Ruto: I won't entertain handshakes

President-elect William Ruto making his address during the inaugural meeting with Kenya Kwanza leaders.

President-elect William Ruto at his Karen Residence on September 5, 2022.

Photo credit: Francis Nderitu | Nation Media Group

President-elect William Ruto has said that his administration will not entertain the idea of a handshake, such as the one that occurred between President Uhuru Kenyatta and his rival Raila Odinga in 2018, on grounds that he wants a strong opposition to keep his administration in check. 

“We will have an opposition in Kenya. We will not have a handshake that creates a mongrel of a government where no one knows where the line is. I believe in the rule of law. I do not believe in handshake stories. I believe in an accountable government held to account by a responsible opposition. That is how Kenya is going to move forward,” said Dr Ruto at his Karen residence just hours after the Supreme Court upheld his election win

“I look forward to having a conversation on how they will hold us to account and make sure we deliver on commitments we have made to the people of Kenya...and ensure public resources are put to good use,” he added. 

The president-elect also promised that his administration will respect and honour leaders that have served the country, and that they shall not interfere with deserved privileges and entitlements in retirement.

“We will respect President Uhuru Kenyatta in his retirement, and give him the respect and dignity a former Head of State deserves. We are honourable people. We are not petty and we are not jealous. He has done a good job and he will have his place in the history of Kenya. So nobody should peddle any falsehoods that we harbour anything against the President of Kenya,” said Dr Ruto.

“When our good friend Raila Odinga retires, we will also give him the respect he deserves as a national leader,” he added. 

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