Raila is a coward, I'll debate myself, DP Ruto says

Raila Odinga.

Deputy President William Ruto and Kenya Kwanza presidential candidate (left) and his Azimio la Umoja counterpart Raila Odinga.

Photo credit: File | Nation Media Group
Why Raila was advised to skip presidential debate

Deputy President William Ruto has confirmed that he will attend the Presidential debate, even if he will be alone.

The Kenya Kwanza presidential candidate said he will use the opportunity to articulate his agenda for Kenyans and elaborate on the bottom-up economic model. 

In a scathing attack on Mr Odinga, the DP claimed that the former premier chickened out of the debate because he cannot tell Kenyans why the price of basic commodities shot up since the handshake. 

"He has feared going for the debate because they have no plan and agenda. They have no policies to sell, that is why they are wondering what they will come to do in the debate. They cannot articulate any agenda because they have none. That man who is full of rhetoric lacks clarity on what he wants for Kenyans, " said the DP. 

Dr Ruto spoke on Sunday at Erera grounds in Kisii town during a political rally which he used to rally support for Kisii County United Democratic Alliance (UDA) candidates. 

He added," He cannot come for the debate because he has no plan. He doesn't know what to say. I want to assure Kenyans that I will attend that debate very early, because I want to explain to Kenyans the Kenya Kwanza Alliance plan."

Dr Ruto said he will use the Tuesday debate to explain his agenda for youths, widows, health, agriculture and infrastructure. 

Mr Odinga had already indicated that he will not be attending the presidential debate slated for Tuesday. 

The former Prime Minister will instead attend a town hall meeting at Jericho Social Hall in Nairobi’s Eastlands.

Giving reason for snubbing the debate, the former prime minister – through Professor Makau Mutua, the spokesperson of Raila Odinga Presidential Campaign Secretariat – said he cannot participate in an exercise where his rival is dictating what kind of questions are to be asked.

Dr Ruto claimed that Mr Odinga had developed fear for the August 9 General Election abd that is why he was raising endless issues. 

Dr Ruto told his boss President Uhuru Kenyatta to ensure a peaceful election even if he is the Azimio la Umoja One Kenya Coalition Council Chairman. 

"He has to differentiate between being the President and the Azimio chairman where he is pushing for Odinga's presidency. He must ensure a peaceful, free and fair election," DP Ruto told President Kenyatta. 

Ruto said Azimio la Umoja-One Kenya Coalition Presidential candidate Raila Odinga had chickened out of the debate because he allegedly lacks a development agenda for Kenyans. 

DP was accompanied by Kenya Kwanza Alliance leaders Moses Wetangula and Musalia Mudavadi. 

Kisii County UDA leaders were led by gubernatorial candidate Ezekiel Machogu and senatorial candidate and outgoing Kisii Deputy Governor Joash Maangi. 

Why Raila was advised to skip presidential debate