education, health, food, water, housing and social security. No single Kenyan should ever feel forgotten in our country.”

“I pledge to build an economy that helps every Kenyan make ends meet, put food on the table, pay school fees for their children and save for the future; with a very deliberate focus on women,” Mr Odinga said.

Some of the parties supporting Mr Odinga are Jubilee, ODM, Wiper, Kanu, Narc, DEP, Upia, PNU, Maendeleo Chap Chap, Muungano, DAP-Kenya, UDP, UDM, PAA, Ubuntu among others.